A las voces que claman por más autonomía para los atletas, el Gobierno acaba de responderles con un claro mensaje. “Para acceder a un contrato [en el extranjero] el deportista” debe tener “un adecuado comportamiento social”, dijo a la prensa Ramiro Domínguez, director jurídico del Instituto Nacional de Deportes, Educación Física y Recreación (INDER).
La declaración del funcionario vino acompañada de las cifras de atletas residentes en la Isla que lograron un contrato en otros países a través de la entidad estatal. Al cierre del pasado año se habían firmado 61 acuerdos en diferentes disciplinas, y hay “entre 200 y 300 deportistas insertados de manera temporal en torneos, bases de entrenamiento o ligas en el exterior”, puntualizó.
Domínguez explicó que para alcanzar uno de estos contratos el atleta debe tener también “buenos resultados docentes y deportivos, ser de interés para su Federación nacional y recibir la autorización del país donde actuaría”.[[QUOTE:Para alcanzar un contrato en el extranjero el atleta debe tener también “buenos resultados docentes y deportivos, ser de interés para su Federación nacional y recibir la autorización del país donde actuaría”]]El INDER evalúa “las condiciones de vida del atleta en el club” donde jugará, “el derecho de representar a Cuba cuando se le solicite y su seguridad”, además de una “segunda opinión médica en caso de lesión o molestia”, aseguró.
El funcionario comentó que se estudia implementar “una compensación económica” que iría a manos del Estado por el concepto de “formación” y que “puede ser un monto económico fijo o el equivalente al 20% del contrato en cuestión”.
Aclaró que en el caso del béisbol el dinero que la Federación recaude por ese camino no es para “satisfacer caprichos personales, sino destinado a solucionar problemas de la propia disciplina”.
“Una de nuestras principales metas es evitar que el atleta sea tratado como mercancía”, y “cada atleta contratado sale de Cuba con un examen médico riguroso, una prueba antidopaje y consciente de sus obligaciones contractuales y tributarias, en algunos casos acompañados por familiares”, puntualizó Domínguez.
El granmense Alfredo Despaigne es el ejemplo emblemático de deportista contratado por un club extranjero. El pelotero logró un contrato millonario con el club japonés Fukuoka Halcones de Softbank, y según Domínguez no tiene que pagar a la Federación Cubana de Béisbol, ni al INDER.
“Una vez que regrese al país, el deportista cumplirá con las obligaciones tributarias, como todos los ciudadanos cubanos que reciben ingresos en el exterior”, había adelantado Domínguez en una declaración anterior.
Carlos Alberto Montaner
Steve King, congresista republicano de Ohio, tuiteó: “No podemos reconstruir nuestra civilización con los hijos de otros países”. A lo que le respondieron, contrariados, dos congresistas cubanoamericanos, también republicanos, Carlos Curbelo e Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. Ileana precisó: “la diversidad es nuestra fuerza”. La polémica fue reflejada en El Nuevo Herald.
Ahí está el núcleo de un debate permanente: la naturaleza humana, es decir, animal, reivindicada por King, frente a la racionalidad artificial surgida en el curso de nuestra civilización. Es la uniformidad contra la diversidad. Son los nexos genéticos frente a las relaciones fundadas en el derecho. Es la lógica de la raza, de la sangre, de Hitler, versus la de los derechos naturales y, si se quiere, la de la tradición judeo-estoica-cristiana.
[[QUOTE:La consigna de hacer “otra vez grande a Estados Unidos” no es sólo una cuestión económica o industrial. Es también que el país sea de nuevo, esencialmente, blanco, norte-europeo y uniformemente angloparlante]]
El racismo, es cierto, aumenta notablemente en el mundo. Se demuestra en los crecientes episodios de antisemitismo. Ocurre en Francia, en Holanda, en España, en Italia. La consigna de hacer “otra vez grande a Estados Unidos” no es sólo una cuestión económica o industrial. Es también que el país sea de nuevo, esencialmente, blanco, norte-europeo y uniformemente angloparlante, como le gustaría al congresista Steve King.
Así era la clase dirigente norteamericana cuando se fundó la República a fines del siglo XVIII, mítica época dorada en la que se dieron cita los Padres Fundadores. Así fue hasta que llegó a la Casa Blanca un señor afro-anglo-americano llamado Barack Hussein Obama, el presidente número 44 de la nación.
Hoy tal vez caben en esa definición estrecha de Estados Unidos, pero menos, los judeoamericanos, los italoamericanos, los grecoamericanos, y el resto de las adherencias que han inmigrado en masa a Estados Unidos en los últimos 150 años, pero el núcleo duro de la identidad estadounidense, el que genera el estereotipo más enérgico, es el mítico anglosajón ilusionado con la victoria de Donald Trump, como le ocurre al congresista Steve King, descendiente de irlandeses, alemanes y galeses.
El racismo es un rasgo inherente a la naturaleza humana. Los niños nacen sin experimentarlo, y así evolucionan durante los primeros años de vida, hasta que, paulatinamente, van adquiriendo una identidad. Ésa es la madre del cordero. Tan pronto se perfila y afianza el yo comienza el impulso ciego por segregar o liquidar al otro, al diferente, al que realmente no forma parte del grupo ni comparte esa identidad primaria.
La identidad nos hace racistas porque vamos dejando de ser individuos en abstracto para formar parte de una tribu que se identifica por el color de la piel, el tipo de cabello, la forma de los ojos, el idioma que utilizamos, la entonación con que lo hablamos, la gesticulación que empleamos, las creencias religiosas, la mitología o relatos compartidos, y otros mil detalles que van formando y conformando a los miembros del grupo.
El antropólogo José Antonio Jáuregui, un catedrático especialmente inteligente, intuía que ese comportamiento de acercamiento “identitario” formaba parte de una estrategia natural de la especie para poder prevalecer en el complejo y agresivo curso de la evolución.
Las personas integradas en una tribu tienen más posibilidades de reproducirse y entregar sus genes a sus descendientes. Para lograrlo, el cerebro nos guía en la dirección debida por medio de los neurotransmisores con estímulos placenteros o dolorosos. Somos, decía Jáuregui, “esclavos de nuestros cerebros’.
El nacionalismo y el fanatismo deportivo –casi siempre hermanados– serían una expresión de este fenómeno. (Hace pocas fechas, cuando los catalanes ganaron un improbable partido de fútbol con cinco goles, los sismógrafos de Barcelona registraron el triunfo con un punto en la escala de Richter por los saltos de alegría que dieron al unísono decenas de miles de barceloneses felices, súbitamente unificados por el paroxismo provocado por la victoria del equipo local).[[QUOTE:¿Cómo pudo ganar la presidencia un mestizo con nombre árabe y orígenes parcialmente africanos si las sociedades permanecen atadas por esos lazos antiguos e invisibles?]]
¿Cómo pudo ganar la presidencia un mestizo con nombre árabe y orígenes parcialmente africanos si las sociedades permanecen atadas por esos lazos antiguos e invisibles? Porque, al menos provisionalmente, había triunfado la concepción republicana (en el buen sentido de la palabra) de la especie: todos somos iguales ante la ley. Fue el triunfo del republicanismo, un bendito artificio basado en la hermosa superstición de que es el acatamiento de la Constitución lo que hace estadounidenses a los “americanos”.
En eso estamos. Luchando contra un extendido pasado que se pierde en el tiempo para que las personas no sean prejuzgadas por el color de la piel, los dioses en los que creen, los deseos sexuales que los dominan y el resto de los elementos que constituyen la identidad.
Eventualmente se logrará y habremos desterrado el racismo para siempre. Pero necesitamos mucho tiempo para que la razón gane ese combate. Al fin y al cabo fuimos animales millones de años y sólo hace 25 siglos que Zenón el Estoico, un extranjero pelirrojo, pequeño y patizambo, se atrevió a decir en Atenas que las personas tenían derechos más allá del parentesco y del sitio de nacimiento. Apenas un rato.
El timplista Josele del Pino, el poeta y repentista Eduardo Duque y las cantantes cubanas de origen canario Ivette Cepeda o Niurka Reyes figuran en el cartel del festival La Huella de España, que esta edición se dedicará a Canarias, con fuertes lazos familiares y culturales con Cuba, reporta EFE.Continue reading
El régimen estaría intentando desactivar el proyecto humanitario Capitán Tondique —que cada semana ofrece una comida a personas desamparadas—, visitando a sus beneficiarios para atemorizarlos, denunciaron a DIARIO DE CUBA Caridad Burunate y Francisco Rangel, dos de los gestores de la iniciativa.Continue reading
Capacity" / 14ymedio
14ymedio, Havana, 17 March 2017 – Journalist Henry Constantin, director
of La Hora de Cuba (Cuba Hour) magazine and regional vice president of
the Inter American Press Association (IAPA), was formally charged Friday
with the crime of "usurpation of legal capacity," he told 14ymedio.
Constantin received a subpoena for the third Police Station in the city
of Camagüey where First Lieutenant Pacheco Seagnamillo informed him that
he was accused of conducting interviews on the public right-of-way in
which he "misrepresented reality."
The police did not mention the names of potential complainants, but
emphasized that he was not "empowered" to perform a reporter's job.
The journalist could be prosecuted for violating Article 149 of the
Penal Code which punishes whomever "performs acts of a profession for
the exercise of which he is not properly qualified." The sentence
contemplates the "deprivation of liberty from three months to a year or
a fine of 100 to 300 shares* or both." The official told him that the
independent journalist Sol García Basulto, correspondent of this
newspaper, will also be prosecuted for the same crime.
In the next 60 days, Constantin will be subject to a precautionary
measure yet to be detailed but at the moment he cannot leave the
city. The reporter will not be able to attend an exhibition in Los
Angeles, about the current situation of journalists on the island, nor
the subsequent meeting of the IAPA in Guatemala.
Constantín was named last December as IAPA's regional vice president for
Cuba and pledged to spread "the reality of journalism" on the
island. The organization has issued several press releases condemning
the harassment and arrests of those who have been victims of attacks in
recent weeks. It has urged the Cuban government to guarantee freedom of
the press and expression throughout the country.
*Translator's note: Cuban law sets fines based on "shares"; the value of
a share is set separately and in this way can be changed, over time,
without having to amend all of the laws that reference fines as a penalty.
Source: Police Accuse Journalist Henry Constantin Of "Usurpation Of
Legal Capacity" / 14ymedio – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/police-accuse-journalist-henry-constantin-of-usurpation-of-legal-capacity-14ymedio/ Continue reading
/ Juan Juan Almeida
Juan Juan Almeida, 15 March 2017 — The Cuban government is preparing an
insightful cyber-offensive and to do so plans to increase the army of
cyber-combatants where, in addition to the well-known guerrillas of
cyberspace — that is the students at the University of Information
Sciences and the pro-government bloggers — they will add to this new
attack all the professionals and staff of the health services. Doctors,
specialists, graduates, nurses, health technicians, radiologists,
physiotherapists and the rest of the staff that deals with all types of
health services and management inside and outside of Cuba.
To this end, they have issued a resolution dated January 31 and signed
by Alfredo Rodriguez Dias, Director of Information Technology and
Communications of the Cuban Ministry of Public Health (MINSAP).
In this document you can read, and I quote:
"At present, the use and presence of social networks has become a
fundamental factor in the process of socialization, exchange and
dissemination of our achievements, our results. Also it has become a
symbol of belonging and sites where people and businesses share
interests in common such as the news, images, and music among others.
"It is a new space of combat, where the spreading of news happens at
great speed with the reach and impact that other means do not have.
"A global university where information is a decisive recourse in the
political struggle, and becomes a matter of national security and it is
necessary that to achieve a competitive advantage in these spaces to
give visibility and credibility to our points of view and our values.
"They constitute privileged channels for the information offensive,
counterattack campaigns and to construct alternatives for political
expansion and to offer a unprecedented opportunity to activate and
multiply the power of the Revolution.
"It is the mission of the activists and cyber combatants to be alert to
the spread of news that could affect the Revolution and others that lie
about it and denigrate it, so it is NOT prohibited to visit these
counterrevolutionary sites, niches where the opportunists are entrenched
to wage battle in the Social Networks.
"It is good to know what they are saying, how they think and how the
enemy acts in order to be able to combat it. We know that lies are
posted there; but there are also truths and we have to know their
weaknesses to be able to fight them and where we still have failures. We
do not have to fear knowing where we have cancer to be able to fight and
The document in question includes a list of objectives that are listed
under the honorable title of cyber-enemies, and there we find 14ymedio,
Cubaenmiami, El Nuevo Herald, Caféfuerte.com, yusnaby.com, Cubanet,
Martinoticias y Diariodecuba; and an extensive list of electronic
addresses. Almost all well-known.
All this framework, this sniffing around the networks, is a common
practice, so it should come as no surprise. The subversive if the maneuver.
Source: Cuba: Directives for Cyber-offensive from the Ministry of Public
Health / Juan Juan Almeida – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/cuba-directives-for-cyber-offensive-from-the-ministry-of-public-health-juan-juan-almeida/ Continue reading
Juan Juan Almeida, 4 March 2017 — Another crazy initiative…a bit
picturesque, perhaps interesting, but totally absurd. Representatives of
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) arrive at the José
Martí Airport in Havana with the express intention of combatting animal
abuse and creating vegetarian habits on the Island.
The idea of watching young activists dressed in lettuce leaves attached
to green bikinis makes for an attractive attention-getter–and it
surprisingly reveals the enormous ignorance of many about Cuban history,
politics, culture, laws, and society.
Perhaps the authorities, as part of a "considered" neo-diplomacy, allows
these young ladies to promenade with gossamer lightness through Old
Havana, dispensing souvenirs, feeding homeless dogs, or handing out
introductory pamphlets on vegetarianism with recipes for beans and rice.
But there exists, and it is good to know this, (1) a cautionary,
provincial ordinance that more or less says the following: Anyone who
publicly goes around the Cuban capital dressed in swimwear, even when we
all know that it is a coastal city, commits a violation and could be fined.
Regarding beef, somebody should explain to the PETA activists that, ever
since July 12, 1963–creation date of the sadly famous OFICODAS (Offices
of Food Control and Distribution)–(2) Cubans have been forced to
exchange beef for chicken, 'hotdogs' and/or fish [see (4) below, there
is no fish], depending on which series is listed on the ration booklet.
In the greatest of the Greater Antilles, (3) there is as much beef
consumed as in India, where cows are considered sacred. And, besides the
facts that Cuba is (4) the only island in the world whose diet does not
feature fish and that Cubans born in that time euphemistically called
the Special Period (5) grew up without a culture of beef consumption,
(6) one pound of vegetables, in the agricultural market, competes with
pork in terms of price.
It would be useful to know who will offer lettuce to these young
lovelies because, even though Raúl Castro in 2008 started leasing
out 1.7 hectares of land in usufruct for agricultural use, (7) Cuba
still imports more than 63% of the food it consumes and the (8) fresh
lettuce offered in the restaurants of tourist hotels is not cultivated
on the Island.
A misguided plan which, save for the level of risk, is very similar to
that of the Bolivian President Evo Morales Ayma–who even knowing the
fate of his ex-comrade and mentor, the Venezuelan Hugo Chávez–still
decided to travel to Havana this past 1 March to receive urgent medical
care in Cuba.
The principal enemy of people who waste time creating publicity stunts
is common sense. Now is the time for momentum, determination, and
awareness-raising about real matters, such as the disturbing rise in
the crime rate, gender-based violence, and the innumerable cases of
domestic violence. To name just a notable few.
Translated by Alicia Barraqué Ellison
Source: Eight Truths About Cuba That the Bikini-Clad Girls Don't Know /
Juan Juan Almeida – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/eight-truths-about-cuba-that-the-bikini-clad-girls-dont-know-juan-juan-almeida/ Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 16 March 2017 – Manolito spends his
afternoons chasing buses to grab onto as he rides down the street on his
skateboard, or rehearsing new stunts. The young man left school a couple
of years ago and every day he spends fewer hours in the house in La
Timba where he lived with his mother, his grandmother and his three
brothers. Now, a few yards from where he lives, there is a new skate park.
An immense site, closed to the public for decades, was opened for
skateboarding on Paseo Street and 31st, very close to the Plaza of the
Revolution. With the opening of the new facility they no longer have to
watch jealously as other boys do tricks on their boards. News of the
opening of the new park spread rapidly among fans of the sport, who have
always had to try to find their own place to skate, despite the prejudices.
This urban sport has gained followers in Cuba in recent years and also
the attention of filmmakers, musicians and supportive friends. For
years, the organizations Cuba Skate, based in Washington DC, has been
sending materials to the island for these restless boys, including
boards and spare skates. The lack of material is just one of the
problems they face. So far the main "squeaky wheel" is that the urban
sport lacks places where it can be practiced, leaving them only the
plazas and other public spaces where they are definitely not welcomed by
other users of the space.
Source: New Skate Park Opens in Havana, 14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez –
Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/new-skate-park-opens-in-havana-14ymedio-marcelo-hernandez/ Continue reading
The United States / 14ymedio, Mario Penton
14ymedio, Mario Penton, Miami, 16 March 2017 — A call from Cuba finally
let Yandry Perez relax. His aunt had alerted him through an interrupted
phone call from the north of Villa Clara, that for two days the
whereabouts of his mother and his two younger brothers had been unknown.
Organized in absolute secrecy to facilitate their flight, fifty Cubans
escaped last weekend in speedboats to Florida, even though they knew
they were no longer welcome there.
"For days we have been waiting for news, in complete uncertainty," says
Perez, who two years ago crossed seven international borders to seek
refuge under the wet foot/dry foot policy, cancelled in the last days of
President Obama's term.
"When we heard the news that they had caught two boats with Cubans, we
breathed a sign of relief," he adds.
Last Sunday, a 40-foot speedboat was intercepted by an operations team
from the US Customs and Border Protection. It had more than 30 migrants
His mother, Marlenes Romero Leon, 47, along with his brothers Yusdiel
and Kevin, 20 and 11 respectively, boarded the speedboat as a last
option to join the rest of the family that was in the south Florida, in
a reunification process that was initiated some years earlier but was
frustrated when Romero was denied a visa to travel to the Unites States
to reunite with the father of her children.
"On television I was able to see one of my brothers, so I know they are
being detained," says Perez, who only wants to know where his family is
so he can hire an attorney to take the case.
"We believe that can ask for political asylum. On more they one occasion
they arrested my mother [in Cuba]. They didn't even let her get to beach
so she couldn't escape Cuba," he adds.
"My brother is a child, at least they should let us take care of him,"
Last Sunday, a 40-foot speedboat was intercepted by an operations team
from US Customs and Border Protection. There were more than 30 migrants
on board, five of them ran off into crocodile filled mangrove swamps to
escape the authorities but they were caught.
A few hours earlier a small boat with seven Cubans on board was
intercepted at Blackpoint Park and Marina, south of Miami-Dade. Another
boat with 21 migrants was detained in the vicinity of Cayo Largo.
"We can not give any information about the case or those involved
because it corresponds to an open investigation," an official with the
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) said.
Authorities are investigating the boat operators who transported the
Cubans from the island. If it is proved that they are human traffickers
they could face severely punished charges in the United States.
Since the press announced the arrival of the Cuban migrants, Julio
Infante has not stopped seeking the whereabouts of his father-in-law,
who allegedly traveled on one of those boats.
"I've gone to several places but they always tell me that they cannot
give out information. We're desperate because we do not even know if
he's alive," he says.
The missing man is Wilber Hechavarría, 46, who left Cuba on Monday. The
relatives were supposed to call to his daughter, Yoandra, who was
waiting for the news.
"I wanted to be with her and leave Cuba. She always wanted to leave the
country because people there have to steal to eat," says Infante.
"My wife came from Guatemala a year ago crossing borders. She arrived
pregnant, we already have a family and we wanted her dad to be with us
too," he adds.
Although the migrants knew of the ending of the wet foot/dry foot
policy, they ventured to cross the Florida Straits, confident that they
would find some way to legalize their situation later in the United States.
For Infante, it's all the same that the policy that facilitated the
entry of Cubans to the United States is over.
"In the end, I would look for some way to legalize or be undocumented,
but that will always be better than staying in Cuba," he says.
Immigration attorney Wilfredo Allen comments that when Cuban rafters
arrive in US territory and do not surrender to immigration authorities,
not only will they not be eligible for the Cuban Adjustment Act after
staying in the country for a year, but they will not be able to obtain
legal status even by marrying residents or citizens.
"When a rafter or any undocumented Cuban migrant arrives in the United
States, he is obliged to appear before the authorities for processing.
The migrant can apply for political asylum if he is persecuted and fears
to return to Cuba," says Allen.
"If your case is credible you have the right to fight for asylum before
a judge and, if granted, you could then adjust your situation through
the Cuban Adjustment Act.
"If migrants who illegally entered the United States do not present
themselves to the authorities, they remain undocumented and it is very
difficult for them to legalize their status later. They are subject to
immediate deportation," he adds.
Source: Total Uncertainty Among Families Of Cuban 'Rafters' Recently
Arrived In The United States / 14ymedio, Mario Penton – Translating Cuba
http://translatingcuba.com/total-uncertainty-among-families-of-cuban-rafters-recently-arrived-in-the-united-states-14ymedio-mario-penton/ Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 16 March 2017 — The Cuban Government will offer to
Colombia one thousand scholarships to study medicine on the Island, of
which 500 will go to former FARC guerrillas and another 500 to civilians
without ties with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.
The proposal was presented by the Cuban ambassador in Colombia, José
Luis Ponce Caballero, to Iván Márquez and to the Commission for
implementation, monitoring, verification, and resolution of differences
of the Final Peace Agreement (CSVR). It is a contribution to the peace
process and to the post-conflict phase.
The 1,000 grants will be distributed over five years and the first
course will begin this coming September. Each year 100 grants will be
awarded to the Government and 100 to the FARC for its management.
"The embassy of the Republic of Cuba will deliver to the Government of
Colombia and the FARC a document detailing the offer, which is being
prepared by the Cuban authorities," Ponce said.
Iván Márquez, a former FARC guerrilla and leader of the peace process on
the part of the guerrillas, thanked the Cuban government for the
gesture. "To Army General Raúl Castro, our gratitude for filling
Colombia with his love and solidarity He supports peace and offers us
doctors," he said.
The total price for a foreigner without a scholarship who wants to study
medicine on the island is about $85,000 for six years of study.
Translator's note: Foreigners studying medicine in Cuba attend the Latin
American School of Medicine, which was established specifically to
educate foreigners separately from Cubans.
Source: Cuba Will Pay For 500 Former FARC Guerillas To Study Medicine /
14ymedio – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/cuba-will-pay-for-500-former-farc-guerillas-to-study-medicine-14ymedio/ Continue reading
Fernando Damaso, 17 March 2017 — According to his brother [Raul Castro],
later endorsed by the docile National Assembly of People's Power, the
"historic leader" [Fidel Castro] ordered that there would be no public
establishment, street, avenue, park or building named after him, nor any
monuments erected to him.
At first glance it seems a gesture of humility and modesty at the end of
his life after a lifelong display of a overwhelming ego. However, there
was no order with regards to the media, perhaps betting he would stay
alive in them.
At least that is what emerges from the monumental and interminable media
campaign about his figure and thinking, initiated before his death and
continuing "in crescendo" to the present. Spectacles of all type,
conferences, festivals, dances, songs, documentaries, expositions, and
every kind of thing in that sphere, dedicated to him, offer reliable proof.
Should there be any doubt, the Book Fair, which is now touring the
provinces, has surpassed all signs of servility with a sick personality
cult; colloquia, conversations, workshops, expositions and much more,
all in his honor and, in addition, the presentation by different Cuban
publishers of 24 titles by him and about him, including three comic
books about his life. No world personality, including Cervantes and
Shakespeare, has had so many books on the stands of the fair, in
addition to the official presentations each and every one of which is
filled with the usual words of praise.
A close friend told me, "We are ruled by a dead man." It appears he is
Source: It Appears He Is Right / Fernando Dámaso – Translating Cuba -
http://translatingcuba.com/it-appears-he-is-right-fernando-dmaso/ Continue reading
Keila, un ama de casa venezolana que vive en Trujillo (oeste), resolvió la escasez de harina de maíz precocido en su hogar mediante un trueque que concretó vía internet y por el que ofreció a cambio una crema dental, un artículo cuyo precio es inferior al de la harina pero que está aún más escaso en el país, reporta EFE.
Como Keila, miles de personas se han afiliado a grupos creados en la red social Facebook para conseguir, por compra o intercambio, los alimentos y las medicinas que escasean en la nación petrolera en medio de una severa crisis económica.Continue reading
"So when are you going to Cuba?"
I get that a lot, maybe once a week. It's understandable, since I am a
home-grown Cubano, at least until I was almost 5 years old. That's when
my parents, in an act of ultimate sacrifice, left everything behind
except their dignity and a sense of purpose to escape Fidel Castro's thumb.
It's the Cuban-American narrative. We'll fast-forward through all the
tears and pain and hardships to get to 2017, when we are dancing on
Fidel's grave and Cuba is now an alluring tropical paradise. Grab some
sunscreen, book a flight or cruise, and order a mojito with a side of
Everybody is Havana Daydreamin'!
Not I. I don't begrudge anyone who wants to go. It is a beautiful place,
with a time-machine vibe. Hop on a '57 Chevy and feel the ocean breeze
as you cruise down el Malecón.
Cuba still stands still in so many ways. The "normalization" of Cuba
under the Obama administration has unlocked the keys to free commerce,
but not the chains that bind dissidents and others under Cuba's
People still rot and die in prisons. Members of the dissident group
Ladies in White still get pummeled by cops and arrested.
Just last month, Cuban dissident Hamell Santiago Mas Hernandez died in
prison. Cuban officials called it a "heart attack," a euphemism for when
a prisoner develops kidney failure, loses 35 pounds and rots away in a cell.
The U.S. does business with a number of unsavory nations, including
China, but the difference with Cuba is that there are a lot of
Cuban-Americans taking notes. They are passionate hall monitors who
don't understand why the Obama administration didn't squeeze Cuba on the
human-rights issue in return for the perks of tourism and groovy
Will things change under the Trump administration? Check your Twitter
feed for updates from 45. I suspect there will be more pushback, given
this snippet from the confirmation hearings for Secretary of State Rex
"Our recent engagement with the government of Cuba was not accompanied
by any significant concessions on human rights," he said. "We have not
held them accountable for their conduct. Their leaders received much
while their people received little. That serves neither the interest of
Cubans or Americans."
He has a point. The purpose of negotiating is to get something in
return, not just give away stuff.
But there's another dynamic in play here, too, that does not bode well
for Cuban tourism. The novelty is wearing off.
Silver Airways recently announced that it will scrap its service to Cuba
next month, citing low demand and competition from other airlines.
Frontier Airlines will cease its daily flight to Havana from Miami in
June. American Airlines and JetBlue have also scaled back their number
Raúl Castro and his compadres are finding out that capitalism is driven
by market factors, and Cuba is still running the con trying to lure all
The infrastructure is a little shaky, given the impact of the embargo
and other economic factors. Hotel reviews on TripAdvisor include handy
tips like "Don't forget to bring and 'USE' bug repellent!!" and "I guess
you get what you pay for."
Restrictions abound: There are 12 "authorized types" of travel to Cuba,
including educational, religious and journalistic purposes. And here's
another fun fact from the U.S. embassy in Havana:
"The Government of Cuba does not recognize the U.S. nationality of U.S.
citizens who are Cuban-born or are the children of Cuban parents."
That would be somebody like me. Cuba keeps meticulous notes on
journalists writing about the regime, and I probably would fill all the
checkmarks as an "enemy of the state." Without any rights as a
naturalized American citizen.
I'm afraid there will be no Havana Daydreamin' for me.
I prefer to visit my homeland one day free of restrictions. I want to
take in the ocean breeze from el Malecón without a cop asking for my
Cuban passport. I want to walk freely along the streets, without fear of
somebody monitoring my footsteps.
You don't have to be in prison to wear shackles. You just can't see them
when you disembark the cruise ship or an airplane.
firstname.lastname@example.org Read George Diaz's blog at
Source: Cuba capitalism blinds tourists from Communist reality -
Baltimore Sun -
http://www.baltimoresun.com/os-ed-cuba-human-rights-not-improving-george-diaz-20170317-story.html Continue reading
by Phil Davies Mar 17th 2017, 11:47
Carnival Cruise Line has won approval to sail to Cuba with Havana
featuring on itineraries from June.
Overnight calls to the island's capital will be added to selected
Carnival Paradise voyages from Tampa.
Havana will be included on 12 four- and five-day cruises from June 29 by
the 2,052-passenger ship.
The visits to Havana comply with regulations of the US Department of
Treasury that permit travel operators to transport approved travellers
to Cuba to engage in activities as defined by the US Department of
Commerce, Office of Foreign Assets Control.
The move follows parent company Carnival Corporation's 'social impact'
brand Fathom starting cruises from Miami to Cuba last year using
revamped P&O Cruises small ship Adonia.
The Fathom ship is being returned to the UK line ahead of the summer
season with the brand being used instead for selected tours across
various of the parent company's cruise brands.
Carnival Cruise Line president, Christine Duffy, said: "Cuba is an
island jewel unique from anywhere else in the Caribbean and we are
thrilled to have this rare opportunity to take our guests to this
"The opportunity to visit Havana, combined with the fun, relaxed
ambiance and wide variety of amenities and features offered on Carnival
Paradise, will make for a truly one-of-a-kind vacation experience."
Source: Carnival Cruise Line to start Cuba calls | Travel Weekly -
http://www.travelweekly.co.uk/articles/275155/carnival-cruise-line-to-start-cuba-calls Continue reading
El régimen busca condenar por presunta "usurpación de capacidad legal" al periodista independiente Henry Constantín Ferreiro, director de la revista La Hora de Cuba y vicepresidente regional para la Isla de la Sociedad Interamericana de Prensa (SIP), confirmó él mismo a este diario.Continue reading