Alfredo Fernandez

Claudia Cadelo. Photo:

HAVANA TIMES — “Those who love me and those hate me won’t forgive my being distracted,” reads a line from an old song by Silvio Rodriguez. It turns out that yesterday — for the first time — I visited Claudia Cadelo’s blog Octavo Cerco. I had previously read some of her work through a multimedia platform of the Voces Cubana that came into my hands.

There, Claudia Cadelo seemed to me to be a brave, interesting and above all very intelligent woman. Octavo Cerco was, or rather is, an exquisitely designed blog, a real blog of someone living on an island without Internet, something like a desperate cry from the depths of a cave.

Yesterday, when taking my turn on the internet in the Swedish embassy, I couldn’t wait any longer and went to enjoy the Octavo Cerco, this time without the need for a link as the only way to access it in Cuba.

To my great surprise the post was dated August 18, 2011, with Claudia apologizing to her readers for the absence that began at that time and that was due only to a very personal need to complete her second short story (which is great).

The truth is that after that time Claudia never began posting again, and has obviously not uploaded any photos or videos to her blog.

So I asked myself, where did this vital energy of Claudia Cadelo go? I still remember her the day of the premiere of the documentary Revolution (about the career of the rap duo Los Aldeanos), insulting the State Security guy Hugo and his cronies, when in an arbitrary and dictatorial act they prevented her from entering the Chaplin Cinema.

Unfortunately none of those reasons which I imagine led Claudia to put aside her fears and launch her blog have disappeared.

So, I guess she did this because Cuba is the only nation in the Western Hemisphere without free Internet access, or because it happens that there are no free elections here, or perhaps because one cannot travel freely. I suspect that if it was because of that and much more, then Claudia has no right to stop blogging.

I hope this message gets to Claudia Cadelo wherever she is. Claudia, it’s true that one needs the energy of a marathon runner to go forward in a struggle that sometimes seems like it has no end, but also remember that the longest journey begins with one step, and in your case you have already taken several.

Start walking again Claudia, at the same time start writing in your excellent blog.

Remember the line from Silvio.


Alfredo Fernandez

Alfredo Fernandez: I didn't really leave Cuba, it's impossible to leave somewhere that you've never been. After gravitating for 37 years on that strange island, I managed to touch firm ground, but only to confirm that I hadn't reached anywhere. Perhaps I will never belong anywhere. Now I'm living in Ecuador, but please, don't believe me when I say where I am, better to find me in "the Cuba of my dreams.

6 thoughts on “Where Is Claudia Cadelo?

  • D. Simels and anyone else who is new to this site or these issues:

    Observe the sequence of comments. “jerzy says” some obvious and irrefutable things about how the US government is trying to overthrow the Cuban government and revolution. If anyone actually thinks that is not happening, they are certifiably out of touch with reality. If someone thinks it may be true, but somehow from their point of view, Cuba is so bad, there is a moral equivalence between the US efforts and the Cuban 5, etc. In other words they believe the multimillion dollar, 50 years of interference including assassinations, and other efforts to overthrow Cuba and Cuba’s efforts to survive – and gather intelligence on their attackers (Cuba 5 and other “espionage” in the US) are “equalized” by Cuba after all that, sent agents to Miami? Really, that is like saying the B52’s were just an equal response to Viet Cong sappers?

    The second issue made muddy in the above comments is comparing Internet in the US with Cuba. Wow! What a stretch. Should Cuba be better in all ways, not just some small things like health care outcomes, mortality, etc but have internet equal to Starbucks in NYC? Is the Cuban government prioritizing who gets what bandwidth? If not, that would be foolish. Paranoid? Only if the my first point is fantasy. To my knowledge, Cuba has never really threatened the USA. But the USA has along and mean history of invading, oppressing and generally raping Cuba as much as was possible. Now it is not so easy.

    My last point is when someone raises a criticism of Cuba or any society, including the US, I wonder if they just want a bigger piece of the pie or if they care at all about how to make things better, not just for themselves. There are millions of poor Americans in the USA and the rest of the Americas. Should they all have access to education and the Web? Of course, but do you for a moment think the media giants really care about them?

    The Cuban revolution wasn’t just a local or selfish act.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *