Monday, 2 February 2015

For the better

Sometimes, and only now and again I find myself in a situation where I can say: I have finally seen it all. I've gone there, been there, done that, nothing can surprise me now; but every time I've been proved mistaken. I feel the same thing is happening right now under our very eyes, without us realizing of it. It's my thinking, and by all account I'm not politician, statesman or even economist, that our government have absolutely no disposition to negotiate with the US authorities. Let me state the facts that have driven me to such pessimist forecast.
It cannot come as a surprise the rather poorly state of Human Rights in Cuba, in fact every NGOs that conducts research and advocacy on human rights that I know of, manage to score Cuba with the lowest in the Americas and one of the worst in the world. Freedom, in my opinion cannot be subject to any bendings, let alone political interpretation. You have it or you don't, this is one of those few things that can be seen in a black and white spectrum. It doesn't change when you cross a border, speak a foreign language or profess certain faith.
Raul Castro said on the CLACS summit this week that Cuba will not negotiate on the principles ruling the national policy or internal affairs in many different topics. In other words we will not be opening legal and independent newspapers because we believe and is stated in the constitution, that there is not such a thing as freedom of speech when it falls out the communist idealism. There won't be any legalization of existing political parties because there can be only one party fully committed with our independence and dignity, and that's the communist party, as stated in the constitution. We don't need a fair and direct voting system, with state of the art technology that guarantee security, because ours is the best, more democratic one. All these matters and many more are matters of internal affairs and national policy that need to be addressed. How can there be a meaningful negotiation when the illness that afflicts our nation in left untouched.
A number of indispensable aspects were pointed out by our president in order to be able to move forward to the normalization of relations between our countries. The first one is the need to end the Embargo that has been for so many years the perfect excuse of our government to all the misery of regular folk. Steps has been already taken to begin a Congress debate on whether to remove the embargo and strip out the Cuban government's excuse for the hardships of the country or to let it continue and not give in to the new approach of the current administration. I believe the embargo will not be lifted, the Republican Party has a supremacy now in both the chambers of the Senate and the House of Representatives, which make up the US Congress. There are also other subjects concerning votes and political interests, but no matter the chances of actually doing something about it, this outcome has yet to be determined.
It was also said the US need to return the southern part of Guantanamo Bay, and these certainly won't happen. Today the White House have stated they won't return control of this territory to Cuba. Don't get me wrong, I think we should get Guantanamo back, or at least decide in a referendum whether to keep leasing it to the US, or to finally put an end to it. I think our government has a big part in this mess, have you ever wonder why haven't been a petition such as the meetings yearly held at the UN to put an end to the embargo, but demanding the return of Guantanamo Bay? Have you wondered why the regular citizen thinks this place as a US territory and not Cuba's? We haven't been raised to think it is ours, we haven't had it at the schools, not at home. And I'm not meaning occasional allusions by our authorities, I mean to really create a strong sense of ownership. Maybe this matter must be dealt as Manuel Sanguily once did when presented with an indefinite intervened country or a Republic with Platt's amendment, he choose the latter. For now, we should discuss this in the future if we want to get somewhere, or just draw it quits, everyone pack their bags and pretend nothing happened, after all that is what Castro wants. The current US government is the one interested in normalizing relations with Cuba, the big majority of their legislative body doesn't want this, they need any excuse to end this historical moment and say: this was a terrible idea. In fact I'm not sure why they are giving in anyway, when no substantial change have happened since it was made into law. Castro is giving them exactly what they want, impossible requests such as paying back to Cuba money for the moral and economic damage caused by the embargo, when in fact Cuba is hold account for losses of nationalized US companies that were not paid, worth 7000 millions of dollars. Did you know this is the reason why a Cuban aeroplane can not land in US soil? Because they would be confiscated to pay for these.

There can't be any freedom and independence in Cuba while there is a single person wrongful imprisoned by his political convictions. Nor there can be while there is still arbitrary arrests and social constrain. There won't be, not until the government, the public servants and the authorities are made accounts for their actions, to the people, where all the power resides. No one, not a single one, not even the ones oppressing us can be ever free, until the very last of us is free.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

A Change??? Don't Think So

This morning I woke up to the news that finally, our beloved Supreme leader Compañero Fidel Castro agreed to comment on the latest development on Cuba - US relations. What a treat for us Cubans you say? Far from it actually.
I guess I can probably explain myself better. I'm a Cuban that lives on the island, with everything that comes with it. I have never been too keen to start my own blog, mainly because my hereditary disposition to never end what I've started. Surely you reader can relate to what I'm saying. I can admit that under certain circumstances I can have a temper but usually I'm quite good at keeping it in line. But the last few weeks has been just too much. Let me tell you about it and you can the judge for yourself.
After the announcement on December last year that Cuba and the US were to establish diplomatic relations Havana has become a fuzz. It was the topic everyone were talking about, that and the exchange of the three remaining Cuban spies for Alan Gross, an american contractor imprisoned in the island and a US intelligence agent. I will not go about what these people did or didn't. Considering that the Cuban government has spend countless amount of money trying to bring the Cuban Five back, mostly led by former president Fidel and his endless reflections on whatever dilution come to his mind, ranging from how a marvellous plant called Moringa can substitute the basic diet of eggs, milk and rice, granting extraordinary health; to more deep thoughts on the way the government of the US has develop the technology to redirect Hurricanes through the Atlantic so they can go right towards Cuba. You would expect the man to say something, anything, after all it was a historical moment and without any doubt a victory for the government in Cuba and specially Fidel. So people started to think: Hummmm this is interesting....silence. And then it was the 56th anniversary of the Triumph of the Revolution (We here in Cuba do not celebrate the foundation of the Republic on May 20).
The media, the papers, magazines, everywhere you could see Vive la révolution, but there were no mention of Fidel anywhere. It was in that moment when the rumours really started flying. You could see it everywhere on Twitter, Facebook, El Nuevo Herald, even in the BBC. The man did not show up, not even for the tragic terrorist attacks in Paris on the Charlie Hebdo Magazine.

Then the unexpected happened, the infamous Diego A. Maradona, drama queen, occasional drag queen (no offence intended to the noble art of dragqueenism), drug addict, goblin; decided to get high in Cuba saying he was here to film a TV Program. I personally despite this little man quite a lot. Anyway, next morning, on the front page of Gramma, one of the two equally ridiculous national newspapers, a note: ''The Historic Leader of the Revolution couldn't let pass the opportunity to greet through a letter, his friend Maradona'' end of the quote. What the heck was that? They showed the letter from Fidel very quickly in perfect New Times Roman 12, Interline 1,5 with the same printed signature. So let me get this clear, the bloody bastard whose been in power since the Egyptians built the pyramids, oppressing a nation to his will, getting rid off every possible civic freedom, is now addressing a ludicrous narcissistic prick? Pardon my French. Two weeks later, today, on the very same newspaper he says some stuff about how he does not trust the Obama administration and something like he haven't spoke a word to them. In my opinion he's trying to sabotage the negotiations, but what I can't understand is why the government keeps giving him a platform to spread all his hate and nonsense. That's the thing about this country now, when you think you're starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, somebody comes along to screw things up.
Personally I started this blog because I think I must do something to chance my reality. Maybe some other action would be more effective, but at least I have my own satirical criticism.
If you like this... please let me know your thoughts, someone told me off about me not allowing bad criticism so... everyone is welcome to leave their comments, please be gentle. Best Regards!