DON’T CROSS THE CUBANS….A few weeks ago I met Ann Louise Bardach, and as often happens after you meet someone, I suddenly started noticing her byline here and there. She’s apparently quite the go-to person for news about the both the Cuban exile community and the Cuban opposition generally.

So yesterday I noticed it when she had an article in Slate about Alberto Coll, a conservative Republican who made a fatal mistake:

Coll committed the unforgivable by coming to believe in the late ’90s that the U.S. embargo of Cuba was a doomed policy. Once he made those views public, marginalizing Coll was not enough; he had to be destroyed.

The opportunity came in January 2004, six months after his 18-year-old daughter, Celia, was killed in a car accident, which by all accounts left Coll devastated. Around the same time Coll’s father became terminally ill. One colleague at the State Department described him as “catatonic”; another recalled Coll saying “the color has drained from my life.”

Perhaps seeking consolation, Coll decided to visit Cuba, which he was legally allowed to do for either research or to visit relatives. He noted on his visa that he would be visiting an aunt, which he did. But he also had a romantic liaison with a childhood girlfriend and did not note the rendezvous on his visa.

Click the link to find out what happened next.