Cuban Dissidents Arrested Before Obama’s Visit 6

Ladies in White and their supporters marched through Havana on Sunday ahead of Obama’s visit. The group was founded by wives and other female relatives of jailed dissidents. They’re calling for an end to human rights violations in Cuba.






  1. President Obama and the present government of Cuba could not have chosen a more significantly symbolic day for an American President to once again–since 1928–to arrive in Habana, Cuba, aside from the U.S. President´s historic visit and the individual significance it represents. March 20th in 1930 marked a historic day in Cuba indeed. On that historic day, the first national labor strike by the National Confederation of Workers of Cuba was organized by Rubén Martinez Villena, a Cuban poet and attorney who later joined the communist party. On March 20, 1930 he led the national general strike—the first of its kind in Cuba—which served to topple the Gerardo Machado dictatorship. Rubén Martinez Villena, protested for the restitution of the legal rights of his labor union. On that unforgettable day—of March 20, 1930—more than 200,000 workers went on strike during 24 hours and they paralyzed, totally; production, commerce and urban transportation in Havana, Manzanillo and other cities throughout Cuba. This action simultaneous and together with the workers involvement put that corrupt government into a political crisis and helped to galvanize the ensuing overthrow of the government in Cuba a few months thereafter.

    Sadly, in contrast, in Cuba today labor strikes are not permitted, nor do democratic based labor unions even exist. Any type of organization similar to one constituted aimed at organizing a democratic channel for change from the present government´s tight fisted control in violation of the civil rights of Cuban citizens, in the island nation, is harshly and undemocratically, unjustly punished. Many times democratic peaceful protests go repressed by violent repercussions hidden to the view of the world by camouflaged para-military troops dressed as Cuban civilians who violently and physically repress the Women in White.

    Such a detrimental socio-political circumstance and an obvious inhumane civil rights predicament should not be cause for celebration when the President arrived in Habana, Cuba. Instead, it should have been—for someone as President Obama—who has experienced a great deal of personal civil prejudice (I´m sure), an opportunity to organize sound thought and deep reflection, aimed at helping to bring democracy to Cuba, my fatherland. While it is not the job of a U.S. President, he is now, most definitely, a key political player—by choice—into what has the potential of becoming, the crossroads event—the seed—for the transition into democracy, which Cuba lacks today, amidst a majority of citizens who claim the most basic human freedoms, presently, thwarted by the government of Cuba.

    • The dictator Raul Castro is not commiting to anything. Castro is not going to relinquish his power much less is he going to conceide any aperture benefitial to the Cuban people. He is planning on ruling Cuba with the same Iron fist that he had Cuba for decades. Castro wants to negotiate on his own terms. Negotiation without a compromise where he always finds a way to evade the topic at hand. DEMOCRACY! I think it will be logical not to make any more concessions to a dictator and instead keep our channel of communication with the growing Cuban dissidence. This people are hungry to know about the meaning of living in a free world and also to heard the real news about what is happening around them from the free world. This reality has been negated to them by the Castro regime. Let’s support the Cuban dissidence,Let’s given hope and let’s keep them informed..

  2. I lived this terror as a teenager. It was normal for everyone to see the green MININT jeep driving around the block checking with the Chief of the CDR. Two days later the same jeep again, but this time with two armed MININT agents dressed in civilian clothes. You were waiting for a knock on your door and then you, your father or your brother were detained. You were questioned, They could not find any evidence of what they were looking for, then they will take your father for questioning in Villa Marista. You were worried you will never see him again,then two weeks later they will release your father. The cicle will continue all over again. Then as retaliation, you will pick up anti government flyers and will post them all over the block. You will never tell your father because he consider you too young to get involved in this mess. Cuba is never going to change unless the Castro brothers are gone and his communist elite collapses. He has put together a military junta, where the elite is becoming rich and the rest of the population suffers. If you watch the video during the arrest of the ladies in white, all these people chanting Viva Fidel are agents of the DSE which are off duty and brigada rapida personel which are their snitches. The Castro brothers are not going to give away their power without a fight. They own Cuba, the same way a farmer owns his farm.

  3. English literature is so filled with resemblances about real life situations, that just about every possible life´s scenario may be represented through literary works, as the different scenarios during the recent visit of President Barack Obama to Cuba and specifically of the picture image at the baseball game. Your recent comment about it, truly reminds me–in good humor–of the axiom about “strange bedfellows” in a quote by William Shakespeare himself:

    “The Tempest” Act 2, scene 2, 33–41

    Trinculo says:

    “Legged like a man! and his fins like arms! Warm, o’ my
    troth! I do now let loose my opinion, hold it no longer: this is no
    fish, but an islander, that hath lately suffered by a thunder-bolt.
    [Thunder.] Alas, the storm is come again! My best way is to creep
    under his gabardine; there is no other shelter hereabout: misery
    acquaints a man with strange bedfellows. I will here shroud till the
    dregs of the storm be past”.


    A storm has shipwrecked Trinculo (I, in good humor, interpret “Trinculo” as President Barack Obama), a jester, with his aristocratic keepers (I interpret “aristocratic” as the Cuban government´s classist and elitist standard of government practice) on an “uncharted island” ( I in good humor interpret it as Cuba). Trinculo happens upon the supine form of “Caliban” (I interpret him as Ramiro Valdes), a deformed native whom he first takes to be some sort of strange fish. When he realizes that Caliban has arms and legs and is warm-blooded, he correctly deduces that what seemed a fish is an islander.

    As the storm resumes and thunder sounds, Trinculo is forced into the nearest shelter, which happens to be Caliban’s gabardine (a loose-fitting cloak as in “cloak and dagger”). As Trinculo famously puts it, “misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows,” and he uses the phrase more literally than we do. He must, to avoid the storm, actually lie down with the petrified Caliban (who thinks Trinculo is a tormenting spirit, by the way Ramiro Valdes looked a President Obama) and share his garment as bed clothing. Trinculo’s “strange” can mean either “foreign,” “unknown,” or “odd,” while we use “strange” only in the last sense. We’ve also adapted the phrase to more metaphorical uses, meaning by “strange bedfellows” unexpected partners (Cuba and the United States as in the picture represented by President Barack Obama and Ramiro Valdes).

    Nothing the mind cannot bear, nor interpret to underscore reality through good humor.

    ¡Viva Cuba Libre!

    • The Cuban regime began conducting preeventive arrests since 1960. Ciudad deportiva in Havana was a place were many dissidents were momentarily detained. Villa Marista is the current place were most dissidents from Havana are detained for interrogations . Once they are interrogated there, they are either released from Villa Marista or they are send to other major prosons,like Kilo-7,Boniato Prison in Santiago de Cuba (eastern Cuba) or Combinado del este en Havana del este.Villa Marista is run by the MININT. These dissidents are detained and then they are usually released once the event is over. The Cuban DSE also infiltrate their agents within the Cuban Ladies in white. The agents are dressed in civilian clothes and they will chant on favor of the fovernment to make outsiders believe that the majority of the Cuban population is supporting Castro when in fact most of them are DSE agents.

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