Sunday, August 27, 2006

CNN Scolded For Hiring Castro's Daughter

The hiring of Fidel Castro's daughter by CNN was "a doozy of a gimmick," says online commentator Jon Friedman, who calls it the network's "latest stretch for publicity." CNN announced that it had hired Castro's daughter Alina Fernandez as a contributor, "just as the Cuban dictator's health became the island's biggest news story since the heady days of Elian Gonzalez, the bewildered little boy who found himself at the center of a media storm in 2000," Friedman writes for
Alina Fernandez
"Maybe CNN had to settle for Castro's daughter because Elian � wasn't available for the gig." Fernandez is the host of a radio program in Miami and author of the book "Castro's Daughter: An Exile's Memoir of Cuba." But Fernandez was a toddler when Castro came to power, and she has had only "sporadic contact" with him over the years, USA Today reports.Friedman notes: "CNN wants the public to believe that Fernandez has unique insights about her homeland and her father, even though she left the country in 1993 � disguised as a Spanish tourist, no less." He adds: "My biggest problem with CNN is that it has been known to pander for viewers as a way to try to keep up with cable news leader Fox."