A Before and After
A Before and After / Fernando Dámaso
Posted on March 30, 2016
Fernando Damaso, 29 March 2016 — The official journalists and the
functionaries of the Cuban government, all in chorus, just to prove that
the Guantanamo Naval Base is illegal have taken up against the
presidents and Cuban governments from the years 1903 and 1934, years
when the status of the installation was, respectively, signed and
ratified. There is talk of appeasement, surrender and other accusations
against facts, institutions and people who belong to history and who no
longer physically exist.
However, no one said a single word against the installation — behind the
backs of the Cuban people and without their approval — of Soviet nuclear
missiles in the national territory in 1962. Nor about the installation
of the “Lourdes” Radar Espionage base, nor about the deployment of a
Soviet motorized combat unit, also without the approval of the Cuban people.
In these cases, with the government that still exercises power and with
those responsible for these events still physically present. Cowardice
or political opportunism? The Cuban authorities and their servants are
so concerned about the defense of national independence and sovereignty,
they should answer to the citizens for these acts committed against them.
To demand from President Obama, as has become the fashion, that he ask
for forgiveness for things he didn’t do and, therefore, that are not his
responsibility, is very convenient. Why not demand it of the Cuban
authorities, as they are the ones responsible because they are the same
people as were here 57 years ago. They should apologize to Cubans for so
many years of suffering, mistakes, arbitrariness, prohibitions,
impositions and repressions.
There is no doubt that the impact of Obama’s visit on Cuban has been
profound and, even more, his speech at the Alicia Alonso Teatro seems to
have filled the Cuban authorities and their most recalcitrant die-hard
followers with concerns.
Trying to downplay what the American president said, they have ordered
the publication of pamphleteer items such as, “What Obama did and did
not say,” “Obama’s smile,” “An unanswered letter to Obama,” “Obama the
Good?” “A mistaken bet,” and the offensive and disrespectful, “Negro,
are you Swedish” and, as a colophon, the insipid, “Brother Obama,” which
convince no one nor do they diminish the importance of his words.
They all repeat each other (is it change or a previously delivered
script?) with the same facts and arguments against the United States,
but they forget the history of the Cuban government: political,
economic, religious, social, sexual, and cultural repression; a ban on
foreign travel and on buying and selling homes and cars; organizing and
supporting guerrilla forces in many countries of Latin America and
Africa; participating in foreign wars with the loss of Cuban lives;
singling the “13 de Marzo” tugboat and killing little children and
babies on board; summary executions without due process of law; acts of
repudiation with vandalism, beatings and other excesses.
Undoubtedly it is nothing more than a display of the “patter of the
losers.” Although they refuse to recognize it, there is a before and
after of Obama’s trip.
Source: A Before and After / Fernando Dámaso | Translating Cuba –