Yesterday, with my lunch half eaten, a friend called to ask if I had seen the 1:00 pm news. No, I never chew while watching this type of program, it’s fatal to the digestion. Mixing red beans with the announcement of the changes in the Council of State and Ministers, would have resulted in a mortar of incalculable consequences. Even so, it bothered me to have missed the news and to find out—in bits and pieces—the changes that happened up there.
The “official notice,” published in the newspaper Granma, is long and full of language that puts me to sleep. In short, various ministers and members of the Council of State have been replaced; this fall from grace has been rumored, even in the streets, for some months. It didn’t even surprise me that one of the replacements, Carlos Valenciaga, was not mentioned, or that the military uniforms ended up with a greater presence at the highest level of the administration.
People are trying to find, in these changes, the depth and wisdom of a game of chess, but to me it seems like a game of “blind man’s bluff.” I don’t believe the wished-for and necessary reforms that people were waiting for, were to have new ministers installed. If the intention was to stimulate progressive measures, no functionary in charge of a ministry could have slowed them down. The intention, however, has been to delay the changes, to dull them, to buy time in the game of politics, while we lose months and months of time in our lives.
Who will convince Marcos, who already has GPS for crossing the Straits of Florida, that the new ministers will pave the way to enable him to fulfill his dreams in his own country? The announcement yesterday did not shorten the long lines to get a new nationality in front of the Spanish Embassy, nor the number of young girls who offer their bodies in exchange for a way out of here. Calling the new chancellor Bruno instead of Felipe has little influence on the degree of hopelessness. Changing the instruments doesn’t mean much, if the symphony being performed, and the director of the orchestra, are the same as before.