Havana, January 26th 2010, the body of a lifeless 26 year old young man is discovered in Amistad near Neptuno at 2:00 am overnight. The young man was coming late night from a party with his friends and someone gave him two blows to steal his cell phone and some money. The only fault committed by that young man was to choose the wrong street to reach home. He was just around the corner of his father’s house.
Havana, a few days before in East Havana district, a family doctor was stabbed when an unknown anti-vector control agent was fumigating his apartment. The only fault committed by the family doctor was to open a door to an alleged official agent from the anti-mosquito brigade.
Those are just two simple facts happened in Cuba, but those news never came out to the limelight in newspapers or TV stations in official Cuba. They didn’t make any headlines around the world like the insignificant pictures of the old satrap Castro in wheelchairs, or his mumble writings in some obscure Cuban official newspaper. For the media, those people are none, insignificant, they don’t make any headline around the world and they are just a name in a nameless statistic list held as estate secret by Cuba.
Those facts are not uncommon in Communist Cuba: those facts are hidden by the authorities and never any official journalist reported in any official media. There are too many secrets held by Cuban journalists: statistics about suicides, criminality and prostitution never find a line in any Cuba’s headlines, but they are open secrets to Cubans. The estate treat them as aliens: they don’t belong to Socialism.
A few weeks before, the deaths in Havana Psychiatric Hospital found a few linesin official Cuba because the National Commission of Human Rights, declared illegal by the government, made them public and the authorities were left with the hands tied: they didn’t have any other choice rather than publish it.
But the facts are there: living a life from mouth to mouth, passing the story person to person, meanwhile Cuba’s media is praising Cuban doctors in Haiti, blaming US troops in Afghanistan and catching bloggers whose only fault has been to bring light to the real Cuba.
Criminality is not an isolated phenomenon in our country. It is the crude reality happening every single day but hidden by Castro and his henchmen in the media. Cuba government only provides the fancy Cuba, the pretty numbers and the happy faces: underground Cuba is left as an obscure number to hide, and a reason to blame the embargo, the shortage of everything and, when there is no other choice, to admit it reluctantly with objections blaming others, and persecuting the sources of the news.
Criminality is also when a government hide information, never admit it and try to accuse others to omit the real causes. But in a country without any mechanism to control and question the officials, Cuba is defenceless and in the hands of criminals who made the censorship the official policy of the Estate.
As a matter of fact, in a totalitarian country the first casualty is the truth.