The Castros' Late Halloween / Cubanet, Miriam Celaya
Cubanet, Miriam Celaya, Havana, 18 November 2016 — Just hours after the
finish of the November 8th US elections, the Palace of the Revolution in
Havana sounded its trumpets of war, summoning another of its ridiculous
bombastically named strategic-militaristic exercises: 2016 Bastion
Exercise and Defense Days, that will take place from November 16th to
They have named this pantomime The War of All People, and the scarce
resources of the ruined hacienda will be squandered in its undertaking,
which demonstrates how cohesive the Cuban people are with their
Revolution, how united we are, and how capable of deploying our
combative nature to confront "any of the enemy's maneuver" with our
It's like a Halloween with costumes and commotion, but without candy.
Army officers wear their jackets with epaulettes and pin all the ritual
insignias and logos on them, resigned to the nuisance of being briefly
away from the comfort of their well-served tables and air conditioned
The starving little soldiers of the Compulsory Military Service are
mobilized for days, loaded with ammunition and old weapons to play the
eternal warrior drill against an imaginary enemy, while the forever
fools dress up as militiamen, courageously wielding their wooden stick
rifles. Pretend warriors and weapons for a make-believe war. Cuban
military military maneuvers are probably the current laughing stock on a
In the unthinkable event that 'the enemy' decided to really attack us,
no one in their right mind can ignore that the war would be much shorter
than this ridiculous Castro simulacrum, and that it would inexorably
result in a crushing defeat for Cuba's troops. One would have to be an
idiot to even imagine a different result. Pitiable.
So then, what would be the point of waging a war that was lost from the
start? What's up with all the pathetic display of conflagration of the
Senile Olive Green Club? What's the point of the speeches and typical
Cold War retrograde gestures in the XXI Century?
The attitude of the Castro regime is all the more untimely if we
consider that, during the past four years, Cuba has been the stage for
peace dialogues between the Colombian Government and the FARC
narco-guerrillas aimed at reaching a consensus agreement after half a
century of civil war in this South American country, a goal apparently
reached just a few days ago.
Let us also remember that the CELAC Summit, held at fill blast in
Havana, where all of Latin America, with a drum roll, was declared a
Zone of Peace.
But in reality, the apparent bipolar disorder of the olive green
gerontocracy, of simultaneously brandishing attitudes so opposed –
calling others to peace and calling Cubans to war – especially within
two years of the restoration of relations between the governments of
Cuba and the United States, reveals several substantive issues.
Leaving aside the obvious fact that the masters of the Palace of the
Revolution do not have the least idea of how or where to lead the
nation, and that their only interest is to keep clinging to power in
perpetuity – reasons that force them to improvise on the fly, lurching
as castaways in a colossal storm – the truth is that the government
desperately needs to conserve its beloved enemy, even when the enemy
keeps ignoring such a negligible adversary.
The official hysteria that is being reflected on the aggressiveness of
the speeches, in the return to extreme nationalism, in the invocation of
the old ghosts of "ideological divisionism" and in the use of the
Government press monopoly as a barricade for slogans and evocations of
the past, shows how much damage the rapprochement and distention policy
begun by the outgoing U.S. President, Barack Obama, is inflicting on the
Although, in principle, Obama appeared as a beacon of hope in the bleak
horizon forecast for the future of the Castro regime, it has turned out
to be, in short, a true nightmare for the General-President and his
clan. Castro II has failed to access the desired capital, and what is
worse, he has lost his essential sustenance of his ideological control
Indeed it so happens that more than half a century encrypting the
backbone of the government's policy about the belligerence and hostility
of the external enemy that threatens us has turned confrontation into
the system's only strategy. In fact, this sustained conflict is so
essential to the Castro policy, both outside and inside the country,
that if the U.S. regime did not exist, they would have had to invent it.
But, in these outdated belligerent infatuations, other elements are
being reflected, such as the alienation of the system, plunged in an
irreversible crisis and the disconnection between the government and the
current reality, with the world political context, and with the interest
of the (un)governed. Obviously, the General-President and his troupe do
not understand that in Cuba nobody believes in the old fable of Little
Red Riding Hood-Peoples besieged by the Wolf-Imperialism which can only
be protected and saved by the Woodsman-State Government Communist Party.
Today's Cuba is different, as are Cubans. Over 50 years have not passed
in vain since a young and energetic Fidel Castro convened the first
military mass mobilization because of the inauguration of an American
President, and 36 years since "The War of All Peoples" was conceived as
a strategy to militarily mobilize millions of Cubans every US election
year. The political benefits of fueling a conflict with the Northern
giant were substantial, but the fable of the Tropical Riding Hood has
worn thin and no longer has an effect.
Cubans today know that Castro's hostility towards the U.S. is a sign of
weakness, not of strength. Neither do they believe in the revolutionary
epic nor are they committed to a regime perceived as the biggest
obstacle to freedom, prosperity and personal fulfillment. Nobody seems
interested in imaginary battles, in particular if they are waged against
the nation that has become destiny and home to millions of our countrymen.
Currently, Cubans who are not leaving for "enemy" territory to follow
their dreams are setting their best hopes on the day when the bastions
of the Castro regime fall, and the political strategy of the future
government, elected by them, is Prosperity for All the People. They
simply want to live in peace, without misleading fables and without wars.
Translated by Norma Whiting
Source: The Castros' Late Halloween / Cubanet, Miriam Celaya –
Translating Cuba -
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