Reports from Cuba: ‘The law is prostituted in Cuba,’ students at the University of Havana complain

Diario de Cuba reports from Havana:

‘The law is prostituted in Cuba,’ complain students at the University of Havana

They say that the Law School has become a ‘den of police, opportunists and mediocrity’.

Students at the Law School of the University of Havana expressed their disagreement with the educations they are receiving at an academic institution where the violations of rights committed by the Cuban regime are not addressed, nor the challenges that this entails for the justice system.

In a collective letter published anonymously on Monday, the signatories explain that they enrolled “excited about pursuing a prestigious course of studies. We came with the idea of doing good for the people. That was before we discovered that there can be no justice where the law is prostituted. Now we are disillusioned, halfway between our academic lives and an uncertain professional future.”

They stress that they all come from “revolutionary’ families, who believed in the process, although at this point our own parents are sad, scared and disenchanted. Today they just want the time to pass, for us to get our degrees and go somewhere else. To be able to live with dignity, without misery and in freedom.”

The authors of the document state that their professors are phonies “who do not believe in the ethical codes governing good professors and jurists” because “they have betrayed the most elementary human and intellectual imperative: a commitment to the truth.”

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The music of imprisoned dissident rapper Maykel Osorbo exposes the communist Cuban dictatorship

The music of Cuban rapper Maykel “El Osorbo” Castillo slices through the myths and propaganda of the Castro dictatorship, and that is why he is rotting in a Cuban gulag.

Ellen Bork at the Bush Institute:

The Struggle for Freedom: The Cuban rapper whose music shames the regime

Cuban rapper Maykel Castillo Perez discusses his uncompromising work that unites Cubans and exposes the myths of the 1959 revolution and its more than six decades of repression.

From the beginning of Cuban communist rule, Fidel Castro coopted artists and performers to promote the regime. They faced a choice: make approved art and remain (relatively) free and comfortable or face the consequences of being “outside the revolution.”

In recent years, the regime has faced a challenge from independent artists who reject this bargain, like the rapper Maykel Castillo Perez. His uncompromising work unites Cubans and exposes the myths of the 1959 revolution and its more than six decades of repression.

Castillo, who performs as Maykel Osorbo, is a co-author of “Patria y Vida,” or “Homeland and Life,” the anthem of unprecedented islandwide protests of July 2021. He is also a leader of the San Isidro Movement, an artists’ and writers’ collective formed in his predominantly Black and poor Havana neighborhood to oppose new, harsher censorship by the regime. In June 2022, he was sentenced to nine years in prison for alleged crimes including “defamation of state institutions.” Castillo’s real offense, and what the Cuban government fears, according to his fellow rapper El Funky, is his “power to summon” other Cubans in seeking freedom.

Cuba’s repression has perverse consequences: Last year a record number of Cubans arrived in the United States, fleeing the desperate economic and political conditions created by the communist rule since 1959. At the same time, the number of political prisoners has skyrocketed, even as the regime forces some artists, writers, and activists to leave the country.

Castillo wants to leave Cuba for medical treatment. The United States and its democratic allies should press for Castillo to be freed unconditionally and permitted to seek medical treatment abroad.

Continue reading HERE.

Cuban dictatorship producing toilet paper only for foreign tourists due to shortages

Socialism in action: The only factory on the island that produces toilet paper for the entire country is sending all its production to regime-owned hotel and resorts. Cubans are left to continue wiping their behinds with state-run newspapers.

Via CiberCuba (my translation):

Toilet paper in Cuba only for tourists

The Sanitary Products Company (Prosa) in Cardenas, which is supposed to cover the demand for toilet paper for the entire country, will only produce the product for the tourist sector due to the lack of raw materials and financing to import the amount of material required.

In the midsts of a serious crisis in basic products, the factory only obtained enough raw material to produce the so-called “luxury” toilet paper to cover the needs of the first four months of 2023 of the tourist sector, “its most important client.” Small quantities sold for hard currency only will be made available, said the company’s director, Manolo Gonzalez Garcia, in a report in the state-run newspaper Granma.

According to Gonzalez Garcia, the company is almost stopped and the delivery of paper to the tourism sector, it’s first priority, is insufficient.

He went on to say there are “guarantees” for a certain amount of raw material to make some four million rolls of toilet paper in the first few months of 2023 because they do not have the financing to import the raw material the factory needs and importing the final product is too expensive.

Continue reading (in Spanish) HERE.

Four-year-old girl in Cuba dies from lack of medical attention

A precious little Cuban girl is one of the latest victims of the corruption, incompetence, and medical negligence of the communist Castro dictatorship, the so-called medical power.

Via ADN Cuba (my translation):

Gladys Capote, a member of the Ladies in White movement defending human rights in Cuba, denounced on Thursday the death of a little girl in her family, presumably because of the lack of oxygen and beds in Havana hospitals.

“Yesterday, February 1st, my granddaughter-niece who was only 4 years old died because of the lack of beds and oxygen in the hospitals of Havana,” said the activist in a Facebook post.

According to Capote, because of the lack of resources in the capital, the little girl “was sent to a hospital in Matanzas and on the way there she passed away. All of this happened because of the lack of medical attention in our country.”

The Lady in White challenged the official propaganda that sells Cuba as a “medical power.” For Gladys Capote, “you have to look for that medical power in other countries.”

Cuba’s medical system is virtually collapsed, facing shortages of doctors and nurses due to thousands of them being shipped overseas sold as slave labor and resources being diverted to build luxury resorts for foreign tourists, all in the regime’s quest to generate revenue to finance its machine of repression. This is socialism in action.

Reports from Cuba: A new year with the same old

Nike writes via Havana Times:

A New Year with the Same Old

After a whole year of so much hardship, and a New Year’s without the traditional roast pork, beer that Cubans like so much, and Spanish turrones, lots of people had to settle for eating chicken. We’ve never really liked this meat. We prefer beef and pork.

Some families were able to have a proper dinner on December 31st thanks to family living abroad who send food packages, including myself thanks to my brother. The reality is that nothing is looking good here in Cuba, and the horizon doesn’t look so bright either, on the contrary.

Everyone I run into says the same phrase every New Year for as long as I can remember: “This year is going to be worse.” Are they masochists or do they have a witch whispering in their ear? I feel this phrase is quite perverse as if they really enjoy the bad rut the country has been stuck in for so many years…

The first few days of January, you couldn’t find any root vegetables, fruit or vegetables, and you’re only beginning to see beetroot and carrots now, for 100 pesos for a bunch of six (a day’s worth of work for many) and root vegetables like cassava for 25 pesos per pound, malanga for 70 pesos and sweet potato which has gone up in price and now costs 50 pesos per pound. Guava and pineapple are the only fruits you can find.

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Communist China and Russia setting up shop right in America’s backyard

While we’re busy looking at conflicts caused by China and Russia on the other side of the world, the two predatory regimes are setting up shop right in our own hemisphere. We cannot afford to ignore it.

Cuban American attorney and author Nestor Carbonell explains in National Review:

The U.S. Must Counter Chinese and Russian Penetration of Our Hemisphere

The U.S. is right to focus on critical hotspots such as Ukraine, Taiwan, and Iran. But it can no longer afford to ignore the dramatic inroads China and Russia have made in our own backyard.

The head of the Defense Department’s U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM), responsible for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), General Laura Richardson, warned early last year that, “China continues its relentless march to expand economic, diplomatic, technological, informational, and military influence in LAC, and challenges U.S. influence in all those domains.”

China’s rising leadership in the region was evident last week at the Seventh Summit of CELAC, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States — a rival of the largely paralyzed Organization of American States. CELAC excludes the U.S., while embracing China under a formal banner known as China-CELAC Forum. In his video address to the Summit, President Xi Jinping proclaimed that in this time of “turbulence and transformation,” he wants to take the China-CELAC partnership to a “new era.”

His words, warmly applauded, carry significant weight. China has already become the top trade partner for South America. Even more important, it is rapidly advancing toward its goal of regional economic dominance within the next decade.

But trading is just one element of China’s influence. By including LAC in Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) — an imperial global-infrastructure program — China has enabled its banks and state-owned companies to finance numerous deals.

Continue reading HERE.

Victims of Communism Museum opens exhibit on prisons in communist Cuba

Many people are unaware how Cuba went from 10 prisons with a population of 6 million people before the socialist revolution to 283 prisons with a population of a little over 11 million today under communism. Roughly 28 times the number of prisons, while the population only doubled. This is socialism in action.

Via the Victims of Communism:

VOC Museum Temporary Gallery Opening and Reception: “Cuban Communist Prison” 

The Victims of Communism Museum opened its temporary gallery, “Cuban Communist Prison,” a visual arts exhibition on Cuban political prisoners. The exhibit reflects the harsh reality that the island has been going through since 1959, where thousands of people have been imprisoned and deprived of their human rights. Through Cuban activists’ works, we can gather different experiences of Cuban political prisoners and their families, focusing on the impact of the repressive system on different population levels during the last 64 years under Communism. The exhibition includes supporting materials such as interviews with political prisoners and a timeline of political imprisonment, civil unrest, turmoil, and repression in the country.

The opening event featured participating artists, several of whom have been imprisoned or ostracized for their political views, and are now widely recognized internationally for their work.

Continue reading HERE.

86 House Democrats vote against resolution condemning the horrors of socialism

86 Democrats noted against a House resolution condemning the horrors of socialism, which over the past century has murdered over 100-million people and enslaved billions more. In addition to those who voted against it, 14 Democrats voted present, bringing the total to 100 Democrats who refuse to acknowledge the death and misery socialism has wrought upon the world.

Via The Daily Signal:

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution condemning socialism on Thursday, with nearly all Republicans and half of the Democrats supporting it.

H. Con. Res. 9, a resolution “Denouncing the horrors of socialism,” passed 328 to 86, with 14 Democrats voting present, and six members (three Republicans and three Democrats) not voting.

“This was a win for democracy,” Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar, R-Fla., the daughter of Cuban exiles who represents Miami-Dade County and who sponsored the resolution, told The Daily Signal in a statement Thursday.

“As the representative of the city of Miami, and daughter of Cuban exiles, I say that this resolution hits close to home for us all,” she added. “We know that socialism only brings misery, oppression, and exile, wherever it is tried.”

[…]

Many prominent Democrats voted against the resolution, including Reps. Julian Castro and Al Green of Texas, Jerry Connolly of Virginia, Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, Pramila Jayapal of Washington, Summer Lee of Pennsylvania, Jerry Nadler and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Jamie Raskin of Maryland, and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.

Lee responded to a group of Democrats who condemned socialism by saying, “They’re going to call you socialists anyways.” Ocasio-Cortez retweeted her.

Although not surprising, it’s no less amazing so many Democrats cannot bring themselves to condemn an ideology that has done nothing but destroy and spread misery and death all over the world. There’s a reason “they’re going to call you socialists anyway,” as Rep. Summer Lee (D-PA) said: It’s because you keep refusing to condemn it.