Saturday, May 17, 2008

Will Cuba Ever Be Free Again?

Part I

Will Cuba ever be free again?

Of course.

There is no doubt that she will be free someday.

Those for whom this assurance is enough, whose vision and faith is Mosaic, should stop reading here.

We have wandered in the desert somewhat longer than Moses did; or, rather, we have wandered away from the desert that has become our homeland in the hope of being able to return there in the fullness of time. That is the remarkable thing about time which we didn't need Einstein to explain to us: it is always expanding. Yet we ourselves are not. Those of us who have already expanded (and expended) fifty years in the hope of catching up with our country's destiny, returning to that desert and making it blossom again, as it once did, cannot cherish the hope of being gardeners there or even of witnessing its blossoming beyond the days of man. Time for us is definitely finite. The nearer we come to the horizon the less time there is left for us to meet it.

So the original question must be rephrased:

Will we live to see a free Cuba?

Is that hope still tenable?

Not for all of us, not even for most of us. Perhaps not even for any of us.

It really does depend on one's individual expectations, that is, how one chooses to define "free." The more you define freedom down, the closer your definition is to the present system (i.e. the negation of freedom), the closer you are to seeing that day. If consumer freedom suffices, then Cubans have already set out on the road to "freedom" with the Chinese model as their ultimate though unreachable goal. If new faces are all that is required, then there will be many new faces in the immediate future, and more importantly, the old familiar detestable faces of communism will all be gone soon if not the thing itself. If that is enough to meet your definition of freedom, then you are that much closer to the "freedom" you desire. If a re-built Cuba, with skycrapers as high as Shanghai's and state-corporativism (also known as fascism) in full-throttle thanks to a sympathetic U.S. president that will do for Cuba what Nixon did for China (except without prior conditions), then your dream of a "free" Cuba may be here as soon as November. If you believe that tyranny can evolve into something other and preferable to tyranny without guns and against the wishes of a regional hagemon which considers stability preferable to freedom in Cuba, then what are you doing here when the best perspective from which to witness that evolution is there?

If, however, you belong to the majority of Cuban exiles unwilling to make any accommodation with the evil that destroyed our country, or to tolerate a thriving tyranny more than an impoverished one, if progress means to you the fulfillment of man's thriving to be free rather the State's striving to be omnipotent, if you want the best for Cuba and not merely what others would settle for as good enough for our country, our wait has just begun.

[In Part II, we will discuss what is required now for Cuba to regain her freedom and for us to be able to see her free before we end our days].


Ms Calabaza said...

I don't think we will ever live to see a free Cuba the way we interpret "freedom". Sorry to sound negative but I just see too much money involved in high places that will benefit keeping the same crooks there in place for a long while.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

ms. calabaza:

The good thing about being a pessimist is that one is never disappointed, but can, on occasion, be pleasantly surprised. Let us hope we will be.

Ms Calabaza said...

that's the thing, I don't consider myself a pessimist but in this matter I don't see much hope. I agree though, when you don't expect much it's hard to be disappointed. Can't wait to read Part 2.

Julio Rey said...

This is in the hands of the kids out there. We need to support people like Porno Para Ricardo and Yoani.

CorgiGuy said...

mat, i think you need to define what freedom is.

Freedom in a spiritual sense jesus, buddha and other spirtual masters define freedom as dettachment from the material world. this type of freedom has to do with your mind and your view of reality. this type of freedom is independent of the goverment.

Here in america we think of freedom in terms of civil liberties and economic potential. we are indivdualistic and like the goverment to stay out of our lives and let's us pursue our individual goals and dreams and create our own wealth.

In Marxists goverments like in cuba freedom is viewed in terms of equality, the state creates the wealth and redistributes it. civil liberties are controlled by the state and can be taken away.

If we hold the american ideal of freedom and liberty cuba is not there yet.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...


Communist Cuba conforms to no ideal of freedom, not even that which you identify as the Marxist ideal.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...


You are right: the future of Cuba will be whatever the young people make it if only they can wrest power from the hands of those who cheated their parents and grandparents of their civil rights by enthroning one generation for nearly 50 years while denying those which followed it the opportunity to assert their political maturity and guide the destinies of the nation.

John Thomas Roche said...

Cuba will be another proof of the human spirit's ability to soar --there is no slavery so great, no tyranny so strict, that a greater redemption does not surge forth. Freedom will come to Cuba, though Cuba will never be what it once was nor what it could have been. And with that, it is painful to see those who knew Cuba before 1959 to pass away while Castro inc. lives on. It is equally painful to know that there will be those alive today who will never step foot on a free Cuba.

You ask what is meant by freedom. For me it is Patria, Pueblo, y Libertad.

Patria: A state where the land is available for all to cultivate, and not for a select few to horde over and oppress others with.

Pueblo: A people whose mutuality and respect of each person's inherit dignity to co-exist with one another is allowed to freely be nourished and cultivated.

Libertad: The full enjoyment of political freedom, social justice, the land, people, and peace.

Time will tell.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

John R.:

These last 50 years will always be a visible gash on our country's face, but time will contour that scar till it becomes no more than a thin if indelible line. Other countries have survived comparable national hecatombs and are instinct with life today. I believe in the innate ability of the Cuban people to transcend our present condition because it is not our destiny, but, rather, a detour from our destiny. Our country may never be what it once was, which is regrettable; but it can be something as great if different. The struggle will be long and hard and we may have to travel roads that we had already traversed more than a century ago, but we will succeed in the end. I have no doubt. Because I believe in the Cuban people, I believe in the future of our country. It is our ability to transcend the present that is my only worry. Once we have done that my faith in the our future is as boundless as my pride in our past.

Patria y Libertad is already our national motto and I would not change it.

Vana said...


Your post stirred me made me cry, to think what Cuba could have been if there had been no Castro's, think of it merely as a dream La Cuba de Ayer will never return, but she will forever live in our hearts, I count myself among the lucky ones. the ones who saw her in all her glory, hopefully my children will one day see her completly free, but even that is in doubt.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Vana & ms. calabaza:

The history of the last 49 years has taught us to take nothing for granted. It has shattered our hopes and expectations in numberless ways; but, at the same time, it has shown us the great part that luck and happenstance can play in our lives. Granted, almost always for the worse; but, nonetheless, variable and unpredictable.

I have never discounted the possibilty that fortune would eventually favor those who love and build rather than those who hate and destroy (as Martí put it). Let us always cherish that hope even when all other hopes have failed us and never surrender it till our dying breath. Even then, the hope will not die but continue to live in others.

Anonymous said...

hey I got some Good news for you that cuba will be free free like never seen before it will be the greatest thing ever it will bring joy and hope prosperity for this country and CUBA will be once again the shinning star of the carribean and that is the truth

Anonymous said...

A lot of bad things haved happend To CUBA but all that is about to change the time has come for real freedom where the new generation of cuban americans and our cuban brothers in the island will see the freedom that cuba deserves and will conquer through the eyes of our new.generation of freedom fighthers that will fight to the end to see justice and liberty for all

Anonymous said...

The time has come for freedom and freedom is coming for cuba freedom for all of our brothers and sisters this new young generation will stand for justice and freedom for all cubans this will mark history we will rebuild a new cuba a new begining freedom justice and liberty for all cubans cuba will be free and it will come back like never seen before it will florish like a rose

Anonymous said...

Cuba will be free when USA wants