Cuban Poet Rafael Alcides on Fidel Castro and the Press (Video)

HAVANA TIMES — “Once Upon a Time in Biran,” part four of the web documentary “Rafael” from an extensive interview conducted with Cuban poet Rafael Alcides on numerous topics. Director: Miguel Coyula (2016). Subtitles in English

See parts 1, 2 and 3 of the interview here:


32 thoughts on “Cuban Poet Rafael Alcides on Fidel Castro and the Press (Video)

  • February 8, 2016 at 1:26 am

    What’s your prescription? North Korea? Khmer Rouge’s Cambodia? (Chomsky defended them back in the 70s…)

  • February 4, 2016 at 9:39 am

    LOL! The voice-over at the beginning of the documentary was taken from he beginning of Citizen Kane, by Orson Wells. Ironically, rather fitting to the topic. Alcedes is a wonderful raconteur, describing in clarity, humour and incite intelligence what was once the hope of the revolution and how it all went wrong.

    An excellent series of videos! Thank you for posting them.

  • February 4, 2016 at 9:30 am

    Caracas is located in the Cuban colony of Venezuela, ruled by the Castro puppet Nicolas Maduro, and where 4000 Cuban troops are stationed to keep the Venezuelan oil and money flowing back to Havana.

  • February 3, 2016 at 8:18 am

    They have nothing to argue because all they do is complaining. They do not like this they do not like that yet what gave they done? Fidel Castro sacrifice his life for the Cuban people. He wanted to retire many times but stayed in the government just like george washignton to make sure the Cuban people were safe. And what does Olga have to offer? Nothing. Everyone would starve under her way.

  • February 2, 2016 at 10:32 pm

    do you think that you could debate me on the facts and figures , a long time ago I learned a piece of wisdom goes like this

    “don’t know argue unless you have something better to offer”
    I try my best to live up to it

  • February 2, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    First of all, thank you for a reasoned reply to my comment. To varying degrees, I disagree with most of what you have written. You have asked what is to gained by being negative against “the Castros”? Accountability. Most of what is wrong with Cuba today is their fault. I completely disagree that the Castros want freedom for the Cuban people. Take internet access for example. There have been several offers from foreign investors to build out the infrastructure necessary to bring internet access in Cuba into the 21st century. They were all turned down. I have NEVER advocated violence in Cuba. I recognize the failings of capitalism. I also understand the limitations of democracy. But the issue here is capitalism vs. socialism and democracy vs. dictatorship. On balance, I choose capitalism and democracy. Dare I say so do you or you would be living in Cuba right now.

  • February 2, 2016 at 1:14 pm

    Moses, negativity serves a purpose, I don’t deny that. It is a means of proving what is true when constructive approaches fail. However where you and me differ is what negative comments to make. What is to be gained by being negative against “the Castros” as you put it, or “Raul and Fidel”. As I said when you begin dialectical contention you energise both sides. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. So you are energising “the Castros” with your attacks. What is the point? You would argue that you are also energising the “anti-Castros” in the dialectic and they, being on the path of truth will be naturally victorious. Fine. But as I said, what is the point? Do you really think Cuba’s problems will get magically better once Fidel and Raul are gone. Fidel has already gone for the most part, and Raul is set to retire soon also. Is it their magic personality that holds the Cuban’s in thrall or is it the reality that having tried revolution for the past fifty years Cuban’s are more realistic about prospects for change. Managing an economy is complex, managing life more so. There are problems that humanity has yet to fully solve, indeed there will always be such problems, which is why in its negativity, the U.S. deserves praise as well. The challenge is to pick ones targets insightfully. Not simply try to kill off a humble man, however much influence he seems to have. We know that Marx is correct about the contradictions of capitalism, that the only way to make profit is through exploitation. We know that the banks create money out of nothing and then charge us to use it, as was recently proved by amongst others Richard Werner (google it). We know that pure democracy is a mathematical impossibility as proved by Arrow’s impossibility theorem (again google it). We know that current production levels of the world can only sustain a net income of $750 a month per person if distributed equally as shown by Picketty (read it). We know that current resource use by the wealthy countries if repeated across the globe would require between three and five planets worth of resources. What do we know about Cuba, that the Soviet Model cannot compete with the Capitalist one when confined to one tiny island? Even that is questionable since Cuba still exists and its people still live. We know that some Cubans feel discontent, yet remain patient, couldn’t that be said for every country in the world, at least most of the time. Your magic solutions are illusions since comparing Cuba with the U.S. is as you keep saying a waste of time. Some of your negativity is justified. Freedom, whilst as an absolute is an impossibility, in relative terms is something to fight for. Unfortunately, whether atheist or not you seem to miss the reality that this is something the Cuban’s have been fighting for for generations, and through their successes they are much more realistic about what is possible than you. Perhaps before you continue to advocate violent upheaval you consider the following quote from the famous Spaghetti Western “A Fist Full of Dynamite”: “The revolution!? Don’t try to tell me about the revolution! I know all about the revolutions and how they start! The people that read the books, they go to people that don’t read the books -the poor people- and say: “Hoho! the time has come to have a change eh!” […] I know what I’m talking about when I’m talking about the revolutions. […] So the poor people make the change, eh… And then the people that read the books, they all sit around the big polished table and they talk and talk and talk and eat and eat and eat eh… But what has happened to the poor people? THEY’RE DEAD!!! That’s your revolution… So please, don’t tell me about revolutions… AND WHAT HAPPENS AFTER, THE SAME F*CKING THING STARTS ALL OVER AGAIN!”

  • February 2, 2016 at 9:37 am

    Of course there are a few companies in Canada that can not legally do business with the Castros. I would venture to guess, however, there are thousands more that can. Digging up “ghosts from Christmas past” to substantiate your anti-US bias is a failed tactic. American foreign policy is a reflection of the leadership in the White House. As that leadership changes based upon the will of the people, our interactions on the world stage change as well. What we did Vietnam, is a reflection of the Johnson and then Nixon administrations. Just as what we DID NOT do in Syria reflects the prerogatives of the Obama administration. In any case, the blemishes of US foreign policy don’t justify the failings of the Castro revolution. Your puerile attempt to defend the Castros by bringing up the US Civil War and slavery (you haven’t but you probably will) falls short of convincing.

Leave a Reply

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