Not By Mere Chance

Dariela Aquique

The famous telephone/internet cable that arrived in Cuba in February 2011 but was never activated. The reasons for its not functioning have not been disclosed by the government.

HAVANA TIMES — It can’t be a coincidence that problems began to occur with web browsing services precisely when sessions started on June 21 for the “Festival Click” conference (a meeting in Havana covering new technologies as well as Internet trends and challenges).

These occurred in various institutional settings, such as universities; and although I can’t say for certain, I can almost dare say that many other places must have experienced similar difficulties.

Apologies were given for all of the inconvenience and simplistic excuses were made citing everything from maintenance being performed on air-conditioning equipment to university web sites being updated. Yet the fact is that — for that day at least — students and workers were without internet access.

Perhaps my level of suspicion concerning government strategies has become overblown, but since this is what we’ve gotten used to over the course of years, there aren’t many reasons to be trusting.

Such an action would be in keeping with those who do everything to prevent people from employing the newly existing tools for information dissemination and communications, especially sites for interaction in virtual space.

I’m sure they devised methods for disrupting this meeting aimed at discussing the future of Cuba as a country that is being tied into the modern technological networks and that called for all Cubans on the island to have the right to full Internet access.

“Coincidence” is the term typically used to explain the unknown cause of occurrences or unexpected events that are not due to the necessities of nature or owing to intentional actions. It’s a spontaneous combination of circumstances impossible to foresee or avoid, they say.

This would make it more likely that the problems with Internet navigation and the lack of connections in government facilities that day were only flukes, even more so for my friends who accuse me of being paranoid. But it was definitely not by mere chance.