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October 2017
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Regina Coyula (Report from the Ooni Team) — Last May, members of the Open Observatory of the Network Interference Project (Ooni), traveled to Cuba and performed a series of tests measuring the performance of the internet at eight connection points in Havana, Santa Clara and Santiago de Cuba, with the goal of measuring the censorship … Continue reading "Measuring Internet Censorship in Cuba / Regina Coyula" Continue reading

For two centuries we Latin Americans have viewed the United States as a mixture of an imperial superpower that threatens us, and the kind of prosperous and open society we envy.

In politics, we learned to hate the CIA, but to admire the civil rights movement; we criticize the legacy of Bush, but we celebrate that of Obama. Meanwhile, the most radical have supported an anti-imperialism that refuses to acknowledge changes over time in neighboring behemoth.

However, we are hardly as wary when it comes to the presence and agenda of other powers. Paradoxically, these powers – whose history, culture and political regimes are very foreign to our bicentennial republicanism, democratic progressivism and Latin American social movements – are very active in the region today.

China, with its powerful mix of capital investment, offers of credit, and the massive purchasing of commodities, is banking on a slow and steady advance.

Russia, incapable of competing with China's burgeoning power, turns to technical/military collaboration and bilateral geopolitical alliances;: and, in the midst of all this, strategies and tactics inherited from the KGB seem to be taking on new life.

The reappearance in Latin American forums and publications of Nikolai Leónov, the veteran agent who recruited Raúl Castro in the land of the Aztecs, years before the revolutionary triumph, is eyebrow-raising. This is the man who trained Nicaragua's FSLN to carry out works of sabotage on the Mexican-American border. And who in Latin America implemented Yuri Andropov's strategy to discredit (through operations of psychological warfare and propaganda) and to beat back (through the triumph of allied regimes) the United States throughout the Third World, to crown its global defeat in the Cold War. The same Leonov who two years ago wrote the biography of the current Cuban president, packed with Leninist lexicon and a rejection of liberal democracy.

Also making a comeback are events organized by regional social science institutions and their Russian counterparts, affiliated with the Kremlin, such as diplomatic, economic and history academies, featuring ideologues and apparatchiks from the Soviet era.

Moscow's media network, including outlets like RT and Sputnik World, has become a source of information and voice for intellectuals backing Latin American populism and anti-imperialism. These are the same figures calling for the necessary expansion of democracy under their neoliberal governments, but who remain silent regarding manifestations of social conservatism and political authoritarianism and imperialism under Putin.

Latin America needs to forge alliances in a complex and convulsive world, in which a half-millennium of western global primacy seems to be giving way to a burgeoning Asia. But doing so by banking on extracontinental autocracies will not bring about greater social equity or respect for human rights.

This is not a clash of civilizations, with culture and faith as unshakable pillars. Rather, the problem is more conventional. We live under regimes where it is possible to oppose the government and, by peaceful means, reform the state. It is a matter of choosing whether we will ally ourselves with powers where the regime, state and government are all one and the same, and an oppressive one, alien and hostile to our idea and experience as citizens; or count on other satraps, liberally supporting their Latin American allies, to get rid of our oligarchs.


This article originally appeared in the Mexican newspaper La Razón. It is published here with the author's permission.

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14ymedio, Miami, 12 October 2017 – On Tuesday, President Donald Trump nominated the Cuban-American Yleem Poblete the a position as assistant secretary of state, according to a statement from the White House. Poblete is an expert in foreign policy and national security who worked for nearly two decades for the United States House of Representatives Committee on … Continue reading "Trump Names Cuban American For Job In His Government" Continue reading
Ivan Garcia,25 September 2017 — If you want to go to the house of the 58-year-old dissident lawyer, Julio Ferrer Tamayo, the busy Esquina de Tejas, which is ten minutes by car from central Havana, can do as a reference point. Four important city streets meet at the famous corner; Monte, Infanta, Calzadas de Cerro, … Continue reading "Interview with Julio Ferrer Tamayo, Independent Cuban Lawyer / Iván García" Continue reading
Ivan Garcia, 6 October 2017 — On Friday, 29 September, a light intermittent drizzle and overcast sky lent a mournful touch to the area around the United States Embassy in Havana. The six-story building with tinted glass and stone-clad facade, where every morning hundreds of people line up for consular appointments and dozens of dissidents … Continue reading "What Cubans Say About the Partial Closure of the US Embassy / Iván García" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 7 October 2017 — Cuban dissident Darsi Ferret, who has lived in the United States since 2012, was found dead Saturday in West Palm Beach, as confirmed to 14ymedio by his colleagues and family. Ferret, 47, a doctor, was at a local television station planning to launch in that Florida city when he died in … Continue reading "Darsi Ferret Dies in Miami" Continue reading
14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar, Havana, 5 October 2017 — Half a century after the death of Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara, the official narrative of what happened on October 9, 1967 in La Higuera, Bolivia has significantly changed. After repeating for decades that Che was murdered in a school in that South American country, the Communist Party’s propaganda media, and in … Continue reading "Crime or Combat?: The Death of Che" Continue reading
Gaza City, October 5 (RHC)-- The Israeli military has forcibly sealed off the Israeli-occupied West Bank and besieged Gaza Strip for the next 11 days, amid the Jewish harvest holiday of Sukkot.  Human rights groups say the border closures are illegal … Continue reading
14ymedio, Luz Escobar, Havana, 1 October 2017 — To avoid losing his sanity, Daniel Llorente sweeps the floor of the psychiatric hospital in Havana with a broom. Llorente trained in automotive mechanics in East Germany, and five months ago the activist was arrested while waving the American flag in the May Day parade in the … Continue reading "“The Man With the Flag” Marks Five Months Detention" Continue reading
… ' safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… diplomats’ safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 29 September 2017 — In a country like Cuba, where regional conflicts don’t surpass the resounding insults during a ball game, secessionism sounds like a distant subject. However, the ruling party has not hesitated for more than half a century to support annexation or separatism efforts in other nations based on ideological … Continue reading "Two Referendums, Different Perspectives" Continue reading
… ' safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… ' safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… diplomats’ safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… ' safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… diplomats’ safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… ' safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… ' safety in Havana and discussions with the Cuban government, which has … traveling and doing business with Cuba unless Havana stopped repressing human rights … . Additional Cuban security guards were stationed in the neighborhoods in Havana where … Continue reading
… read, that was read by Cuba's ambassador to the … . The nations, among whom are Cuba, China, Bolivia, Russia, Iraq, Syria … Continue reading
14ymedio, Mario Penton, Miami, 22 September 2017 — Carlos Iván González arrived in Florida in 1980, during the Mariel Boatlift exodus, barely 14 years old. Now, at age 50 and after establishing a family in the United States, deportation is hanging over his head. In 2012, he was sentenced by a state judge to five years in … Continue reading "A ‘Marielito’ Will Be Deported After His Release From Prison After 37 Years In The US" Continue reading
… - The United States and Cuba held the sixth Bilateral Commission … the U.S. Embassy in Havana. The United States reiterated its … U.S. Embassy community in Havana and the urgent need to … the United States and the Cuban people, including human rights; implementation … Continue reading

La organización de derechos humanos Human Rights Watch (HRW) instó este miércoles a Naciones Unidas a presionar a Corea del Norte para que prevenga e investigue los abusos sexuales a menores, unos delitos que, según el régimen de Pyongyang, no se cometen en el país, reporta EFE.

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14ymedio, Carlos Alberto Montaner, Miami, 17 September 2017 — In the middle of the hurricane I received a mysterious photo of Fidel Castro. At the top it said: “Fidel resurrected.” Below the portrait the mystery was clarified: “His name is Irma.” The Commander was reincarnated as a ferocious hurricane. The joke has a serious basis Juan Manuel Cao, … Continue reading "A Hurricane Called Communism" Continue reading
14ymedio, Nora Gamez, Mimi Whitefield, Mario Penton, Miami, 17 September 2017 – Concerned that the Cuban government does not usually accept donations from the United States, the Cuban-American community is looking for alternatives to help their families on the island, which has been devastated by the passage of Hurricane Irma. According to a preliminary evaluation … Continue reading "After Hurricane Irma, Sending Help to Family in Cuba is Complicated" Continue reading
14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar, Havana 16 September 2017 — Aimara Peña was a little over 16 when she enrolled in a degree to qualify as a primary school teacher, but in the last semester of the course she was expelled from the Pedagogical University of Sancti Spiritus for her incipient political activism. Now, the young woman … Continue reading "Aimara Peña: “I want to hear what the citizens have to say”" Continue reading
… Immigration regarding policies for handling Cuban migrants. On Jan. 24, 2013 … , legislation and practice relating to Cuban migrants. Our 2013 Annual Report … on weekends, personally engaging with Cuban migrants. She has been instrumental … time for free to represent Cuban migrants denied state assistance, achieving … Continue reading
United Nations, September 2 (RHC)-- Three human rights experts in the United Nations have denounced the rising racism and xenophobia in the United States, citing the deadly violence at a white supremacy rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, as the latest … Continue reading
Somos+, Karla Pérez González, 28 August 2017 — Edison Lanza, Special Rapporteur for the Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH), shares his vision on what is happening in Cuba regarding the violation of a series of elementary rights, already surpassed by the majority of systems that govern the continent. The … Continue reading "Edison Lanza and the Lack of Press Freedom in Cuba / Somos+, Karla Pérez González" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 29 August 2017 — Five opposition organizations have withdrawn from the coalition of more than seventy independent groups that form the Democratic Action Roundatable (MUAD), as well as the #Otro18 (another 2018) campaign, which is demanding a new electoral law in Cuba. The split has become “irreversible” according to comments from the veteran dissident … Continue reading "Five Cuban Opposition Organizations Break With MUAD and #Otro18" Continue reading
Sanaa, August 26 (RHC)-- Airstrikes by a coalition under the leadership of the regime in Riyadh against civilian targets across Yemen have killed 42 more civilians, including a number of children, over the past week, the United Nations human rights office … Continue reading
United Nations, August 25 (RHC)-- UN human rights experts have urged the U.S. government to "unequivocally and unconditionally" condemn racist speech and crimes, warning that a failure to do so could fuel further violent clashes by racist groups … Continue reading
Fernando Damaso, 19 August 2017 — After more than half a century of absolute power, many of the real and imagined problems that have historically served as the rationale for the Cuban revolution have not been resolved. Most have gotten worse; others have arisen that had previously not existed. The housing shortage — thousands of … Continue reading "A Lost Bet / Fernando Dámaso" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 15 August 2017 — The Aguadores prison authorities authorized on Monday the first family visit to the three activists arrested during the protest at the cathedral of Santiago de Cuba on July 26, 14ymedio was told by Reina Silvia González, wife of Alberto Antonio Ramírez Odio, one of the detainees. During the meeting, which … Continue reading "Three Activists Arrested At Santiago Cathedral Receive Their First Prison Visit" Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 14 August 2017 – The Office of the Attorney General of Cuba declared the “final dismissal” of the case against the activist Eliécer Ávila, accused of the crimes of receiving and illegal economic activities. The court also ordered the seizure “in favor of the Cuban State” of most of the property seized during a … Continue reading "Prosecutor Dismisses The Case Against Eliecer Avila But Seizes His Belongings" Continue reading
… Caracas and Havana. He notes that tens of thousands of Cuban soldiers … junta, the Communist Party of Cuba, the Revolutionary Armed Forces, and … that he estimated 50,000 Cuban agents, including civilians, had established … Assembly. In remarks this week, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez issued … Continue reading
United Nations, August 8 (RHC-teleSUR)-- Human rights advocates and agencies at the United Nations have demanded an end to the discrimination, exclusion and lack of protections for Indigenous peoples around the globe.  The call comes ahead of the tenth … Continue reading
14ymedio, Regina Coyula, Havana, 1 August 2017 — I should be in Panama right now. But on July 31, when I showed up at the desk at José Martí International Airport, I was shown to an office where an Immigration officer informed me that I could not travel because I was “regulated.” The word has unpleasant connotations … Continue reading "Avatars Of A “Regulated” Person" Continue reading
14ymedio, Marcelo Hernandez, Havana, 26 July 2017 – There were few surprise in Jose Ramon Machado Ventura’s speech this Wednesday during the ceremony for National Rebellion day in Pinar del Rio. The Cuban Communist Party number two reiterated that “the direction of the Revolution is laid out,” and denied that Cuba was participating in the … Continue reading "Machado Ventura Denies Cuba’s Mediation In The Venezuelan Conflict" Continue reading
… human rights goes well beyond Cuba, where his family is from … lot of the dissidents in Cuba I've never gotten … Continue reading
… for nearly 20 years, said Cuban-Americans who escaped the Castro regime … Cuban government routinely detains for peaceful protesting. Rubio adamantly opposed the Cuba … Rep. Mario Diaz-Ballart , a fellow Cuban-American from Florida, on a rewrite … Continue reading
… rush plans to visit Cuba More: Cubans in Miami divided over Trump … for nearly 20 years, said Cuban-Americans who escaped the Castro regime … of jailed dissidents whom the Cuban government routinely detains for peaceful … Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, a fellow Cuban-American from South Florida, on a … Continue reading
… human rights laws, in occupied Cuba’s land as a detention … Continue reading
14ymedio, Havana, 25 July 2017 — The former Dean of the Faculty of Law of the University of Havana and current chair of the National Assembly’s Committee on Constitutional and Legal Affairs, Jose Luis Toledo Santander, is clear: there are similarities between the Cuban and Spanish electoral systems, although the island is free of those … Continue reading "A Professor Sees Similarities Between How Cuba and Spain Choose Their President" Continue reading
14ymedio, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 28 July 2017 — The man forms a trumpet with his hands in front of his mouth to warn of the presence of an informant. It is a transcendental gesture warning not to blab in a daily life were people constantly appeal to body language, obscene words and metaphors. Failing to do … Continue reading "Missing Words" Continue reading