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Daily Archives: July 18, 2013

NEW YORK (AP) A U. S.-based tour company on Thursday announced the launch of new people-to-people trips to Cuba that would transport US citizens there by ship. Road Scholar, a Boston-based company, is offering the trips from Jamaica and Miami, with sto... Continue reading
Ciego de Avila, Cuba, Jul 18 (Prensa Latina) During the last 10 years, around 10,000 young Canadians visited the Cuban seaside resort of Jardines del Rey, through the Tourist Program for Canadian Students S-Trip. Since 2003, the program, organized by C... Continue reading
Cuba will look to maintain momentum going in their CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-final after their last-minute qualification. Walter Benitez's men only made it through to the last-eight meeting with Panama thanks to a stoppage-time goal, which me... Continue reading
Say you could hop into a DeLorean and travel back to when life on Earth began. Would fish migrate from water to land? Would the dinosaurs go extinct? At the end of our trip, would we still encounter life Continue reading
PANAMA CITY -- Panama has filed charges against the crew of a North Korean ship seized as it tried to pass through the Panama Canal while carrying obsolete weaponry from Cuba hidden under bags of sugar, Continue reading
The life of Ernesto Guevara de la Serna is most like a legend.  The truth is simmered over a slow flame along with countless inaccuracies.  Since the date of his birth until the date of his death in the Bolivian … Continue reading Continue reading
A United Nations team is due to arrive in Panama next month to inspect a North Korean ship which was seized carrying arms from Cuba, a potential breach of U.N. sanctions that the United States said was Continue reading
This is Joaquin, Lieutenant Colonel of State Security who operates in the province of Matanzas, especially in the areas of Cardenas, Colon and Varadero.  The agent has taken up the task of persecuting dissidents from Matanzas and frequently orders violent actions against these activists.  Recently, this past Sunday, July 14th, Joaquin gave orders to a […] Continue reading
Santiago de Cuba, July 18 (Prensa Latina) Ambassador of Ecuador, Edgar Ponce Iturriaga, described today as reciprocity of solidarity his ... Continue reading
Sancti Spiritus, Cuba, Jul 18 (Prensa Latina) The Alturas de Banao Ecological Reserve in the central province of Sancti Spiritus, Cuba, is preserving woods which the human hand has not yet touched, as said by specialists from the Cuban Science, Technol... Continue reading
Miami Herald reports. The weaponry, which has totaled 240 metric tons so far, included two anti-aircraft missile complexes, nine missiles in parts and spares, two MiG-21 jets and 15 motors for MiGs, according to the ministry.Panamanian authorities stil... Continue reading
Dicen en Cuba que hay quien compra pescado y después le tiene miedo a los ojos Continue reading
Cuba , they can only remember the past". He should look closer to home and ask himself if it is his own government that is stuck in the past. For over 50 years, since it nationalised the property of US corporations and citizens, Cuba has suffe... Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba, July 18 (acn) Havana tour international tour operator and travel agency opened a branch office today in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to promote the Cuba destination in the South American ... Continue reading
El equipo de Naciones Unidas que investigará el buque norcoreano cargado con armas procedente de Cuba llegará a Panamá el próximo 5 de agosto, según ha informado el Gobierno panameño este jueves. Continue reading
Sao Paulo, Jul 18 (Prensa Latina) The international group of tour operators and travel agencies Havanatur opened an office in the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo, aimed at offering Cuban destinations in this South American country. In the opening ceremony ... Continue reading
United States and Cuba negotiated for re-immigration of two years after the break, news agency STT reported quoting AFP and Reuters. The parties wish safe, legal and regular and precise migration. Wednesday's debate on the so-called dr... Continue reading
KINGSTON, Jamaica - The U.S. military says the number of prisoners on the hunger strike at Guantanamo Bay has dropped to 75, down from a peak of 106 last week. From the U.S. base in Cuba, Army Lt. Col. Sam House said Thursday that a total of 67 of tho... Continue reading
Desde su cuenta en Twitter la más conocida bloguera cubana envía felicitaciones al líder antiapartheid Nelson Mandela, en ocasión de su 95 cumpleaños. Continue reading
Panama City, Panama (CNN) -- Four days have passed since Panamanian authorities discovered undeclared military weapons hidden aboard a North Korean ship, and the painstaking process of examining the entire Continue reading
ARTEMISA, Cuba, 18 de julio de 2013, Moisés Leonardo Rodríguez/ www.cubanet.org.- La orden de que los vecinos de Cabañas –por la carretera que une a este pueblo con su cabecera municipal, Mariel-  no pueden abordar los ómnibus que trasladan a trabajadores de empresas debido al pésimo estado de las vías ha creado malestar entre los [...] Continue reading
Panama City, Panama (CNN) -- Four days have passed since Panamanian authorities discovered undeclared military weapons hidden aboard a North Korean ship, and the painstaking process of examining the entire Continue reading
Estados Unidos aseguró este jueves que no ve el incidente del barco norcoreano como un asunto bilateral con Cuba, sino que está centrado en la posibilidad de que se hayan violado sanciones del Consejo de Seguridad de la ONU contra Corea del Norte. Continue reading
Vuelve propaganda oficial al “Periodo Especial” Yosvani Anzardo Hernández 18 de julio de 2013 San Germán, Cuba– www.PayoLibre.com – La propaganda oficialista cubana ha retomado el término “Periodo Especial” y los principales dirigentes comienzan a hablar de él como de un periodo que está por terminar. Desde hace varios años no se hablaba del “Periodo [...] Continue reading
EEUU reitera a Cuba libertad de Alan Gross durante conversaciones migratorias La reanudación del diálogo migratorio entre Estados Unidos y Cuba, que permanecía congelado desde enero de 2011, “se desarrolló en un clima respetuoso”, señaló la delegación cubana en una declaración al término de la reunión Agencias julio 17, 2013 Durante las conversaciones migratorias celebradas [...] Continue reading
Cuba: surrealismo a bordo de un buque norcoreano Tania Quintero julio 17, 2013 Cuando el lunes en Café Fuerte leí que un actor se había disfrazado de José Martí y con voz engolada había intervenido en el recién terminado Congreso de la UPEC, pensé que esa ‘teatralidad’ quedaría como otro ejemplo del surrealismo típico del [...] Continue reading
The Guardian: el legado del comunismo en Cuba “El gran problema es que a pesar de todo el debate del cambio revolucionario, cada vez que intentan imaginar una Cuba mejor, sólo pueden recordar el pasado”: Profesor universitario. martinoticias.com julio 17, 2013 “Para los cubanos; quienes en su mayoría sólo conocen las empresas de propiedad estatal, [...] Continue reading
Marchan mujeres de la FLAMUR exigiendo que suban los salarios y bajen los precios [18-07-2013] Alexei Jimenez Almarales Prensa Joven Los que participaron fueron: Gladis Ramírez Fernández, Lisbet Peñas Hernández, Eleiny Viamonte Cardoso, Libia Hernández Pérez, Carmen Oropesa Ramírez y Amilkar Pérez Riverón. (www.miscelaneasdecuba.net).- Suban los salarios y bajen los precios, eran la palabras que [...] Continue reading
Misiles de azúcar En un momento en que los periódicos dan lecciones de que los gobiernos no se pueden salir con la suya en cuanto al secretismo, es penoso –cuando menos- el papel conformista de la prensa oficial cubana. Yoani Sánchez julio 17, 2013 El Congreso de la Unión de Periodistas de Cuba (UPEC) acaba [...] Continue reading
The "Crisis of the Sugar Missiles" / Yoani Sanchez
Posted on July 17, 2013

The Congress of the Journalists Union of Cuba (UPEC) has just been
contradicted. Barely a few days after that meeting of official
reporters, reality has put them to the test … and they failed.
Yesterday, the news that a freighter flying under the North Korean flag,
coming from Havana and found with missiles and other military equipment
in its hold, jumped to the first page of much of the world's press. In
Panama, where the arms were detected, the president of the country
himself sent out a report via Twitter about what happened. Knowing that
in this day and age it's almost impossible to censor — from the national
public — an event of such scope, we awoke this morning to a brief note
from the Ministry of Foreign Relations. In an authoritarian tone it
explained that the "obsolete" — but functional — armaments were being
sent to the Korean peninsula for repairs. It did not clarify, however,
why it was necessary to hide them in a cargo of sugar.

At a time when newspapers are offering lessons that governments can't
get away with secrecy, the conformist role of the official Cuban press
is, at the very least, painful. Meanwhile, in Spain several newspapers
have challenged the governing party by publishing the declarations of
its former treasurer; in the United States the Snowden case fills the
headlines which demand explanations from the White House about the
invasion of privacy of so many citizens. It is inconceivable that, this
morning, Cuba's Ministry of the Armed Forces and its colleagues in
Foreign Relations are not being questioned by reporters calling them to
account. Where are the journalists? Where are these professionals of the
news and of words who should force governments to declare themselves,
force politicians not to deceive us, force the military not to behave
toward citizens as if we were children who can be constantly lied to?

Where are the resolutions of the UPEC Congress, with their calls to
remove obstacles, abolish silence, and engage in an informative labor
more tied to reality? A brief note, clearly plagued with falsehoods, is
not sufficient to explain the act of sending — secretly — arms to a
country that the United Nations itself has warned others not to support
with the technology of war. They will not convince us of their innocence
by appealing to the antiquity of the armaments; things that produce
horror never entirely expire. But, as journalists, the most important
lesson to come out of this "crisis of the sugar missiles" is that we
cannot settle for institutions that explain themselves in brief press
releases, that cannot be questioned. They have to speak, they have to
explain… a lot.

17 July 2013

Source: "The "Crisis of the Sugar Missiles" / Yoani Sanchez |
Translating Cuba" -
http://translatingcuba.com/the-crisis-of-the-sugar-missiles-yoani-sanchez/ Continue reading
More Jail Time for Shouting and Handing out Leaflets than Castro got for
Assaulting an Army Barracks / Angel Santiesteban
Posted on July 17, 2013

Prisoner of conscience in punishment cell

Piloto Barceló is in the punishment cell for demanding his rights. He
has served more than half of his sentence, so he should be receiving the
benefit of "minimum security"; but the authorities are like always, and
their ears are especially deaf to opponents of the regime.

Piloto finds himself sentenced to six years in jail for protesting in
the Plaza of the Revolution against the atrocities of the Cuban regime.
According to his indictment "for threatening the figures of the leaders
of the Revolution," that is, right now, Pilot has served the same amount
of time that Fidel Castro served for assaulting the barracks of the
constitutional army, to which must be added the lives of the fallen
soldiers. Clearly, Piloto will be imprisoned longer for shouting and
handing out leaflets, than was Castro for assaulting a barracks with
their firearms.

Whoever utters a word against the dictator, is punished as if he
assasinated him. However, Piloto, from his cell, continues to struggle
against the regime, and warns them that the time will come when he will
be testifying before a jury about their abuse.

Ángel Santiesteban-Prats. Prison 1580, July 2013

15 July 2013

Source: "More Jail Time for Shouting and Handing out Leaflets than
Castro got for Assaulting an Army Barracks / Angel Santiesteban |
Translating Cuba" -
http://translatingcuba.com/more-jail-time-for-shouting-and-handing-out-leaflets-than-castro-got-for-assaulting-an-army-barracks-angel-santiesteban/ Continue reading
Melesio's Grill / Rosa Maria Rodriguez
Posted on July 17, 2013

Yoel Martínez, guitarist and member of the duo Buena Fe, (Good Faith)
bought a house facing the sea. He and Israel Rojas hired a brigade to
repair it and convert it into a bar-cafeteria-restaurant, Melesio's
Grill, which opened its doors the public on July 12.

With that name, and with both musicians being from Guantanamo, many
think they named it in honor of a family member, but that's not it.
According to the source, the 90-year-old actor Reynaldo Miravalles,
whose granddaughter lives in Cuba and represents him, is the one who
made the "strong investment" in assembling the business and chose the
name in memory of his beloved character, Melesio Capote, who played in
the telenovela "The Rock of the Lion" and who lives in people's hearts.
They say that in the few days since the establishment opened, the son of
Carlos Lage has visited it — will a green jar be found? — as have
foreigners and some members of the Anacaonas orchestra. There are also
many who expect it to be a major sales success because the prominent
Cuban actor will promote it from Miami.

Business hours are from 12:00 pm to 12:00 am every day of the week, the
staff wears uniforms and there are two work teams directed by Israel's
wife; on one team is the daughter of Cuba's former Foreign Minister
Felipe Perez Roque. In addition, that assert that there are cameras
everywhere to avoid costly mistakes. Two neighbors on the block live
on-site: a cleaning assistant and a night custodian.

The locating of this private gastronomic center has generated great
expectations among the neighborhood peanut gallery, in which they might
expect to take a drink or enjoy a meal accompanied by some national
entertainment celebrity. But the cheapest menu offering costs 5 CUC and
already the neighborhood "roosters" resignedly assume that "this fight"
is not theirs.

However, we wish the young entrepreneurs success in their business. To
Miravalles, that the "mantel" of health will ways protect him, that
fortune will rain on his life and his business, that abundant fruits
will rain down in return for the good faith of his investment.

16 July 2013

Source: "Melesio's Grill / Rosa Maria Rodriguez | Translating Cuba" -
http://translatingcuba.com/melesios-grill-rosa-maria-rodriguez/ Continue reading
If the Model Isn't Working, What Hope Is There for the Copy? / Dimas
Posted on July 17, 2013

In the second half of the 18th century Creole capabilities along with
the effects of the English occupation of Havana and the Haitian
revolution created favorable conditions for turning Cuba into a sugar
powerhouse. Land owners understood the importance of rapidly developing
the island's agriculture before Haiti could recover. It was necessary to
look to the neighboring island not only with compassion, said Francisco
de Arango y Parreño, but also through political eyes. As a result Cuba
became the main producer and exporter of sugar in the world.

Sugar production, which in 1860 was 447,000 tons, had reached 1,400,000
by 1895. In 1919 it exceeded 4,000,000. In 1925 it reached 5,300,000; in
1952 it was 7,200,000. In 1970, after a colossal effort that disrupted
the entire Cuban economy, 8,500,000 tons were produced. After that, it
began to decrease to the point that in 2001 it was no more than
3,500,000, a figure lower than that of 1919.

To reverse the decline General Ulises Rosales del Toro was appointed to
head the Ministry of Sugar (MINAZ). The Sugar Industry Restructuring
initiative and the Álvaro Reynoso Project were also implemented. The
goal of the former was to achieve 11% output (to extract 11 tons of
sugar for every 100 tons of sugar cane); the goal of the latter was to
produce 54 tons of cane per hectare (according to the UN's Food and
Agriculture Organization the world average was 63 tons).

The results of both projects led to 2.2 million tons being produced in
2002, 2.1 million in 2003, 2.52 in 2004 and 1.3 million in 2005 (a 40%
decrease from the previous year). Results for 2006 and 2007 were similar
to 2005. 2009 saw a slight increase to 1.4 million tons (the same as in
1895). The figures hit a low point in 2010 when only 1.1 million tons
were produced. The annual average over ten years has barely topped 1.8
million tons. The harvest in 2011 remained below 1.3 million tons.

In response to its failures, MINAZ was replaced by the state sugar
monopoly AZCUBA. With the two major factors that led to significantly
reduced production on everyone's minds, the organization made sure to
plant enough cane and at the outset managed to secure almost all the
necessary resources it had contracted for the 2012 harvest.
Nevertheless, it was still only able to fulfill a target of 1,450,000
tons, and even then it did not meet its target date. Finally, in
December 2012 — the beginning of the current harvest — AZCUBA decided to
pool its accumulated knowledge and proposed a production quota of 1.7
million tons of sugar (20% higher than the previous harvest). It also
announced that a majority of its factories would close before May to
avoid the negative effects from that month's heat and rain, factors
which reduce the quality of sugarcane.
Difficulties quickly mounted. By the beginning of February there was a
production delay of 7.8%. By the middle of March the state-run press
noted that most of the thirteen sugar producing provinces would have to
continue refining operations past the target date in order to be able to
produce 1.7 million tons. By the end of March production delays had
reached 18%. At the beginning of April the country was refining at 65%
of its normal capacity due to a shortage of sugarcane. Cienfuegos and
Artemisa provinces have reached approximately 90% of their goals.
Matanzas has a shortfall of 30,000 tons while Villa Clara, Santiago de
Cuba, Holguín, Las Tunas, Granma and Mayabeque are milling at 60% of
normal capacity. At the end of May it was discovered that Camagüey, one
of the provinces that had hoped to fulfill its quota, was lagging
behind. Now, in late June, the end of the current harvest has still not
been announced.
Results from the Uruguay central sugar refinery in Sancti Spiritus
province, which for the last six years has fulfilled its technical
economic quota, produced 8,000 tons more than the previous year and
achieved an 11.95% rate of gross economic output, the highest in the

In summation, a change of management, the Sugar Industry Restructuring
initiative, the Álvaro Reynoso Project, the closure of some one-hundred
sugar factories, the reallocation of a large percentage of fields
reserved for sugar cultivation to other crops, the replacement of MINAZ
with AZCUBA and a varied package of economic and structural measures
have not been sufficient to raise the per-hectare production of
sugarcane or planned industrial output.

The 2013 harvest suffers from the same problems as those that preceded
it: late starts, sugarcane shortages, low agricultural and industrial
output, transportation problems, inadequate maintenance, industry-wide
breakdowns, poor repairs to agricultural equipment, aging raw material,
lack of spare parts, poorly trained personnel, administrative
incompetence and high per-ton production costs, among other factors.

Although twenty years is nothing according to the popular tango anthem
by Carlos Gardel and Alfredo Lepera*, in economic terms it is long
enough to know it is time to get rid the current model. Whether
discussing the obsolete or the updated version, it simply does not and
cannot work. This is because economic issues remain subordinate to
ideology. State ownership of property predominates and the system of
economic planning has no relationship to reality, having been copied
from the Soviet model. The situation is similar to that of Cuba at the
end of the 18th century when solutions imposed by Spain were no longer
appropriate given the changes that had occurred on the island. Francisco
de Arango y Parreño summed it up nicely when he said, "If the model no
longer works, what hope is there for the copy?"

Havana, June 3, 2013

1 Ponte Domingo, Francisco J. Arango y Parreño; estadista colonial
cubano, Edición del Centenario, Havana, 1937, p. 27.

*Translator's note: A reference to a line from Volver, a popular 1934
tango by Argentinian singer and composer Carlos Gardel and
lyricist Alfredo Lepera.

Published June 17 in Diario de Cuba

Source: "If the Model Isn't Working, What Hope Is There for the Copy? /
Dimas Castellanos | Translating Cuba" -
http://translatingcuba.com/if-the-model-isnt-working-what-hope-is-there-for-the-copy-dimas-castellanos/ Continue reading
according to a Pew Research Hispanic Center study . According to Pew, based on the 2011 American Community Survey, there were 1.95 million Salvadorans living in the U.S. in 2011 compared to 1.89 million Cubans – statistically speaking, these ... Continue reading
El famoso humorista cubano Guillermo Alvarez Guedes ingresó el lunes en la sala de cuidados intensivos del Doctors Hospital de Coral Gables por un padecimiento estomacal. Continue reading
La comisión de sanciones del Consejo de Seguridad de Naciones Unidas se encargará de investigar el caso del barco norcoreano apresado en Panamá con armamento cubano, según ha informado el embajador británico ante el organismo, Mark Lyall Grant. Continue reading
A United Nations team sent to examine the North Korean ship seized by Panama for carrying arms from Cuba will arrive in the Central American nation on Aug. 5, the Panamanian government said on Thursday. Continue reading
El líder del partido Arco Progresista, escribió a Mujica: "Siempre hemos visto a Uruguay como una nación madura que ha sabido defender... sus sólidos presupuestos democráticos" Continue reading
Panama police officers stand guard in front of a container holding a green missile-shaped object seized from the North Korean flagged ship "Chong Chon Gang" at the Manzanillo Container Terminal in Colon City July 17, 2013. U.N. Secret... Continue reading
A special thank you to Manuel Robles Villamarin, a young member of the Christian Liberation Movement (MCL) for offering this interview, where he talks about his involvement in the pro-freedom movement in Cuba, the projects for change carried out by the MCL, the Cuban youth, and more.  –— Pieces of the Island blog (PDLI): Tell […] Continue reading
Por Pilar Mireles Adalys Pinar del Rio, Cuba, Jul 18 (Prensa Latina) Cuban scientists will conduct the first test to get an antifungal substance as of the carapace of the lobster in the processing industry of the crustacean itself, to fight the disease... Continue reading
Santiago de Cuba, Jul 18 (Prensa Latina) Cuban artists contribute today with their works to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the attack on the Moncada Garrison, July 26, on behalf of the whole island. The major action is the National Exhibition of Fin... Continue reading
Panama City, Panama (CNN) -- Four days have passed since Panamanian authorities discovered undeclared military weapons hidden aboard a North Korean ship, and the painstaking process of examining the ship Continue reading
Havana, Cuba, July, www.cubanet.org The sinking of the tugboat 13 de Marzo, on the morning of July 13, 1994, with over 70 people on board, ordered by the dictatorship that governs us, does not appear in the nation’s list of … Continue reading Continue reading
This Anole lizardfrom the Dominican Republic lives among tree trunks and boulders. Unrelated but identical Anole varieties are found in Cuba, Jamaica and Puerto Rico as well. Visit the Caribbean islands Continue reading