The Two-Headed Cuban Hydra

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It has become an axiom about communism as expressed by the architect of glasnost and perestroika, Alexander N. Yakolevlev: “Communism doesn’t work because it runs contrary to human nature.”

The principles or sentences need no explanation. But, although it disappeared 20 years ago, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and the so-called socialist camp, it would seem that what happens with communism was described by Greek mythology in the Twelve Labors of Hercules. Recall that in one of them (the second) the hero confronted, and with the help of Iolaus, killed the Hydra of Lerna, a huge monster with nine heads. Only by decapitating one of them, which was immortal, would the beast die. If any of the other eight were cut off, two more would grow back in its place.

For over half a century the Cuban Hydra has been the cause of misery, destruction, and the plundering of the national heritage. It has oppressed its people. More than two million have fled and are scattered across the globe. Some have been eaten by sharks as they tried to escape. The island is one big prison.

For years, complaints were raised by only a few voices crying in the wilderness, falling on the deaf ears of international public opinion. Today, by ruthlessly leaving a prisoner of conscience to die, the regime received worldwide rejection. So on Thursday, March 11, the European Parliament issued a strong condemnation regarding the cruel and preventable death of political prisoner Orlando Zapata Tamayo, as well as the detention of activists and the attempt to prevent the family from holding his funeral and paying their last respects.

The regime, heir to the experience of repression of all ages, uses scientific and technical advances in its action. They hope that, as sometimes has happened, the world’s attention will be diverted by new urgent events in the world, that the shame will be forgotten and they can continue with their excesses. We hope this does not happen.

In recent days we see, in a disdainful disregard of international sentiment, government mobs beating the Ladies in White, the wives and relatives of the prisoners of the Black Spring of 2003. Even Reina Tamayo, the mother of the deceased Zapata Tamayo, was not only attacked but they screamed that she would be killed like her son.

The system has used considerable resources to reproduce itself in the region and to project an image of social justice. It provides qualified personnel, in conditions of slavery, so it can consolidate its allies. These, in return, give support or repay it with their silence.

To escape this dark night, our nation needs the unity of all Cubans. It is time for those inside to act in concert with the diaspora. Just as Hercules did, with the help of the international community, we will put an end to the two-headed Hydra of Cuba.

Translated by: Tomás A.

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