Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Musings of a Blind Man (2)

Musings of a Blind Man (2) / Angel Santiesteban
Posted on February 23, 2015

Angel Santiesteban, 7 January 2015 — To know that there is a Cuban who
knew how to work against the dictatorship makes it easier to bear that
the regime's five spies are now back on Cuban soil. I rejoiced when it
was revealed that this Cuban — responding not to the North American
government but against the dictatorship of the Castros — was the cause,
having passed information to United States intelligence agencies about
the enemy network that was operating in its territory. He is a free man
today, having been exchanged for the last three of those spies who were
still in prison in the US].

In turn, the fact that Alan Gross is now back with his family also means
relief for those of us who harbor good feelings — especially those of us
who know firsthand the suffering of incarceration.

I believe the Castros will win any arm wrestling match in which their
arms are supported by feelings. They do not care about keeping innocent
people in jail, at least for the crimes with which they are charged. In
the Gross case, the regime's own reports affirm that this is about "a
North American subcontractor who intended to smuggle into Cuba equipment
which is not authorized by the government of the Island."

If his crime is one of "smuggling," then of what espionage is he
accused? The government's legal action was forced in the exchange for
its spies, as has recently occurred.

There are good reason that it has an espionage and repression machine,
lubricated by the oil of experience over more than half a century. The
most important thing, to my understanding, is that the Communists in
power have, for the moment, been left without a carrot to mobilize
social media.

Throughout their more than 50 years in power, the Castros have been
characterized by public "yearnings" — which they use to keep the Cuban
people distracted. Nobody can forget the months of intense, manipulative
propaganda regarding the return of the boy Elián Gonzalez, later
replaced with an even more intense campaign for the return of the spies.

I suppose that at this moment, the ideologues of the regime must be
finding themselves in a forced march in search of a new carrot to
dangle, as well as a new objective to achieve. In the meantime, they
will find entertainment in the embargo, which they like to call a
"blockade" in order to produce maximum solidarity effect.

Starting with Obama's announcement of establishing diplomatic relations
with Cuba, an interesting chapter is opening that could end up, for the
regime, being even more destructive than the embargo.

Ángel Santiesteban-Prats

December, 2014. Border Patrol Prison Unit, Jaimanitas, Havana.

Source: Musings of a Blind Man (2) / Angel Santiesteban | Translating
Cuba -

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