Sunday, December 27, 2009

A New Year and Some Small Vacations

Photo: Claudio Fuentes Madan

Happy Holidays! Thank you all for reading me, for translating me, for the solidarity you have brought me in difficult times—which are the hardest and in which one is most alone. To all who share this virtual space I wish you a beautiful year and a good one, and above all a year of change, that change that we are waiting for. Hopefully in 2010 Octavo Cerco will no longer be a cry for freedom without freedom, and will become one of freedom in freedom.

I am going to take a little vacation until the first of the year; I leave you with a sign representative of the Christmas spirit here in Havana.


Note: The blogger Luis Felipe has been freed after his arrest. I hope for the rest of the year the Blogosphere can sleep peacefully—it’s a pain that State Security doesn’t take vacations, they need one!


Humberto Capiro said...

CNN: MORE INFORMATION ABOUT U.S. church group briefly held in Cuba
"The church made three trips in November without incident, but things went sour almost immediately after the 14 volunteers exited the plane in December, one of the participants, Jacquie Jones, told CNN.

Most of the group passed through customs without a problem, but five members of the group were stopped and had their passports and licenses checked, Jones said."

"The Cuban authorities told the five that they were not allowed inside Cuba because they were there for religious reasons and forced them to wait for almost an hour and a half before putting them on a commercial flight back to Mexico, from where they had traveled.

Jones pointed out the U.S. gives travel permits to Cuba for religious work, but the island, at least in this case, rejected the group for the same reason."

"The nine others who had already passed through customs faced additional questioning and were detained inside the airport overnight, Carol Slegers, who was part of that group, told CNN.

Later, it was learned that Cuban authorities considered imprisoning them, she said. Instead, they were left to find a place to sleep on the floor of the airport.

The group ended up sleeping underneath a staircase, using fabric they brought for the clothes-making project as sheets, Slegers said. The next morning, they were put on a plane to Mexico.

The Cuban officials "were rude and cold and indifferent," Slegers said. "It was very psychologically disarming.""

Humberto Capiro said...

HAVANA – Cuba celebrated Friday the 51st anniversary of the revolution with austerity and without any government ceremonies planned, though the public’s traditional dancing in the main squares of the communist-ruled island to celebrate the occasion were maintained.

Communist Party daily Granma published Friday on its front page a photo of ex-President Fidel Castro with the headline “Viva la revolucion,” and used most of its pages to recall what life was like in the country before 1959 when the uprising led by Castro ousted dictator Fulgencio Batista.

The official media also gave space to telling how this weekend the island will be one big party, with the usual dances and public concerts.

Unlike last year, when official events were organized to celebrate a half-century of revolution, this time no activity was planned with members of the government, nor has there been any word of a message to the public from President Raul Castro, Fidel’s younger brother.
Although the anniversary was prepared with austerity amid the worst economy in decades, the streets were decorated with Cuban flags and posters bearing revolutionary slogans.

At midnight Thursday the traditional 21-gun salute sounded from Havana’s La Cabaña Fortress to kick off the anniversary, and at the same time every TV channel transmitted a music video dedicated to Fidel Castro.

But the television aired no official communique to the people referring to the anniversary of the revolution.

Humberto Capiro said...