(CNSNews.com) - Reform Party presidential hopeful Pat Buchanan said Sunday that Cuban dictator Fidel Castro should allow the father of six-year-old Elian Gonzalez to come to the US, along with both of the child's grandmothers, so a judge can decide if he should stay here or return to Cuba. Otherwise, said Buchanan, there is no way to be sure that Juan Miguel Gonzalez, who has asked that his son be immediately returned to Cuba, is not being coerced by Castro's communist regime.
"I don't believe for a second that that father is speaking his heart and mind when he knows that his ex-wife and his boy almost died for freedom," said Buchanan on CBS's Face The Nation.
Elian Gonzalez was found clinging to an inner tube in the Atlantic Ocean last Thanksgiving Day after his mother and ten other Cubans drowned when their boat capsized trying to reach the United States.
The U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) has ruled that the boy must be returned to his father in Cuba, but the deadline the INS set of Jan. 14 has been extended after relatives of Elian in Florida presented a legal challenge through a court in Miami.
Calling the Cuban government a "Stalinist regime," Buchanan said the numerous demonstrations in Cuba demanding that the U.S return Elian are "put on" by Castro's supporters. Buchanan believes that the boy's father should be offered asylum in the U.S. and that he would probably accept it.
"I believe he wants [freedom] too," said Buchanan.