Angel Santiesteban, Translator: Unstated
For fifty years the Cuban government, scripted by Fidel Castro, has
decided to convert Cubans into heroes or traitors, according to its own
All those who left during the Mariel Boatlift were "scum and worms,"
notwithstanding that they had committed no crimes or were doctors or
When General Del Pino took a small plane to flee to the north, in his
television interview Fidel Castro, to discredit the high official, going
at him from his machismo, exposed that the General's son, also a
soldier, was a homosexual.
I remember that through the national press they constructed a
problematic past as an abuser for Guillermo Fariñas with the intent to
create a criminal persona for him. With regards to the writer Raúl
Rivero, when they wanted to commit abuses against him, they discredited
him by manipulating his personal life.
The same thing happened with Orlando Zapata, with the regime's version
being that he was a criminal with no ideology manipulated by the opposition.
And with the Ladies in White something similar happened: they are
catalogues by the Cuban government as scoundrels and mercenaries running
after money from the United States Interest Section.
Apparently this is the oldest and the recourse most used by the system
in these fifty years of social injustice. If is the technique of
discrediting, through a media show, and voice that is exalted beyond the
permissible limits of the game. The Government does not pardon the
opposition and attacks, with all the means at its disposal, to stifle
any attempt at freedom.
Recently we've seen they have killed Juan Wilfredo Soto, a born fighter
since his teens. His family, terrified, has declared there were no signs
of a beating on his body. A niece said the opposite. Some witnesses
asserted that they saw the brutal beating. Others just claimed that Juan
Wilfredo was led across the red carpet laid out by the cops, into a
police car where they gave him a cup of coffee and a full body massage.
A neighbor of Juan Wilfredo Soto's family telephoned me to say they the
sister of the deceased was justified, saying that "If they tell the
truth they won't come back alive." The niece and her husband came to the
conclusion that, "He died as he'd always wanted, fighting in opposition;
it makes no sense for them to commit suicide by telling the truth if
they are young and want to live. They are aware of what could happen to
them if they contradict the official version."
On listening to the news from the neighbor I just smiled. I don't need a
telephone call to confirm what I already knew. There are so many
repetitions, a script written in the first years that they came to power
which they know by heart.
When freedom comes, each one will have his place.
May 17 2011