Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Who do you do business with in Cuba, the military or civilians?

Who do you do business with in Cuba, the military or civilians? / Juan
Juan Almeida
Posted on June 22, 2015

Juan Juan Almeida,8 June 2015 — In an admirable surge of ratification in
the most pure tradition of sovereignty, out of an infinite commitment of
respect for human rights and in support of the Cuban people, this past
June 3, on the birthday of Raúl Castro, the U.S. House of
Representatives approved the prohibition of exports to the Cuban military.

I assume, without the least reluctance, that the General took it as an
excellent gift. That measure won't affect the ruling class at all; it
will only shatter, even more, the agonizing economy of Cubans who don't
have sufficient resources to reach the end of the month. As my
grandmother said, "What's just is not only what suits the ones who
dictate the sentence."

Relying on memories etched by force and in the authority granted to me
by the experience of having lived in the monster and knowing it, I can
guarantee that in terms of effectiveness, this recently approved statute
will not even begin to make a dent in the pentagram of Cuban authority.

To stop exporting American products to institutions directed by the
Cuban military implies not selling anything to Cuba. And if the idea is
to stop exporting in order to augment the discontent and provoke a
hoped-for social conflict, we are more out of place than a piraña on the
high seas.

The CIA, congressmen, think-tanks, analysts, scholars and advisors
should come back to earth and understand for once that the
civil-military parallelism with its commercial and banking tentacles in
several places in the world, which for years sided with Fidel and Raúl,
has ceased to exist.

Since 2009, when the GAE (Business Administration Group, S.A.)
appropriated CIMEX (Cuba Import-Export, S.A.), they made Colonel Héctor
Oroza Busutil president and arranged that the Center of Purchasing and
National Imports would remain under the orders of Tecnoimport (which is
not a fake business – its central offices are in the Marina Building,
Ave. del Puerto, No. 102, between Justiz and Obrapía, Old Havana).

It seized, among other things, the last civilian redoubt divesting
itself of the Panamerican Shops, the Servi-Cupet (service centers), the
El Rápido cafeterias, the Video centers and the photo shops,
Photoservice, the Commercal Centers, the shipping company, Zelcom (which
includes the free zone, the industrial parks and the storage services in
bond), the International Group of Tour Operators and the tour company
Havanatur, the services of Rent a Car and taxis, Black Coral (jewelry),
Contex (design and production of uniforms and fashion collections),
Coinage of Money, the Customs agency, Images (publicity and production
of videos), Ecuse (repair and maintenance of automotive equipment and
construction of property), the Estate Agent, the Center of Credit Cards
and financial services, the BFI (International Finance Bank), Cubapacks
(messaging, parcels and catalog sales), Abdala (recording studios,
record labels and music editing) and the division that manages all the
trademarks and patents.

The same thing happened in Habaguanex, in the system of self-employment
and in all the ministries and institutions, be they governmental or not.
In all of them there are colonels and generals dressed like CEOs with
clothing from Anderson & Sheppard.

You only have to look to see that the social, economic, financial,
business and institutional structure today is under the control of the
military and/or the families of the legendary leaders of the Cuban
Revolution, who paradoxically fake their ideological positions but in
reality are more committed to their generation and their own desires
than to their loyalty to Raúl.

Without a doubt, with this measure they will entrench themselves, and it
will help them reorganize the rank and file that is already divided and
with serious internal conflicts. I am sure that other ways exist,
including better ways of making this ruling class implode, from the
inside, without having to affect the Cuban people.

Translated by Regina Anavy

Source: Who do you do business with in Cuba, the military or civilians?
/ Juan Juan Almeida | Translating Cuba -

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