A leading anti-Castro lobbyist reportedly influenced Radio Marti newscasts to Cuba that misrepresented U.S. policy toward the Caribbean nation.
An investigation conducted by the U.S. Information Agency found that interference in station practices by Jorge Mas Canosa undermined U.S. immigration initiatives, according to The Washington Post.
The newspaper said an investigation lasting more than a year found Mas Canosa, president of the Cuban American National Foundation in Miami, has been a key factor in personnel and management decisions at Radio Marti and arranged for reprisals against staff members who refused his orders.
But on Capitol Hill, supporters of Radio Marti denounced the report and called it an attempt to convince Congress to shut off the flow of federal dollars to the station which beams news, opinion and entertainment broadcasts to the communist-run island.
“It’s another in a series of hatchet jobs with preordained conclusions instituted by certain members of Congress and carried out by their left-wing allies in the federal bureaucracy,” said Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, R-Fla.
He said it was difficult for him to accept the report seriously since it will not be officially released for weeks and since USIA officials have yet to interview Mas Canosa.
Diaz-Balart, Rep. Illena Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., and Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., renewed a request to the General Accounting Office to investigate what they alleged was the politicization of the USIA inspector general’s office.