A novel idea

Here’s a thought: being that the CAFC II report has come at such an inoportune moment and that because of it fidel castro now has even more ammunition to hurt said dissidents with, perhaps, maybe, im just saying, because, you know, maybe, the Cuban people ought to get off their asses, stop waiting for checks from Miami and support the dissidents who are most assuredly about to get their asses kicked on their behalf?

There’s a big party coming up on Wednesday, isnt there? Everyone’s is expected, no?

What if noone showed up?

Or maybe we should all just shut up and send money?

44 thoughts on “A novel idea”

  1. Val, ‘I feel your pain’.

    Seriously, you are doing nothing but calling a spade a spade. What with this never ending 47 year tragedia, where the Cuban people have been continously sat on, crapped on, and totally robbed of their dignity, when are they finally gonna decide “YA NO MAS!”

    I see nothing wrong with you challenging the Cuban masses to finally “get off their asses” and support the dissidents, in fact EVERYONE should be doing it.

    With your well timed post as a call-to-arms to the Cuban people, I think it’s high time to re-energize the “YA NO MAS” message directly from the entire BLOGOSPHERE as a run up to the DICtator’s party day.

  2. Every once in a while we all get tired; this is emotionally draining.

    We have no way of knowing what these 47 years have done to people’s spirit as to why they are not getting off their asses and why they prefer a status quo with Miami money – frankly it doesn’t sound like any Cuban I know. But I haven’t been through what they have to even begin to figure out if I would be able to get off my ass or not.

    No hay mal que dure cien anios ni cuerpo que lo resista. We keep doing our part, relentlessly, they will do theirs when its the right time.

    Nadie se muere en la vispera, ni siquirea la punetera revolucion cubana.

  3. ok..im gonna say this in spanish,’cause i express my self better in it..val,esa idea no es nueva,nosotros en cuba la pensamos muchas veces,ahora te estaras preguntando..Y PORQUE CARAJO NO LO HACEN ..O LO HICIERON..???..no es simple la respuesta,pero tratare de ser consiso,la mayoria del pueblo sabe que aquello no sirve,y la misma mayoria piensa que son incapaces de tumbar el sistema..por que tanto pesimismo,o como quieras llamarle??..si vas a la historia,veras que las revoluciones y/o guerras que fueron apoyadas por la mayoria del pueblo,por ejemplo en korea,rusia,china,los cambios siempre vinieron desde arriba,nunca desde abajo,ejemplo rusia,y en algo,china,bueno,korea esta por ver cuando,en otras palabras,parece que los pueblos sienten culpabilidad, mas lavado de cerebro,mas represion interna,etc,que les impide actuar,o creer realmente que ellos pueden tumbar lo que apoyaron al principio,por lo tanto,a no ser un milagro..y yo creo en milagros,solo que no se dan tan seguidos,por desgracia,pues quizas nos quitemos al castrado y el sistema que tenemos de una vez y por todas,o simplemente esperar a que haya un cambio desde arriba,al morir el castrado,o algun otro percance que suceda en el camino,quizas mi opinion suene pesimista o sin remedio,pero es solo basada en la historia de los pueblos de este simpatico planeta..

  4. tony,

    I understand everything youre saying, and everyone here knows the support ive always tried togive the cuban people and dissidents, pero, you know, ENOUGH ALREADY.

    Los cubanos en cuba saben ya bastante bien como es la vida aqui en los estados unidos. Cuban’s and foreigners have been travelling to Cuba for decades. There’s thousands of Cubans here that send money to Cuba weekly. That money serves as ABSOLUTE proof of the difference between a life in Cuba and one in a free country. Not because of teh money perse, but of the ability to PROGRESS.

    but all I hear lately are complaints, from both sides of teh Gulstream, about the US, about el exilio, about The CAFC II report, about everything. enough already. put up or shut up.

    And I keep hearing people say how everyone is desecantado wioth the cuban government and how the secretly all complain and yada yada yada. But withthe exception of a few brave couple of hundred people or so, noone doesa a damned thing about it except, of course, wait for the money from abroad and then criticize those that send it just to follow along and not hurt fidel feelings.

    le ronca los cojones man.

  5. Val I think the problem is que muchos estan vencidos antes de empezar. It’s not fear, or fear of repression, it’s depression.

    I think you have a nation with a very high degree of depression that keeps them without the will or motivation to act.

    That’s a possibility no?

  6. Please take this comment in the right vein.
    We must be VERY careful how we paint with our broad brushes.
    It would be hard for me to tell my 82 year old blind cousin to get off her *** and fight the giant.
    It would be hard to tell the average Cuban who is against castro to get off their *** while the comite listens at their door. (remember who it was that turned in the dissidents, it was one of their (assumed) own.
    It would be hard to tell someone who has been brainwashed (an entire generation) who knows or has known NO freedom to get off their *** and fight for it.
    Yes we are all frustrated and except for a few true patriots who sacrificed their lives at the Bay of Pigs WE never got off our *** beyond the conversation and refugee stage.
    The reality is that they and we have created a giant and it will take more than starving out our relatives in Cuba to kill the giant.
    he (fidel) doesn’t care if they starve. He is set financially, politically, and in every way.
    Again I ask why we are so quick to rabidly go after remittances (of which there are many abuses) and we turn the deaf ear to the millions upon millions of dollars being generated for castro through states trading with the enemy.
    The food never gets to the people so why is that okay? Unless we choose to actually do something of substance we are forced to sit at the sidelines and play monday morning quarterback.
    We are as responsible for the monster (the US included) and we are just as responsible to remove him. I appreciate this blog and the many others more than you all realize. At times it is one of my few links to Cuba. But the enemy is not the Cuban who is against castro the enemy is castro. Lets spew our venom on him. He would love for us to be divided and devour our own. I do feel your frustration as I am at wits end (and that doesn’t say much for me). But I am convinced that the only chance for freedom in the patria is internal revolt or military assistance from outside. If the US would not hinder CA’s it would probably happen. Either way it is blood that will free the Cuban people and not restricting legitimate remittances. Keep on exhorting we are all on the same team.

  7. Ventanita,
    You’ve got it right. Balance. Thanks!I think you hit the nail on the head regarding depression. It is their feeling of defeat without ever taking a shot. Many Cubans, myself included would love a free Cuba rich or poor. At times we forget that its not about economics. We Cubans have what I believe is a unique romance with the homeland. To watch a viejito talk about Cuba its almost like you can feel the breeze blowing through the palms and feel the sand under your feet. Many Cubans, like my relatives, lived a dream that castro would never last and things would get back to normal. Some still dream that dream in Cuba. Others have never had the privilege to know what normal is. It is they that we expect the most out of. It is they that don’t consider themselves human anymore. It is they we must fight for!

  8. pototo,

    let’s make this perfectly clear, once again, there will be no military intervention in Cuba by the US or any other country. If it hasnt happened already, it most definitely will not. So, that leaves us with only internal revolt. the Cuban people arent idiots. They know, absolutely, the the US will not intervene in Cuba, as has been proven to them via 47 years of penny ante policy. Therefore, they must know, again absolutely, that the only change forthcoming will be by their own means.

    And I understand that some like a blind 82 year old cousin cant do much. And I understand it is hard given the comites and the overall control, but THERE IS NO OTHER CHOICE if freedom and dignity is what they want. There simply is no other choice period.

    let me correct that. There is a choice. the Cuban people either rise and fight for their dignity, or continue to be cowed into submission and remain slaves to the revolution.

    that’s the choice. And its a difficult one, but freedom isnt free. many Cuban’s have died fighting for their freedom. they made that choice, and paid dearly. But they died as DIGNIFIED human beings and not sheep too afraid to speak, too afraid to move, too afraid to do anything to change their lives.

  9. Val, Pototo, Ventanita, you all right. There are no “wrongs” being expressed here.

    I have come to the conclusion that the reason we see no mass revolt in Cuba, aside from the G2 and CDCs, is that Cuban people, having lived under a virtual ‘concentration camp’ for 47 yrs, actually exhibit the collective mind-set of those concentration camp survivors freed at the end of WWII, where upon on the arrival of the allied armies at their concentration camp gates, you could see by the pictures that they just stared at you zombie-like, half-starved, having been left with no will to fight or celebrate.

    I also agree, that without a fight, the Castro Mafia will not be changed (with or without Castro dead or alive).

  10. Val,
    I’m afraid that many in Cuba know neither freedom nor dignity. You and I hermano had the privilege of learning alot of what we know today because of a benefactor known as the US. We got help from the outside, otherwise where would we be today. They need help from the outside. I agree with you that no “country” will do it. But their is a piece of Cuba (2 million of us) that can make a difference. As for my comments of states trading with the enemy, take that away and see how quick these corporate giants would want US intervention in Cuba. Its all about the money!

  11. yes pototo,is difficult to express in english or spanish,but cuando alguien nace sin libertad,se piensa que la ausencia de ella,es la “libertad”,y que no se a perdido nada del otro mundo,pero cuando de pronto se tiene,lleva tiempo para entenderla..asi que imaginense en cuba los 11 millones de gentes,o diria yo,esclavos modernos,lo que tienen en la mente..????recuerdense que alla nos consideramos “medios basicos” de la “revolucion”,o sea..no somos humanos..somos “instrumentos”,asi que traten de hacerse creer ustedes mismos que son “instrumentos”,es dificil,pero cuando en verdad se cree,se pierde la humanidad,la moral,la dignidad.en fin..lo de ser humano era vede y se lo comio un chivo..

  12. Piruli,
    That is exactly what I tell people. That when you see people in Cuba you see zombies. People without hope. People who have no reason to go on living. They need a champion. I don’t believe that they are sitting around eating bon bons from Miami and I don’t believe that is what Val is implying either. But what we see is our version of the hopelessness of refugees.Both the Cubans in the interior as well as the exterior feel just as hopeless. We just get to freely express our pain.

  13. Pototo,

    I have to disagree that many in Cuba dont know what freedom or dignity are. They know perfectly well what freedoms is because they have family and friends that live with it aborad. they see it on their streets in the form of tourists. And while Cubans may be living with the indignity of being slaves, they are diginified. they are, Cubans after all, just like you and me.

    And many mention that we Cubans in exile should invade Cuba and fight for her freedom. True, but idealistic. Truth of the matter is that we would get slaughtered because we wouldnt have any military suport necessary to topple a military government.

    And I agree with your trading with teh enemy assesment, and I vote accordingly and work to change it, however futile my actions end up being. Im wary of saying its about the money because if it were, the US would have lifted sanctions against castro long ago.

  14. Val,
    a few years back my cosuin in Cuba told me that she hated President Bush because he wanted to kill her and all Cubans she even asked when he would invade. I tried with all my heart to convice her otherwise. She incidentally is not a communist. This was once a very intelligent woman. This is what the robolution did to her. This is what we are dealing with.

  15. Tony,

    Im sorry, but I have to given them the benfit of the doubt. I may be wrong, of course, but I find it incredibly hard to believe that Cubans dont know what freedoms is. if they didnt know, we wouldnt get a single balsero trying to reach its shores. But there’s thousands of balseros and those balseros have thousands of family members and friends. they know perfectly well what freedom is.

    And again, I refuse to accept that cubans have no dignity. They may live without it, but it is inherent in us as human beings. they only way it is lost is if one gives it away and refuses to fight for it once its usurped.


    I agree, the cuban people need a champion. there’s plenty of them right now, on the island, championing their cause. Roque, Paya, Biscet…the list is long. but they cant wait for that champion to fix the problem for them. they need to join that champion, fight alongside him or her instead of waiting for a Don Quijote to come and battle their windmills.

    That is exactly what Im saying in the original post.

  16. Allow me to revolver la mierda a little, El Pitbull style. My mom has a lady that comes in every two weeks to help her clean the house. This lady arrived from Cuba about a year ago. My mom, being the typical ama de casa Cubana, cleans along with the her. The last time this lady helped my mom, she said that she was so tired of all she was doing to make a life for her and her husband and kids here in the US and added that if she had known how hard they had to work, they’d have never left Cuba.

    Now I know this in only one example, but I have heard others say the same thing. I fired my lawn man — an ex-prisoner — when he told me that he traveled to Cuba regularly because he did not trust the dentists here.

    Is this ingratitude or is it emblematic of the way all of the Cubans on the island think? Is it that they just want the benefits without the work? I know plenty of recent arrivals who don’t think this way. But I think it illustrates a set of issues we have to deal with.

  17. pototo..sorry..but cubans DONT KNOW WHAT FREEDOM IS..’cause they ‘hear the bells sounds” they dont know that those are bells,is in their “chip” that has been download every day,since they were babies,THE GOVERMMENT IS THE ONE IN CHARGE,ITS GIVE YOU,AND ITS TAKES YOU,is hard,maybe painful,but is the truth,i was there,i’ve seen the same persons here,and it takes long time for us to understand the freedom,and a lot of times,at the end,we still use the freedom that we have here in the wrong and stupid way…bottom line..IS IN OUR CORE… it doesnt mean is impossible to change,but takes time..

  18. by the way..when i say cubans..i dont mean the 11 millions..i just mean…THE MAYORITY OF THEM..thanks..

  19. George,
    Thats exactly my point. There are many who have come who are castristas and just want more stuff. There are many who don’t have a clue. They thought they would just saunter in and have a bigger libreta. We are dealing with a generation of brainwashed people. People who have no idea as they have only seen life through the eyes that castro has allowed them to see. As for Val’s point regarding balseros hungry for freedom. Remember the movie balseros where many didn’t come over because they hated communism, they came because the libreta didn’t supply what they wanted. It must be distinguised that we are dealing with people who are hungry for food and have very little if any knowledge of what freedom really is. It is freedom to succeed and freedom to fail. It is freedom to live and freedom to die.
    It is freedom to eat well or freedom to starve. etc, etc, etc.
    As it has been said these people have spent 47 years in a concentration camp. They don’t have a clue. Not the majority. It is a fact of lost hope.

  20. Pototo and tony,

    If what you are stating is true. then I might as well pack up the blog and close it down. We can all just go on home, kick back and turn on the TV and watch American Idol and forget all abouut Cuba.

    Im just about ready to do just that.

  21. jajajaja..c’mon val..no e’ pa’tanto..aunque la verdad a veces es horrible,asi se entiende mejor lo que realmente hay del otro lado del ‘gulf stream”,pero para alivio de val..y de american idol,tambien conoci algunos cubanos todavia con algo de cerebro,y espero que haya mas,y seran los que de una forma u otra ayuden a la isla a pasar a mejor sistema,asi que no cierres nada val,dejalo abierto,y american idol ya tiene bastante audiencia,no le hace falta mas..

  22. George, regarding your example it may very well be these people do not want to do the work, are vagos, or anything you said.

    It can also be, that having never worked before, or known the meaning of work, they have no clue as to how much effort goes into everything. This is a problem a free Cuba will have – people will need to be taught to work.

    As for the dentist, well my Mother still flies back to Puerto Rico to see her doctors b/c she doesn’t trust the ones here. I have found that where medicine is concerned people trust what they know, not what they haven’t seen. In the case of a Cuban with all the lies they are fed about the states (remember the Jose Contreras article?) it doesn’t surprise me the guy wouldn’t see a dentist in FL.

    Val, you pack up this blog, and you will know the meaning of a true revolution.

  23. FWIW . . . the Poles, the Czechs, the Romanians, etc. they overthrew the tyrannies they were living under. And we all remember what they did to Romania’s dictatorship…. as Clemenza said, “You won’t be seeing him no more.”

    if the public in masse finally said fuck this shit like they did in Eastern Europe in the 1980’s, then and only then would the tyranny be destroyed.

    So I’m with you on this one Val.

  24. Count me in with Cigar Mike.

    This Robolution needs to finish the way it started, with the people (in Cuba), ala-Eastern Europe. I prefer the Romanian model. But, it’s true what Val is saying. It’s got to start and end with those in Cuba. Bay of Pigs is over, and will never happen again.

    Whether concentration camp or not, until the people take the streets (peacefully or otherwise), the new day will not come.

    The tourist industry is the first thing they need to take out. ‘Storm the beaches’ would take on a new meaning.

    Then,it’s on to Malecon, the Plaze de La Revolucion, and the Malecon.

  25. Val,
    The chances of you packing it in are about the same of me genuinely giving up on Cuba. We all get frustrated. Tomate un cafesito con leche by the poolside and relax. If indeed Cubans need to take to the streets then how do we go about telling them that? We need a media campaign and Radio Marti won’t do it, because they won’t speak of revolt. It may take castro’s death for the people to get the gumption to do it. If not it will tale stimuli. It only takes a spark to start a fire! I believe that it will take the Cubans to do it, but I also believe we need to be directly involved in helping them do it.
    Patria o Muerte! That would have a good application for today.

  26. Now everyone shut up and send me a cuban sandwich. You can’t get one around here. I haven’t had a good one since I was travelling in Tampa at Reuben’s Cubans.

  27. well..people from eastern europe never has a “rebolucion”,and never supported the soviets not even 90%,so its kind of different situation although it was the same sistem and the same master,and about teaching cubans to “work”…hmm..is not that..is teaching them the value of work..remember,in cuba,the mentality regarding work is..the less you work..the better..although i never was a vago,i always in cuba avoided to work,and when i came here,i remember this,i was in the elvator of the hotel that i started to work as housekeeper,my first job in usa,and besides me was another housekeeper and he was telling me that they were glad and lucky to have 40 hours work,and overtime,in other words..QUE BUENO QUE HAY BASTANTE TRABAJO…i remember i tell to my self..THIS GUY IS STUPID OR WHAT????..later on,we started to have less hours..and then..I REALIZED WHAT THAT HOUSEKEEPER WAS SAYING THAT DAY…STUPID ME..yes guys..i know this doesnt mean nothing for you,but for me was a “WOW”..me cai de la mata,’cause is in the way we were raised and the way we live in cuba,the mentality is totally 100% opposed to what is in here,the values,the moral,etc..etc..

  28. Tony, you, having come from Cuba more recently than I, what is the MAIN reason (according your opinion), why the people in Cuba have not taken to the streets en-masse up to this point?

    My feeling is that it is not so much ‘fear’ that keeps them from taking to the streets in protest, but actually the utter psychological manipulation by the government over the last 47 years to make them feel that they are not worth much as an “individual”.

  29. The sad reality is that the vast majority of the Cuban people are ambivalent about the political situation in which they live. For 47 years all their basic needs (as bad as they are) have been met by the STATE. Since they rely on GOVERNMENT assistance for EVERYTHING, they have no initiative. I would even say that most have reached a point of complacency. Add to that all the DOLLARS sent to Cuba by family members (living in the United States or elsewhere outside of Cuba,) and they don’t even have to worry about finding a job or even working at all. The Cuban government and the Cubans living abroad have created the biggest WELFARE STATE in the world. Is it any wonder then, that some Cubans when faced with ACTUAL work and responsibility can’t function?

  30. Yes George TAMPA, (great Cuban sandwiches there, try Lala’s as well)
    I am one of those unfortunate 1960’s Cuban refugees that only passed through Miami. Yes I do wish we would had permanently relocated there thus I would not feel like such a stranger throughout the years in different parts of the country. I didn’t even get to live in Florida. My only Cuban food connection is via UPS and Cubanfoodmarket.com. Man if that doesn’t buy me some sympathy nothing will. So send me my sandwich!!!!!!!

  31. piruli,i have to say this again..is the brainwashed,plus the guilty sense of supporting castro at the begining,the repression for 47 years,is all that and more…na’que cuando el mal es de cagar..no valen guayabas..ni verdes ni maduras..pero ya veremos la luz…y asi podremos encontrar papel sanitario,en vez del “periodico”,hmm..acabo de levantarme,y todavia no me he tomado el cafe..creo que se nota..

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