Human Rights in Cuba

Time To Change

April 2016
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Waiting for help
Waiting for help

Cuba, A Broken Toy / 14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar

14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar, 17 April 2016 — Among the many expectations
raised by the Seventh Congress of the Cuban Communist Party (PCC) was
the possibility that the expected generational change would be announced
there. The prospect that young cadres would introduce bold changes and
accelerate the timid reforms initiated with the departure of Fidel
Castro from power, fed by the expectations among Cubanologists of
different viewpoints.

Perhaps that is why, when the general-president proposed that the
maximum age for joining the PCC Central Committee would be 60 and to
hold senior posts one would have to be under 70, many had the momentary
impression that the rule would begin to be applied at this Party
Congress. Only a more sedate reading, stripped of all irrational
optimism, was able to untangle the ambiguity of his words.

, First Secretary of the PCC, acknowledged that “the next
five years, for obvious reasons, will be decisive.” Hence, the need “to
introduce additional limits on the higher organs of the Party.” However,
he declared that this would be a “process of transition that should be
undertaken and concluded with the celebration the next Congress. Leaving
for the future, “a five year transition so as not to rush things.” A
phrase that reinforces Castro’s oft repeated premise of acting “without
haste but without pause.”

The “additional limits” on age to be appointed to “the higher organs”
had already been introduced, although not disclosed, at the first PCC
Conference in January of 2012, when the concept of age was added to
those to be taken into consideration at the time of filling leadership

To Raul Castro it seems that having delayed four years and four months
in defining the numbers that would mark the age limits would have been
“not rushing things.” Although it is probable that his real concern has
been that the Central Committee elected at the current 7th Congress
would naturally dispense with the so-called “historic generation of the

The only obvious reason for not passing the baton in this Congress is
reduced to an unhealthy addiction to power, especially to its obscene
attributes of privileges and powers.

Like the spoiled child who wants his turn with a toy to last forever,
the first secretary intends to remain in office until 19 April 2021,
when he’ll be just 45 days short of officially becoming a nonagenarian.

By that time, should he survive, what would be left of the instrument of
his amusement could be an useless wreck, and we’re not talking about the
Party but about the country: a toy broken beyond fixing through the
attempts to make it work capriciously. The blame for its destruction
will then fall on those who inherit it.

Source: Cuba, A Broken Toy / 14ymedio, Reinaldo Escobar – Translating
Cuba –

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