V Jara, F.G. Lorca, R. Arenas: we grieve for all
HAVANA TIMES – Victor Jara’s killers were finally arrested. The Chilean singer and songwriter was murdered in Santiago’s National Stadium in 1973, a few days after the military coup that toppled the Popular Unity government of Salvador Allende.
Even Chile, so intrinsically nationalist and conservative, is now detaining these subordinates.
Will Spain ever offer a unanimous moral condemnation of the assassins who murdered Federico García Lorca and Miguel Hernandez, or those who exiled Antonio Machado, Pablo Picasso, Manuel de Falla, Rafael Alberti? Or of the executioners of so many thousands of Spaniards who defended the democratic and universal values; decent and upright citizens who even today remain by the wayside, unknown and forgotten.
When will there be a condemnation from within and outside of Cuba of the express firing squads, the imprisonment of the unruly and those who dissented from the dictatorship, and the exile of so many valuable intellectuals and professionals like Sarduy, Arenas or Cabrera Infante?
Enough – this needs to end. Franco’s rule was one of the four most criminal episodes in the history of Europe, together with Stalinism, Hitler, and Mussolini’s fascism, and the greatest fratricide of all times in Spain.
And for their part, the Castros, with 56 years spent destroying the foundations of a civilized society in pursuit of the personal interests of their leaders have comprised a reign whose chronological length is superseded only by the 63-year reign of Isabel II. The latter, however has the saving grace that the iconic “queen” isn’t allowed to involve herself in domestic politics. On the contrary, for the Castro’s in Cuba there are no political issues that they’re NOT involved in.
Chile’s democratic voices were brutally silenced from the time of that tragic September 11 in 1973. From there on, Pinochet constructed a successful fiction: a model that was rich in economic benefits for the upper and upper middles classes, constructed upon the cadavers and the silence of the pariahs. This is closely related to the Spanish and Cuban phenomena; always when a dictator has managed to remain in power for enough time to plow the dust of forgetfulness over the blood of the victims, mute their cries of pain, and rub terror mixed with numbing drugs into the heart of their memories, the result is a people who become the victims of a peculiar kind of Stockholm Syndrome on a collective scale.
The result is that at times it becomes incredibly difficult to understand how in these three countries the people simply and plainly admit to being defenders of the accomplishments of Franco, of the Castros or of Pinochet.
Today we can celebrate the fact that justice moves slowly but surely – at least in the case of Chile.