On October 9, 1967, in southern Bolivia, near the barren and desolate village of La Higuera, the Bolivian Army, under instructions from the government of the U.S., trapped the isolated guerrilla column led by Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara. Che, a hero of the Cuban Revolution of 1959, believed that Cuba, only 90 miles away from the mainland of the U.S., would remain vulnerable unless other revolutions succeeded in the world. His reaction to the violent U.S. bombardment of Vietnam had been similar, not enough to defend Vietnam, he had said, but it was necessary ‘to create two, three, many Vietnams’. Failure to spark revolution in Congo led Che to Bolivia, where its army trapped him. He was eventually captured and brought to a schoolhouse. Mario Terán Salazar, a soldier, was tasked with the assassination. Che looked at this quivering man. “Calm down and take good aim,” he told him. “You’re going to kill a man.” Che died on his feet.
Tag Archives: Cuba
As bad as things have been for those who suffered loss and discomfort from Hurricane Irma in the continental United States—where millions of Floridians evacuated their homes and fled north in slow-moving processions of possession-packed cars—the difference in scale between their experience and that of residents of the affected Caribbean islands cannot be understated. That gap has only been accentuated by the advent of Hurricane Maria, which has wreaked havoc upon the island nation of Dominica. The United States citizens most directly in its path—as in Irma’s—are the people of Puerto Rico. Otherwise, only the destruction in the Florida Keys, which are, essentially, Caribbean outcroppings, is comparable. The damage to settlements on some of the Leeward Islands, such as Barbuda and the French-Dutch island of St. Martin, is so thorough that rebuilding seems neither realistic nor wise, given the likelihood that even greater hurricanes will come in the future.
concederlo el recién electo presidente de Estados Unidos, Donald Trump. Quieren que se restituya la política de ‘pies secos, pies mojados’ o quieren, al menos, una amnistía para los varados, para aquellos que abandonaron Cuba antes de que el 12 de enero pasado el ex presidente Barack Obama derogara la política que permitía a los residentes de la isla ser admitidos legalmente de manera casi expedita si se presentaban en las fronteras terrestres o si lograban tocar tierra desde el mar.
La petición de los varados llegó al sitio web de la Casa Blanca el pasado 25 de enero y necesitan obtener 100.000 firmas para que la Casa Blanca se pronuncie sobre este asunto. Que responda no significa que conceda la amnistía, o que regrese la política de ‘pies secos, pies mojados’. Significa, apenas, que recibirán algo de atención. Mientras las 100.000 firmas llegan, Jovann Silva Delgado, abogado cubano residente legal en Dallas, Texas, viaja en su auto hasta Nuevo Laredo para dar asesoría legal a quienes duermen en albergues, casas de migrantes manejadas por la iglesia católica, hoteles baratos y otros sitios cerca de la frontera.
On Thursday, President Obama announced that he was scrapping the long-standing policy by which Cuban migrants arriving at U.S. borders were granted automatic access to the country, and eventual permanent-resident status. The measure, which had immediate effect, was in keeping with a dramatic series of executive actions that Obama has taken to solidify as many of his policies as possible, or to at least hinder their reversal by Donald Trump. The end of open-door entry to the United States for Cubans, called “wet foot, dry foot,” is intended both as a buttress to Obama’s historic rapprochement with Cuba—which Trump has recently threatened to tear up—and as a brake on the surge of Cubans flooding into the United States since a restoration of diplomatic relations was announced, in December, 2014.
He led a one-party communist state by himself. He participated in leading the world to near nuclear crisis. He was in power for quite a long time and the feelings are mixed about him, but one thing is certain: Few world leaders, living or dead, have occupied history’s center stage as long as Fidel Castro, whose death shocked the world today. He dictated over Cuba for nearly half a century.
Castro tended to keep the press at arm’s length. As you’ll learn below, one exception was our first playboy Interview with him, in 1967, in, which he discussed the early days of the Revolution and the 1962 missile crisis. But things change, and Castro clearly came to believe that the time had come to launch a new dialog with the American public. Hence his second playboy Interview, first printed in August 1985 and presented in its entirety here, on the occasion of his death at age 90.
Sus manos son muy blancas y sus dedos son largos, como de brujo. Sus dientes son amarillos. Yo tengo diez años —1999 o 2000— y estoy muy nervioso: de pie frente a un micrófono, él frente a otro. Miro su uniforme, sus botas y su zambrán. Él me pregunta qué quiero ser de grande y le digo, por decir algo, que médico. Él se alegra. Le gustan los médicos. Es lo que más le gusta. Es su carta de presentación.
Estamos en televisión, en cadena nacional para todo el país. Hablamos un par de minutos. El resto de los pioneros escucha con atención. También las maestras. Las maestras tienen el mal gusto de reprender si uno dice algo fuera de tono delante de las visitas. Pero yo no digo nada demasiado atrevido. Luego me abraza y creo que me besa. Lo quiero mucho, tanto.
Fidel Castro was, by any standards, a towering figure. In his frail late years his presence still resonated across Latin America, even among generations that did not experience the exhilarating shock of the 1959 Cuban Revolution.
Before the revolution, Cuba symbolized colonialism at its most pernicious. Its war of liberation from Spain was appropriated by the United States, whose government claimed that victory as its own and rewrote the newly independent country’s constitution to ensure its dominance.
On 26 July 1953 an angry young lawyer, Fidel Castro, led a small band of armed men in an attempt to seize the Moncada barracks in Santiago de Cuba, in Oriente province. Most of the guerrillas were killed. Castro was tried and defended himself with a masterly speech replete with classical references and quotations from Balzac and Rousseau, that ended with the words: ‘Condemn me. It does not matter. History will absolve me.’ It won him both notoriety and popularity.Released in an amnesty in 1954, Castro left the island and began to organize a rebellion in Mexico. For a time he stayed in the hacienda that had once belonged to the legendary Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata. In late November 1956 eighty-two people including Fidel Castro and Che Guevara set sail from Mexico in a tiny vessel, the Granma, and headed for the impenetrable, forested hills of the Sierra Maestra in Oriente province.
Fidel Castro has died. Few political leaders of modern times have been as iconic or as enduring as the Cuban revolutionary, who had turned ninety in August. He had been formally retired since 2008—he had handed power over to his younger brother Raúl two years before, after falling seriously ill—but he had ruled as Cuba’s jefe máximo for no less than forty-nine years, and he remained Cuba’s undisputed revolutionary patriarch until his death.
In 1998, a decade after his ghostwritten memoir, “The Art of the Deal,” made him a household name in the United States, the New York real-estate developer Donald Trump sent a team of consultants to Cuba to sniff out new business opportunities. According to a story in the current issue of Newsweek, Trump paid the expenses for the consultants, who worked for the Seven Arrows Investment and Development Corporation. Their bill came to $68,551.88.
The payment was illegal, and was also covered up. Documents obtained by Newsweek suggest that Trump’s executives knew as much, and sought to conceal the payments by making it appear that they had gone to a charitable effort. Clearly, Trump’s company, then called Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts, knowingly violated the long-standing U.S. trade embargo with Cuba, part of the Trading with the Enemy Act—which, as it happens, is still on the books today, despite President Obama’s restoration of relations with Cuba, in December, 2014. The embargo is a complex bundle of laws and prohibitions that have accrued over a half century and that can only be done away with by a majority vote in Congress, which seems unlikely to happen anytime soon.