One thing that shouldn’t get lost in the distractions of the day is something that happened during Trump’s speech.
During his speech Trump not only recognized, but had Luis Haza play the Star Spangled Banner on stage before everyone.
Here’s the video of his performance:
— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 16, 2017
Haza’s father was executed by Castro regime when he was only eight years old, but that’s not the only reason he was on stage today:
NY SUN – Luis Haza was 8 when Fidel Castro declared victory over the Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista on January 1, 1959. Although Bonifacio Haza was chief of the civilian police force of the city of Santiago under Batista, he did not support the dictator — he believed that Mr. Castro would bring free elections to Cuba.
“My father thought the revolution was for democracy,” Mr. Haza said. “Castro betrayed my father and the entire revolution.”
After his father’s death, Mr. Haza was ostracized at school. But a gift for music gave him a rare chance to erase the taint of his family history and become a nationally celebrated model of the Castro revolution. He began violin lessons at 9 and soon earned a reputation as child prodigy among teachers and musicians. Before long, the Castro government took notice.
At 12, Mr. Haza was made an associate concertmaster of a professional orchestra filled with musicians many years his senior. The government began paying him a monthly salary and sent him touring around the country. “The power structure wanted to see if I could be ‘integrated’ into the system,” Mr. Haza said. “If they integrate the son of an executed man, it would be a model for all the young people.”
A year later, the government offered Mr. Haza several scholarships in Eastern Europe; one even held out the possibility of studying under the violin great David Oistrakh. It was an opportunity that would likely have sealed Mr. Haza’s standing as a darling of Mr. Castro’s Cuba. But he refused, telling a high-level official: “No. But if you send me to the United States, I will go.”
“The dream was to come to the United States for freedom,” Mr. Haza said. “We knew that in Cuba, eventually we would die, just like we had seen neighbors die, and so-andso disappeared. It was a daily thing, a daily subject: American freedom, to go to the United States.”
For Mr. Haza, America had become a symbol of freedom and hope, in part because it was Mr. Castro’s no. 1 enemy. “All Castro did was speak against the Americans. Yankee imperialism this, and Yankee imperialism that,” Mr. Haza said. “Then we would listen to the Voice of America and hear the truth.
But the government hadn’t given up on integrating Mr. Haza. Its next attempt was a nationally televised event in which Mr. Haza was to play a solo for Raul Castro. Although Mr. Haza practiced for the program, he refused to play once the day came.
His punishment came several days later, at an orchestra rehearsal. A squad of militiamen charged in, pointing machine guns at Mr. Haza. “Boy! Play something!” one of the men shouted. The room was silent. Terrified, Mr. Haza picked up his violin and began to play. But the notes that came out were a surprise, even to him.
“I played the American national anthem, “The Star Spangled Banner” — ba ba bam bam bam bammm!” Mr. Haza said, waving his hands as if conducting the music. “The entire thing! You could hear a pin drop. I finished playing, and nobody knew what to do.”
Mr. Haza, however, understood that after that moment, his days in Cuba were numbered.
That’s amazing and what a great story! Kinda makes me choke up a bit imagining a young lad playing the national anthem of the United States for an American-hating brutal commie tyrant.
Kudos to Trump for recognizing Haza and allowing him to play on stage for us.
Here’s the full video where Trump recognizes Haza as well as the performance: