Saturday, January 14, 2017

When A Hope Is Lost

When A Hope Is Lost / 14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar

14ymedio, Desde Aqui, Reinaldo Escobar, 13 January 2017 — The end of the
wet foot/dry foot policy entails among its many consequences the loss of
hope for a great number of Cubans. Few times in our national history has
a decision taken outside the borders of the island touched the lives of
so many Cuban citizens in a medullary and definitive way.

Among those affected are migrants already on their way to the United
States, as well as those who have sold their property and possessions to
pay for the expenses of the journey, those who were waiting for an
opportunity to desert from an official mission abroad, or simply those
who dreamed of escape from the island. In total, tens of thousands of

However, there is a much larger number. Incalculable. The one made up of
all those who saw in the possibility of emigration a motivation to
behave with docility in the face of difficulties. They were the ones who
trusted that, at the moment when they could not longer bear the hard
daily life of the island, they had a way out: a raft, the jungles of
Central America, the Mexican border, the Bering Strait…

The only hope is that we recover the courage to face our reality and
assume the consequences

Like the last drops of water in the canteen while crossing the desert,
the lifejackets the stewardess holds up for emergencies, or the last
gulp of oxygen with which the diver must try to reach the surface, the
wet foot/dry foot policy represented hope for many on the island. The
illusion that if they reached their limit there would always be a
lifeline to cling to.

"If it gets ugly, I'll up and leave," was a recurring thought shared
among young and old, poor or new rich, dissidents or government
officials. It relieved them to know that, from the closed box which Cuba
has become, they had a way out. Perhaps they would never use it, but it
was a balm to know it was there.

From now on there are no lifejackets under the seat, no water in the
canteen to cross the desert, and there is no oxygen left to return to
the surface. The only hope is that we recover the courage to face our
reality and assume the consequences.

Source: When A Hope Is Lost / 14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar – Translating
Cuba -

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