Edmundo and Robertico : The Opportunist and the Opportune / Miriam Celaya
Posted on September 25, 2013
HAVANA, Cuba, September, www.cubanet.org – Edmundo Garcia, ardent
defender and offshore soldier of the Cuban dictatorship, hosts in Miami
— in Miami no less! — a radio program that constitutes an extension of
the Roundtable TV talk show in Havana. His insults against imperialism
and against "anti-Cuban counter-revolutionaries," like his praises
rendered to the Castro regime, are the most convincing demonstrations
that the ineffable Edmundo enjoys the opportunity that freedom of
expression permits in a democratic country, which the peaceful
opposition does not enjoy in Cuba because the regime that he defends
denies it to us.
Edmundo rants publicly against the critics of the Castro regime, visits
the Island to relax in restaurants and tourist resorts where the
majority of his "compatriots" have no chance to even poke their noses,
as cool as a cucumber, he walks through those northern and these
southern streets without being arrested or harassed, which — let me say
— seems great to me.
Many Cubans wonder what reasons pushed Señor Garcia to leave his native
land, which — to judge by his own statements — he rates as the fairest
system in the world with a government that any democratic nation would
envy, to settle in the most hellish and imperfect nation on the planet
where, to be precise, terrorists run rampant and the worst enemies of
Humanity and Cuba govern. But this seems to be a mystery that only the
bilious member of the claque himself can reveal, or — of course — the
Cuban government. Meanwhile, Edmundo continues to preach in his
underwear, because he is the living embodiment of the opportunist.
He projects this on others and he described as "unfortunate,"
"opportunistic" and "disrespectful" the performance by the artist
Robertico Carcassés at the recently held gala for the release of the
Cuban spies who are serving long sentences in the United States. In the
improvisation, Carcassés declared his desires for free access to
information, the end of the blockade and the internal-blockade, the
power to elect the president directly ("and not by other means") and
asked for "freedom for the Five and also for Maria," and also launched a
phrase that is highly radioactive in Cuba: "Neither militants, nor
dissidents, all Cubans with the same rights."
The audacity of the artist consists not only in the fact of having
expressed publicly the desires of an immense majority of Cubans, without
his suggesting he belongs to the opposition sector or is committing a
legal transgression — all a flagrant challenge to the authorities on the
Island — but in having done it precisely at the Protestdrome, in front
of the United States Interest Section, the Castro-anti-imperialist
scenario par excellence, and as part of an "activity" called with great
fanfare by the official media, at which supposedly the entire cast
should respond with absolute fidelity to the directives of the ruling elite.
And of course, for Robertico Carcassés it wasn't opportunistic. Quite
the contrary, it was marvelously opportune. So much so that — regardless
of whether at some future mediated by the figureheads of the regime,
making use of their usual resources of ideological conviction, they get
him to publicly take back his (our) truths — as great as temples; and
they were said. What's more, it's the first time that so much contained
hope and so many desires shared by millions of Cubans were spoken live
and so clearly on an official stage. And this is the most dangerous for
the owners of Edmundo Garcia. If the opposition had had the microphone,
it could not have done better.
Because, and here is what should be a lesson to us all, nothing is as
powerful and effective as simply and plainly expressing the hopes of an
entire nation, not from fiery patriotic discourse or from sectors of the
opposition — as demonized and feared by the government as they are
little known by society — without infringing upon the rights of those
attending, but rather from the courage and shame of an individual not
subject to ideological compromises. That is honesty, the exact opposite
of opportunism. We need many Robertico Carcassés in Cuba, with or
For a few brief minutes, this artist demonstrated, perhaps
unintentionally, that the streets, the plazas, the platforms and the
microphones do not belong to the "Revolutionaries," but to all Cubans.
For that alone his audacity had value, it was really worth it. Blessed
be his way to taking advantage of the opportunity! For the gift of those
moments of public freedom practiced from the official media we should
thank the young Carcasses, with all our hearts.
24 September 2013
Source: "Edmundo and Robertico : The Opportunist and the Opportune /
Miriam Celaya | Translating Cuba" -