Cross a zone


I know them from forever, since I ventured beyond my neighborhood of dirty facades to a Havana that never ceases to surprise me. You could say they resemble almost all my friends: hairy, alternative and smiling. They are similar to those young people who crowded into our living room a few years ago, to play the guitar and spend the blackout among songs and poems. The folks at Omni Zona Franca also use a pot for a hat, a skirt to cover the legs of men, or a long staff made from a tree branch. Rebels all, they broke with sentimental apologist poetry, with the standards of good dress, and even institutionalized, and therefore prudent, art.

The scene of their performances is none other than this suburb of Alamar, designed to house the New Man. Today a dysfunctional conglomeration of buildings, all identical, where no one would want to live and from where residents rarely manage to move to another area. Positioned on the grass with little thought given to urban planning, these concrete blocks have been the inspiration for several of Omni’s artistic actions. I remember when area residents called the police on seeing arms and heads rise among the mountains of trash that no truck had collected for weeks. It was a way these young people found to tell their fellow citizens: we are drowning in waste, we can barely breathe in the midst of so much garbage.

Every December, Omni organizes the Festival of Poetry Without End, and the current program has been marked by the closure of its venue at the Alamar House of Culture. Between police patrols and the irate voice of the vice minister for culture, these chronic irreverents had to leave a space that had been theirs for twelve years. They were allowed to take away the posters, ceramics, a pair of old typewriters, and a laptop on which they edited videos and wrote their webpage. The program of activities moved to the living rooms of houses and the garage of a friend, all without suspending the long “Festival of Light.” Today they will be carrying an enormous offering for the health of poetry to the St. Lazarus shrine in the town of Rincón. They will raise their arms over the enormous figure made of branches and will ask for a verse, an harmonious rhyme or the chorus from a hip hop song.

Those who removed them from their headquarters last Friday, intending to punish them with homelessness, don’t understand that their art springs from the asphalt, from the crazy man who begs for alms on a corner, and from this city, crippled but intense, that today is Alamar.

An article on Omni Zona Franca I wrote two years ago.


38 thoughts on “Cross a zone

  1. RE 29 & 30 Hank

    The staff at the Cuban Interest Section in Washington, DC is made up completely of perfect idiots. You just have to dial their number and listen to how they answer the phone to see that–then when you get one of them on the line, just try getting a straight answer on ANYTHING, even the weather or day of the week–they always have to check and let you know at a later time. The answers to the same question change by the hour even when it is the same person providing the answer. How did a country that produced so many bright minds sink to such a low level of ignorance? Oh, wait, The Revolution…sorry, I forget.

    Re the conference I attended, I’d rather not say, but it was “scientific” in nature.

  2. Macheteramor,

    Los Aldeanos Arrested for a Dream
    at 3:59 PM Monday, September 28, 2009

    Cuban Rapper Arrested
    at 3:18 PM Monday, September 28, 2009
    This morning, the lead artist of the Cuban hip-hop group, Los Aldeanos, was arrested by Castro’s state security for the “illegal possession of computers.”

    YOANIS BLOG ON LOS ALDEANOS: Computer without papers

  3. When you criticize the many young people writing for Havana Times why don’t you think about this Los Aldeanos song and how “hot” it is down there. It’s easy enough to be an “armchair revolutionary” in the heart of the empire.

    me cago en ellos tambien; yo mismo me manipulo; se meten los pasaportes y las visas por el culo; En la Bahia es muy fácil faltar el respeto; y más si esta por medio el oceano completo; si tu eres guapo de verdad saca un boleto; y ven para que te meta en la candela que me meto; mi objetivo nunca a sido elaborar una canción en contra de las convicciones de esta revolución para que la mafia anticubana o los derechos humanos le gestionen una carta blanca a los aldeanos

    “fuck them too; I manipulate myself; They can shove their passports and visas up their ass; From the the bay is easy to disrespect; specially since there is a whole ocean in between; If you are so full of yourself why don’t you buy a ticket; and come with me, to where the flame is hot; my objective has never been to compose a song against the ideals of this revolution so that the anti-cuban mafia and the human rights [groups] can manage a carta blanca for the aldeanos”

    They don’t write for you. They write for the Cuban people who struggle day in and day out. For the people who desperately need change and control over their lives and society. Por Cuba Para Cuba !

  4. Candido:

    My family and I are all fine. I usually don’t read the dictator’s diatribes. But earlier yesterday morning tried to find it and could not.

    However, based on your message below, I just checked and found that indeed, there was the article on the Copenhagen meeting.

    I’m sure he does not have the capacity to write it. He’s most likely being helped.

  5. we are going to cuba!!! sometimes you got to fire with fire (give me liberty or give me death)

  6. Hefa #16

    You raise an extraordinarily interesting point. The sciences — physics, chemistry and biology — are typically thought of as being divorced from politics and other subjective influences. But we know they are not e.g. Thomas Khun. The scientific pursuits are just as linked to politics and ambient thinking as are the humanities.

    So, I wonder, what has been the effect of 50 years of institutionalized insanity on the “hard sciences” in Cuba? The topic might make for an illuminating Ph.D. dissertation or two — once things open up in that place.

    I am curious, what was the topic of the academic conference you attended in Cuba?

  7. Julio and Hefa,

    Why don’t we direct some questions to the head of the Cuban Interests Section in DC? Do either of you know this person’s name? Presumably he has full access to the internet. Or if he doesn’t, then maybe someone on his staff does, unless of course they are all blocked in DC too! You never know, wouldn’t that be crazy? The silence is absolutely deafening. I assume this person is a male given the statistics provided to us previously by Hefa. Here’s a draft…

    Dear Esteemed Head of the Cuban Interests Section in DC:

    Hello? Are you there? Say something…anything. What do you think of all the snow? They are predicting close to two feet, that’s a lot! Do you like sledding? Roasted chestnuts are really good when it gets cold. Castañas asadas, que ricos son!

    Respectfully submitted,

  8. VOICE OF AMERICA ARTICLE: Cuba, US Struggle to Repair Long-Frayed Relationship

    ‘Now, lawmakers are working on a bill that would enable all Americans to travel to Cuba, not just Cuban-Americans. Supporters of the House measure say one of the best ways to spur democratic change in Cuba is through direct contact with Americans visiting the island.

    Phil Peters, a Cuba analyst for the Lexington Institute near Washington, says the bill has a good chance of winning approval early next year.

    “They got 180 co-sponsors of this bill to end all the travel restrictions, so that certainly puts them in striking distance,” he said.”

    “University of Nebraska at Omaha professor Jonathan Benjamin-Alvarado recently visited Cuba to explore opportunities for rapprochement between the two governments. He says many Cuban leaders have a sincere interest in improving ties, but there are rogue elements in the Cuban government who are not prepared to relax political control on the island.

    “They want to remind people that yes, there certainly is hope for the future, but we are still in control here,” he said.”

  9. Just to understand democracy…

    Life happen while you start topping with your limitation, on top of this to be born in a limited society ain’t worthy to pledge your live.


    “Carta de Presentación” El B
    Disco: Viva Cuba Libre (Coming Soon)

    Written by Bian Oscar Rodríguez Galá a.k.a El B
    Composicion musical Aldo Roberto Rodríguez Baquero a.k.a. AL2 / El Aldeano

    video clip dirigido, filmado y editado por: BoriSDJ © 2009

    Desde ya El B de la agrupación Los Aldeanos se encuentra realizando un nuevo disco independiente llamado “Viva Cuba Libre.” El disco ya cuenta con la grabación de ocho temas, y El B confirma que faltan varios mas para grabar pero en tinta ya esta completado el álbum.

    Carta de Presentación es el tema que El B ha escogido para introducir el proyecto nuevo por venir de “Viva Cuba Libre.”

  11. Maybe their issue with Yoani is not so much of her been critical but one of envy
    Yoani’s site does get a lot more hits than any of the Cuban regime media. Including granma.
    So for them to think that one individual in this case Yoani have so much world attention maybe the driving force behind the attacks.

    The irony here is that they themselves are to blame for it!
    They catapulted Yoani to fame with their negative to allow her to travel.
    They still have not seem to learn the lesson. It’s like teaching an old dog new tricks… :-)
    They do not seem to understand how widely view and known is Yoani around the world.
    For example the attack to Reinaldo to make appear the security officers as saviours this time on plain camera views to discredit the attack on Yoani!

    This got all the rings of a badly executed play on the part of the regime.
    The negative of Raul Castro to answer one of his citizen’s question when the president of one of the most powerful nations on earth have answer is simply stupid.

    He should have answer her questions, he should engage in talks with them and solve problems. After all government are elected to answer to the people. Any of the people not just the adulators and cheer leaders.

    It is not only Yoani who wants this is a very growing group of the Cuban population that is waking up to the reality that they have to claim their own freedom.

  12. Yoani, and friends have proof or actually I should say the Cuban regime has proof with all its actions how the punish people that are critical of the regime.
    Just one have to luck and the punishments provided by big daddy Cuban regime in this post and prior post.

    One case of expropriation
    One case of expulsion.

    So is the artistic group Omni forcing the Cuban government to do that?
    Can the Cuban government claim there is freedom and liberty of expression for all Cubans?
    Obviously no!

    They all are examples of the tactics the regime uses to curve critical thoughts, critical statements. In many many cases the Cuban regime has gone even further.

    One would wonder if the Cuban regime is stupid by acting this way?

    For example in Yoani’s case why have they opted for not letting her go out to receive prizes?

    It is a way to tell the rest of Cubans in Cuba. That they are in control.
    They have loss the fear factor. And they are afraid that they will loss that fear factor against the rest of them. So they have to react they have to do this things to keep critical people at bay.

    If not they will be confronted with a revolution a new revolution that will overthrow the existing “revolution”.

    What they are failing to see is that their “revolution” has failed. They failed on what the promise. The Cuban revolution is evidently not for the people of Cuba but for the Castro brothers that use Cuba as his own personal farm. So this state of affairs can not be kept for a long time since things always tend to go back to their natural way. The natural way is for the people of Cuba to have the power back that was usurp by the Castros.

    We will have that power back when Cuba is a democracy.

  13. I did enjoy particularly his points on

    * She is a dissident in the literal sense in that she differs from official positions.” (This statement is so vague that it doesn’t explain anything, unless Ubieta believes it’s wrong for people to differ from official positions)

    * “Yoani not only speaks about politics, she engages in politics.” (Is it a crime to engage in politics? Is there no difference between recounting the misfortunes of daily life and engaging in politics?)

    * She is a “counter-revolutionary activist” (For saying what she thinks and becoming famous for that? For openly speaking about the humiliations she experiences?)

    If Ubietas’s article is the best the regime can do then the regime is really at a total loss cause and that may explain why they have resorted to other coercive methods like violence and repudiation acts, confiscation of yards etc.

  14. Humberto, some people here have mentioned that Havana Times has improve in the articles published after the editor or director was expel from Cuba. I think someone noted he lives in Nicaragua.
    The articles there are softly critical of the regime.

    Erasmo Calzadilla is one of the best writers they got.
    He was actually fired from his university post as philosophy teacher for something critical he wrote there!

    for those who are critical of Yoani this statements made by Erasmo will be hard to swallow but they do express the truth about Yoani.

    “I’ve been able to read many of the writings of the creator of Generation Y, and in them I don’t find anything that threatens the civil norms of coexistence in a society of democratic rights and responsibilities, as Cuba is said to be.

    Her attacks on the government are even respectful, and generally she doesn’t get into traditional political issues. It’s true, though, that she sees everything in a dark tone and without hope under socialism.”

  15. Cold in Chicago:

    How are you my friend?,,,I hope that you and your family are ok.

    It is very sad to say, that you are wrong!!!!,,today,,,the Granma Digital did publish a new Reflection, written by the “Murderer in Chief” (related with the Denmark Meeting)!!!!

    If you have some kind of constipation,,,,you should read it,,,it will push you to go right away to the toilet!!!!

    My best regards!!!


  16. MIAMI HERALD ARTICLE: In Cuba, bringing a message or help can lead to jail. People who travel to Cuba under U.S. -funded programs to promote democracy risk landing in jail.

    All the travelers follow basic tips such as being sure to engage in tourist activities and not take taxis from the hotel. Bringing more than one computer or telephone raises red flags, experts said.

    “If you bring two phones, they may let you in just to follow you,” Babún said.

    James Cason, the former head of the U.S. Interests Section in Havana, said organizations used to send materials through the American diplomatic pouch, until the Cubans stopped deliveries.

    “You can bring in one or two computers, and they will register it at customs when you arrive. If you don’t have it when you are leaving, you have to pay an enormous tax,” Cason said.

    “They may even have followed the person off the plane. This is what they pay spooks for: to find out when people are coming from these organizations to Cuba. If you work for a human rights organization, it’s naive to think they don’t know who you are.”

    That was the kind of information Bubenik said he never got from Freedom House.

  17. So has Havana Times shifted politically? I dont know much abut its history.


  18. Hefa

    The Cuban regime does not withstand the use of logic.
    We have requested many time for them to provide us with someone with knowledge and that is an advocate for the regime but I guess they lack the person or even worst
    they lack of right arguments to defend their positions.

  19. RE Humberto #13

    What is most telling about the article you cite and anything else you read or hear from the state’s mouthpieces is the lack of true critical thinking and analysis in anything they say–50 years of “free” education has resulted in well-educated robots–they can memorize by rote the absurd litany and illogical arguments you hear over and over, regardless of the program or channel metaphorically speaking. Once committed to memory, all they can do is repeat the same thing over and over–it does not matter what the question is, the reply is the same.

    I was floored by the absolute lack of critical thinking skills I witnessed among Cuban academics when faced with the questions posed to them by an academic audience after making their presentations at a professional conference in Cuba. I witnessed brilliant, euphoric, gesticulating lectures and perorations that would rival even Papa Fidel’s, however, when it came time to respond to the audience’s questions, they fell flat on their Marxist faces.

    In almost any other place in world, the question and answer part of an academic presentation is when the speaker shows his mettle–by addressing the critical questions of his or her audience. The Cubans were expert presenters, but once they were done with their memorized speech, they could not go off script. The Cubans did not understand why the audience, made up of Europeans and Latin Americans, laughed at the responses they gave to the questions they received. At first the audience was polite, but when pressed for more detail and all they could do was repeat what they had already said 100 times, the audience lost its patience. And mind you, this was not about politics by the farthest stretch of the imagination–just purely academic, my dear Watson.

  20. Humberto

    The article you mentioned is by Erasmo Calzadilla and it is a well directed critic to Ubieta’s infamous Granma article attacking Yoani.

    What he (Erasmo) discusses is the same thing we talked about in post here when Ubieta’s article came to light. Ubieta has no a shred of proof for any of his claims and as Yoani herself have mentioned. In another society she could have sue him for slander.

    When one does not have proof of the statements that ones make then does statements are just used propaganda.
    It is the case for the Cuban government that always classify people opposing the regime as connected to the CIA or any other foreign government.

    I still do not see what is wrong with what Yoani writes that bothers so much the regime. Everyone knows about the problems she describes that exist in Cuba.
    So what is the problem then?

    Why not seat down with the bloggers and start trying to solve the problems mentioned?
    Why can they get it thru their heads that any government of any people on earth should be to serve the people and not the other way around?

    In their archaic or self motivated mentality they think we should all lie and describe a Cuban paradise that only exist on the Cuban National news.
    As Regina remarked ironically on one of her post
    She wanted to find out what form she must fill to move to the Country in the Cuban news cast.

    I do wonder if they themselves believe the fantastic reality portrait in Cuban television and do not really know about the real problems affecting every Cuban.

  21. Candido, great to see you’re still here, and going strong as always, against the dynastic dynosaurs.

    And speaking of dinosaurs, I was reading an article, not long ago about this site somewhere in the Montana/Alberta area (I wont say exactly where so as not to offend anyone), where fossilized dinosaur droppings (coprolites) can be found by the thousands all over the landscape. There is an army of paleontologist scouring the area. I guess after our dinosaurs are gone from the island, we may have to do the same, so as not to suffer the same faith as Slovenia.

    During my absence, I’ve noticed that the Coma-Andante is no longer writing his “reflections”. A good sign that he may be rapidly descending into oblivion. Since I’m not religious and don’t have to worry about forgiveness, I can honestly say that I hope his death is slow and riddled with unimaginable pain. I’d hate to be the thug that helps him to the bathroom each day, given his anal shortcomings. Regardless, no matter how much he suffers, it will only be a fraction of the collective pain he’s caused those who disagree with his dictatorship.

    I’m glad to be back briefly on a broadband connection during my out of town work assignment. Not having fast access gives me a glimpse as to what it must be like for Yoani and those in Alamar to be disconnected.

  22. HAVANA TIMES ARTICLE: Better Arguments against Yoani
    But let’s take a look at the “reasons” the columnist cited for accusing the blogger of having committed certain crimes:

    She was carefully constructed, promoted and sustained by the major media in the service of international oligarchies. (With no proof, except for her being lavishly awarded; this is merely asserted by Ubieta to support this claim.)
    She receives large sums of money through fraudulent journalism awards from those same oligarchies as payment for her services. (Nor does this appear backed by anything other than suppositions.)
    “They say that she met Carlos Alberto Montaner in Spain” (Can a “they say” constitute proof of a supposed tie with the journalist widely linked to the CIA?)
    “She is a dissident in the literal sense in that she differs from official positions.” (This statement is so vague that it doesn’t explain anything, unless Ubieta believes it’s wrong for people to differ from official positions)
    “Yoani not only speaks about politics, she engages in politics.” (Is it a crime to engage in politics? Is there no difference between recounting the misfortunes of daily life and engaging in politics?)
    She is a “counter-revolutionary activist” (For saying what she thinks and becoming famous for that? For openly speaking about the humiliations she experiences?)
    She wants “to change the system” and “reintroduce capitalism in Cuba,” which constitutes the “idea of her blog.” (This exaggerated presumption was made by the author based on an interview with Yoani in which an interviewer asked her: “Changes in the system or of the system?” – to which she responded: “a change of the system… why can’t we develop a unique [form of] capitalism? What this country needs is an injection of creativity and freedom to produce, and socialism is a straightjacket to all that.”

  23. Cita:

    It is very sad to read your explanations about Slovenia.

    I think to reach freedom, it means no change the name of one system by another -in this case communism by democracy-, anyway, because I know exactly how the communists control everything as well as the obsessive fan of power they have, I’m sure and I believe you totally when you say that the old Communists still retain control of everything, is something like “the same dog with different collar”.

    Cuba is a dictatorship over the many that have existed in human history, with the difference of their “tropical aspects “!!!!,,, for example, Cuba is an island, has no one around, so the Cuban government may well limit the entry of people, especially those who think differently.

    Cuba, whose people are extremely attached to the family, allows the government to use all kinds of repression, abuse, etc, etc, providing to each human being the fear for their loved ones and that makes many feel frightened or hide behind of passivity.

    In Cuba, control over citizens is total, house by house, street by street, neighborhood by neighborhood, city by city, province by province, is stiff, absolute, repressive, criminal and cruel.

    Cuban laws have been designed, by their rulers to be applied for its own benefit, so that each offense is punishable according to the convenience of the state, their leaders and their Murderer in Chief Fidel Castro.

    Fidel and his murderers friends have been able to use all the current anti-Americanism to defend their criminal plans and to add supporters to also profess feelings against the United States.

    Every Cuban has received a poisonous dose for over 50 years, which affects and reflects on fear, panic, terror, etc, etc,,,, and will only be removed from his mind the day that these leaders no longer exist, and then, after long years of hard struggle to be able eradicate from the psyche of each one of them the fear to express freely, and incorporate the need and hope of pursuing happiness that we all should be guaranteed from the moment we are born.

    My best regards


  24. Dear Yoani and readers of this blog!
    I think citizens of democratic countries should help Cuba by demanding of their politicians who visit Cuba to meet besides the communist authoriteies also the representatives of various political opposition groups.
    In December the EPP (European People’s Party) the largest political group in the European Parliament held a congress in Bonn, Germany.During the congress several resolutions were adopted, among them 4 refering to 4 countries:Slovenia (the resolution:Totalitarian communist regime), Cuba, Honduras, and Belarus.

    How is it possible that Slovenia(a member of NATO and EU) finds itself in the group together with Cuba, Belarus and Honduras?
    This is the consequence of the fact that there was no lustration in Slovenia after the first democratic election in 1990.So our communists (renamed of course) has retained control over practicaly everything: economy, judiciary, education, media, culture,sport, … In their hands are Ombundsman, Amnesty International, different non-government organizations and so on and so on …

    So when the democratization in your country begins be careful. Follow the example of East Germany not Slovenia.

  25. As part of a self- psychotherapy to keep my high level against Castro, recently I read in the infamous newspaper Granma Digital, an article called “Predators of the National Heritage”.

    In this article, the robotic marionette that is calling himself as journalist!!!!, makes a study of the hundreds of wrecked ships there are around Cuba’s insular platform, dating from the XV century and emphasizes that in recent years kinetic people, – classified by him- as “predators” have been looting, vandalizing, etc., etc., these shipwrecks with the intentions of personal gain.

    The main point of the article, is to highlight the violation of national treasures, which according to the “rat” -the journalist – belongs to the people.

    For nothing, has been mentioned that the Government, the Murderer in Chief and his band of dinosaur mafia, who truly are the greatest predators of the Cuban national heritage, for almost 51 years after the expropriation, looting, vandalism, repression, abuse, torture, etc, have left the island of Cuba plunged into the most catastrophic period in its history, with a town full of gaps, hungry, without freedom of expression, no freedom of movement and under a constant terror that is part of the life for every Cuban.

    It also occurred to me to ask to “the rat” author of the article, why , the Cuban authorities so eagerly want to maintain and explore these wrecks, however, never have engaged in allocating resources, studies, examinations, etc., to find the remains of Camilo Cienfuegos plane !!!!,, could be because the Murderer in Chief, his brother and friends may be responsible?,,,, could come to light that the plane was shot down by direct orders from Fidel?,,, why the Murderer in Chief do not explore deeper in that matter?.

    Fidel, Raul and their mafia gang are the greatest predators that Cuba had ever in its history!!!!!!


  26. Just a thought …
    The names of the “heroes of the revolution are used for castro’s propaganda …
    They remembered and honor ing them is required, repeated over and over till their “truth” becomes a reality.
    How about the heroes of the counter revolution, do we remeber and honor their names?
    Do we mention them, honor their sacrifice, remeber them with thanks?
    Even if they did not find what they wanted, Cubans, non cubans, there were many; today their voices are silent, their blood has disapeared even from the mind ^ hearts of the very people they tried to serve.
    Very few of us are left to to say something, to remember their voice, their actions, their faces.
    Perhaps is time to remeber and bring them forth, to honor them while we keep striving for a better tomorrow …
    The regime uses names to “motivate & inspire” the people, the very people they are keeping under their brutal control.
    We (perhaps) should use the names of the true Cuban patriots to remind this beasts that there was & still is other people that is as committed and with as strong beliefs in opposing the regime as they have defending it.
    Dying for an ideal may be heroic but final, living with an ideal & never giving up is not heroic is the way life is … the ones that survive are the ones living with the consecuences of this “heroes”.
    Heroes like che … ?
    Or heroes like my parents, they raised me, protected me, cared for me … even while in utter poverty & with the freedoms of a slave to a regime and an ideology we never even understood …
    I think (personally) that names have to be mentioned … my personal fundation is freedom, as my parents tought me, not with books & meetings & recited slogans … I was tought w/love, w/patience & by example …
    So here are another names to the list:
    My father Juan … my mother Alda … my Grandmother Elena Y my Grandfather Jose …
    I say THANK YOU with a prayer on my lips … and the regime can go to hell !!!

  27. A name to think about … to ponder why she choose to do what she did?
    Among the many names to remember …

    Zoila aguila almeida …


  28. This (as many other things) reminds me of Algeria … when the struggles were directed at France … when the legionaires were in charge of ‘security”
    When independence and beter treatment for the “pied noirs” was the cause …
    The “meetings’ in the living rooms, in the kitchens …
    Thinfs don’t change … they just evolve into a different level … & still we watch “the evil that man do”

  29. YOANI, ABOUT WEB 2.0
    Open Source Social Network:

    I think in Germany there are servers that allow WordPressMU.
    It shouldn’t cost more than $10/month


  30. YOANI, ABOUT WEB 2.0
    Open Source Social Network:

    Buddypress plugin installed in WordPressMU (mu = multi user)

    The only thing you need is to find a server that will allow you to install WordPressMU and the time to install it.

    Warm Regards

  31. That’s rite John 2,people in Alamar say NO to snitching, they say NO to repudiation rallies, They NO, NO and NO!

    Red Social de software libre y de código abierto:

    Buddypress plugin instalado en WordPressMU (mu = multi user)

    Lo único que necesitas es encontrar un servidor que te permita instalar WordPressMU y tiempo para instalarlo.


  33. Claudia Cadelo (Octavo Cerco blog) attended the Festival of Poetry in Alamar and writes about it. There are also some photos of what this Soviet style neighourhood looks like.

    Claudia also writes that some people in Alamar, upon being asked to participate in a repudiation rally, refused telling those doing the recruiting to stick it where the sun don’t shine (my metaphor not Claudia’s).

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