After Hurricane Ian left Cuba in the dark, protestors took to the streets. Now the government is set to charge them with sedition and terrorism.
As the sun rose over Cuba on July 19, Fidel Castro issued a new decree. It was a bold move, and it had nothing to do with the country’s electricity supply.
The dictator had called last June for the country to hold a national plebiscite on the question: Should Cuba join the US embargo of the island’s trade? The plan was to let the people decide, and since they didn’t show up, Cuba, like most Latin American countries, was stuck with the decision the US has forced on the region: that it will no longer sell oil from the island.
But the authorities still wanted the opportunity to express their opinion — and the Cubans had given them what they wanted. In a day of massive protests, demonstrations were held demanding that the government revoke the decree and institute a new “social revolution” that would make socialism a reality and put an end to the US blockade.
But what’s more revolutionary than democracy to Cubans? The government has now had the opportunity to hold an election for the National Assembly, the country’s parliament, to replace the one the people’s assembly passed, but it rejected it.
The government was set to run the election anyway, and was prepared to use the media to spread lies that were based on a conspiracy theory, according to which the US was funding these demonstrations to overthrow their government. That’s because the country needs the dollars coming in from the US to pay for its vital medical service (that includes its hospitals) and its imports of food and fuel. It can do this only by exporting products such as sugar or meat to the US.
This is why the Cuban regime uses violence to put down protestors.
The violence began the following day, with three people shot dead by the security forces. Then came the attacks: Cubans were beaten, tortured, and, according