Washington DC – The Obama administration has signed a historic law enforcement agreement with Cuba, but notably absent from the agreement is for Cuba to stop harboring terrorists like Joanne Chesimard AKA Assata Shakur.
The new memorandum of understanding on law enforcement issues, was signed by our State Department and the Cuban Interior Ministry in Havana, Cuba on Monday. Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes attended the signing on behalf of the Obama Administration. The agreement was signed by Jeffrey DeLaurentis, chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Havana, and Vice Adm. Julio Cesar Gandarilla, the newly appointed Cuban interior minister.
It outlined what could potentially be joint investigations and possible stationing of law-enforcement officials in each other’s countries. Despite the State Department previously saying that talks would include the return of fugitives that Cuba has long harbored, including cop-killer and terrorist Assata Shakur, that no longer appears to be the case.
The Obama administration had explicitly said that they are trying to pass as many agreements as possible before the Trump administration takes over, in order to prevent them from unraveling their policies. With only days to go until President-Elect Donald Trump takes office, it appears that the Obama administration was cared more about getting an agreement signed than Cuba harboring terrorists.
President Obama has stood behind numerous agreements made between the U.S. and Cuba in areas of healthcare, agriculture and as of January 16th, law enforcement issues. According to USA Today, the new agreement outlines U.S.-Cuban cooperation on a number of criminal and security-related issues, including terrorism, narcotics, cyber-security, immigration, money laundering, smuggling and human trafficking. Most notably however, is what is absent from the agreement, the return of fugitives they have long harbored. Terrorist fugitives including New Jersey cop-killer Assata Shakur who received political asylum in Cuba after escaping an American prison for the murder of New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster.
In what would become one of the most notorious, brutal killings of a New Jersey State Trooper, Werner Foerster was gunned down on May 2nd, 1973, when he responded to assist a fellow officer on the New Jersey Turnpike.
The Troopers encountered three members of the Black Liberation Army, a radical group that was responsible for the deaths of at least 10 police officers and multiple injuries to others during a traffic stop. The three BLA members began fighting with the Troopers and were able to disarm Foerster and kill him with his own service weapon. Trooper James Harper was wounded but was able to return fire and kill one of the three suspects.
The two remaining killers were captured and convicted in 1977 for the murder of Foerster. Assata Shakur, who was also a member of the Black Panther Party, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba in 1984. She has since received political asylum from the communist Cuban government. Shakur has since become a darling of the far-left who ignore the fact that she’s a killer and refer to her as a “freedomfighter” and “escaped slave.”
Assata Shakur was classified as a domestic terrorist by the FBI in 2005, with a $1 million reward for assistance in her capture. On May 2, 2013, she was the first woman added to the Most Wanted Terrorist List and the New Jersey Attorney General offered to match the FBI reward, increasing the total reward to $2 million.
While this terrorist has lived out the last three decades on an island, writing books and still acting as voice of ‘the rebellion,’ the Werner Foerster’s family has had to deal with the loss of the hero, while his killer walked free.
The Obama administration had one final opportunity to bring this terrorist to justice, and they failed. With all of these agreements being established, it’s looking less likely that the Trump administration will succeed in securing extradition of terrorists.