Citizen Reasons

Razones ciudadanas from Yoani Sanchez on Vimeo.

Translator’s Note: Readers who want to prepare a transcript… you can either post it in the comments… or email DesdeCubaEnglish Gmail com. If you want to take on a particular speaker… or a certain part (specify the time from and to)… I will post in the comments section what part of the transcript is underway so people’s work doesn’t overlap. And of course I will happily translate it to English once it’s done. Gracias and thank you.

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38 thoughts on “Citizen Reasons

  1. Damir and other lovers of a cvil humanity, one that is truely free from what occurs in the land of the free and the brave. what occur there? Racism,hights of socio economic inequality and injustice towards minorities such as Latinos, which includes cubans,a battle to pass a health reform bill that would benefit the common man and we could go on but I do not want to miss the point I was going to raise. The study is out. There is a brain difference and there seems to be little we can do to help those who are vehemeniently opposed to Castro/ socialism. The fact of the matter is human make mistake and the historical circumstances may have facilitated mistakes. but I, haveing lived in Cuba for seven years, experienced my fare share of racism and saw the conditions and effect of a 50+ years of blockade of the comon man. Not the rulers. I have not heard or seen the anti Cartro bloggers critize the mighty USA for this crime against humanity. I will end by saying, history cannot be reversed so instead of living in the pass, why not constructively build a better future for la Partia, one fashoned from the dream of Marti who was not in favor with what he saw living in the entrails of the monster. Insulting is not the answer and please stop making it look as if the USA is the epitomy of ‘demo-crazy’ as I know this is not so. Again I say ask Mumia Abu Jamal, he is in jail there. There are many more imprisoned wrongfully solely because of their belief, not in Cuba, but in the ‘land of the free and the brave. want to be stucked in history? ask the native indians, the African decendants who had and still face grave discrimination, ask the people of Vietnam, Iraq among others. they will tell you what this so called demo-crazy is. Stop fighting, learn to appreciate that everyone will not see the phenomenon with the same perception. Respect the differences and work towards a better world order. One that promotes social justice and equity.
    One love!!!

  2. Albert, “rebolution”? what in the world is that, it sure isn’t a word, but if are refering to what Castro did in Cuba, it is destruccion y no revolucion.

  3. Nuevoz, enjoyed very much the blog, recomend it. Whomever is the writer needs to write more frequently, is great stuff!

  4. By the way #30 how about my question addressing the need to defend the cuban rebolution? I pressume that you either are preparing a lengthly eassay on the subject or you are at loss for words …
    Nevertheless I expect that if it comes, will be full of misdirection,twist of facts, finger pointing & racist insults …

  5. @#30
    Your expressed conclutions about the pictures reveal your thinking form, the same form used by most other defenders of the rebolution.
    W/ all you mental prowness it seems you are not able to avoid falling into patterns, that alone weakens your argument, one would think you read what you post …?
    Add to it your attempted mokery & there, nothing but humor to laugh at from your statements.
    Good form & thank you for the laughs!

  6. Damir, millions of visitors bring in books to Cuba. The ones that are politically acceptable, like “internet for dummies”, are sometimes brought in by the suitcase full. Visitors also bring in computers and leave them behind. Even the most rabid anti-American party faithful crave American books and American computers and American money. Or I should say, especially the party faithful.

    The books are then passed around or sold on the street. In small quantities, we’ve brought in less politically acceptable books and magazines, which customs often misses or turns a blind eye. I really don’t see your point, are you sure you’ve been to Cuba? I’m curious how often you’ve been there and what you’ve seen. I’m also curious about your habit of “quoting” things nobody ever said.

  7. Hillarious those books behind the guy with the glasses. “Internet for dummies” (how appropriate). “Los mejores trucos para internet 2010”, “Diseno y desarollo de blogs”, “Internet”…

    Given the embargo, there is only one way to get those “made in usa” books in Cuba.

    Clandestinely.

    So they tell us.

    Well, if that is the case, can someone tell us exactly who brought those books tyo Cuba and gave them to these people?

    Yeah, family and friends would bring those books to their grandfathers who, according to the team “yoani” and similar “democrats” cannot afford to buy computers, which are hard to find anyway, thanks to the embargo.

    And strange to see only old people around the “new technology” (blogs are not technology, and internet is over 30 years old, geniuses), and not one young person (Yoani is old nowadays too) who would be more suited to exploring and using this “new” technology.

    You know, like in the rest of the world.

    Kids are hackers and technology fanatics, not their grandfathers and grandmothers…

  8. Tampa, Florida Marzo 22, 2011

    Sta. Yoani Sanchez

    ¡Todos siempre te diremos que estamos orgullosos de ti! Te diremos mil y una de esas cosas que encajan y desencadenan albas y agitadas olas en tu vanidad. Te haremos sentir como la homérica heroína de nuestros tiempos y hasta habremos esos que juraríamos haberte visto, con tus propias uñas, extirpar tu seno sin haberte oído quejar− para por medio de tus valiente sacrificio e ideal, con tus afiladas letras, tirar contra el desventajoso y maléfico enemigo y nunca fallar.

    Hemos colmado tu coraje, suficiencia y si, hasta tu astucia como mujer para después vanagloriar a la digna y sacrificada mujer que vela por los derechos y libertades de su patria, aunque su propia vida o libertad… está siendo sacrificada cada segundo.

    Después, tenemos los déspotas y las ratas cobardes que te velan y atosigan. Esos que sabotean tu ideal― sin darse cuenta― el muy cretino― que validase tu innegable valentía mientras olvida que no existe dictadura que dure cien años… ni pueblo que la resista; estamos cruzando un momento en la historia del mundo donde arraigados gobiernos están sufriendo los efectos del dominó… y caen, uno tras otro, como soplados por un huracán que no es más que el hambriento aliento de los pueblos rompiendo sus cadenas y exigiendo la ansiada libertad. Pueblos como Egipto que se ha tirado a la calle y ha despojado sus tierras de aquellos que lo encadenaron treinta años. Pueblos como Libia, después de cuarenta-y-dos años, fervorosamente ha decidido arriesgar sus vidas y tirarse a la calle con cuchillos, palos y piedras, contra aviones y tanques blindados y un ejército secundado por mercenarios y asesinos importados del África, alquilados por el gobierno opresor. Hoy, mientras escribo estas letras, el pueblo de Siria, cual gobierno ha mantenido suspendidos los derechos civiles de sus ciudadanos desde comienzos de 1960, también se ha tirado a la calle demostrando contra el corrupto y despótico gobierno.
    ¡Todos siempre te diremos cosas muy bellas y siempre estaremos orgullosos de ti!
    …lo que no he logrado escuchar o leer (Tan siquiera en susurros), es cuando los cubanos en el exilio vamos a dejar que una mujer y un puñado de presos políticos (En Cuba), sigan muriendo en huelgas de hambre y tengan, al fin, el apoyo patriótico que ustedes se merecen tener. ¿Cuándo vamos a despertar, pueblo cubano, dentro y fuera de nuestra tierra? ¿Cuándo vamos a recordar que Cuba siempre tuvo la valentía de hombres y mujeres que activamente defendieron y hasta dieron la vida por la dignidad y libertad de sus palmas?

    Todos te diremos cosas muy bellas Yoanis…mientras tú arriesgas vida y libertad. Mientras eres perseguida, atropellada y vilmente mancillada y pasas numerosas necesidades por lo que todos debiéramos hacer… y hacer decididamente. ¡Todos te diremos… Menos lo que más ansías escuchar!

    Que el pueblo cubano se ha unido sin miras a poderes o riquezas oportunistas… con el sentido de un gobierno totalmente soberano y por medio del voto democrático… con miras a un único y pronto desenvolvimiento para la situación cubana… ¡Unidad, por la libertad de Cuba!

    ¡Libertad! Y esta vez… sin banderas extranjeras sombreando nuestra estrella solitaria!

    Eres admirablemente valiente Yoani y si en algo quiero ser diferente por este medio, es diciéndote que siempre que te he leído me has recordado a otra dotada y hermosa mujer llamada Juana Borrero, quien el régimen Castrista mancha, usando su nombre para con la revolución, cuando ella hubiera muerto cien veces en vida, si la hubiera tenido que sufrir.

    ¡Despierta pueblo cubano!

    Dios te cuide siempre Yoani…

    Pablo J. de la Rosa

  9. Varader Beach
    I’ll like to add my question from #24 which it does not get answered either … hope you don’t mind …

  10. lol@Damirony

    So now the so-called team Yohani is trynna avoiod you??? And what about the simple question u been ducking for the past month?? Don’t worry I promise not to run and hide :-)

  11. Damir, I was thinking, you might be a lovable person if we ever met. You remind me of a friend who believes man never went to the moon. A very nice guy, but if you talk about the moon to him, he starts foaming at the mouth. Of course, the families of dead Apollo astronauts might feel like punching him in the mouth, which would be understandable.

    Don’t you get it buddy – if you have some personal horror story about Yugoslavia (such as family that were raped or murdered) and you create a blog, and I show up and call you a liar, are you going to be civil with me? Even if general Tito invited me to his birthday party that wouldn’t make me an expert on Yugoslavia.

  12. Yes Damir! We know that you need some attention buddy! Do you need a massage too?

  13. What’s with this breeze of sudden civility…?

    A cat is a cat, even when it purrs. It will scratch you hand in a jiffy.

    Anti-Cubans are still conveniently forgetting that in their anger they are missing the crucial point, which Many of the people, yes like myself, have tried to make them understand:

    There is a crucial difference between being a “regime sympathiser” and a pacifist.

    For those anti-Cubans here (and the team “yoani” supporters) there seems to be no understanding of this differentiation. Those who are sincere should go to the posts from a year or so ago and read what many, not just I, had tried to convey here, but were brutally insulted and many chased away by the same sudenly “civilised” posters today.

    I suggest to those who do not see the difference, go work on our education and then, when you unerstand the terms, come back and join conversation.

    ANd what’s with “maybe someone in the “loyal opposition” would have the guts to engage in a real debate?… I know some of you read this blog, so maybe one of you has the guts to debate Yoani and company in an open, civil forum?”

    This is as open a forum as they come. There is no greater audience than this.

    And is teh team “yoani” participating in ebate?

    NO,

    They are avoiding people like I. They, and so do you, know only too well that they would have a seriously hard time participating in a debate with people who cannot be fooled with their hollow rethorics and empty party slogans.

    So, what do they do? Like those cowardly school bullies, they post here and run. And let their dogs do the dirty job of intimiation and insulting for them.

    I am here.

    And where is the team “yoani”???????

    Hiding behind the comfortable wall of the internet.

    So they should. They have dropped too many, far too many stupid coments here to be able to survive a civilised debate about Cuban issues.

    Please note that there was only one (1) post they managed to write that was worht reading. Des anyone even remember of that post? About the young medical doctor. Great story. Accidental luck. The team “yoani” are not about real stories like that. They are about destruction and crisis. Of course they would not dare stick their necks out here and debate. I would eat them alive with their on posts. And they, the old ladies, know that very well.

  14. the question I always ask & never gets answered …
    since the reboution is so good, why does it need to be defended?
    Now w/the considerable resources used to attempt to discredit the dissident bloggers, where does it come from? again … since the rebolution is so good, why does it need to be defended?
    So: to the many well educated defenders of the rebolution brigade including doctors, book writers, lecturers & experts in the “Cuban situation” can any of you formulate an answer?

  15. Love Cuba, you forgot to mention that you also are allowed to travel from Canada to Cuba; Cubans are confined or imprisoned in their own country

  16. 2 things

    1. Im not LoveCuba

    2. U didnt answer my question

    U claimed before that this current site was visible from Cuba… So how do u explain the report sayin that they unblocked the site from Cuba AFTER u claimed that it was never blocked?

  17. BBC: Cuba releases dissidents Felix Navarro and Jose Ferrer

    The Cuban government has freed the last two dissidents still in jail after a crackdown on opposition activists in 2003.
    Jose Ferrer and Felix Navarro were among 75 opponents of the government arrested eight years ago.

    The dissidents’ freedom was brokered by the Roman Catholic Church last year, with most agreeing to go into exile.

    The remaining prisoners had refused to leave the island.

    Mr Navarro, 57, a teacher and political activist, and 40-year-old Mr Ferrer, a fisherman, were freed early on Wednesday.

    “My dad is in great spirits, very upbeat, very happy – and prepared to pick up where he left off in 2003,” Mr Navarro’s daughter, Sayli, told the AFP news agency.

    There was similar jubilation for Mr Ferrer and his family.

    “It was a really emotional reception. All the family was waiting for me and I am going to devote my first days to them, before taking up the struggle again,” Mr Ferrer told the Spanish news agency, Efe.

    He said he believed the Cuban government had been obliged to free the dissidents, but the releases did not signify that there had been political change.

    “Cuba’s prisons are full and there is all kinds of criminals in them, as well as a lot of victims of the regime,” Mr Ferrer said via telephone from his home in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba.

    Unfair trials
    Last July, Cuban President Raul Castro agreed after talks with Catholic Church leaders to free the 52 dissidents still behind bars after the 2003 crackdown.

    Most were released in the following weeks and went into exile in Spain, but several, including Mr Navarro and Mr Ferrer, stayed in jail because they refused to leave Cuba.

    Earlier this year, the authorities began releasing the remaining dissidents without insisting they go into exile.

    Reacting to news of the latest releases, Amnesty International said the activists should never have been jailed in the first place.

    “The release of all prisoners of conscience from the March 2003 crackdown and an activist detained last December is a step in the right direction for human rights in Cuba,” Amnesty Cuba expert Gerardo Ducos.

    “What we want to see now is for the Cuban authorities to not force activists into exile as a condition for their release and to ensure all human rights activists are able to carry out their legitimate work without fear of threat, harassment, further arrests or unfair trials in their own country.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-12835362

  18. No. 15:
    I’m thinking perhaps Yoani can find borderline sympathizers who walk a thin line at the margins but are appologists for the regime. I know that those who hold on to dear life for their jobs at the service of the regime, would not want to be associated with the cause for democracy – being opportunists, they’ll only come around when Cuba is altogether free. But I’m sure among those half million who are about to be let go, there’ll be plenty of folks who’ll have a great deal to say. There may be friends of Yoani, retirees with nothing to loose, etc. who might want to participate.

  19. Amnesty International Reacts to Release of Activists in Cuba
    Amnesty International Media Statement
    For Immediate Release
    Wednesday, March 23, 2011

    Contact: AIUSA media relations office, 202-509-8194

    (Washington, D.C.) In response to news that the Cuban authorities will release the last remaining activists from the group of 75 detained in March 2003, Amnesty International’s expert on Cuba, Gerardo Ducos, said:

    “It is a step in the right direction for human rights in Cuba to see the release of all prisoners of conscience from the March 2003 crackdown and an activist detained last December, particularly considering they should have never been imprisoned in the first place.

    “What we want to see now is for the Cuban authorities not to force activists into exile as a condition for their release and to ensure all human rights activists are able to carry out their legitimate work without fear of threats, harassment, further arrests or unfair trials in their own country.”

    Background Information

    Seventy-five people were jailed in a massive crackdown against the dissident movement around 18 March 2003 for the peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression.

    Most of them were charged with crimes including “acts against the independence of the state” because they allegedly received funds and/or materials from US-based NGOs financed by the US government.

    They were sentenced to between six and 28 years in prison after speedy and unfair trials for engaging in activities the authorities perceived as subversive and damaging to Cuba.

    http://www.amnestyusa.org/document.php?id=ENGUSA20110323002&lang=e

  20. Just thought I’d mention, for the umpteenth time, since it seems to escape the delusional, that all those Americans and Canadians who live in Cuba and praise Castro and work to overthrow the US and Canadian governments – are never accused of being mercenaries in the pay of Castro. And I can walk into any bookstore or library in North America, including in Miami, and I can drown in pro-Castro and pro-Che literature. And none of those bookstores or libraries have ever been accused of “waging war” against the USA or Canada. Even more conveniently I can order every single pro-Castro book ever written right now using my capitalist credit card, and neither Amazon nor my credit card company nor the post office nor I will be accused of waging “cyber war” against America.

    For the intelligent readers here, sorry to be repetitive, just following my conscience.

  21. Chicago, love your idea of inviting regime sympathizers to debate the dissidents. The question is who would be able to accept such an invitation, at least today. First, a party hack would need permission from the party, and that would give legitimacy to the dissidents which the party claims aren’t really dissidents, and even if a party hack was given permission, they know they would look like idiots in an open forum.

    But maybe someone in the “loyal opposition” would have the guts to engage in a real debate? I’m talking about those people who criticize some aspects of the Cuban government but make it clear they are “real socialists” and still hate America. Some even think Cuba should have a multi-party system, as long as all the parties are “socialist”. Since a lot of those people are foreigners who live in or frequently visit Cuba, and they are “sympathetic” to the Cuban system, they have little to fear from the government. I know some of you read this blog, so maybe one of you has the guts to debate Yoani and company in an open, civil forum?

  22. @#13
    in case you have not noticed … you just spoke your mind & your opinion was not only respected but answered to …

  23. Damir,

    The abuses at Guantanamo were leaked by US personnel and US press and stopped thanks to our relatively open system. And at their worst, they did not approach anything close to the abuses committed in prisons of closed societies, like, you guessed it, Cuba. So let’s talk about today, what are you doing to stop abuses in Cuban prisons? Why won’t the Cuban government allow inspectors into their prisons? Have you posted to Cuban websites demanding to know why? Do you think they would publish your posts even if you did?

  24. varadero/lovecuba, I did answer your question. I also offered more interesting observations, but they were not to their liking and they blocked my posts. I tried about five times.

    See, as soon as I post something damning, just as humberto (is that you too?) when he posted that interview with a Cuban woman who retired and went to Cuba to live, saying that the life in Cuba is good, they edit, censo or simply block.

    Why did they block my response to you, you should ask them.

    And I do not normally engage with other posters because large majority has nothing to say. To make up for intellect, they cut and paste stuff irrelevant to the team “yoani” posts, and then viraly attack, insult, drull and anything else that may intimidate those who dare to think differently.

    And then go back to their business talking about “democracy”…

    (you know, the place where people have their opinion and openly speak their mind, respecting others and their own opinions.)

  25. I checked the video suggested by Humberto below. Boy these people are blind!!! I don’t know what the elders are giving the people to smoke or eat, but they sure seem wrapped in a sort of fog of the unreal. Not a word about real issues, failures and deprivations suffered by the population, everything is demonization, demonization…… These people sound as if they don’t even know they are being deprived both, of their citizen rights as well as material well being.

    I’m not very computer savvy, but there must be talented people out there, both in Cuba and state side who can answer these deceptive documentaries scene by scene accusation by accusation.

  26. Dr. Dumbir,

    “Some really horrible things are going on in Cuba.

    About 11 million people are kept in 365 days / year in solitary confinement on the island as they are not allowed to leave or emigrate. The regime guarding them beat them and denigrate them , on a regular basis. State-sponsored nazist treatment of human beings whose only fault is to dislike teh government that is beating them, destroying their homeland and is locking them up with no access to lawyers, family living in other countries or human rights organisations.

    And no charges are laid for years.

    No, I am not talking about the Castros

    I am talking about the Cuban nazist and imperialist.”

  27. Damir

    Im man enuff to say you are 100% right with that last comment… Question is: are u man enuff to answer my question?

  28. Some really horrible things are going on in Cuba.

    About 300 people are kept in 22 hours a day solitary confinement. The soldiers guarding them beat them and even sexually abuse or denigrate, on a regular basis. State-sponsored nazist treatment of human beings whose only fault is to dislike teh government that is beating them, destroying their homeland and is locking them up with no access to lawyers, family or human rights organisations.

    And no charges are laid for years.

    No, I am not talking about the Castros.

    I am talking about the usa nazist and imperialist dictatorship, the same one that is currently attacking another oil-rich arab country to depose another dictator they themselves kept up for so long, simply because he was selling them the oil.

    BBC documentary talking about the horrors and reality of what is actually going on in Guantanamo:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00psnxv

  29. THIS WOULD BE LAUGHABLE IF IT WAS NOT FOR THE SINISTER, CYNICAL AND ABUSIVE GOVERMENT THAT’S BEHIND IT!

    RADIO CADENA AGRAMONTE (from Cuba): The Truth, Shield of Cuba in Cyberspace

    Some people forecasted some years ago, by virtue of heyday that Internet was reaching, that access to information and new technologies would cause the third world war.

    These Nostradamus of the modern time were not wrong: the cyberwar developed by United States constitutes an example of what a country does to achieve its interference.

    One obvious example is monitoring of mails and of network of countries such as Cuba, People’s Republic of China and Iran, like one of violations by the White House to international law and to right to self-determination of peoples.

    Sale of printers with virus in Yugoslavia, which affects network and air transmissions, is another evidence of this North American strategy, demonstrated also in direct intervention in networks of other nations by the United States Army and more recently, by cyber-mercenaries.

    Clear example is the blogger employed Yoani Sánchez, who receives dough to write a distorted vision of reality, subject to orders of the White House.

    Contrary to this degrading action, many young people set out, every day, with their works on personal pages, the reasons to defend Cuban socialistic society.

    Spiritual and human wealth of majority of Cuban people who today carry out revolutionary work is unbounded. Values, ideas, political convictions … are the principal weapons with which we will sustain defence of Cuba in cyberspace.

    http://www.cadenagramonte.cu/english/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4867:the-truth-shield-of-cuba-in-cyberspace&catid=1:camaguey&Itemid=14

  30. YOUTUBE: “Ciberguerra”, en Las Razones de Cuba 1/2 – 2,157 VIEWS
    YOUTUBE: “Ciberguerra”, en Las Razones de Cuba 2/2 – 1,541 VIEWS
    VIMEO: Razones ciudadanas-by Yoani Sanchez – 7,952 VIEWS

  31. Great idea Yoani. Since the geriatric ward and their cronies don’t allow their demonized victims to respond through through normal television channels, the idea of allowing them to defend themselves through this medium is plain unadultarated genius. It is great to see the people whose blogs we’ve been reading actually speaking their minds and sharing their personal experiences in a more intimate way.

    I hope that unlike the intellectually challenged bullies that rule the island, and in order to teach them a lesson in civility, Yoani and Reinaldo invite some of the more flexible regime sympathizers so that a legitimate balanced debate can be held and made available on line for all to see. This would be a great way to show them that issues can be discussed and disagreements aired without insults and witch hunts of those who differ. Judging by the intellect and gift of prose of those in the above video, there should be nothing to fear in squaring off face to face with any regime sympathizer, even if it was Carlos Refael himself.

    I love the idea of a virtual internet television channel or channels maybe in the “Desde Cuba” site, discussing and debating all manner of topics maybe even documentaries, that affect and take place in Cuba. It would be a great way for all young and old to show their artistic talent in a video-cinematographic context.

  32. THIS IS SO BIZARRE AND CONTRADICTORY TO THE CLAIMS IN THE PAST SEVERAL YEARS THAT “THE MUMMY” WAS CALLING ALL THE SHOTS!

    NPR:Cuba’s Castro: I Quit As Party Chief 5 Years Ago HAVANA March 22,
    Fidel Castro’s surprise announcement that he stepped down as head of the Communist Party five years ago — despite widespread belief he remained in charge — marks the bizarre end of an era for a nation, and a man, whose fates have been intertwined for more than half a century.

    The 84-year-old revolutionary icon made the revelation Tuesday — with word of the resignation thrown in as an aside halfway through an opinion piece that otherwise focused on President Barack Obama.

    The declaration raises fundamental questions about just how much power Fidel has been wielding behind the scenes since his 2006 illness, and to what extent his 79-year-old brother has had freedom to make his own decisions as he pushed the country to enact sweeping economic reforms.

    It also gives the Castros an opportunity to tap a possible future successor with their naming of a new party No. 2 — one without their famous last name.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE

    In Tuesday’s opinion piece, Castro said that when he got sick in 2006, “I resigned without hesitation from my state and political positions, including first secretary of the party … and I never tried to exercise those roles again.”

    He said that even when his health began to improve, he stayed out of state and party affairs “even though everyone, affectionately, continued to refer to me by the same titles.”

    In the opinion piece, Fidel indicated that, with or without formal titles, he will always be an intellectual force in the revolution, a refrain he has uttered several times in recent years.

    “I remain and will remain as I have promised: a soldier of ideas, as long as I can think and breathe,” he writes.

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=134758708

  33. The man probably got scared watching the news from Egypt, Libia, Yemen. He thinks a bit and then tells to the people he highjacked 51 years ago : ” I stoped being in charge since 2006, so why are you asking me to quit. I did it already. ”

    I am just curious if he will blame Osama & Al Quieda for the Cuban unrest. Ceusescu
    blamed the KGB, funny eh ??

    http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/957837–fidel-castro-says-he-quit-as-communist-party-head-five-years-ago?bn=1

    Fidel Castro says he quit as Communist Party head five years ago

    Paul Haven
    Associated Press
    HAVANA—Fidel Castro’s surprise announcement that he stepped down as head of the Communist Party five years ago — despite widespread belief he remained in charge — marks the bizarre end of an era for a nation, and a man, whose fates have been intertwined for more than half a century.

    The 84-year-old revolutionary icon made the revelation Tuesday — with word of the resignation thrown in as an aside halfway through an opinion piece that otherwise focused on President Barack Obama.

    The declaration raises fundamental questions about just how much power Fidel has been wielding behind the scenes since his 2006 illness, and to what extent his 79-year-old brother has had freedom to make his own decisions as he pushed the country to enact sweeping economic reforms.

    It also gives the Castros an opportunity to tap a possible future successor with their naming of a new party No. 2 — one without their famous last name.

    They might select from a cadre of younger leaders who could carry the fiscal changes forward, and perhaps even reboot relations with the United States. Alternatively, the brothers could look to the past by promoting a loyal-but-weathered veteran of the revolution that brought them to power in 1959.

    The answer will likely become apparent through a high-level game of musical chairs that Fidel’s departure will engender in the upper reaches of the Communist Party hierarchy during a crucial Communist Party Congress next month.

    In Tuesday’s opinion piece, Castro said that when he got sick in 2006, “I resigned without hesitation from my state and political positions, including first secretary of the party … and I never tried to exercise those roles again.”

    He said that even when his health began to improve, he stayed out of state and party affairs “even though everyone, affectionately, continued to refer to me by the same titles.”

    In the opinion piece, Fidel indicated that, with or without formal titles, he will always be an intellectual force in the revolution, a refrain he has uttered several times in recent years.

    “I remain and will remain as I have promised: a soldier of ideas, as long as I can think and breathe,” he writes.

    The article, which was published on the state-run Cubadebate website overnight and in newspapers Tuesday morning, caught many people by surprise.

    “It’s incredible. Nobody can believe it,” said Magaly Delgado, a 72-year-old Havana retiree who was clutching a copy of Granma, the Communist Party daily. “I always thought he was still in charge. … He never said he had resigned.”

    The Cuban government had no immediate comment on the revelation, which appeared to tweak history. Fidel stepped down in 2006 due to a serious illness that almost killed him. In an official proclamation released on July 31, 2006, he provisionally delegated most of his official duties to his brother — including the presidency and head of the party.

    In February 2008 he announced he was officially stepping down as president, and Raul Castro was formally picked to succeed him by the country’s parliament a few days later. But no reference was made to Fidel leaving his party post, and Cuban officials and ordinary people have referred to him as the party leader ever since.

    Even after the announcement, the Communist Party website on Tuesday listed Fidel as first secretary, with Raul as second secretary.

    It is widely expected that Raul will formally be named to the top spot at the April congress, and analysts say the choice of second secretary will say a lot about how the brothers envision a transition to an eventual post-Castro era.

    “They could send a startling message by picking somebody young or out of the party, or somebody whose name is not easily recognized,” said Robert Pastor, a professor at American University and longtime adviser on hemispheric affairs. “Most people would guess, however, that they will pick … an octogenarian who fought in the revolution.”

    While the government historically has focused on the day-to-day running of the country, the party is tasked with guiding the Cuban people on their path to communism. In practice, no major policy can be passed without the party first agreeing.

    There are a scattering of young leaders including Lazaro Exposito, the fast-charging Communist Party chief in Santiago de Cuba, and Lazara Lopez Acea, the 47-year-old top party leader for Havana, as well as Bruno Rodriguez, the 53-year-old foreign minister, and Marino Murillo, the 50-year-old economy minister.

    But none appears ready to step into such a high-profile role, and neither Fidel nor Raul has ever indicated publicly that one is favoured over the others. Since taking office, Raul has also elevated a number of generals to high-ranking jobs at state-run entities, but they are technocrats largely unknown to the public.

    Some young politicians might be reluctant to step into such a senior position, conscious that the career path of those who have flown too high, too fast, has usually been short. In 2009, Raul suddenly fired two of the island’s rising political stars: Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque, then 43, and Vice-President Carlos Lage, who at 57 was relatively youthful given the advanced ages of most government officials. Both were captured on a secret video tape drinking whisky and joking about the country’s old leaders.

    “The truth is Raul’s experience with young leaders hasn’t been very good these past few years, so I think he will name a historic figure,” said Eduardo Bueno, a professor of international relations at Mexico’s Iberoamerican University. “That said, if the younger generation could take a step forward it would be a great signal, including for Raul, that things are finally moving and the country’s long paralysis is over.”

    The safest choice for the No. 2 party spot would probably be Jose Ramon Machado Ventura, a strict disciplinarian of unquestioned loyalty who has been with the Castros since their guerrilla days in the Sierra Maestra mountains and once extracted a bullet from Argentine revolutionary Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara’s foot.

    Machado Ventura, 80, is already Raul Castro’s first vice-president and holds several other key posts in the government.

    Another old-timer who could get the nod is Ramiro Valdes, 78, who is vice-president of Cuba’s supreme governing body, the Council of State, and oversees the crucial ministries of telecommunications and construction from a new position carved out for him in January.

    But neither choice is likely to shake things up politically, or result in improved relations with the United States, which has maintained an economic embargo on Cuba for 48 years.

    Bilateral ties have plunged into a deep freeze recently due to the conviction earlier this month of U.S. contractor Alan Gross, who received a 15-year prison sentence for bringing satellite equipment into the country illegally.

    A congressional staffer involved in U.S.-Cuba relations said Fidel’s official departure from the party will not lead, at least in the short term, to improved relations with Washington.

    “It will not have much of a political impact on bilateral relations because Raul has the same last name,” he said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly. He said it would take the death of one or both of the two brothers to change perceptions in the United States.

    “His stepping down will be a watershed on the island, for sure, and it will be seen as such by most in Washington,” he said. “But some people will still say Fidel is calling the shots, whether or not it is really the truth anymore.”

    However the party shakeup plays out, it is likely to leave Raul with more room to transform the island’s ever-weak economy.

    The Communist Party Congress at which Fidel’s successor is likely to be picked has been called to set a new economic path for the country, one which Raul has been pushing since he took office.

    Many of the changes Raul has already embraced, like allowing Cubans to go into business for themselves, rent homes and even hire employees, have long been anathema to his brother.

    There has been speculation — impossible to confirm in Cuba’s hermetically sealed political culture — that Raul Castro would have moved the reforms along faster if not for his older brother’s larger-than-life presence and continued influence behind the scenes.

    Tomas Bilbao, the executive director of the Washington-based non-profit Cuba Study Group, which supports increasing economic and academic exchanges with the island, said the impact of Fidel’s resignation cannot be overstated.

    “I think it’s significant because if nothing else it’s Fidel Castro sending a clear message that his brother is in charge of the country,” he said. “It’s a big boost in credibility for Raul and the reforms he’s trying to push.”

  34. Hermanos Cubanos tenemos que entender que todos le tememos a la muerte y por consiguiente evitamos confrontarla pero si Mohammed Ghandi pudo de forma pacifica ganar la independencia de su pueblo y librarce de ser colonia de los Ingleses y ahora los paises arabes estan obteniendo su libertad tambien comenzando protestas de forma pacifica debemos tomar en cuenta eso para actuar. Constantemente escucho y veo noticias desde dentro de Cuba y se que la resistencia dentro del pais es cada vez mas fuerte, por eso no deben echar atras ni un solo paso. No teman estar presos porque hace 52 anos que lo estan, no teman morir porque vivir sin los basicos derechos de todo ser humano es estar muertos. Aqui en el exilio nos estamos informando de todo lo que pasa en la isla atravez de diferentes medios y sabemos que cuando ustedes esten listos nosotros tambien lo estaremos con nuestro apoyo. Si los cubanos en la Isla dejan de trabajar y hacen una huelga de brazos caidos al gobierno no les quedara mas remedio que acceder a reformas o largarce que seria lo ideal pues no hay carceles para ll millones de habitantes mas bien hay una sola y no podran matarlos a los ll millones porque aparte de que seria genocidio cosa que el mundo no permitiria, ellos los Castros no tendrian a quienes explotar, humillar o encarcelar. La libertad cuesta! Soy de la opinion de que para atras ni para cojer impulso. TODOS SOMOS RESISTENCIA!

  35. Research and Markets: Cuba – Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband Report 2011
    DUBLIN–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Research and Markets has announced the addition of the “Cuba – Telecoms, Mobile and Broadband” report to their offering.

    Economic pressures underpin Ral Castro’s reforms.

    Cuba – Telecoms, Mobile, and Broadband profiles the fixed-line, mobile and broadband markets in Cuba.

    Cuba still has the lowest mobile phone penetration in Latin America, one of the lowest levels of Internet penetration, and is among the five lowest in terms of fixed-line teledensity. Cuba’s fixed-line services remain a monopoly in the hands of government-controlled Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Cuba SA (Etecsa), while mobile services are provided exclusively by Cubacel, a subsidiary of Etecsa.

    There remains substantial state control over the right to own and use certain communications services, including the right to access the Internet. Whilst the Obama administration has recently relaxed some of the embargo rules pertaining to telecommunications, differences between FCC pricing regulations and Cuban government pricing rules effectively preclude US operators from operating in Cuba. Although Raul Castro has made it clear that he will be reducing the size of Cuban state expenditure in favour of private participation in the economy, the genuine liberalisation of Cuba’s telecommunications sector is expected to occur slowly over the next five to ten years.

    Market Highlights:

    In 2009 the Obama administration said it would forthwith authorise US telecoms companies to establish themselves in Cuba, whether that be by way of establishing telecommunications facilities, roaming agreements with Cuban service providers, or transactions leading to the provision of satellite radio and television services. The US administration would also allow US residents to enter into service agreements with telecoms companies providing services to Cubans, as well as allowing the donation of certain telecommunications devices to Cuba without a licence.

    By early 2011 however the Obama announcements had changed little since the Cuban government was still resisting the US policy steps whilst the FCC was not prepared to amend its rules to allow US operators pay the 84 cents per call required by the Cuban government.

    Although in 2009 ETECSA stated that it would work with the government to increase teledensity in poorly served areas of the capital, by early 2011 it was estimated that fixed line teledensity was still the lowest in the region, at little more than 12%.

    In January 2011 the laying of a new submarine fibre-optic cable between Cuba and Venezuela commenced. The cable is expected to triple Cuba’s overseas phone connections and data transmission speeds.

    Mobile subscriber growth of around 50% in 2010 was largely attributable to the Cuban government’s decision to make mobile phones more accessible to citizens. Nevertheless mobile penetration continues to be rated by the United Nations as the lowest in Latin America. The substantial gap between Cuba’s mobile penetration, which stands at around 10%, and the rest of Latin America’s, which averages around 90%, continues to widen.

    Despite the growing awareness of the Internet among the Cuban populace, public Internet access is still limited. Broadband services, such as ADSL and cable modem, are non-existent in Cuba, and until mid-2008 Cubans could not legally buy a computer or subscribe to an Internet connection without having a government permit.

    Undoubtedly the most pressing incentive for telecommunications reform will come from the country’s growing economic crisis. In 2010 Raul Castro outlined a raft of significant state cutbacks and liberalisation measures designed to reduce the role of the state and increase the private sector.

    Data in this report is the latest available at the time of preparation and may not be for the current year.

    Key Topics Covered:

    1. Executive summary
    2. Key statistics
    3. Country overview
    4. Telecommunications market 4.1 Overview of Cuba’s telecom market
    5. Regulatory environment
    6. Fixed network operator in Cuba 6.1 Empresa de Telecomunicaciones del Cuba SA (Etecsa)
    7. Telecommunications infrastructure 7.1 National telecom network 7.2 International infrastructure 7.2.1 Submarine cable networks 7.2.2 Satellite networks
    8. Internet market 8.1 Overview 8.1.1 Internet statistics
    9. Mobile communications 9.1 Overview of Cuba’s mobile market 9.1.1 Mobile statistics 9.2 Major mobile operators 9.2.1 Telefonos Celulares de Cuba (Cubacel)
    10. Related reports

    For more information visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/5b0674/cuba_telecoms_m

  36. AS WE SAY IN CUBAN SPANISH, THE CASTROFACISTS “SE ESTAN CAGANDO”!! I LOVE IT, REACHING TO THE BOTTOM OF THE BARREL TO SEE IF THEY CAN CHANGE THE TIDE, AND STOP THE TRUTH FROM COMING OUT! WONT WORK, TOO LATE!

    BBC NEWS: Cuba accuses award-winning blogger of cyberwar against her country- Havana says Yoani Sánchez’s Generacion Y blog demonises government and is the tool of neocolonial propaganda-Sam Jones and agencies -Tuesday 22 March

    A dissident Cuban blogger who was hailed last year as a hero of press freedom has again been attacked by the island’s government for waging a “cyberwar” against the communist regime.

    Yoani Sánchez – whose Generacion Y blog has won numerous prizes and attracted an international readership for its blunt reflections on Cuban life – was the subject of a TV programme on Monday.

    The latest in a series of programmes called Cuba’s Reasons claimed Sánchez was part of a media campaign intent on “demonising” socialism.

    It included grainy videos in which the blogger enters European embassies and the US interests section in Havana, and said she has collected $500,000 [£306,000] in international prizes for her work.

    “Cyberwar is not a war of bombs and bullets, but of information, communication, algorithms and bytes. It is the new form of invasion that has originated in the developed world,” said the narrator.

    The Cuba’s Reasons series has tried to show that the US is using new technologies to try to subvert the Havana government.

    It has coincided with the trial and conviction of US aid contractor Alan Gross, who has been jailed since December 2009 for allegedly trying to bring the internet to government opponents. Earlier this month, Gross was sentenced to 15 years in prison by a panel of judges in a case that has strained US-Cuba relations.

    Sánchez herself has shrugged off the latest attack, taking to Twitter to announce: “I am so happy. Finally the alternative blogosphere on official television, although it’s to insult us.”

    She added: “They don’t know what they’ve done! Pandora’s Box has been smashed open!”

    Sánchez also thanked all those who had texted her. “I can’t keep tweeting all the texts of support,” she wrote. “There are too many of them and I have only 10 fingers!”

    It is not the first time that Sánchez has drawn the ire of the ruling regime. In November 2009, the blogger said she had been beaten up by a group of thugs hired to silence her as she travelled to a peaceful protest.

    And three years ago – shortly after Cuba denied her permission to travel to Spain to collect the prestigious Ortega y Gasset journalism award for her blog – Fidel Castro himself appeared to express his disapproval.

    In a book about his relationship with Bolivia, Castro alluded to the fact that Sánchez had told an international news agency that she had been barred from travelling to Europe.

    “What is grave isn’t so much affirmations of this type that are divulged immediately by imperialism’s mass media,” the former president wrote, but that there are young Cubans who “assume the job of those who undermine, and of the neocolonial press of the ancient Spanish metropolis that awards them”.

    In an interview with Spanish newspaper El País in April 2008, Sánchez explained why she blogged: “The official discourse in Cuba is stagnant and that’s why blogs offer a fresh perspective. They’re like drops of water: each one of them, as it hits the wall, can end up doing a lot of damage – knocking it down. It’s the young people who control technology and they often feel moved to express their opinions.”

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/mar/22/cuba-accuses-blogger-cyberwar

  37. Gracias por continuar la publicación, excelente comida de reflexión para aquellos de nosotros fuera de Cuba que están tratando de comprender mejor estos debates de todos los partes.

    También estoy triste de ver que el Diario de Cuba ha indicado que este excelente video ya ha sido denunciado oficialmente como “la infiltración estadounidense de Cuba.

    Por favor, sé que la gente piense en todas partes, incluso aquí en Canadá, reconocen el derecho de toda persona a expresar libremente sus opiniones sin temor. También agradezco todos los esfuerzos para traducir la amplia variedad de blogueros cubanos a otros idiomas, para que yo pueda entender mejor el debate.

    Por favor, hágamelo saber si hay alguna forma específica que le puede ayudar en estos esfuerzos.

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