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Luis Felipe Rojas

Luis Felipe Rojas, 14 March 2017 — A poet writes to unpick puzzles, to sell and buy other questions.  The Cuban poet Magali Alabau came to Miami this Friday 10th March to give a reading from her book “Fatal Attraction” (Betania, 2016). She did it in La Esquina de las Palabras Lounge, which was founded and … Continue reading ""Fatal attraction" Magali Alabau’s Riddles / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 21 January 2017 — This 29th of January I will be running the Miami Half Marathon. It will be 21 kilometers of puffing and panting while I think about the people who are in jail in Cuba because of their opinions. My legs and ankles will get unscrewed, my liver will tell me to … Continue reading "21 km for Cuban Political Prisoners / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 20 December 2016 — Today I am going to tell you something you absolutely are not going to believe. But I don’t care, the military dictatorship violates human rights in cold blood and many don’t even want to know. Great is the fool who defends them. The brothers Geordanis and Adael Muñoz Guerrero are two … Continue reading "Pagan, A Very Bad Man With a Cuban Ministry of the Interior ID / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 28 November 2016 — Who in Cuba has not been asked to speak a little more softly? Who has not lowered his or her voice while making a comment about Fidel Castro? This is the regime’s family treasure: a snitch on every corner. When the triumphant son from the town of Birán — … Continue reading "Denunciation and Fear: Fidel Castro’s Family Treasure / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 11 November 2016 — The answer is simple. Because we are a country at war with the media for almost six decades. To speak of the green shoots of happiness, in the midst of hardships and political harassment, is little more than to put our heads in the sand. The dictators don’t believe … Continue reading "Why Does Cuba Have a Journalism of the Barricade? / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 31 August 2016 — Abusers, they beat women in the street, participate in acts of repudiation, and monitor those who think differently. They are the kids of the feared Rapid Response Brigade. Now they are thirty-somethings. They graduated from Cuban universities, but before they were wearing red bandanas in school, raising their hands … Continue reading "They Wanted to be Like Che… and They Are / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 9 August 2016 — He was the son of a colonel in the army, but was born to be the literary father to several generations. José Lezama Lima departed this life on 9 August 1976, and left a vast canon of work in which he wanted to embrace literary criticism, poetry, and narrative (stories … Continue reading "40 Years Without Lezama Lima / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 13 August 2016 — Now, in the second week of August, dozens of members of the Cuban opposition have been trapped in their houses. The Cuban political police have been instructed to close off the streets and mount patrols to prevent dissidents from going out to protest. The photos published by the … Continue reading "The Peace the Castros are Looking For / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 30 July 2016 — This weekend — the end of July 2016 — Armando de Armas will open the Festival Vista in Miami. In the middle of the diatribes coming out of the U.S. elections, the Cuban novelist and essayist has given another twist to the torture with his gift of this corrected … Continue reading "Armando de Armas Shows His Cards / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 9 July 2016 — José Abreu Felippe has become a goldsmith. He’s a guy who’s creating a city that will be lost, and he wants to change it into a jewel that we all will carry with us. Poesía exiliada y pateada (Alexandria Library, 2016) collects poems of seven Cuban writers who already have … Continue reading "Cuban Poets: Exile, Prison and Oblivion / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 1 July 2016 — This Friday I was informed that Cuban writer, poet, novelist, and cultural advocate Poemario de Rafeal Vilches was denied a visa by the United States embassy in Havana. Vilches has become an problem for those who claim that things have changed in Cuba. He has been arrested, interrogated by … Continue reading "The United States Denies Visa For Poet Rafael Vilches / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 20 May 2016 — Every day it becomes more dangerous. Engaging in speech and dissent in Cuba is still like a throwing a rock against the door of Castroism. After their cell phones were returned to them, Pastor Mario F. Lleonart and his wife, Yoaxis Marcheco, found their Twitter accounts had been disrupted. … Continue reading "Speech in Cuba: A Freedom under Threat / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
Luis Felipe Rojas, 3 May 2016 — They’ve barely finished giving a slap before they give another. The insult-spitting machine of the Castro regime is fired up week after week. Arbitrary arrests, repudiation rallies, and beatings calibrated from the offices of the Ministry of the Interior (MININT) in every province. This arsenal of harassment counts … Continue reading "Castro’s Kicks and the Applause of the Sheep / Luis Felipe Rojas" Continue reading
[1]Orlando Zapata TamayoLuis Felipe Rojas — I published this post a few days after that needless death. Now I again denounce the death and express the same ideas about it. It’s my homage to my brother, Orlando Zapata Tamayo.I am still experiencing the pain caused by that avoidable death, and I feel impotent because I didn’t attend the funeral honoring him due to political impediments, but that hasn’t stopped me from saying that in any case, what I present here seem to be the seven final steps that advanced the repressive machinery used to kill Zapata.1. Setting up that para-judicial theater that imposed a sentence of 63 years on him for contempt.2. The continuous beatings accompanied by obscene words and insults about his race and the region where he lived (shitty negro, shitty peasant).3. Putting him in prisons that were located far away from his mother’s home (Prison Kilo Cinco y Medio in Pinar del Rio, Prison Kilo 8 in Camaguey).4. The beatings in November 2009 in the Holguin jail when they knocked him down smashing his leg with a steel bar, on his knee cap, and that his mother saw again when she opened the coffin in her house in Banes and also discovered that there were other marks of the beating with clubs that he surely received months before.5. The forced removal to Camaguey and the robbery of his belongings on December 3 when they confiscated the only food he was eating in prison. This was the fact that made in declare a hunger strike.6. Taking away water for the 18 days in the middle of the strike even when he had said that he was declaring a hunger strike but would drink small amounts of water.7. The maneuver of taking him to a hospital for prisoners in Camaguey, west of Havana, and putting him in a room that was not set up for treating prisoners in a grave condition.I lack the power of analysis in this case, but please don’t keep saying that the government didn’t have a hand in his death. The execution order was given from the office of General Raul Castro Ruz.Translated by Regina Anavy23 February 2015[1] https://cruzarlasalambradas.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/ozt.jpg Continue reading
[caption id="attachment_38616" align="aligncenter" width="596"] [1] The writer Ángel Santiesteban Prats[/caption]Luis Felipe Rojas, 12 February 2015 -- Just days after Ángel Santiesteban Prats sent this interview to Martí Noticias [2], he was transferred in an untimely manner to Villa Marista, the general barracks of Cuban State Security. However, his replies were already safeguarded, as was he.This storyteller -- who won the UNEAC (Cuban Writers and Artists Union) prize for his collection, Sueño de un día de verano (Dreams of a summer day, 1995), the 1999 César Galeano prize, the Casa de las Américas award of 2006 for his Dichosos los que lloran (Blessed are they who weep) -- later started a blog where he set forth his ideas on human rights in Cuba, and he did not cease even unto imprisonment.In 2013, Ángel won the International Franz Kafka "Novels from the Drawer Prize," which convened in the Czech Republic, for the novel, The Summer When God Slept. Today he is responding to these questions from his improvised cell in a Border Patrol unit of the Ministry of the Interior, in Jaimanitas, Havana.Following is a Q&A between Luis Felipe Rojas and Ángel SantiestebanLuis Felipe: At which moment did the narrator and character Ángel Santiesteban come to be?Ángel:  I can affirm that he came into existence at the end of the 1980s. I believe that the need to write, to communicate, to transmit my feelings, were a way of dealing, precisely, with the pain I felt inside of me. I recall that my first literary sensibility arose at the age of 17, when I found myself imprisoned at the La Cabaña fort [3], for the "offense" of having accompanied my family to the coast, with the intent of seeing them off, as it turned out.They were later caught on the high seas, and I was charged with harboring fugitives -- but on the day of the trial, the court ruled that, according to current laws, I could not be so charged, because between parents and children, and between siblings, such action was considered reasonable. However, I was prosecuted anyway because, according to the district attorney, I should have reported my relatives for clandestinely leaving the country, which is considered an act of treason against the totalitarian regime.Notwithstanding, I remained in jail for 14 months. Thus I consider that before I was a writer, I was already one of my characters, which I used to share my personal pain with the other characters that, as of that time, I began to construct. In each character created by me, there is my pain, or that of my family, friends and neighbors. I am a social reflection of my times, and there is where my commitment lies: with myself, with my mother, with history and with my times, with no concern for the consequences that this posture might entail for me.I suffer with every word I write, I bleed for every passage that I execute. I live and die with my characters; but always, I believe above all, it is through art that is genuine and uncompromised.Luis Felipe:  To what point were your narrative demons fused with your social intentions?Ángel:  I swear that this was not a goal, nor was it a commitment, and even less intended as a means to shock or gain attention. I believe, in fact, that this is not the way to achieve art. My creative seed took root in nonconformity and social fear -- individuals who hid their antipathy to the political process and pretended, or pretend, to be sympathizers of the dictatorship -- and this reflection of my times turned me into a voice, an alternative, and it was an unconscious process, because the foundation of my artistic vision is that which lacerates me, which strikes or preoccupies me, and then I want to capture it in the best way, according to the literary tools at my disposal.When I discover a thought in a personal passage, or hear an evocative anecdote, a force is ignited in my being, and a different hunch alerts me that I should attempt it, and almost always this is tied to a social consequence.Luis Felipe: You have assumed the tragic sense of life. Like Severo Sarduy [4], Guillermo Cabrera Infante [5] or Reinaldo Arenas [6], you have assembled a literature that becomes condemnation. What does Ángel Santiesteban Prats process or write from within this enclosure?[caption id="attachment_38617" align="alignleft" width="300"] [7] Angel and Luis Felipe[/caption]The author of this interview with Ángel Santiesteban, 20 January, 2010, in Havana, Cuba.Ángel:  Above all, to recognize that with any artist to whom I am compared, among those three great Cuban writers, I am honored, and I appreciate the noble hereditary line in which you have placed me, because I will always recognize the distances between them and me. I respect them for their work and life, the suffering they hoisted like a flag, for choosing the emigration option, looking for those "three trapped tigers,"* who were them, for having been voices discordant with the political system.I have experiences similar to Reinaldo Arenas, in terms of imprisonment and the cultural marginalization that he suffered; but I identify with all three in the matter of emigration -- only that in their cases they had to displace themselves from the Archipelago, and in mine, I live those same consequences, but from the interior, inside the Island. For this reason, today I write about the reality that surrounds me, the injustice that I live.I once wrote in a post that the last place that the dictatorship should have sent me was here, where I have had to develop myself as a human being, artist and dissident. I have written a book of stories out of pain, but which in my view and that of my friends, is still very raw, and I need to distance myself from the experience to revisit it and remove a political intention which, inevitably, is reflected in this collection of stories. I also wrote a strange novel, with a prison-life theme, which I intend to revise upon my release. I started a novel, Prizes and Punishments, of a more biographical cut.My life experience is tragic. I have lived a tragic script that affects society, caused by the dictators' political whims. It is known that "we writers nourish ourselves from human carrion,"** and this system is quite given to soiling us with the blood of its victims.Luis Felipe: Your characters appear to be stricken with pain as if there were nothing else on the horizon. From whence this creation, these pieces of change contained in every story?Ángel:  At times it is, in a word, an image, or the reflection of an anxiety. When I perceive that someone is suffering, I feel a need to help him. I fervently believe that if a writer does not help to change -- to heal -- that reality, at least he has the duty to reflect it like a mirror of his times, as a social function. And, at times, we even seek alternatives to anemic responses for those sufferers, when they see in the characters their more immediate reality.We have the possibility, as part of creation itself, to substitute, improve, provide, replace, exchange, our given destinies, and to create for ourselves something better. The variables can be many, to the extent of the writer's capacity for talent and his artistic needs. I feel that I am the reflection of my times and so I try to capture this in my work.Luis Felipe: If we refer to the backstory you provide in The Summer When God Slept, your novel is the reconstruction of an era. Describing life at sea, characters that are not precisely fishermen, the actual circumstances in which they decide to launch themselves to a new life, or to death, and the outcomes that come to pass from what we today know as the "Rafters Crisis [8]," what we have is a historical novel. What were your tools -- were they historiography, sociology, or a thorough knowledge of those narrative techniques that you have been displaying for a long time?Ángel:  When I tackle a subject that I have not experienced, which is not even found in books that can be consulted, I begin a field study -- in my case, depending on my subjects, with the soldiers who participated in the African wars, with the rafters who chose to return from the Guantánamo Naval Base, or marginalized characters who survive through crime.I always make recordings of their narratives. In a few cases I had to turn off the recording equipment at the interviewee's request, when they incriminated themselves in their testimonies and fear forced them into self-protection, upon revealing delicate matters -- for example, terrible orders from a high-level military commander in Angola that produced innocent victims, or acts that they themselves committed and for which they are now ashamed.I have the need, when I begin to treat a subject, to know every event -- the history, the culture, the color of the earth, the scents, the vegetation -- details that help me to transport myself and live in my imagination, to recreate, to go back in time and see, and feel, what I narrate.The majority of the characters in my novel, The Summer..., are based on relatives or friends. Manolo is my younger sister's husband. It is true that he was involved in the conflict in Africa, that he was a combat engineer, that he risked his life in the Florida Straits on a raft with other relatives, and that he later crossed the minefield [around the American naval base at Guantanamo] to return to Havana with his family.In him, in that character, are composites of many characters. I interviewed every rafter I have met, producing hundreds of hours of cassette recordings -- which is what I would use in the mid-90s -- and in every one I captured the pain that burst from their words, gestures and silences.Luis Felipe:  There is a period of "painful apprenticeship,"  as Carlos Alberto Montaner [9] might say. Why are your stories loaded with victims?Ángel:  I am convinced that every Cuban who is a participant in the political processes -- not only since 1959, but from before -- is a victim of the whims, ambitions, and bad intentions of those leaders who have arrived at positions of power in the nation. In particular I base my view on the experience, the suffering, of the generations since that of my parents, through today, and I consider them victims of the regime.And not just those who were opposed, but I also add those who were deceived, those who like my Uncle Pepe, bet on a better country, democratic and humanist, until they discovered that they had been deceived, but then no longer had the youth or courage to confront the deceivers -- and they decided to take their own life out of shame at having been party to this miscreation that has governed for more than half a century, and has done so by executing, jailing and assassinating via its structures for repression and espionage.Those who emigrate, those who remain inside the Island with their fears (even if only one); those who at some time have needed to pretend so as not to be reprimanded or punished; those who have lied, or are lying, and who betray their real thoughts and opinions about the reality that surrounds us -- all are victims of the system.I always reiterate that the only ambition I have had in life is to understand people -- to understand them even if I don't share their reasoning, but at least to know the cause, the feeling that they had at the moment of committing an act, be it positive or negative. I don't always achieve this with human beings, but I do so with my characters. They must be transparent to me at the moment that I tell their story, understanding their actions, thinking and functioning.I am a victim of my times, in the company of my characters, who reflect this human suffering.Luis Felipe: It appears that you inhabit a space between the pieces of Carlos Montenegro [10] and the lost souls of Reinaldo Arenas. The protagonists of your novel and stories move between the perdition of the night and the disillusionment of the days in Havana. Do you not fear that you will ultimately tell of a Havana that has been told and told again?Ángel:  Montenegro's version is my personal experience, and we already know that reality surpasses us -- it being so rich in hues, in multiple, inexhaustible tones that guarantee the health of that approach in the city and to the city. There is always a trace that hasn't been covered, a new way of telling the same story, of sharing imperishable themes. Not even the same photo taken repeatedly in rapid succession can capture the same subject because its colors change constantly.Yes, I fear repeating those paradigms of Cuban literature, but I do not believe that it can seem an imitation of those great and special writers, because there are many ways of seeing, ways of telling this Havana, this Cuba, at times so beloved, or so hated.Ángel.Border Patrol Prison Unit, Jaimanitas, Havana.Translated by Alicia Barraqué EllisonTranslator's Notes: * A reference to the novel, "Three Trapped Tigers," by Cuban writer Guillermo Cabrera Infante [5]. ** Santiesteban is quoting Cuban writer Amir Valle, who made this statement during an interview with the journal, IberoAmericana, published in 2014. The original Spanish phrase, "Los escritores nos alimentamos de la carroña humana,” is used in the title of the article [12].[1] http://translatingcuba.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/1423710210_angel-santiesteban-prats.png [2] http://www.martinoticias.com/content/angel-santiesteban-soy-una-mirada-social-de-mi-tiempo-/86459.html [3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Caba%C3%B1a [4] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Severo_Sarduy [5] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guillermo_Cabrera_Infante [6] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reinaldo_Arenas [7] http://translatingcuba.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/1423710211_c3a1ngel-santiesteban-luis-felipe-rojas-y-ernesto-lozano-20-de-enero-2010-en-la-habana-cuba-copy4.jpg [8] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balseros_(rafters) [9] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Alberto_Montaner [10] https://books.google.com/books?id=84PuTrY7FVsC&pg=PA85&lpg=PA85&dq=carlos+montenegro+cuba&source=bl&ots=32P5tqn3bA&sig=fbFr65xOiED86VS1dBAOps886fI&hl=en&sa=X&ei=gKDiVMDbJYLVoASBnoCYBw&ved=0CEAQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=carlos%20montenegro%20cuba&f=false [11] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guillermo_Cabrera_Infante [12] http://journals.iai.spk-berlin.de/index.php/iberoamericana/article/view/1118 Continue reading
[1]Photo taken by Universo Increible (Incredible Universe)Rafael Alejandro Hernández Real, who says he was an agent of State Security in Cuba — infiltrated into the Eastern Democratic Alliance — in September 2014 chained himself in the Plaza Bolivar of Bogota, Colombia, and now is on a hunger strike, demanding that he be allowed to go to the United States, according to a report from Universo Increible.“Ten young Cuban emigrants have declared a hunger and drink strike in the immigration station at Acayucán, in the state of Veracruz, in order to avoid being deported to Cuba. Right now there are seven men and three women. The group of strikers has been increasing before the official denials and threats of being returned to the island,” reports the news source.Hernández Real made himself known in 2008 when, together with Eliecer Ávila and other students at the University of Information Sciences in Havana, they questioned the then-president of the Peoples’ Power National Assembly. Ricardo Alarcón. On that occasion Ávila and Hernández Real called for the freedom to leave the country, to visit historic sites of the world like “Che Guevara’s tomb in Bolivia,” and they questioned the supposed unanimity of the general voting that takes place in Cuba.Translated by Regina Anavy6 February 2015[1] https://cruzarlasalambradas.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/ale.jpg Continue reading
[1]Graphic: Sonia Garro Alfonso, recently freed Lady in White [2]. Collage over a piece by Rolando Pulido [3].The writer and blogger Ángel Santiesteban Prats, from the prison where he is serving an unjust sentence, just published–thanks to the help of a friend on Facebook–a brief post expressing his thoughts about the recent releases of political prisoners. As always, Angelito is filled with Light and strength. May my embrace reach him though the faithful reproduction of his text.Ángel’s post:I have received the expressions of pain from many friends, my publisher, and my relatives–some stupefied, others offended–over my exclusion from the list of prisoners recently released by the Cuban government.Upon completing almost two years of unjust imprisonment, I can assure everyone that never have I asked the correctional authories or, even less, the officials from State Security who have visited me, when I will be released. I will never give them that satisfaction, just as I have never inquired whether I will be given the pass* which is granted to all “minimum severity” prisoners like me, who am sentenced to five years.Nonetheless, although I know that I am not on the noted list, my joy is infinite at knowing that those who were on it are now free. My suffering is universal. I feel all Cubans to be an extension of me, or vice versa, above all those who have suffered and do suffer for an ideal–and in particular that of freedom for our country.I also believe that the list that so gladdened me was missing the names of other political prisoners who deserved to have been added. There will always be some who are excluded because government’s sleight-of-hand is very swift and, when it already has one list compiled, it as another of recently-apprehended inmates.It is unfair to think that they should have taken one name off to insert another. Rather, they should have added to the list, because those who were freed deserved it, just as do those who still remain in the totalitarian regime’s jails–some shut away and subjected to inhumane treatment for many years, for whose imminent freedom I pray.By the same token, and referring again to the recycling of political prisoners, we must now clamor for the immediate absolution and liberation of El Sexto, Danilo Maldonado [4], whom they keep in the Valle Grande prison for a crime of “disrespect to the images of the leaders.” This is a further proof of how jealously they hold on to their power, and of what they are ready and able to do to safeguard it. Power and its dictators are untouchable, and to live is to see it.I will not live long enough to infinitely thank those who clamor for my release, and those who suffer because of my imprisonment, but we must clamor for all–just as my publisher entreats on the blog, “The Children That Nobody Wanted [5],” and my family through social media. At the least, may I be last on the list, as I will complain no more.Ángel Santiesteban-PratsJanuary, 2014. Jaimanitas Border Patrol Prison Unit, Havana.*Translator’s note: In an earlier post Ángel explained the Cuban penal system that allows prisoners with shorter sentences to leave prison every so many days for extended (overnight) home visits. He was granted one of these passes when he was in the Lawton Settlement, a work camp, but future passes were withheld. Translated by Alicia Barraqué Ellison 22 January 2015[1] https://cruzarlasalambradas.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/picmonkey-collage1.jpg [2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ladies_in_White [3] http://translatingcuba.com/category/authors/rolando-pulido/?x=1 [4] http://translatingcuba.com/category/authors/el-sexto-danilo-maldonado-machado/ [5] https://hijosnadieeng.wordpress.com/ Continue reading
All said and done, more than half of a list of 53 political prisoners that nobody knows are already free, completely secret and that nobody we ask clarifies for us. Of the fifty who were out, I have the list … Continue reading Continue reading
My baby, my third child, this blog, is five years old and at times I ask myself this question. How long should I continue? I started writing against the grain of what a blog was, doing it like a daily … Continue reading Continue reading
We went to Miami’s Wynwood District today, a zone of street art, of abundant graffiti. Miami is also redeemed by these beauties and daubings, by this joy that is the festival of color mediated by no other rule than the … Continue reading Continue reading
Photo:  Luis Felipe Rojas About the awarding of the Critic’s Prize (in Cuba) to the Cuban essayist Roberto Gonzalez Echevarria.  The scholar won it with a book published by Capiro Editions, from Santa Clara. We have gone back 200 years, the epoch … Continue reading Continue reading
Michael H. Miranda. Photo: Martha María Montejo. Michael Hernandez Miranda (Holguín, Cueto, 1974) has come from the Far West (College Station, Texas, where he prepared his doctoral thesis) to show us his first collection of poems written halfway between Cuba … Continue reading Continue reading
When I say exile, I only think of the word life. That was what happened to me at the meeting “Fight for Liberation against Castro-communism,” which the writer Julio M. Shiling generously coordinated and which was held at the West … Continue reading Continue reading
On the evening of June 5th, I had the opportunity of presenting Janisset Rivero’s book “Testigos de la noche”  (“Witnesses of the Night”) (Ultima 2014).  Casa Bacardi opened its doors so as to let us share this lady’s work along with … Continue reading Continue reading
Photo: Roberto de Jesus Guerra Perez, beaten June 11, 2014 Independent journalist Roberto de Jesus Guerra Perez was beaten on Wednesday, 11 June by a regime partisan. Guerra Perez uploaded a photo to his Facebook account where he appears with … Continue reading Continue reading
By Enrisco Today, July 6th, is the 34th anniversary of what is regarded as (only by a few certainly) as “The Massacre in Canimar River” because 14 years before the sinking of the “March 13th” tugboat there was an almost … Continue reading Continue reading
Just by strolling through, you can see the diverse medley that everyone has described Miami to be. A girl pirouettes in a public square; exiled Cubans peacefully protest in a major street within the city; a Muslim woman takes a … Continue reading Continue reading
About 30 members of the Cuban opposition,belonging to the illegal Partido Popular Republicano, throwing flowers into the sea in memory of the victims of the tugboat “13 de Marzo”. Archive photo (martinoticias.com) By Armando Añel What happened can be briefly … Continue reading Continue reading
I hadn’t seen José Prats Sariol since 1997, when he offered a lecture on Phenomenology in the conference room of the School of Arts at the University of Havana. Seventeen years later he came to Miami to talk about the … Continue reading Continue reading
Rogelio Betancourt shows his passport in Castilla Plaza in Madrid, June 2014. / M. G.-R. According to El Pais, “Rogelio Betancourt Suárez no longer lives on the streets of Morocco. After 11 months of facing the daily uncertainty of knowing … Continue reading Continue reading
The title came from Ramón Tirso, one of the most hardened and prolific lecturers that I know on the whole Island. Tirso has spent time in three Cuban universities, studying the most disparate careers among them. From physics to art … Continue reading Continue reading
As the world shouts itself hoarse over what’s happening in Venezuela, the Cuban Network of Intellectuals, Artists and Social Movements in Defense of Humanity assures us that this is nothing more than a ruse of the “fascist right” and they’ve … Continue reading Continue reading
Jose Kozer, (taken at the site of “Una Belleza Nueva”) “Two Cuban filmmakers seeking financial support to complete a documentary on the Cuban poet, José Kozer” stated an article published by the site Café Fuerte (Strong Coffee). The documentary titled … Continue reading Continue reading
I’m fed up with poetry that doesn’t speak, that doesn’t shake you up, that doesn’t give you that punch in the face that we expect from every book. In the end this is the literature of a kind of sado-masochism … Continue reading Continue reading
Newspaper accounts written by different independent groups of the private sector in Cuba do not supply the images that emerge from the histories, essays and poems produced by the experience of being imprisoned under the Castro dictatorship in the 54 … Continue reading Continue reading
Last December 24, as a reverse Christmas gift, officials of the National Revolutionary Police (PNR) arrested human rights activists Yordis Garcia Fournier (Youth Movement for Democracy) and Yobel Sevila Martinez (Eastern Democratic Alliance – ADO) in the city of Guantanamo. … Continue reading Continue reading
Print Screen/Tmblr Here I am with my friend and brother Joan Antoni Guerrero Vall, a blogger in Barcelona for the cause of freedom in Cuba. A thousand hugs, a thousand “miamis’ once again. 14 December 2013 Continue reading
11 December 2013 Continue reading
The Cuban government has cracked down hard on dissidents who dared to go out on December 10th, the day when the world celebrated Human Rights Day, according to sources from the island who have posted on the social networks. In … Continue reading Continue reading
Víctor Domínguez. Photo: Luis Felipe Rojas Men who believe themselves to be free manage to break the bars imposed on them by authoritarian regimes. The Cuban Writers Club (CEC), established in Havana in May 2007, is an initiative that arose … Continue reading Continue reading
Poster, courtey Rolando Pulido Tweet a tweet this Monday on the social networks, Facebook, Twitter and the others for solidarity with #FreeSonia, #FreeElCritico and all the other Cuban political prisoners. 17 November 2013 Continue reading
The Association for Freedom of the Press (APLP) is an organization to disseminate the work of independent journalists in Cuba. Recently I spoke with José Antonio Fornaris, one of its officers, and with Juan Carlos Linares Balmaseda, manager of public … Continue reading Continue reading
Today at the Versailles Restaurant, of Miami and the whole United States, those of us who want to can add our names to #CubaLibre #FreeElCritico #FreeSonia and all the Cuban political prisoners. Raise your voice, you can do it. We … Continue reading Continue reading
My beautiful son Malcom and I in front of the bluest sea, from Miami to Cuba (in the far distance, of course!). 10 November 2013 Continue reading
Poster: Rolando Pulido Once again the graphic artist Rolando Pulido echoes the suffering of Cuba and has prepared a poster calling for solidarity with Angel Yunier Remon Arzuago, who as of Thursday has completed 22 days on hunger strike, in … Continue reading Continue reading