Citizens’ Reasons 5

Razones Ciudadanas 5 from Yoani Sanchez on Vimeo.

Chapter 5 of the program Citizens’ Reasons, this time dedicated to the alternative Cuban blogosphere. The debate centers around the evolution, characteristics and future projections for this citizens’ phenomenon. Among the guests in the studio are Claudia Cadelo, Yoani Sánchez, Orlando Luís Pardo, Luis Felipe Rojas and as moderator. There are also brief appearances from more than 15 alternative bloggers.

90 thoughts on “Citizens’ Reasons 5

  1. Humberto Capiro (YOUTUBE): I did like videos. Some got 150 views. Not bad for millions who read this blog. I must say that 150 views doesn’t mean that 150 people finished watching video.

  2. Komar! Komar! Komer-youknowwhat! Glad you like my Youtube post! The Cuba Archives are there and lets see what happens in the future! Pinochet! Somosa! Fidel! Raul!
    In the age of information, THE FACISTS WILL NOT ESCAPE JUSTICE!

  3. Humberto Capiro (YOUTUBE): do you know what is “tabloid”. Tabloid is a weekly paper sold to uneducated masses in grocery stores. Feeds those masses information about UFO’s, Elvis Presley being alive and well, and some other crap. “Youtube” is the same garbage. Anybody can post anything on “Youtube”. So as You can see “Youtube” is no more than “tabloid”. Just bunch of talking and no facts. Oh, I forgot mention that “Youtube” is a good place for stupid teenagers to show off how stupid they are? Cuban dissidents fit there too.

  4. YOUTUBE: Cuba Archive’s Truth and Memory Project


    Cuba Archive’s Truth and Memory Project is documenting deaths and disappearances resulting from the Cuban revolution. This project seeks to:
    Compel people and nations to help Cubans peacefully attain their rightful freedoms;
    Further an understanding of the cost of political violence and foster a culture of respect for life and the rule of law;
    Honor the sacrifice of those who’ve paid the highest price.
    This work is a gift to present and future generations that deserve to live safely, peacefully, and in freedom.

  6. @#38
    good one!
    To add, lets not forget raulito, the only rival to che’s brutality & his number of executions are legendary, there are pictures showing him “prepping” people to be executed,after the kangoroo courts sentenced them; I remember a priest who after witnessing countless executions in which the only confort he could provide was to give the final rights had to quit so troubled was his soul. Yes, Batista needed to be removed form power, what Cuba didn’t need was the usurpation of power that came after, thru lies, intimidation & indoctrination Cuba was changed … even Jose Marti’s ideals were changed to serve the dictators who call themselves rebolutionaries.
    Some research will do good & I know it supports my statements: read Jose Marti writings before they fell pray to the rebolutionary revisionism; look for raulito’s pictures from the 50’s, look for & read his relationship w/one of the russian/recruiters even before the rebolution took over Cuba. Read fidelito’s speeches after the rebolution took over, his promises of free elections, his “walking away” from power since his job was done …
    Research … research … research.

  7. Komar, you dummy, Ceausescu was the only TV sensation in Romania for 25 years. Freedom of speech was banned,if you were listening to Radio Free Europe you were thrown in jail for a few years. When the people had enough they “signed” the dictator for a last TV apperance : trial and execution.

    The Cuban TV has the same pattern ….it is all about defending the socialism agains the american imperialism. Go figure how long it will take until Yoani and other disidents will be part of the prime time Cuban TV

  8. Komar,

    I feel sorry for you, assuming you are acting in good faith. You should go to Cuba and try to live like a pro-democracy Cuban and you will learn in 10 minutes what we mean. Yoani is a very important person and the government is afraid of her and the world’s public opinion. We are no longer in the 60’s at a time when the Soviet Union would let Castro do what he pleased. He needs Europe and if something happens to Yoani it could have a very negative impact. The truth is that Castro’s tyranny does not know how to deal with bloggers.

    The link I am sending is what they do to those who openly oppose the regime by trying to organize a political party. At first you will hear in Spanish the State security officer who visits the owner of the house to “warn” them. Then you will see what the so called Rapid Action Brigades do. These are thugs that State Security gets together for a few favors. They call them Acts of Repudiation. I call them Acts of Infamy. The sad part is that most people stay behind closed doors because the price they would pay by supporting their neighbors is too great. Most human beings are like electrons: We take the path of least resistance. But, there are a few that always say: Enough is enough. Meet Marta Fonseca and her family. This is how they live in Castro’s paradise.

    You don’t need to know Spanish to understand these images.

  9. Igor, are You kidding or asking for directions? You wrote: Komar, was this video will shown on Cuban TV ??? Is the Cuban TV allowing these bloggers to freely express their opinion ???
    No and No….freedom of speech never existed in communism.”
    Why Cuban TV would show bunch of dissidents talking about not having freedom of speaking? That would make them look like a liars, if they were free to speak, unless they wanted talk about eating cashews and not meeting their quotas at work.

  10. It is too bad that Citizens’ Reasons 5 does not have subtitles in English. The English speaking readers of Yoani could then appreciate the intellectual honesty and incredible courage of my compatriots. Those of us who lived under the totalitarian system invented by Castro, a mixture of the worse of Communism and Fascism, truly appreciate those brave Cubans. It is very easy to ask for the freedom of expression in a totalitarian state like Cuba from a democratic country. It is very dangerous to demand those inalienable rights inside a totalitarian country.

    Most of the world thinks that Castro toppled a brutal dictator Batista. I was a child during the 50’s and my family opposed Batista, never dreaming that Fidel Castro would turn out to be a tyrant. The fact is that compared to Castro, Batista was very mild indeed. The best definition of Batista is that he was “a part-time dictator with a democratic complex”. You will hear those words in a link at the end of this posting from a man who opposed Batista. This presentation from YouTube is in English.

    I am not supporting the infamous betrayal of the Cuban Constitution by Batista with a coup d’état three month before an election in 1952. However, the truth is, that under Batista, most of the time, there was complete freedom of the press, opposition parties flourished and even thugs like Castro, after attacking an army barracks was condemned to 17 years in jail and served less than two years when Batista granted him an amnesty. Right now, I have in front of me a copy of the number one magazine in Cuba at the time, called Bohemia, dated July 11, 1954. On page 60, there is an article called: “With the political prisoners at the Isle of Pines.” There are 17 pictures of the prisoners. Castro can be seen in 7 of the 17 pictures. You can see Castro very well fed, well dressed, without the beard, and with a double chin. Castro spoke against the “dictator” who allowed the visit and the publication of the article in Cuba’s number 1 magazine. How different Castro has treated the hundreds of thousands of Cubans who at one time or another have been his guests at one of his dungeons!

    I am sending a link of a presentation by Dr. Manuel Márquez Sterling the son of a great statesman from Cuba on his book published late in 2009 titled – “Cuba 1952-59, The True Story About Castro’s Rise to Power”. His father, Dr.Carlos Márquez Sterling was a candidate to Cuba’s November 1958 presidential elections representing one of the opposition parties. Had Batista not stolen the election on behalf Dr Andrés Rivero Aguero the regime’s candidate, the history of Cuba would have been very different. The civil society, which was totally destroyed by Castro until a new beginning by brave Cubans like Yoani Sanchez and many others, would have continued to grow and mature during the 60’s through today. But it was not meant to be. How sad is the history of Cuba!

    Even if you don’t believe what I say, I recommend you watch these three links I am posting. I’ll guarantee that you will learn things you did not know happened.

    Link 1. – first part

    I will send the other two links in two additional postings.

  11. An underated Cuban Film – “Bitter Sugar/Azucar Amarga” (1996)- Director: Leon Ichaso Stars:René Lavan, Mayte Vilán

    Gustavo is a young Havana Communist who believes in the revolution; he hopes for a scholarship to study aeronautical engineering in Prague. But his faith in the new Cuba is tested: his father, a psychiatrist, can make four times as much playing piano at a hotel for foreigners; his sweetheart, Yolanda, wants a career as a dancer and longs for the riches of Miami; his younger brother Bobby simply wants to play rock music, and as a result is in constant trouble with the authorities. When Bobby takes a shocking step of revolt and Gustavo is refused service at a foreigners-only bar, the contradictions in his resolve to become a “new man” push him to the breaking point


    YOUTUBE: Cuban Film/Pelicula-“Bitter Sugar/ Azucar Amarga” part 9 of 10

  12. The Arnold is back! Trying again to use the diversion tactics to divert the discussion to some other country with a totally different society and context. Mr. Schwarzenegger, dont you think you have focused around enough? Sorry wrong Arnold!

  13. I like when people OBEY me!!!!!
    OK komar (you lost your right to capitals), just the fact to answer my comment shows you need attention and a cyber-life….. the reason is simple … you don’t have a real life….. that’s why you try to minimize Yoani (too big enterprise for a so little person) to gain some kind of notoriety …..
    I see you don’t answered Albert questions what makes me and the millions, MILLIONS, M I L L I O N S of readers of this site aware of your lack of answers…..
    About your comment 31 ….. I confess I didn’t passed the second sentence……… I immediately noted it was more of your inferiority complex …… by the way….. no one told you I am this site official psychiatry doctor?????……. ok, you know now….. I declare you (together with damir) officials site’s patients.

  14. Komar, was this video will shown on Cuban TV ??? Is the Cuban TV allowing these bloggers to freely express their opinion ???

    No and No….freedom of speech never existed in communism.

  15. Thank you Yoani for representing all the Cubans who are afreaid to tell the truth. You are one of the people I admire the most…You are one of my role models.

  16. Freud, what makes You think I want “cyber” life? I already have real one.

  17. Yoani Sanchez, how stupid, do You think, people are? I can understand that You don’t like Castro and that You have trouble buying food. For the sake of honesty, stop writing that Cubans have no freedom to speak. You are the proof that they can speak. Your videos Citizens’ Reasons shows people speaking. Aren’t they Cubans? Cubans can’t travel? Wake up. You did. You overstayed visa or let the passport expired and now You can’t. Poor people in USA and Europe do not travel either. Cubans are poor as long, as long, they go to work and don’t care about their job. Here You are perfect example, Didn’t You write about playing on the job and eating cashews? Didn’t You mention about not meeting quotas and not care about that either? Do I need to mention what happens to people who talk “to much” in China and Vietnam? Why it didn’t happened to You in Cuba. Flap Your lips as much as You want, just don’t say You have no freedom to speak in Cuba.

  18. Komar, remember….. in the cyber who is not read does not exist….. give us something to read so you can keep your cyber-live.

  19. Komar, don’t worry about Albert writing style …… the millions of readers of this site never complaint about this because everyone understand him very well…… but you better answer the questions that people ask you without diverting strategies if you don’t want your comment to look like simple provocations and people start to pass over them without reading them like it happen in ‘Damir” case.

  20. Well, Spanish socialism, Mr. Zapatero and all this chorizo-nomenclature finally achieved its goal. Spain is today suffering little bit, just a sample of what Cubans have suffered in last 50 years. At least in Spain democracy (imperfect or not) does not kill protesters, does not jail them and protests can go on in a festive and civic way …… something very different happen in Cuba. The toll paid by Spaniards today comes from the “shopping” they did in the last elections ….. in this case one can said with all reason: Spaniards have what they chose.

  21. Have you been to Spain Mr. August? Most of those unemployed youth live in conditions of luxury compared to the average working person in Cuba. Nothing wrong with wanting fairer and less corrupt democracy and more money, but you are against Cubans demanding democracy. If Spaniards’ have the right to protest, why are you against the Cuban right to protest? Why do you applaud protesters in Spain and condemn them in Cuba? Why do you support fascism in Cuba? It’s never too late to look yourself in the mirror and apologize to the Cuban people for all the crimes you’ve committed.

    About 2,000 young people angry over high unemployment have spent the night camping in a famous square as a political protest grows.
    A big canvas roof was stretched across the square, protesters brought mattresses and sleeping bags and volunteers distributed food.
    The protests began on Sunday.
    On the first evening, police dispersed the protesters, but on Tuesday they let them stay overnight.
    The 21.3% unemployment rate is the highest – a record 4.9 million are jobless, many of them young people.
    Media say the protesters are attacking the country’s political establishment with slogans such as, “if you don’t let us dream we won’t let you sleep” and “the guilty ones should pay for the crisis”.
    The atmosphere in the square has been quite festive, with the crowd singing songs, playing games and debating.
    They are demanding jobs, better living standards and a fairer system of democracy.

  23. YOUTUBE: La Prostitución de Menores en Cuba. Una denuncia- Part 1 of 4
    The Prostitution of Minors in Cuba. An Expose- Part 1 of 4

  24. EL MUNDO: Cuba calls for 15 years in prison for an article-05/08/11

    “I’m desperate, took 10 months in jail and still do not know why I am here. The consulate has left me and I’m about to succumb. Do not take it anymore. ” Those were the words of despair and cry for help raised by Ferraté Sebastián Martínez, a former television journalist, when contacted with the world from the Cuban prison of La Condesa.

    Ferraté Martinez had worked as a journalist in various television production, including Mandarin and EL MUNDO TV, and in 2008 traveled to Havana to do a story on child prostitution in Cuba, which was later broadcast on Telecinco.

    Following these reports on child prostitution and other, Sebastian Martinez left broadcast journalism and went to work as managing director of the tourism enterprise Marina Mallorca Hotels. And the July 11, 2010, landed at Havana airport to conduct a series of business related to his new post. Former television journalist was immediately arrested by Cuban authorities and detained in the prison of La Condesa, which is located about 70 kilometers from the capital.


  25. Senora Yoani Sanchez: Yo estudiè con Renè Gòmez Manzano y desearìa tener un contacto digital con èl. Ya llevamos màs de 40 anos sin tener un intercambio de ideas y recuerdos. Es posible lograrlo con la ayuda de usted? Gracias de antemano. Jorge.

  26. Thanks Humberto for the link to Yoani’s award ceremony. Yoani for ever will be remembered in Cubas written history as defender of all Cuban basic Human Rights. She is Cubas future. God bless her and all those who want Cubans to have better living conditions. FY… the ones who stay quiet, or support the OPPRESSION.
    Yoani for being a little girl sure makes some big waves.

  27. Well, well, well. By the way You write single letters instead whole words they already know who You are. Simpleton, that is what You are.

  28. @#18 complaining & critizicing is easy, doing & solving takes work but it takes a choice which u seem not capable of making, u r all talk, no substance, let everyone who read this blog see u for what u are … go get a job girl.

  29. @#18 what’s more importamt? how one writes or saving the lives of “200 more or less” homeless who die every year (as u stated) in the country u live at?
    U have a choice to make, put ur money were ur mouth is girl …

  30. albert, since this blog is read by millions, I suggest You start to write whole words, instead of single letters from alphabet.

  31. @#16
    Like u r doing? saving those 200 or so homeless people that die every year where u live at.
    If u remember I suggested to u to pick that up as ur cause but u choose to still be here flapping ur lips (or ur fingers), u r right talk is cheap & u r the perfect example, right in front of the many blogers who read this Yoani’s …

  32. Talk is cheap. Anybody can talk. You can only talk. See, life is like crossing river. To see what’s on the other side one needs to get wet to swim there. You and Your dissident friend can only talk. Castro didn’t give me this or that. Why, for the God’s sake, don’t You get it Yourself. All You need to do is start to care. Maybe You should start to contribute to society with Your hands instead of mouth.

  33. YOUTUBE: Questions to Yoani Sanchez at Casa America en España conference via SKYPE-Cuban blogger answers questions from the audience via video/skype and after by phone after the internet connection from Cuba “fell”.
    Preguntas a Yoani Sánchez conferencia Casa América en España- via SKYPE-La bloguera cubana responde a preguntas de los asistentes por videoconferencia y por telefono pues se cayo la conexion de internet en Cuba

  34. @#2
    Ur hatefulness like ur slip is showing hypocrite, ur record of derrogatory, abusive & insulting comments have more than proven that u contribute just to provoque just to distract & be negative. I dare u again & again … contribute one positive thought, one constructive suggestion.

  35. It was a pleasure watching and listening to Yoani discuss the social networks and the internet and its effects on Human Rights in Latin America and specifically Cuba. The event was hosted by and was streamed live on the internet, anyone could participate via Twitter at #iberoamericadice sending comments or asking questions that were then relayed to the panel of participants.

    Casa de América is a public institution that serves as an instrument of integration and cooperation between Latin American countries. The following is the description of the event held in Spain from their website, translated from the Spanish.

    “moderated by journalist Nico Abad (@nicoabad) with the participation of Mr. Burns’s founder, Venezuelan Gaby Castellanos (@gabycastellanos) Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez (@yoanisanchez), via videoconference, the director of, Carlos Salas, the head of Amnesty International in Spain, Miguel Angel Calderon, and Doctor of Philosophy and Education, an expert on Internet and Human Rights, Javier Bustamante .. The topic of conversation is how social networks break down barriers social, economic, spatial and cultural implications of this phenomenon around the main debate of the day: Human Rights and the Internet.”

    Though the video link to Yoani was lost halfway through the Q&A session from the participating viewers and Twitters she was able to continue responding and answering questions via a telephone link.

    Yoani vigorously described her conversation and expressed her opinion regarding Pastor Mario Lleonart Barroso, who ran into Juan Wilfredo Soto García as the 46-year-old dissident was leaving the hospital in Santa Clara and to whom Soto described the beating he had received from the Castro security police agents.

    Yoani also responded to questions directed at her from someone in the audience who questioned how she could be a blogger and Twitter while claiming to not have internet access from Cuba (this is the same theme that the Castro apologists and her attackers such as Damir are constantly trying to insinuate proves that she is lying about not having internet access).

    In response Yoani stated that she does so by once every week or ten days going to a location where she can email her blog writings to a friend outside Cuba who then posts it to the internet. She also stated that the reason for her website being hosted in Europe was that the Castro regime does not allow bloggers who are critical of the regime to establish a website from Cuba to express themselves. She also explained that she posts her Twitter messages via SMS from her cellular to a phone number and that allows them to be published on the web.

    I was very pleased to have been able to hear this courageous lady live and share with her if only for a short time an exchange of ideas and information that is part of the Human Rights that belongs to all in the world and that are brutally denied to those dissidents in Cuba who would speak out. Fortunately more and more everyday these walls that the totalitarian regimes like the Castro tyranny build are being dismantled and broken through by the valiant efforts of individuals Such as Yoani Sanchez.

  36. ALL GOV: Dictator of the Month: Fidel Castro- by David Wallechinsky

    Fidel Castro seized power in Cuba in January 1959, at the age of 31 or 32, and held on until health problems forced him to begin giving up partial control in 2006. He finally retired officially as the leader of the Communist Party of Cuba on April 19, 2011, handing over power to his younger brother, Raúl, who will turn 80 on June 3.

    In my book Tyrants: The World’s 20 Worst Living Dictators, I included a chapter about Castro. Here is an excerpt.

    “Like his father, Fidel was prone to violent tempers, and he could be a very sore loser. His sisters recall him starting a baseball team in Birán with equipment bought by his father. If the game was going poorly or his team began to lose, Fidel would simply stop the game, gather up the equipment and walk off. Castro’s close friend, novelist Gabriel García Márquez, wrote, “I do not think anyone in the world could be a worse loser. His attitude in the face of defeat, even in the slightest events of daily life, seems to obey a private logic: he will not even admit it, and he does not have a moment’s peace until he manages to invert the terms and turn it into a victory.””

    “COMPAÑERO CHE GUEVARA—Che Guevara, meanwhile, had grown into the ideological brains of the revolution. By 1963, however, Che’s socialist idealism had begun to conflict with Soviet economic plans for Cuba. The nation’s agricultural output fell by 23 percent, leaving a foreign trade deficit and lower living standards throughout Cuban society. The sugar harvest was the lowest since the end of World War II. As the regime’s industry minister, Che was held responsible and he openly criticized aspects of the regime, including its close ties to the Soviets. The following year, Castro signed a five-year agreement to sell Cuban sugar to the Soviet Union at a price above the world-market rate. In 1964, Castro agreed to remove Che from his ministry post and allow him to deal instead with foreign policy. Although he publicly denied having quarreled with Castro, Che began making long trips abroad to support foreign struggles for independence and armed revolutions, spending less and less time in Cuba. He traveled to Algeria, after which Castro agreed to send a battalion of Cuban soldiers and tanks to help the Algerian government in its armed conflict with Morocco. Previously, he had given Cuban military aid to the Algerian National Liberation Front in its struggle against France. Che visited various areas in Africa where colonial struggles were taking place, including Angola, Mozambique, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, the Congo, Senegal, Ghana, Tanzania, and Egypt. While in Algiers, Che gave a speech criticizing the Soviet Union’s economic practices and calling for an end to Cuba’s trade agreements with the Soviets.”


    David Wallechinsky (born 5 February 1948) has worked as a commentator for NBC Olympic coverage and is the author of many Olympic reference books and other reference books. He is a Jewish-American. His father is Irving Wallace. He is the author of The Complete Book of the Summer Olympics and The Complete Book of the Winter Olympics series.[1] He is also known for his work on The People’s Almanac and The Book of Lists series. He splits his time between Santa Monica, California and the south of France.


    Declaración inédita del Pastor Bautista Mario Félix Lleonart Barroso al periodista independiente José Alberto Álvarez Bravo, el martes 10 de mayo del 2011, sobre la agresión policial que costó la vida al disidente Juan Wilfredo Soto García

    Unpublished declaration by Baptist Pastor Mario Felix Barroso Lleonart given to independent journalist José Alberto Álvarez Bravo, Tuesday May 10, 2011, about assault by police that killed the dissident Juan Soto Wilfredo Garcia.

    YOUTUBE: Cuba: Testimonio excepcional de Pastor Bautista Mario Félix Lleonart Barroso


    HAVANA TIMES: Granma, the official paper of the Cuban Communist Party, came out with an editorial on Monday attacking what it considers fabrications surrounding the news of the death of Villa Clara dissident Juan Wilfredo Soto García. Without mentioning her name the editorial alludes to blogger Yoani Sanchez as the source of information it considers false accusations.


  39. I like it when the comments here get witty, sarcastic, ironic and plain out funny!Come on Damir! Jump in!

    ITS “TODAY’S CUBA 101”!!!

    May 16th 1,387 VIEWS

  41. I think we should have a like button on this blog like on Facebook! How many thumbs up would Damir garnish? INTERESTING THOUGHT!

  42. Damir, for a guy who says he’s censored on this site, you sure manage to post a lot. How have you managed to outwit the CIA?

    Meanwhile, I can’t post to any pro-Castro site, must be some sort of technical glitch there.

  43. Wait, there’s more!!!

    Of self-serving and self-promoting form supposed “fighters for democracy”.

    What was the point of this video again?

    Apart from the above, to increase the ratings on the internet, since The Huffington Post sold out their pathetic rants and ran away from them.

    (Has anyone noticed how Cuba haters are illiterate and do not even notice that this is part of this site in english, not spanish…?)

    (confirms the general perception about them and makes me chuckle…)

  44. Una entrevista increíble con personas comunes que tienen muy poca libertad, pero continuan utilizando sus blogs para informarnos a todo acerca de lo que realmente está sucediendo en Cuba, no lo que los hermanos Castro dicen.

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