On April 23rd, Cuban independent journalist Calixto Ramon Martinez Arias was arrested on charges “to be named later.” The regime has several books of arbitrary laws they can charge any Cuban citizen with including the catchall “social dangerousness” law. This past Friday, however, Martinez was released from prison with a warning to cease and desist his independent journalist activities or risk being arrested once again. In response to this warning, the brave journalist had this reply to his captors, as Marc from Uncommon Sense reports from an interview Martinez gave Radio Marti after his release.
“You may as well take me back to jail because by no means will I give up my work or the struggle for human rights and freedom in Cuba.”
Back in the old days, when the regime operated under a cloak of darkness, such a response would have earned him a good beating and mandatory imprisonment. But the old days are only a memory to the regime, who must now deal with the scrutiny that the internet, Facebook, Twitter, camera phones, and tiny video cameras is exposing them to. As in the case of Dania Garcia, only days after the illegal arrest of both these dissidents, the news was broadcast throughout the world, and that is exactly the type of attention the regime does not want. Some may try to spin this sudden change of heart on the part of the regime as proof of the benevolence of prince Raul, but in reality it is nothing but pure and unadulterated fear.
A putrid stench of fear emanating from the palaces in Havana can now be smelled from thousands of miles away. The regime is scared–they are really scared. And they have no idea how to control the new technology that in only a couple of years is undoing five decades of advancement and success in controlling the world media.
The times, they are a changin’, and the regime can only sit and watch it destroy them.