Trump’s Shadow and Cuba’s Ruling Classes

Lynn Cruz

The head of Cuba’s Communist Party, Raul Castro and Donald Trump. File photo: cubanosporelmundo.com

HAVANA TIMES – When US president, Donald Trump, came into power, I remember reading an essay by Deepak Chopra in which he warned that Trump represented America’s shadow and that we’d have to wait and see whether the world was ready to live in his shadow.

Those words really left a mark on me. For this US president has created a policy of rumors and theater during his time in office with his Twitter account. His actions aren’t in line with his words a lot of the time, but the terrifying enfant terrible effect he has does the trick. He is putting the entire world on edge.

Trump isn’t the president of any old country, he is the president of the most powerful country, and his politics are based on making shit hit the fan.

His compulsive nature is returning national pride to “America” (US). This, as well as economic growth, increases his support base, especially of those who have suffered the vicious cycle of poverty which ruling classes create. I think Trump has quite a good chance of winning his reelection. We’re lucky that he’s only allowed to run for a second time.

Here in Cuba

Something similar to the Trump phenomenon happened in Cuba in the early years of the Revolution, only it was a “lighter” version of the ruling class, and it was almost tongue-in-cheek the way they waited for people to call Fidel Castro “a madman” in the news, every morning.

There was a mass exodus of Cubans in the ‘60s, mainly the island’s bourgeosie. They thought that it would be wiser to wait for the end of this revolutionary frenzy, from afar. But, that decision automatically stripped the island of its political opposition. It was defining in terms of the entire country’s power falling into the hands of a single man. Of course, the existence of the former Soviet bloc also conspired in favor of Fidel Castro.

This first migration of Cubans was what led to the creation of Miami. As they were the old ruling class, they spoke English, many of them were already doing business with US companies when they were in Cuba, it was easier for them to pick up their capital and leave, take hold of political power in Florida (which is the same as economic power), and they are the ones with a deciding vote in elections.

That said, they feel like they are victims of expropriations and Castrismo. They aren’t the only ones, mind you, there are plently of examples of tragedies at sea, trying to flee the socialist paradise and seeking asylum in the US. 

My take on it is that in these past 60 years, most Cubans have lost out, especially the generation that brought about the Revolution and put their hearts into the process. Today, they have a ridiculously low pension. This is the punishment that has befallen those Cubans who supported Fidel Hood back in the day, who stole from the rich and gave to the poor.

However, if you have power, then you are right. That’s the way the game goes. The people ruling Cuba today are hiding behind the US embargo. Cubans in Florida don’t want to accept their mistake, of having downplayed Castro.  We know today that a candidate has to please the Cuban exile community if they want to be US president, like Trump did. That’s why, the situation that the Cuban people are suffering now depends on the duel between the Castro family and the first wave of Cuban emigres.


Lynn Cruz

It's not art that imitates life, its life that imitates art," said Oscar Wilde. And art always goes a step further. I am an actress and writer. For me, art, especially writing, is a way of exorcising demons. It is something intimate. However, I decided to write journalism because I realized that I did not exist. In Cuba, only the people authorized by the government have the right to express themselves publicly. Havana Times is an example of coexistence within a democracy and since I consider myself a democrat, my dream is to integrate this publication’s philosophy into the reality of my country.

8 thoughts on “Trump’s Shadow and Cuba’s Ruling Classes

  • Thanks for your comments. Very usefull to understand better.

  • CNN showed an interview with Trump held in a US military cemetery in France with row upon row of white crosses in the background – each over the grave of a lost American. So what was Trump talking about in those surroundings? Why. Nancy Pelosi of course and how she is in his opinion losing her mind. It was an awful illustration of how the President of the US has lost all sense of decency – if he ever had any.

  • I agree with everything in your comment Mr MacD. War is a terrible business.
    Thankfully there has been peace in Europe since the end of the conflicts in Ireland and Former Yugoslavia.

    In the end, I think the D Day commemorations were fine. Very moving.

    The presence of trump was entirely dwarfed by the presence of the surviving veterans.

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