Breaking!!! Shake-up in the castro regime

Cuban TV is reporting that Felipe Perez Roque, Cuba’s foreign minister, and Carlos Lage a long time functionary of the castro regime have been relieved of duty.

More as we get it.

Associated Press:

HAVANA (AP) — Cuba abruptly replaced some of its most powerful and visible officials on Monday, including Vice President Carlos Lage and Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque.

The surprise shakeup, involving about 10 top officials, was announced at the end of the midday newscast by Cuba’s supreme governing body, the Council of State.
Among others replaced is Economy Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez.

Lage, 57, was one of five vice presidents below Raul Castro and had served as a de-facto prime minister. He was credited with helping save Cuba’s economy by designing modest economic reforms after the Soviet Union collapsed.

Perez Roque, 43, was previously personal secretary to Fidel Castro and a former leader of the Communist Party youth organization. He had been foreign minister for almost a decade.

It’s hard to judge what these moves mean. Lage has generally been touted as a reformer and possible future Gorbachev figure once the old farts were out of the way. Removing him can signal that they are cracking down, not loosening up. Perez Roque has always been a dutiful stooge of the regime.

Another reading is that these were fidel’s guys. raul seems more comfortable with being surrounded by generals. There are raulista and fidelista factions within the regime and this may be a move toward consolidating power among the raulistas.

Could fidel have finally kicked it paving the way for a true raulista regime? Who knows?

Miami Herald:

Lage will be replaced by military Gen. José Amado Ricardo Guerra, while deputy foreign minister Bruno Rodríguez will assume Pérez Roque’s post, according to the announcement read on Cuban television as part of the midday newscast…

”This is big — and big in the wrong direction,” said Andy Gomez, a senior fellow at the University of Miami’s Institute of Cuban and Cuban American Studies.

Translated from official Cuban news rag Juventud Rebelde:

Institutionalization is one of the pillars that lends invulnerability to the revolution in the political arena, we must work constantly on its improvement.

Do not ever believe that what we have done is perfect. With regards to the above, it has been agreed upon that there is a need to continue to study the current structure of government with the aim of gradually reducing its size and raise its effectiveness.

Really hard to interpret that. Did the people removed from their offices impair the “institutionalization” of the Revolution (translation: they got too big for their britches)?

It’s also curious that Cuba aims to “reduce the size” of its government at the same time
raising its effectiveness”. Not bad advice for our leaders in Washington but hardly credible coming from castro’s Cuba.


8 thoughts on “Breaking!!! Shake-up in the castro regime”

  1. Like Iran, they are letting Obama know that sweet talk is not going to soften them.
    The market is plummeting, the world is getting more dangerous. When does the messiah’s greatness get to kick in?

  2. Consolidation by hardliners could mean the beginning of the end. They may be scared of something.

  3. Breking News, FLASH!!!!: Bat Shit Roque, Buzzard’s Head Laje and Fat Head Alarcon all spotted coming off a raft at Key Biscane, rumors abound that Fidelito and Elian follow close behind rowing fast….

  4. I think it’s more the latter – putting in “raulistas” or people that are more of his trust and less of fifo’s. As to what this all means for Cuba, anyone’s guess is as good as the other. It could be that fifo is no longer.

  5. Maybe change is coming… but change decided by Raul Castro. Might “reducing the size” of the government be code for economic liberalization??? How can you reduce the size of a communist system??

  6. FIRED!!!!

    José Luis Rodríguez García: Minister of Economy and Planning since 1998. Since there has been very little actual economy since 1998, he will not be missed.

    Otto Rivero Torres: Vice-President, Council of Ministers (In charge of Battle of Ideas campaign). Member of the council of State and First Secretary of the Young Communist League. The Battle of Ideas campaign has not been going so well lately. Maybe they should put Alarcon in charge of that, we know Cubans of all ages love to listen to his ideas.

    Raúl de la Nuez Ramírez: Minister of Foreign Trade. Should-have stayed in Canada when you could-have.

    Alejandro Roca Iglesias: Minister of Nutrition (in charge of food) – why this guy wasn’t fired years ago is the real question? Let this motherfucker go to the market with his ration card for awhile and see how he likes it.

    Alfredo López Valdés: Minister of Fishing. Not sure what this guy did exactly, there is not really any good fish in the market in Cuba. Great lobster on the black market though.

    Felipe Pérez Roque: I know this is going to make everyone on Babalu blog upset, but I actually kinda miss Lil’ Felipe already even though I admit he is a blowhard who hates both American and Jews. But I do think we will all soon be seeing much more of Felipe, as due to his recent support of Hamas and Hezbollah, he most likely already has a postion in the Obama Cabinet as soon a someone can get him a suit that fits him properly. Val.. do you have a taylor?

    Georgina Barreiro: Minister of Finance and Prices. Yes, she fears the free market and hates capitalism but is rumored to have a job opening with Obama administration to fix the “American Housing crisis” or lobby on behalf of AIG, GM, or Citibank. If that doesn’t work, maybe she can move to Miami and get some work in the porn industry.

    Fernando Acosta Santana: Minister of SIME (Steel, Mechanical, Electronics and Recycling Industries) since January 2000. He hasn’t really done anything in 9 years so the powers that be finally had to get around to letting him go. I was a tough call I am sure and he will be dearly missed by anyone who….. okay, I can’t think of anyone who will miss him….

    Alfredo Morales Cartaya: He was a Minister of Work and Social Security. I tried to find out what this guy’s responsiblities were but no one in Cuba knows what it was he was supposed to be doing – as both work and social security in Cuba suck.

    The real quesiton for Tio Raul: When are you going to fire Alarcon? Enough with that guy’s bullshit already.

    PS: Does this mean the “Battle for Ideas Campaign” is over – and will Otto be sending Elian back or just coming over on a raft himself?

  7. Sorry, I forgot. Lage got fired also. But we haven’t seen or heard from him for so long everyone had forgotten about him.

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