The Prayer of Today’s Cubans

Cartoon by Yasser Castellanos

La plegaria


HAVANA TIMES – With the bad economic news of recent days many Cubans are worried of a possible return of the prolonged blackouts that plagued the country in the 1990s.

Reports in the alternative and international online media and word of mouth note the continued worsening of the economic and political situation in Venezuela, the main oil supplier to Cuba under highly preferential terms.

For now, the government of Raul Castro has cut back on electricity use at state workplaces and says the general population will hardly be affected.

However numerous reports have already begun to appear regarding hours long power outages in several neighborhoods of the capital. Likewise, bureaucratic services at government offices are likely to become even slower than usual.


15 thoughts on “The Prayer of Today’s Cubans

  • I am quoting figures produced by the Mennonite Church. But I am interested to learn that the Mennonites in Cuba (a country you have never set foot in) are working with “the authorites” which in Cuba means the Castro regime. Unlike you, I am a free individual not directed by others such as a religious organization. My concerns are for humanity, not pursuit of imposing any religious or political beliefs upon others. To express the views that you pursue in these pages and then to have the temerity to suggest that you support social justice would be laughable if it were not obvious nonsense.

  • I gave a direct quote of the General Conference of the Mennonite Church.

  • Your figures are totally off, and you have no idea what you are talking about. Besides that there are no (zero) Amish in Cuba (and never were), and the Mennonites number in the thousands. They do not oppose the Revolution, and work together with the authorities and the nation on matters of peace and social justice. You seem to know nothing about churches or religion. You are known for your “made up” facts. You are a fiction writer. Maybe you should look for a job. Your handlers are not pleased with you.

  • “That we recognize the incompatibility of Christianity and atheistic Communism and the challenge to the cause of Christ which the latter represents.”

    General Conference of the Mennonite Church

  • I note that the Mennonite Church lists 124 members in Cuba plus 20 Amish. It will be difficult to identify the Amish in Cuba as there are so many horse drawn vehicles.

  • You Conrad refuse to answer the question previously asked:

    Is the Mennonite Church now in favour of communism?

    As for the Mennonite Church being well ‘entrenched’ in Cuba, exactly where?

  • Nice try. You don’t know anything about the Mennonite Church, which is well entrenched in Cuba, and strongly supports the revolution. You are confused, but that is to be expected. Your handlers will not be amused. You are on a short leash, remember?

  • Many of us? Did you take a poll? Grow a pair and say it is what you and you alone think.

  • Is “many of us” the members of the Mennonite Church?

    Did you even notice that the title of the article is:
    “The Prayer of Today’s Cubans.” ?
    and that the cartoon is of Cubans praying? That is why they are shown in Cuba’s national colours!

    How do you pose as a Christian and have no respect for the pain of others?

    Mennon Simon would have been ashamed of you!

  • The early 1990’s experience after collapse of Soviet Union will not be returning. Raul and not Fidel has the helm. Raul will do whatever is needed to survive. Fidel lacked the same flexibility. Interesting times ahead.

  • It appears to many of us that you always overstate what you perceive to be bad news.

  • Correct. But when Obama quotes unemployment numbers that are questionable low, there is a cauldron of naysayers to call him on it. When Raul “understate bad news”, there’s no counter-balancing force to check him.

  • That is certainly correct Terry.
    There are some differences however. In countries where access to information is the norm, people are better able to anticipate and judge for themselves, that which issues from the mouths of the politicians. In Cuba day to day life doesn’t change and the information which most Cubans receive has been only that which the regime selects.
    However, perhaps the biggest single change which we witness is the flow of information now circulating through the cell-phones of younger people. This form of ‘underground’ news much of it unwelcome, is a huge problem for the regime and they cannot stem it.
    Other source of information particularly regarding Venezuela and Equador, are the teachers and doctors serving there and then returning home to Cuba to explain just how badly the economy of Venezuela has declined and the new requirements for Cubans to acquire a visa to visit Equador where previously one wasn’t necessary. I say this from experience, having relatives in both education and medical services who either have or are currently working in those countries.
    Slowly but surely the information leaks out through mouth to mouth discussion and slowly but surely the population has realized that much of the truth has been hidden from them. In consequence they watch Mesa Redondo at 7.00 p.m. and the national news at 8 p.m. with cynicism.

  • Moses, while I agree with you, I also believe that there’s nothing peculiar about politicians understating bad news and/or up-selling good news. This happens everyday all around the globe.

  • As I mentioned in a previous comment, the Castros always understate bad news. Likewise, the Castros will overblow good news. Blackouts are bad news. If Raul even bothered to mention it, you can be sure its worse than he announced.

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