The ‘Misunderstanding’ of the Cuban People

Havana must accept power outages in solidarity, the authorities ask. (EFE)

By Reinaldo Escobar (14ymedio)

HAVANA TIMES – Fidel Castro had not yet assaulted the Moncada barracks in Santiago de Cuba when, in communist Germany, on June 17, 1953, the people took to the streets to protest against the system that, eight years later, that future assailant implanted in Cuba.

The Germans who rejected socialism were not expropriated capitalists or petty bourgeois, but construction workers. The poet and playwright Bertolt Brecht, after reading the pamphlets that the Writers’ Union distributed on Stalin Avenue indicating that the people had lost the confidence of the Government and that they could only win it again “with redoubled efforts,” asked himself, ironically, the following in the last verses of his poem, “The Solution.”

“Wouldn’t it be simpler

in that case for the Government

to dissolve the people

and choose another?”

Obviously, the solution to the disagreements of the governed with the measures of the rulers is not that those who rule seek new subjects, but that new policies are proclaimed and, better yet, that it’s others who dictate them.

People don’t have to be sympathetic to their rulers, whether they are democratically elected or hand-appointed by the only party allowed.

If the policies drawn up by those who hold government positions produce enemies in relations with other nations, if as a result of those bad relations it’s difficult to market what the country can sell and acquire what it needs to buy, if the laws make it difficult to prosper and suffocate entrepreneurs and if, to top it off, dissent becomes a crime, being understanding becomes an act of complicity.

They want to convince Cubans that people, Party and Government make up an indissoluble Holy Trinity, and that any fissure constitutes a contribution to the enemy. Therefore, understanding is not enough for those who rule. They demand applause and that the people pretend to be enthusiastic.

At the climax of that claim, to justify the inevitable power cuts in the capital amid the blackouts that mainly overwhelm the cities of the interior, they have appealed to the “solidarity” of the people in Havana, who will have to accept, almost celebrate, the absence of electricity so that the people in the provinces suffer less.

The capital’s solidarity could have another less understanding face so that the inhabitants of the interior are not left alone when it comes to protesting. But then, those would be the people that the Government would like to dissolve.

Translated by Regina Anavy for 

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