Cuba’s brutal repression highlighted at OAS’s ‘Captive Nations Week’

John Suarez

From our Bureau of Widely Ignored Significant Events

The Organization of American States is holding a special session this week on “Captive Nations.”

Naturally, this event is being ignored by American and European mainstream news media.

Yesterday, at the opening of this conference, OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro made the following observation:

“Cuba is a defining example of a captive nation. The communist dictatorship not only enslaves, represses, tortures, assassinates, persecutes, intimidates & forces into exile its people, but also exports these totalitarian practices to the rest of the region.” 

Sirley Avila Leon, victim of a brutal machete attack in May 2015,was one of the conference participants yesterday. She met with Representative Alan Lowenthal of California’s 47th Congressional District, and he learned about what had happened to her in Cuba.

Sirley Avila Leon and Rep. Alan Lowenthal

The Center for a Free Cuba distributed copies of it’s reports on “Women Under Repression in Cuba” which outlined Sirley’s case and the “2018: Human Rights Briefing on Cuba.” It also distributed a poster by artist Rolando Pulido marking “25 minutes of silence for 25 years of impunity” for the July 13, 1994 “13 de marzo” tugboat massacre in which 37 Cubans were killed by Cuban government agents.

Luis Almagro with Tugboat Massacre poster

To cap it all off, John Suarez, the new director of the Center for a Free Cuba, laid bare the repressive machinery of the Castro regime.

Here is what he had to say:

Past is prologue

To understand the human rights situation in Cuba, one must understand what came before. Cuba had regular competitive elections, and between 1944 and 1952 presidents who respected human rights and civil liberties. This was reflected in the role Cuban diplomats played in 1948 in pushing for regional and international human rights covenants. All of this came crashing down with Fulgencio Batista’s military coup in 1952.
The Castro brothers promised to restore democracy, while imposing a communist dictatorship in 1959.

In May 1961 they confiscated private schools and most seminaries to eliminate religion. In September 1961, the Castro regime at gun point collected 131 priests, brothers and a bishop, placing them on board the Spanish ship Covadonga and deported them from Cuba.

Today, the Office of Religious Affairs (ORA), an arm of the Central Committee of the Cuban Communist Party, still oversees religious affairs in Cuba, and exists to monitor, hinder and restrict religious activities.

The Home School Legal Defense Association (HLDA) is holding a rally today at noon for Pastor Ramon Rigal, his wife Adya, and Golkis Almaguer who are jailed for homeschooling their children.

Sixty years later, Fidel Castro is gone, but his brother Raul remains along with the communist regime.

The non-transition

What is called reform in Cuba has been a fraud for the dynastic succession of the Castro family. Raul Castro remains in control of the government as head of the Communist Party. His son, Alejandro Castro Espín, a colonel in the Ministry of the Interior presided over the Cuban side in the secret negotiations to normalize relations during the previous Administration.

Continue reading HERE (scroll down past the introductory paragraphs and photos)