Outside the Revolution, Nothing

Luis Miguel del Bahia

Photo: Caridad

HAVANA TIMES — The Cuban state prioritizes the family. No one born in Cuba can be deprived of their nationality. So says the constitution.

Nationality implies the right of residence, except in Cuba – so it seems from what happened to a friend of mine.

She went abroad to do a PhD, but decided to stay. She was then not only automatically disqualified for ever working in Cuba as a teacher, but her request to re-enter the country was denied.

The consulate told her that she was not allowed to come back, giving no further explanation. They didn’t tell her how long she would have to remain outside the country or what conditions she would have to meet. She only got a “no” and silence – and her own tears.

Why won’t they let her voluntarily come back to go on trial under the corresponding charges they might bring against her. Who decides arbitrarily which people to exile?

They ask for the extradition of Posada Carriles, but in this woman’s case they didn’t even let her respond voluntarily to justice. All Cubans are equal before the law; the constitution also says that.

It sounds weird to label a university professor a “deserter,” like some soldier in a war. The battle must be one of ideas, with crimes paid for with more than thought.

She has a little girl back in Cuba, so the separation is killing her. Possibly she has one last resort: repatriation.

If the underlying logic is that Cuba paid for her education, sufficient economic sanctions would be enough. But the authorities think differently: defectors must remain behind the enemy’s lines.

Without a country, but without a master, she might reply.


2 thoughts on “Outside the Revolution, Nothing

  • Grady, I personally know a professor at the University of Havana who completed post-doctoral studies in the US two years ago. While here in the US for just over a year, he met, married and fathered a beautiful little boy. Cuban immigration advised him to return to Cuba before seeking permission to reside permanently in the US. After returning to Cuba and receiving his US visa to live in the US he was denied his tarjeta blanca or exit visa by Cuban immigration. He has been stuck in Cuba for more than two years with no explanation from the regime for the repeated refusal to permit his departure. He, too, has agreed to any economic sanctions and is willing to pay back to the regime any educational expenses deemed owed. He has taught at the University for more than 6 years for roughly $11 US a month so he believes he has paid Fidel what he owes. He is not a dissident, he has never done anything contrarevolutionary and up until now has been a card-carrying party member. Dictatorships…you can’t live with them and you can’t live with them.

  • Well, we only know what is reported in the article, so any discussion should keep this in mind.

    I wonder why a person who has a little girl in Cuba–a country under constant attack by imperialism and, presumably, trying to protect national sovereignty by special regulations–would not be cautious and try to “get permission” for any extended stay abroad, in order to safeguard her options.

    This is not to say that related regulations by the Cuban government are unjust; they might or might not be. But sometimes people bring injustice upon themselves, for reasons great and small, and this might be a factor here.

    Let us hope the author’s friend is able, at some point, to return to her home country and reunite with her daughter.

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