The Ministry of Revenge Imparts Punishment in the Castros’ Cuba / Angel
Posted on March 6, 2014
Raul Castro, are you satisfied now?
One year can be a sigh in time or an interminable nightmare; it depends
on how you pass the year. To be deprived of freedom is always a bitter
drink, but when in addition you’re innocent, when you’re condemned and
incarcerated by a judicial system answering to the guidelines of
political power of a dictatorship like that of the dynasty that you
incarnate today, it’s much worse.
To this you have to add the characteristics of the prisons and
concentration camps elaborated on by your Regime, which in no way
resemble, neither in form nor in treatment, what you tried to make the
national and international journalists who visited last year believe.
They cowardly and immorally endorsed the farce to which they were
subjected, ridiculing the tragic reality of the thousands of Cubans who,
the length and width of the island, are brutally treated, tortured,
humiliated and living in conditions that are absolutely inhumane.
As if the dirty complicity of the press wouldn’t have been enough the
year before, this year, you, Castro II, tried – and with great success –
to gain support for your dictatorship from the member presidents of
CELAC, the secretary of the OAS, the director general of the United
Nations and the European Union – which only a few days ago, announced
that it would resume negotiations with your dictatorship, without caring
in the slightest about the destiny of the 11 million inhabitants of the
island. Economic interests are more powerful than the fundamentals at
the dawn of the 21st century, but the OAS and the UN seem not to notice
that they are consenting silently to letting other nations enrich
themselves at the cost of Cuban blood and tears. Pathetic but true.
Meanwhile, in the concentration camps and penitentiaries of the Prison
Island, more than a hundred political prisoners wait in vain for justice
and freedom, and much of the opposition who are being besieged today
will, before long, be political prisoners also.
The existence of the opposition in these circumstances should cause an
international scandal, but on the contrary, it’s ignored obstreperously
by those who can do something. Only the governments of Chile and Costa
Rica showed interest and concern for the reality of the opposition in
Cuba, and not for the Chinese story that they sold to all the rest of
Havana in the context of the Second Summit of CELAC.
How far can the hypocrisy of the bigshots of the world and their
selective blindness go? If the clamor for freedom, democracy and justice
by the Cuban people isn’t enough for them, they should lend an ear to
the people of Venezuela, whose country was colonized by its dictatorship
in order to exploit the natural resources, to submit to its people and
thereby perpetuate the badly-named “Revolution,” whose true name is
“military dictatorship,” which attains power through a coup in order to
subvert another military dictatorship.
Now we can’t understand the suffering of Cuba without understanding
what’s happening in its sister country, Venezuela. There you have 30
million inhabitants who are submitted to the designs of Havana through
its dauphin, Maduro, who came to power through electoral fraud, and
since then has only intensified the task of “Castroization” of the
country initiated by the deceased Chavez, another general who attempted
a coup, and who governed as a dictator for 14 years in spite of having
come to the presidency through the ballot box. The same as Adolf Hitler.
Venezuela also has an increasing number of political prisoners; the
communications media are being accosted and gagged; and the students who
go into the street demanding freedom are brutally massacred by the FANB
and paramilitary groups. There are many denunciations with photographs
of Cuban State Security agents who are infiltrated into these barbarous
acts and who, only by seeing the images, are clearly recognized by their
In Cuba we can’t talk about electoral fraud because the whole communist
system set up by the dictatorship is a fraud. For 55 years they call
“elections” with a system of one party and candidates chosen by the
elite of the Communist Party. Only they are chosen; only they can be
All this terrible situation that both countries live, twinned by the
stomp of your boot, Castro II, unites the whopping number of 41 million
people who cry out and need liberty and democracy NOW, and the full
presence of their rights and guarantees.
Ángel Santiesteban-Prats is a talented Cuban writer, a national and
international award-winner, who one day decided to take off the mask and
– whatever it cost – denounce to the world the sufferings of his country
through his blog, opened in 2008, The Children Nobody Wanted.
Once he opened the blog, the “good” and the “bad” started arriving: the
messages and warnings that he abandon his path. The pressure didn’t
matter to him, and he went forward with his moral duty as a citizen of
denouncing the Regime and reclaiming the rights that all sovereign
people should have.
He undertook a long and difficult path the day he took the side of
liberty and democracy, from physical aggressions, all types of threats,
even ostracism and marginalization, including from those who called
themselves good friends; and of course, betrayals here and there. None
of this stopped him.
Finally the biggest infamy happened: His ex-wife and mother of his son
made a false accusation with the support and advice of her then-partner,
an agent of the political police. It didn’t matter to her to lie
shamelessly and buy a false witness to send her ex-mate to prison
because she couldn’t handle – after having abandoned him and leaving him
with a small child during two and a half years – coming back to him to
try again, and at that point he was involved in a happy and stable
These Machiavellian false denunciations finished by sending Angel to
five years in prison for crimes that he did not commit after a farce of
a trial that should be the shame of the Cuban judicial system. But no,
in place of that, they insist on multiplying the violations of Angel’s
rights, now ignoring the request for review of his trial that was
presented in July last year by his lawyer, Amelia Rodriguez Cala,
(recently disqualified – in a surprise move – for six months from
exercising her profession in the courts).
He has been assaulted, harassed and threatened by his jailers, and they
invented disciplinary punishments for him, like taking away the 70-day
pass required for his type of penalty. In seven months he has left
prison only once, at the end of September. That’s to say, not only are
they violating rights universally consecrated but also they’re violating
their own law, because it’s a right in force in the Cuban constitution
to repeat the trial if the condemned requests it.
Today, February 28, 2014, Angel completes one year of imprisonment,
hoping for a justice that doesn’t come, nor can it come while a
dictatorship continues to occupy power in Cuba illegally. International
solidarity can pressure the Regime to demand not only justice for him
but also that the United Nations pacts be ratified. But that solidarity
must be huge in order to counteract the immense harm that the presidents
of the region have caused to Cubans: Secretary Inzulsa, Mr. Ban Ki Moon
and the European Union, which drools over the chance to profit by doing
business on the island.
I am calling for international solidarity on the part of governments,
organizations and well-meaning citizens, to mobilize for Cuba and for
all its political prisoners.
And meanwhile, I remind you, Raul Castro, of your absolute
responsibility for the life and integrity of Angel, and for all
political prisoners and members of civil society who are punished every
day for expressing themselves and demanding freedom.
And I ask – now that you’re trying to make the world believe that you’re
a reformist president and that you’re bringing change to Cuba – at least
hide it a bit and take democratic steps that show your “good will.” Free
all the political prisoners, ratify the UN pacts and call for open and
free elections. If you don’t take these three steps, it will only go to
prove that you continue being a ruthless dictator as you have been up to
now, the same as your older brother.
I know perfectly that the ambition for power blinded your brother the
same as you, but at that height of life, you should ask yourself if you
can feel satisfied and rectify the course, so that at least the few
haggard people who still have confidence in you don’t feel so defrauded
when freedom finally comes and they can recognize the difference. And by
the way, may God forgive you.
Translated by Regina Anavy
28 February 2014
Source: The Ministry of Revenge Imparts Punishment in the Castros’ Cuba
/ Angel Santiesteban | Translating Cuba –