Is Cuba and its fight for freedom a lost cause?

John Suarez in Notes from the Cuban Exile Quarter:

CUBA: The Lost Cause?

“Satisfaction lies in the effort, not in the attainment, full effort is full victory.” – Mohandas Gandhi

Cubans in Havana in August of 1994 chant “Liberty” in an uprising known as the Maleconazo.

Over the past six decades Cubans fought for a lost Cause. Their rewards were summary executions, decades suffering torture under inhumane prison conditions, or exile from the land of their birth. This sacrifice was made for the Cause. What is this Cause? It is the return of the republic and the rule of law to Cuba. Cubans fought and died for independence and a republican democracy throughout the second half of the 19th century. This struggle became primarily a political struggle throughout the first half of the 20th century culminating in the Constitution of 1940 and the election of the opposition figure Ramon Grau San Martin in 1944. On March 10, 1952 Fulgencio Batista plunged Cuba back into the anarchy and chaos of dictatorship and the lack of rule of law. This opened the way for violence to triumph and become institutionalized on January 1, 1959 by the Castroite terror.

Cubans have suffered sixty seven years without democracy and sixty years under a totalitarian communist dictatorship ruled by the Castro brothers. Fidel Castro died two years ago, but his brother Raul Castro remains the head of the Cuban Communist Party, and firmly in control of the dictatorship. There is cause for despair, and the communists have also sought to educate generations of Cubans in the doctrine of despair with the knowledge that it breeds both inaction and acceptance. They have sought to rewrite Cuban history with numerous myths and lies to justify their continued rule.

Cuban opposition leader Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas understood this and rejected the counsel of despair with his Christian faith. He also wrote with admiration how the Polish people, under even more dire circumstances, succeeded in not only rejecting despair, but embracing solidarity and obtaining their freedom. In this September 16, 2005 essay titled “From the battle of Poland to that of Cuba: The path of liberation in the face of totalitarianism,” Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas gave a warning to those liberated from communism while at the same time calling to task the double standard of many in the world with regards to Cuba.

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