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Daily Archives: March 15, 2014

6:30 p.m. CDT By David Adams MIAMI (Reuters) - Cuban Americans met in Miami on Saturday to discuss how to normalize relations with Cuba and end the five decade-long United States embargo against Continue reading
Cuban Americans met in Miami on Saturday to discuss how to normalize relations with Cuba and end the five decade-long United States embargo against the communist-run island, the first such gathering in Continue reading
“Thank you Fidel, for all you give us…” Prisoners curse their freedom Convicts say that when they get a pass for almost 72 hours every 10 days, their worries increase. They experience a major agony in the sense of feeling … Continue reading Continue reading
El vicepresidente del Consejo de Ministros de Cuba, José Ramón Machado Ventura, ha instado a los agricultores a "producir todo el azúcar posible" porque "el país lo necesita" como parte de sus objetivos de crecimiento y desarrollo. Continue reading
GENEVA -- With diplomatic efforts having failed to defuse the crisis in Ukraine, political and business leaders are worried that plans to place sanctions on the Kremlin will create an economic meltdown Continue reading
Diversas organizaciones del exilio cubano se reunieron este sábado en Miami para analizar “los cambios importantes” ocurridos en los últimos años entre Estados Unidos y Cuba y abogaron por la supresión del embargo económico a la isla, con el fin de potenciar el comercio bilateral y restablecer una “relación normal” entre ambos países. Continue reading
Reviewer rating: Rating: 2 out of 5 stars CUBAN FURY ?? (M, 98 minutes). Opens Thursday. The English comic actor Nick Frost has built a career out of a productive partnership with fellow funnyman Simon Continue reading
A Whitecourt resident has found a way to combine his love for travel with his passion for photography. For the rest of March, the Whitecourt Library will host a photography exhibit on Cuba by local photographer Continue reading
The north-eastern city of Holguin hosted a Territorial Shop on Socio-political Studies and Opinions with the attendance of experts from provinces of Camaguey, Las Tunas, Granma, Santiago de Cuba and Guantanamo. Continue reading
A Whitecourt resident has found a way to combine his love for travel with his passion for photography. For the rest of March, the Whitecourt Library will host a photography exhibit on Cuba by local photographer Continue reading
REUTERS SEOUL: North Korea has developed sophisticated ways to circumvent United Nations sanctions, including the suspected use of its embassies to facilitate an illegal trade in weapons, a United Continue reading
QÐND - Saturday, March 15, 2014, 22:38 (GMT+7) PANO - A delegation of the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defence, led by Lieutenant General Luong Cuong, Deputy Director of the General Department Continue reading
Tras la decisión de Cuba y Venezuela de retirar a sus embajadores por el golpe de Estado en Honduras, el nuevo presidente de ese país Juan Orlando Hernández indicó que "es cuestión de pocas semanas para que estemos reinsertados totalmente ante toda la comunidad internacional". Continue reading
01:25 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ Matanzas, Mar 15, (RHC), -- Cuba will host the 7th International Scientific Conference on Sustainable Development and Innovation CIUM-2015, scheduled for April Continue reading
:49 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ Terry Fox Marathon of Hope The Terry Fox Marathon of Hope , in its 14th edition, kicks off today March 15th throughout Cuba, with the special motivation of promoting Continue reading
01:27 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ Santiago de Cuba, Mar 15, (RHC), -- Cubans commemorated today in the locality of Mangos de Baraguá of the eastern province of Santiago de Cuba, the historical feat Continue reading
01:26 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ Havana, Mar 15, (RHC), - The First International Scientific Conference of the University of Informatics Sciences (UCI), to be held from April 10 through the 14, Continue reading
01:27 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ Havana, Mar 15, (RHC), -- Cuban First Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel on Friday called on Cuban media workers to advance in the improvement of their work, amidst Continue reading
01:27 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ Havana, Mar 15, (RHC), - The 34th International Tourism Fair FITCUBA 2014 will be held from May 6 to 10 in the colonial fortress of San Carlos de La Cabaña, located Continue reading
01:47 PM Facebook Twitter Google+ While fascist groups continue trying to spread violence and chaos and destroy the social and economic gains installed in Venezuela by the Bolivarian Revolution, Continue reading
La policía venezolana los puso de rodillas y los roció con perdigones; los presuntos cubanos los desnudaron para atormentarles con un tirapiedras. A otro le hicieron morderse la lengua. Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba.-The crucial dispute in which the geopolitical, economic, and military interests of major world powers are played is the most relevant one in escalating individual conflicts that have been taking place in other regions–the Syrian and Venezuelan crises are … Continue reading Continue reading
Cuba: Internet in Your Home from September / Ivan Garcia
Posted on March 15, 2014

According to a spokesman for ETECSA, the only telecoms company in Cuba,
they are going to start marketing internet in peoples' homes, with ADSL
included, from the first half of September.

We don't yet know what the price of the installation will be. What has
come to light in a document which we have seen are the different tariffs
for national and international internet surfing.

The document, put out by Ibis Díaz Silva, commercial executive of
ETECSA's Oficina de Pequeños y Medianos Usuarios (Office of Small and
Medium Users ), indicates that the 20 hour internet package will cost 10
convertible pesos a month, 50 hours 15 cuc (Cuban convertible currency),
100 hours 30 cuc, 180 hours 50 cuc, and 220 hours 60 cuc. There will be
a 90 hour package, usable between 8 pm and 7 am which will be offered at
20 cuc. They will sell additional hours at 30 convertible pesos.

Additionally, starting from September, they will market the local
intranet network at a lower price, where you can find official media.
The connection speed will be between 2 and 4 megabytes.

Gradually, Raúl Castro's government has taken some steps forward to
provide internet access for Cubans. On 4th June 2013, ETECSA opened 116
navigation rooms in 15 provinces of the country.

Up to this month, according the ETECSA spokesman, about 600,000
customers have connected to the network. Last February 25th, the Gaceta
Oficial de la República (Official Gazette of the Republic) announced new
cellphone internet tariffs. And from 2013, ETECSA workmen have been busy
putting in place wireless networks in different parts of Havana.

The prices of these new services have generated a lot of controversy.
The point is that the Cuban man in the street, with an average salary of
$20 a month, can't afford the luxury of connecting to the internet while
he has no chicken, fish or meat in his pantry.

One way or another, nearly everybody is complaining. Whether they are
unknown citizens, like the private shoemaker Alfonso Ayala, who has
never surfed the net, or official journalists like Elaine Díaz or
Alejandro Rodríguez, who have criticised the excessive prices in their

"One hour at 4.50 cuc (Cuban convertible currency) is equivalent to 112
Cuban pesos. Repairing shoes, I make between 80 and 100 Cuban pesos a
day. All my income is for buying food and supporting my wife and kids.
As far as I can see the internet continues to be out of my reach," says

As far as the regime is concerned, the internet is an invention of the
US special services with the aim of colonising information and culture.
Only the inescapable necessity of not continually putting the brakes on
Cuban professional development has forced the government to authorise
access to the internet.

It all started in 1998, when the island was connected up, via satellite,
more slowly and with a narrower band than a public university in New
York. The official press blamed the technological backwardness on the
trade embargo imposed by Washington, which forbids connection to the
underwater cables owned by US companies, which surround the green Cayman
Islands. And we know that Cuba and the USA are continuing with the Cold
War. And truth is the first casualty of any war.

According to the ETECSA spokesman, in 2010, some gringo companies
located in Florida were authorised by the Obama government to negotiate
with Cuba to recommission an old unused underwater cable.

"The project was viable. It cost $18m with a bandwidth right for our
requirements. But the government preferred to bet on the so-called
digital self-government and designed a project jointly with Venezuela
called ALBA1, stated the source.

At a cost of $70m, the submerged cable connected the twin cities of La
Guiara and Siboney in the east, in Santiago de Cuba. There is a spur off
it which goes off to Kingston, Jamaica.

There is a structure of corruption around the cable in the upper
echelons of the Ministry of Communications and Information, which led to
the desertion of a high-up manager of ETECSA in Panama in 2012.

There was no news about ALBA1 until 4 June 2013, following the
government decision to open new navigation rooms. There is no doubt that
the famous cable clearly improved the connection speed.

Before that, in a five-star hotel like the Saratoga, where Beyoncé
stayed last year with her husband JayZ, the connection speed was slow
and expensive. At best it didn't get past 100Kb. And 2 hours of internet
cost a bit over $15.

From September 2014 on, things are going to change, according to
specialists I have spoken to. It could be that not many Cubans will be
enthusiastic about the new provision, on account of its irrational
pricing. But the ETECSA functionary referred to is optimistic and
considers that the opening up of cyberspace will bring more positives
than negatives.

Iván García

Photo: A Cuban surfs the net in one of the cyber cafes opened by ETECSA
all over the island in June 2013. Taken by El Universal.

Translated by GH

9 March 2014

Source: Cuba: Internet in Your Home from September / Ivan Garcia |
Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/cuba-internet-in-your-home-from-september-ivan-garcia/ Continue reading
Publicado el sábado, 03.15.14 Quema de pastos pudo desatar incendio forestal en Cuba AFP LA HABANA — Una quema de pastos desató presumiblemente el incendio que ha arrasado en ocho días más de 8,000 hectáreas de árboles, pastos y malezas en el oriente de Cuba, informó este sábado el Cuerpo de Guardabosques, subrayando que logró […] Continue reading
Half of the Cuban state-owned firms audited recently by the Comptroller General of the Republic (GGR) received unfavorable reviews, the government said Saturday. "Among the 281 firms audited this year, Continue reading
Cuban Fury Reviewer's rating: 4/10 Comedy, rated M, 98 minutes, opens Thursday Stars: Nick Frost, Rashida Jones, Ian McShane, Olivia Colman Director: James Griffiths Verdict: A shy man rediscovers Continue reading
QÐND - Saturday, March 15, 2014, 22:38 (GMT+7) PANO - Senior Lieutenant Generals Ngo Xuan Lich, Director of the General Department of Politics, and Nguyen Chi Vinh, Deputy Minister of National Defence, Continue reading
El coronel Benito Tena, jefe del Cuerpo de Guardabosques de Camagüey, dijo que "las próximas horas serán determinantes para extinguirlo definitivamente". Continue reading
Cuba will test next April a modern sugarcane harvester, which was designed by national experts and manufactured in conjunction with a company in the People's Republic China. Mechanical engineer Manuel Continue reading

El presidente de Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernández, dijo este sábado que su país normalizará totalmente sus vínculos diplomáticos con Venezuela y Cuba, informó EFE.

En un comunicado de la oficina de prensa del Ejecutivo hondureño, Hernández indicó que su Administración "trabaja en reactivar las relaciones, es una cuestión de pocas semanas para que ya estemos reinsertados totalmente ante toda la comunidad internacional".

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According to a spokesman for ETECSA, the only telecoms company in Cuba, they are going to start marketing internet in peoples’ homes, with ADSL included, from the first half of September. We don’t yet know what the price of the … Continue reading Continue reading
Viet Nam is halting its search in the East Sea for the missing plane of the Malaysia Airlines, but stands ready to do the work in other areas in its capacity if the Malaysian side requests, an official Continue reading
La bloguera cubana Yoani Sánchez, autora del blog Generación Y, anunció que su bitácora pasará a ser un medio de prensa. Continue reading
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The Workers Never Believed in "Their" 20th Congress / Orlando Freire Santana
Posted on March 15, 2014

HAVANA, Cuba. The 20th Congress of the ruling Cuba Workers Central
(CTC) has just concluded its sessions. Even though authorities
proclaimed that this had been a democratic meeting, what is true of
every workplace discussion of the main documents is that very few
workers expected anything good from the event. I could verify the
foregoing a day after the conclusion in conversations held with several

Alina is a worker in a dressmaking shop of the Ministry of Industries.
She told me that she did not bother to read newspapers or watch
television news during the days that the Congress was in session.
Overall, it was not going to answer her demand and that of the rest of
her companions: a salary increase.

Alina told me that in her workshop three systems of payment have been
applied, and none of them has served any purpose. They have not been
able to pay the wage stimulus because the company to which the workshop
is subordinate has breached the indicators that they call
macroeconomics, and no worker understands where they come from.

The day that they gave the pre-Congress meeting in her workshop, her
companions suggested that, since they never paid the stimulus, at least
they could increase the base salary. But the municipal CTC official said
that was impossible until the country's labor production and
productivity increased. "And of course I wasn't about to listen to the
same story now in the 20th Congress," concluded Alina.

Miguel Angel is a Bachelor in Economics. He does not much like that kind
of slogan that the government brandishes in the context of modernizing
the economic model, in the sense that planning prevails over the market.
What he likes least is that the CTC is not original and merely repeats
what the country's rulers say.

Like many, he was not aware of what happened in the chief worker
meeting. He did not need to be. Some days before, Mr. Ulises Guilarte de
Nacimiento, who presided over the Organizing Commission for the 20th
Congress, confirmed that the unions supported the economic strategy that
planning put in the foreground. "Well," says Miguel Angel, "I oppose
planning in Cuba. The government planners here, besides being
inefficient in their work, want to stick their noses into everything,
even in what must be produced and sold in a simple farmer's market."

And on passing near one area where some months before everything was
business due to the clothes that private workers were marketing and that
today languishes in loneliness, I stumbled on Yoandri, a young man who
had to turn in his license as a self-employed worker. He was one of the
first to agree to belong to the unions sponsored by the CTC. Today,
however, he assesses that decision as useless. "Bottom line, it was all
for nothing. When they closed my clothing business, the union did
nothing to defend me," he confessed.

He also said that his case could serve as a lesson to many other
self-employed workers who find themselves pressured by authorities to
join the unions. "The government wants to unionize them in order to
control them better, because here the union and the government are the
same thing. The rest is baloney," he concluded.

Ah, and the three knew beforehand that the fatso by the name of
Brazilian — as they call Ulises Guilarte de Nacimiento — was going to be
elected secretary general of the CTC. That was decided previously.

Cubanet, February 26, 2014, Orlando Freire Santana

Translated by mlk

Source: The Workers Never Believed in "Their" 20th Congress / Orlando
Freire Santana | Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/the-workers-never-believed-in-their-20th-congress-orlando-freire-santana/ Continue reading
The Last in History's Line / Angel Santiesteban
Posted on March 14, 2014
Cuba has always been the last in line in terms of positive results
compared to the rest of Latin America. By a wide margin we were the
last ones to abolish slavery, and also the last to achieve
decolonization from Spain.

After a half century of trying out a prosperous and honest republic, we
had a "revolution" that immediately stopped being such in order to turn
into the iron dictatorship that we currently suffer, exceeding half a
century of totalitarianism.

After Fidel Castro's arrival to power in 1959 began the tumultuous
period for Latin American countries in that failed effort to export the
revolutionary model. After the communist threat covered the rest of the
continent like an ominous shadow, the answer, also negative, as a
solution for moving away from Castro's Carribean Stalinism was the
establishment of more dictatorships that captured, tortured and
assassinated anyone who opposed them.

After years of governing, those dictatorships were surrendering power
because of social and international pressures.

We, as good Cubans, also will be the last to free ourselves of the
"monarchical" regime of the Castro brothers.

Angel Santiesteban-Prats

Lawton prison settlement. March 2014.

For Amnesty International to declare Cuban dissident Angel Santiesteban
a prisoner of conscience, please sign the petition here:

Source: The Last in History's Line / Angel Santiesteban | Translating
Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/the-last-in-historys-line-angel-santiesteban/ Continue reading
Casi la mitad de 281 empresas auditadas en Cuba recibió evaluación negativa lainformacion.com sábado, 15/03/14 – 01:22 Casi la mitad de las 281 entidades estatales auditadas en Cuba en una verificación efectuada en 2013 recibió evaluaciones desfavorables, según informó hoy la Contraloría General de la República al hacer balance anual de su actividad. La Habana, […] Continue reading
México, Cuba y Venezuela Hay muchas teorías sobre por qué México está alabando a la dictadura de Cuba y guardando silencio sobre la brutal represión del gobierno de Venezuela a las manifestaciones estudiantiles, pero creo que la más creíble puede resumirse en una sola palabra: miedo. Muchos analistas de la política exterior mexicana coinciden en […] Continue reading
Honduras normalizará vínculos diplomáticos con Venezuela y Cuba Sábado, 15 de marzo de 2014 El jueves pasado, Honduras y Ecuador restablecieron totalmente sus nexos diplomáticos. El presidente de Honduras, Juan Orlando Hernández, informó este viernes que su país normalizará sus vínculos diplomáticos con Venezuela y Cuba. Hernández indicó en un comunicado que su gobierno “trabaja […] Continue reading
Friday 21 March 2014 - Friday 21 March 2014 Venue: Robert Powell Theatre, University of Salford, and The Zombie Shack, Thirsty Scholar, Oxford Road, Manchester Event Type: Arts; Music Continue reading
El escritor cubano Antonio Orlando Rodríguez, autor de la novela “Chiquita” (Premio Alfaguara 2008), celebrará el próximo 26 de marzo en Miami 40 años de dedicación a la literatura, en un acto en el que presentará además su obra más reciente, “Concierto para escalera y orquesta”. Continue reading
CIBOLA COUNTY - There were 55 students from Mesa View, Milan, Mount Taylor, San Rafael Elementary Schools and students from Los Alamitos Middle School (LAMS) who competed in the annual Spanish Spelling Continue reading
En los últimos meses Andy García ha encabezado el elenco de varias películas, una serie de televisión y un cortometraje. Sin contar las tres producciones que aguardan por fecha de estreno. Pero su buena racha no lo hace dormirse en los laureles. Continue reading
HAVANA, Cuba.  The 20th Congress of the ruling Cuba Workers Central (CTC) has just concluded its sessions.  Even though authorities proclaimed that this had been a democratic meeting, what is true of every workplace discussion of the main documents is … Continue reading Continue reading