Oswaldo Payá, Rest in Freedom

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Oswaldo Payá (1952 - 2012)

No one should die before reaching their dreams of freedom. With the death of Oswaldo Payá (1952 – 2012), Cuba has suffered a dramatic loss for its present and an irreplaceable loss for its future. It was not just an exemplary man, a loving father and a fervent Catholic who stop breathing yesterday, Sunday, but also an irreplaceable citizen for our nation. His tenacity shone forth since I was a teenager, when he chose not to hide the scapulars — as so many others did — and instead publicly acknowledged his faith. In 1988 his civic responsibility was forged in the founding of the Christian Liberation Movement, and years later in the initiative known as the Varela Project.

I remember — as if it were yesterday — the image of Payá outside the National Assembly of People’s Power on that March 10, 2002. The boxes filled with over 10,000 signatures in his arms, while he delivered them to the infamous Cuban parliament. The official answer would be a legal reform, a pathetic “constitutional mummification” that would tie us “irrevocably” to the current system. But the dissident of a thousand and one battles was not dissuaded and two years later he and another group of activists presented 14,000 more signatures. With them they demanded that a referendum be called to allow freedom of association, expression, and the press, economic guarantees, and an amnesty that would free the political prisoners. With the disproportion that characterized it, Fidel Castro’s government answered with the imprisonments of the Black Spring of 2003. Over 40 members of the Christian Liberation Movement were sentenced in that fateful March.

Although he was not arrested at that time, for years Payá suffered the constant surveillance of his home, arbitrary arrests, repudiation rallies and threats. He ever missed a chance to denounce the prison conditions of some dissident, or another wrongful conviction. I never saw him break down, or yell, or insult his political opponents. The great lesson he left us is his equanimity, pacifism, putting ethics above differences, the conviction that through civic action and through legal action, an inclusive Cuba is closer to us. Rest in peace, or better still, rest released.

23 July 2012

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62 thoughts on “Oswaldo Payá, Rest in Freedom

  1. Pingback: The Washington Post: Who killed Cuban dissident Oswaldo Payá? By Carl Gershman.president of the National Endowment for Democracy. | MCL Oswaldo Payá

  2. And here’s a very interesting and an eye-opening evelation, made by Germans by the way, about the true PATH of “democracy” and “some kind of pragmatic capitalism”:

    THAT is what these traitors and terrorists disguisnig themselves in a, appropriately if you ask me, sheep’s skin and pretending to be moral and righteous while lying through their eyes about their white “gods” TRUE INTENTIONS!!!!!

  3. hERE’S WHY YOU ARE ALL JUST A BUNCH OF LIARS AND CRIMINAL TERRORISTS:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-18990351

    BBB CITES

    DIPLOMATIC SOURCES

    WHO HAVE CONFIRMED THAT THE ACCIDENT IS JUST THAT: A GENUINE ACCIDENT. AND THAT ANYONE SAYING DIFFERENTLY IS A MO**N.

    Like the son of the killed man, who claims that a

    T R U C K

    NO LESS

    RAMMED THE CAR REPEATEDLY!!!!!!!

    What a MO ** N.

    A truck

    CANNOT even gather the speed to run as fast as a passenger’s car. And even if it could, it would be so much heavier that it COULD NOT MANEUVRE in such a way to cause the accident.

    Pnly a st**d “dissident” – read a traitor and a terrorist, could ocme up with such a blatant and VERY ST**D lie.

  4. I am still laughing at the copy and paste geniuses who are unable to see their own stu***y …

    Is that indeed the tree that is hiding the forest behind it liars and terrorists!!!!!???

    You can’t even see the tree because your own delusions and lies are blocking the view!!!!

    Laughable useles id**ts…

    Lemme sho you the tree. In a number of posts the team “yoani” claim that Cubans CANNOT TRAVEL AROUND CUBA WITHOUT THE PERMIT.

    The killed in accident and his cronnies were TRAVELLING 800 KMS, and in less than 8 hours, by the way.

    if the guy was really a DISSIDENT SORT OF GUY, AGAIN ACCORDING TO THE POSTS PUT UP BY THE VERY ST***D AND INEPT TEAM “yoani”, and their pin-up granny, THE GUY WOULD NOT HAVE RECEIVED THE PERMIT!!!!

    The guy not only D I D HAVE THE PERMIT, HE WAS ALSO IN COMPANY OF HIS SPANISH CONTACT, WHO WAS THE DRIVER TOO.

    REMEMBER HOW YOU ALL WROTE SOOOOOOOOOOOO MANY TIMES HOW CUBANS ARE PROHIBITED FROM CONTACTING FOREIGNERS!!!!!??????

    BUNCH OF LIARS AND TERRORISTS.

    THE DRIVER HIMSELF HAD ADMITTED DRIVNIG FAST. NO CUBAN POLICE OR SECRET SERVICES GUIDED HIS HAND AND FOOT.

    BUT YOU JUST HAVE TO BULLSHIFT ABOUT A N Y T I H N G AS LONG AS IT SERVES YOUR PURPOSE: CRIMINAL ACTS AGAINST A FOREIGN COUNTRY THAT YOU DO NOT BELONG TO AND HAVE GOT F**K ALL TO DO WITH, RIGHT!!!!??????

  5. THE CUBADEBATE PAGE HAS RELEASE AN “ANALYSIS” AND STATEMENT OF THE OSWALDO PAYA “ACCIDENT” BUT SO FAR ONLY IN SPANISH! OF COURSE THEY ARE BLAMING THE SPANISH DRIVER Ángel Carromero !! THE LINK IS BELOW! I HOPE THE CASTROFASCISTS ARE READY FOR THE WORLD TO SEE THEIR VERSION OF EVENTS AND THE PHOTOS OF THE “ACCIDENT” SO IT CAN BE ANALYZED AND DISCUSSED BY EVERYONE!WILL TRY TO FIND THE LINKS TO THE PHOTO FOR THEY “FAILED” TO PUT THEM ON THE WEB SITE! AND WHERE IS THE PHOTO OF THAT DAMN TREE?? THE CASTROFASCISTS DONT LIKE NATURE SHOTS I GUESS!!

    CUBADEBATE CUBAN DISSIDENT OSWALDO PAYA FATAL ACCIDENT ANALYSIS PAGE (Spanish only)
    http://www.cubadebate.cu/noticias/2012/07/27/nota-oficial-del-ministerio-del-interior/

  6. Humberto, I don’t think it is a Freudian slip. Raul wants to send a message to both Cubans and other leaders of the world. And the message is: if Cubans will rise up as the Arabs did I will kill’em all.

  7. GREAT PIECE! FULL OF IRONY AND SARCASM! JUST THE WAY I LIKE THEM!

    “Past defectors include Alexei Collado, Odlanier Solis, Joel Casamayor, Guillermo Rigondeaux, Yuriokis Gamboa, Erislandy Lara, and Yan Barthelemy. They leave a history the Fidelista island’s rulers would prefer to forget. For example, heavyweight Solis, flyweight Gamboa, and light flyweight Barthelemy reportedly sold their 2004 Olympic Gold medals to buy food for their families before running off in December 2006 from a training camp in Venezuela.”

    BOXER INSIDER: Cuban Olympians — How Many Will Defect and When?

    Cuban security thugs will have their hands full trying to prevent Cuban fighters and other Olympic athletes from bolting in London. It always creates additional drama at these global competitions as we try to guess when the first one will take off and how many will follow. You can bet there’s a lot of whispering going on in those hotel corridors.

    As Scoop Malinowski pointed out on this site last month, the boxing team is once again rich with talent after faltering a bit in China four years ago. This time they’re loaded with world-beaters from previous global tournaments. But how many of them will still be on the roster when the plane comes home to Havana?

    That’s the real question — not how many Gold Medals these formidable chicos and chicas will pick up, but how of them many will return to a land where just finding a sheet of toilet paper is a feat worth recording in your diary. How you gonna keep ‘em down in the wretched deprivation of Communist Cuba after they’ve seen Piccadilly Circus, the iPhone, and all-you-can eat buffets?

    Past defectors include Alexei Collado, Odlanier Solis, Joel Casamayor, Guillermo Rigondeaux, Yuriokis Gamboa, Erislandy Lara, and Yan Barthelemy. They leave a history the Fidelista island’s rulers would prefer to forget. For example, heavyweight Solis, flyweight Gamboa, and light flyweight Barthelemy reportedly sold their 2004 Olympic Gold medals to buy food for their families before running off in December 2006 from a training camp in Venezuela.

    “Gold medals are wonderful, but athletes can’t eat their gold medals,” explained boxing trainer Roberto Quesada, a Cuban coach who eventually defected to train fighters in Miami. The defections aren’t just limited to boxers. For example, seven soccer players melted into Tampa in 2008 while competing in the Olympic qualifying tournament. It’s a big problem. How do you show off your athletes in international competition when you can’t take them out of the country? Because if you take them off the island, there’s only so much a security team can do to keep them under your control.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.boxinginsider.com/columns/cuban-olympians-how-many-will-defect-and-when/

  8. THE CASTROFASCISTS ARE CORNERED AND NOW “PLAYING NICE”!! PRESIDENT BARAK OBAMA HAS SEEN WHAT LIARS THEY ARE AND THEY CANNOT BE TRUSTED!

    FOX NEWS LATINO: US Tells Cuba to End Authoritarianism, Then We’ll Talk

    The U.S. government on Thursday reaffirmed its willingness to “forge a new relationship” with Cuba, but it insisted that the Raul Castro regime must take various measures to clear the way for that to occur including releasing U.S. contractor Alan Gross.

    “Our message is very clear to the Castro government: They need to begin to allow for the political freedom of expression that the Cuban people demand, and we are prepared to discuss with them how this can be furthered,” Mike Hammer, assistant secretary for public affairs at the U.S. State Department, said.

    Pointing to the brief detention of dozens of dissidents at this week’s funeral of prominent opposition figure Oswaldo Paya, he said that “the authoritarian tendencies are very evident on each and every day in Cuba.”

    Hammer also reiterated the demand the Cuba release Gross, now serving a 15-year sentence for illegally bringing communications gear into the Communist-ruled island as part of a U.S.-funded program.

    Hammer made his remarks in response to the proposal made on Thursday by Raul Castro to begin a dialogue with the United States in which all issues would be on the table, including freedom of the press and human rights.

    “I have already said this through the existing diplomatic channels. If they want to talk, we will talk,” the Cuban president said at a Revolution Day event in the eastern province of Guantanamo.

    He added, however, that Havana will accept only a dialogue of equals, as Cuba is neither a colony nor a satellite.

    latino.foxnews.com/2012/07/27/us-conditions-talks-with-cuba-on-end-to-authoritarianism/

  9. YOUTUBE: The widow of Oswaldo Paya: “I’m not seeking culpability, I’m seeking the truth” – Ofelia Acevedo, widow of Oswaldo Paya, has denounced that she knows nothing about the accident that killed her husband and “I’m not seeking culpability, I seeking the truth”. She also said that “I can not accept such a simple version of what occurred.” (SPANISH ONLY)

    YOUTUBE: La viuda de Oswaldo Payá: “No busco culpables, busco la verdad” – Ofelia Acevedo, viuda de Oswaldo Payá, ha denunciado que no sabe nada del accidente que provocó la muerte de su marido y que “no busco culpables, busco la verdad”. También ha asegurado que “no puedo aceptar una versión tan simple de los hechos”.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLij2VhdjLY

  10. In #45 Humberto wrote: “A FREUDIAN SLIP BY “LA CHINA” RAUL, HE COMPARED HIMSELF TO Bashar al-Assad !!”

    It’s no surprise. Cuba remains one of the few supporters of the Syrian dictatorship. They’ve seen one thug after another fall from power and are worried they might be next. The lie they tell is the US is behind all these revolutions, but it was the people of Tunisia, Libya, egypt and now Syria who are rising up against the dictators. That’s Raul’s nightmare: one day the Cuban people will be shouting “El paredón” for him.

  11. THE CASTROFASCISTS ARE READY TO TALK TO THE USA BUT NOT TO THE DISSIDENTS INSIDE THE ISLAND PRISON! THAT SHOULD TELL YOU A LOT ABOUT WHAT THEIR REAL AIM IS! SURVIVAL!

    REUTERS: Raul Castro: Cuba willing to sit down with US – By PETER ORSI,

    HAVANA — Cuban President Raul Castro said Thursday that his government is willing to mend fences with bitter Cold War foe the United States and sit down to discuss anything, as long as it is a conversation between equals.

    “Any day they want, the table is set. This has already been said through diplomatic channels,” Castro said. “If they want to talk, we will talk.”

    Later Thursday, Mike Hammer, assistant secretary for public affairs at the U.S. State Department, said that before there can be meaningful engagement, Cuba must institute democratic reforms, improve human rights and release Alan Gross, a Maryland native serving 15 years for bringing satellite and other communications equipment into Cuba illegally while on a USAID-funded democracy-building program.

    “Our message is very clear to the Castro government: They need to begin to allow for the political freedom of expression that the Cuban people demand, and we are prepared to discuss with them how this can be furthered,” Hammer said. “They are the ones ultimately responsible for taking those actions, and today we have not seen them.”

    Hammer highlighted the brief detention this week of dozens of dissidents outside the funeral of prominent Oswaldo Paya, who died in a car crash last weekend, saying “the authoritarian tendencies are very evident on each and every day in Cuba.”

    Days after Paya’s death, Raul Castro had harsh words for the island’s opposition, accusing them of plotting to topple the government.

    “Some small factions are doing nothing less than trying to lay the groundwork and hoping that one day what happened in Libya will happen here, what they’re trying to make happen in Syria,” Castro said.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iKq8GZTa92EdZ19lWTKlvnnMRwpw?docId=b67c3933b5dd48448276fedea347e831

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