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January 19, 2018

Cuba

Uruguay Investigates Possible illegal Trafficking of Cubans

Source: Havana Times Uruguay has two investigations underway into the alleged trafficking of Cuban citizens who have entered the country by land, informed the country’s attorney general, Jorge Diaz. Link: Uruguay Investigates Possible illegal Trafficking of Cubans

Havana Weather for January 18-24

Source: Havana Times The days will remain cool with abundant cloudiness and some occasional and scattered showers. The maximum temperatures will be between 19 and 25°C (66 and 77 F), while in the early morning the lows will be between 16 and 20° C (61 and 68 F). The sea surface temperature will…

Teen Who Slapped Israeli Soldier to Remain in Jail

Source: Havana Times The 16-year-old Palestinian girl who slapped an Israeli soldier after her cousin was shot in the head at close range by another soldier will remain in jail without bail said a military judge, reports Democracy Now on Thursday. Link: Teen Who Slapped Israeli Soldier to Remain in Jail

The EU sanctions Venezuela’s “#2” Diosdado Cabello

Source: Havana Times The European Union agreed today to sanction the “number two” figure of the government of Venezuela, Diosdado Cabello, and six other senior officials in response to president’s Nicolas Maduro’s repression against the opposition in the South American country. Link: The EU sanctions Venezuela’s “#2” Diosdado Cabello

The Trials and Tribulations of a Cuban Couple

Source: Havana Times She is 29 years old, He is 38. They share their marriage, their three children and their frustration. This is their story. Link: The Trials and Tribulations of a Cuban Couple

When We Were All Together

Source: Havana Times I remember when I was little girl and all of my neighborhood friends would get together so we could play. We were about 10 kids, maybe there were more of us. It was a nuisance for our neighbors who had to deal with the racket a big group of kids…

Trumps Stops Detente with Cuba, without it becoming a Cold War

Source: Havana Times Donald Trump entering the White House meant a return to the times when hostile language was used against the Cuban government, but, this time, without becoming a confrontation similar to the Cold War years. Link: Trumps Stops Detente with Cuba, without it becoming a Cold War

Jazz Plaza Underway in Havana and Santiago de Cuba

Source: Havana Times Jazz Plaza 2018 kicked off Tuesday in Havana and some fifty artists from various nations are attending the festival. The 33rd edition of the event began with a concert by Bobby Carcasses, along with his new orchestra Afroswing, at the Sala Avellaneda of the National Theater of Cuba. Link: Jazz

I don’t get mixed up in politics

Source: Havana Times Not getting mixed up in politics is a premise of the majority of citizens in any society. Because ordinary citizens only aspire to live within a social framework that works the best it can, not relying on their active participation. Cuba isn’t an exception to this rule, in fact, it…

Havana University’s 290th Anniversary

Source: Havana Times Havana University currently has over 30,000 (undergraduate and postgraduate) students studying there with a staff of 2000 professors, of which nearly half have a Doctorate in Sciences and a considerable number have a Masters. It has 16 faculties, four institutes and 18 research and study centers. Link: Havana University’s 290th

Mayte under the Flamboyant Tree

Source: Havana Times Mayte hung herself from a flamboyant tree, some years after she left her position as the leader of the Young Communist League at secondary school, where she fulfilled the role of a Torquemada of Stalinism, pointing out, informing on and destroying the lives of her classmates, marked by the urgency…

Cuba Was Never Different

Source: Havana Times Cuba exported a sugar-coated image of its youth for many years. Young people who lived as equals (in poverty), brimming with maturity, political convictions, willingness and other upstanding values. Very different to those consumer teenagers, Capitalism’s children, whose only goal was to have something and flaunt it. Link: Cuba Was

Rebel ex-Police Officer Among the Dead in Venezuela

Source: Havana Times Former Venezuelan police pilot Oscar Perez, leader of the rebel group calling themselves “Warriors of God”, is among the nine casualties of an assault operation by military commandos near Caracas, confirmed Interior Minister Nestor Reverol on Tuesday after a day of silence on his whereabouts. Link: Rebel ex-Police Officer Among

Is the Movement of Money between Banks in Nicaragua to Avoid Sanctions?

Source: Havana Times In Nicaragua, deposits grew substantially in the Albanisa bank (Banco Corporativo) following the closing of accounts in three other banks for fear of being affected by US sanctions against PDVSA, the Venezuelan State-owned petroleum company. Link: Is the Movement of Money between Banks in Nicaragua to Avoid Sanctions?

Illegality Proves that things Need to Change

Source: Havana Times Not too long ago, I was speaking to a historian who told me she was up-to-date with the news relating to acts of censorship that have taken place over recent months. With a gesture of political indifference she said: “This isn’t going to change.” Link: Illegality Proves that things Need

A New Cuban Movie for Parents

Source: Havana Times A new Cuban movie, “La Hoja de la Caleta”, premiered in the capital’s movie theaters over the past few days. Directed by the pair Jorge Campaneria and Mirta Gonzalez; they bring us the story of a boy who lives in a fishing village in Santa Cruz del Sur. His mother…

Invitation: Three New Art Expositions in Old Havana

Source: Havana Times On January 9th in the city’s same historic center, three personal exhibitions by Cuban artists opened all at the same time, at the Provincial Center of Visual Arts and Design, better known as the “Luz y Oficios” gallery. The exhibitions can be seen until February 2nd. (18 photos) Link: Invitation:

Colombian Embassy in Cuba Working to the Max

Source: Havana Times In the face of protests by Cubans, who depend on getting a US visa so as to join their families on a permanent basis, Washington, in agreement with the Colombian government, decided on the expensive solution to move this paperwork to its embassy in Bogota in mid-October. Link: Colombian Embassy

Migration and Politics: a Necessary Debate for Cuba’s Future

Source: Havana Times The year 2018 will be a decisive one for Cuba’s future. The island is not only a geographical space but also a social space which transcends physical borders. In this regard, the future government will have to face the challenge of building a prosperous, transnational and inclusive country. Link: Migration

The Gift (Video)

Source: Havana Times The Gift is an animation by Jasser Barbier about the meeting of two characters from the works of the plastic artist Nur Diez, a graduate from the San Alejandro Academy of Fine Arts in Havana. You can find her pieces in galleries in Old Havana or by contacting her directly.

Arce Defends Roberto Rivas over Corruption Charges

Source: Havana Times Bayardo Arce, the economic and financial adviser of Nicaraguan president Daniel Ortega, criticized the United States on Friday for sanctioning the president of the country’s Electoral Council, Roberto Rivas, for acts of “significant corruption”, Link: Arce Defends Roberto Rivas over Corruption Charges

A Clear Example of Cuba’s Cooperative Movement

Source: Havana Times I have been farming the land and been a member of a credit and service cooperative (CCS), for over five years now, based in my community, of Mayari, Holguin. This mode of production is the closest thing there is to a real cooperative here in Cuba. Link: A Clear Example

New Day of Looting in Venezuela

Source: Havana Times A new day of protests and looting took place on Friday in Venezuela with shortages and the high cost of food being the catalyst, reported dpa. Meanwhile the Government continues to insist there is no crisis, just foreign aggression. Link: New Day of Looting in Venezuela

Ecuador Grants Julian Assange Citizenship

Source: Havana Times After over five years held up at the Ecuadorean Embassy in London, British authorities rejected Thursday a bid to allow Julian Assange safe passage in London, after Ecuador’s foreign minister said she’d granted Assange citizenship. Link: Ecuador Grants Julian Assange Citizenship

Real Cuban Rodeo is a Horror. Don’t Take Part!

Source: Havana Times This mare is the apple of my eye, I look after her as if she were me myself. This is how Miguel speaks about cuquita, the mare who his daughter takes to competitions. For several years now she takes part in the Rodeo with cuquita, an event which some people…

Nicaragua: Exit of Electoral Council Chief Demanded

Source: Havana Times Magistrate Roberto Rivas should resign the post that he’s occupied for over twenty years as head of an electoral system that has collapsed, even though his exit alone won’t reestablish its credibility. This is the unanimous opinion of analysts and figures from the Nicaraguan opposition. Link: Nicaragua: Exit of Electoral

“This Revolution Is Really Great”

Source: Havana Times I met Lazaro when he approached me to please talk to my wife as he knows that she is a doctor at an important hospital. He had an echocardiogram prescribed, but there weren’t any appointments for the next four months and that’s if the machine didn’t break. He was worried,…

Architectural Treasure in Havana’s Vedado Neighborhood

Source: Havana Times There is a very special house in Havana’s Vedado neighborhood. According to what renowned historian and visual arts researcher Lillian Llanes says, it is the first mansion in Havana which we have bibliographical evidence about that has an indoor pool. Link: Architectural Treasure in Havana’s Vedado Neighborhood

The Glass Castle

Source: Havana Times “The Glass Castle” left me thinking for a few days. It made me remember the joy of dreaming, those childhood dreams which still aren’t tainted by the official standards of success. Pure dreams which don’t seek to impress or please anyone. Link: The Glass Castle

US State Department without Evidence against Cuba

Source: Havana Times Washington is changing its tune as Diplomatic Security Assistant Director, Todd Brown, accepts that a sonic weapon might not exist but he does say that US diplomats in Havana could have been targets of a “viral” attack. Of course, he didn’t offer a hint of evidence to back up his…

Costa Rica Investigates Nicaragua’s Roberto Rivas for Money Laundering

Source: Havana Times The Costa Rican Attorney General’s Office informed on Tuesday that it opened an investigation against the president of the Supreme Electoral Council of Nicaragua, Roberto Rivas, for what it considers the possible crime of money laundering. Link: Costa Rica Investigates Nicaragua’s Roberto Rivas for Money Laundering

Havana Weather for January 11-17

Source: Havana Times The days will continue to be relatively cool, with some isolated showers during the day. The maximum temperatures will be between 21 and 27° C (70 and 81 F) while the lows will be between 16 and 19° C (61 and 66 F). Link: Havana Weather for January 11-17

Canada Considers Diplomats’ Ailments a Mystery

Source: Havana Times The Canadian Police investigating the possible causes of the ailments that eight Canadian embassy personnel in Cuba suffered in 2017 and have been qualified as “sonic attacks” by some media, are still considered a mystery. Link: Canada Considers Diplomats’ Ailments a Mystery

The Three Kings Visit Havana’s Children

Source: Havana Times When I asked a 6-year-old boy if his grandmother had bought him the tanker truck he was pulling along on a string through the entire house as a present, he stared at me, thinking about his response, standing still and not pulling his truck along anymore. The old lady, who…

Uruguay Receives Wave of Cubans

Source: Havana Times A total of 4,577 Cuban citizens entered Uruguay in 2017, the majority between October and December. Channel 10 of Uruguayan television reported that some 200 Cubans decided to settle in the small rural town of Santa Rosa, in the department of Canelones, near Montevideo. Link: Uruguay Receives Wave of Cubans

Another Cuban Struggle against the Blockade

Source: Havana Times We always end up talking about the same old thing: politics, the economy, “the situation”. Names and faces change in different groups, but the subject remains the same. Inevitably, we end up analyzing “how things are”, like a moth to a flame. Link: Another Cuban Struggle against the Blockade

Cuba: The Old Clock Needs More than a Few Repairs

Source: Havana Times On January 4th, Fernando Ravsberg published an article entitled “Challenges for Cuba’s New President”. The key issue revolves around the dual currency system, linking in with the tricky answer of how to refloat Cuba’s battered economy. The issue deserves to have all of its sensitive points poked at. Link: Cuba:

Trump Hits Salvadorans in Latest Attack on Immigrants

Source: Havana Times The Trump administration continues to issue measures that hurt the immigrant communities in the United States. The latest blow was felt this week by 250,000 Salvadorans in the US under the now rescinded Temporary Protection Status (TPS). Link: Trump Hits Salvadorans in Latest Attack on Immigrants

Real Changes in 2018 or Just a Hoax?

Source: Havana Times By Victor Manuel HAVANA TIMES — A few weeks ago, on Holy Innocents Day (December 28th) to be exact, a Link: Real Changes in 2018 or Just a Hoax?

Cuba Criticizes US Senate Hearing on Attacks on Diplomats

Source: Havana Times The Cuban government questioned today the validity of the hearing held in the United States Senate on Tuesday over the alleged acoustic attacks on US diplomats in Havana, and restated its denial of having any responsibility in the events. Link: Cuba Criticizes US Senate Hearing on Attacks on Diplomats

Details of My Arrest and My Captors

Source: Havana Times More than ten people took part in the operation last November when I was arrested in my home, between agents from State Security, MININT’s Technical Investigations Department, police, crime investigators, an ambulance driver, intensive care doctor and inspector. They interrupted that peaceful afternoon in my home like vultures. Link: Details

US Studies Possible Viral Attacks on its Diplomats in Cuba

Source: Havana Times The Trump Administration is studying whether a virus could be the source of the health problems suffered by 24 of its diplomats in Cuba, said a senior official of the State Department in the US Senate. Previous accusations have centered around “acoustic attacks”. Link: US Studies Possible Viral Attacks on

Havana’s Medieval Festival Jan 16-21

Source: Havana Times This new year, 2018, is welcoming the third edition of Havana’s Medieval Festival, a way of bringing the Middle Ages to a modern audience via theory events, concerts and exhibitions from January 16-21. Link: Havana’s Medieval Festival Jan 16-21

Remembering my father

Source: Havana Times All throughout my life, I have heard stories about separated families, children who don’t speak to their parents or parents who don’t want to know anything about their children, neglect and other stories which are too terrible to repeat… However, my experience with my father wasn’t like this. Link: Remembering

Different Ways of Celebrating the Holidays

Source: Havana Times December didn’t bring many surprises for the Cuban people, just another end of the year, which wasn’t very different to previous year ends, which everyone celebrates as best they can and people aren’t expecting much from this new year, not even with a new president. Link: Different Ways of Celebrating

Song for Cuba

Source: Havana Times This short experimental documentary by Tamara Segura about memory and music follows a young Cuban couple charting a new course for their lives on an island in the North Atlantic. Link: Song for Cuba

December 31st Doesn’t Mean Anything Anymore

Source: Havana Times This isn’t anything new. Every Cuban, both here and there, know this. When the end of the year comes around, most Cubans want to eat pork (preferably roasted), cassava with garlic sauce, mashed chatino or plantain, black beans, a lettuce and tomato salad, and if your budget allows for it,…

Venezuelan Bishops Warn of Social Upheaval over Food

Source: Havana Times The president of the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference, Diego Padron, warned today that the protests taking place around the country for a lack of food could generate a very strong social upheaval. Link: Venezuelan Bishops Warn of Social Upheaval over Food

Why I Didn’t Tell My Partner I’m Gay

Source: Havana Times These are the stories of three Nicaraguan couples and a marriage, where one of the partners involved discovered that they weren’t heterosexual. Photo from the film Grace and Frankie. Link: Why I Didn’t Tell My Partner I’m Gay

Ecuador Has a New Female VP

Source: Havana Times The socialist María Alejandra Vicuña was elected today by the National Assembly as the new constitutional vice president of Ecuador to replace the imprisoned Jorge Glas, convicted of corruption. Link: Ecuador Has a New Female VP

The Three Wise Men, Illusion and fantasy?

Source: Havana Times The day of the Three Wise Men, known throughout much of the world, is here. In Cuba the day used to be celebrated. Although that was a fantasy, there is no doubt that it was also something very beautiful that children lived. Link: The Three Wise Men, Illusion and fantasy?

Mourning in My Town of Remedios, Cuba

Source: Havana Times Remedios was in mourning this year. Too much pain in the town for people to even celebrate the good omens that pass from mouth to mouth during this important time, with a half-smile. During the normally festive Remedios’ nights there was no music and partying, people were going to the…

The Three Ways the Castros Betrayed Socialism

Source: Havana Times In its nearly 60 years at the helm of power, the Castros betrayed three great paradigmatic ideals which the majority of the Cuban people had fought for: Democracy, national independence and socialism. Read on for the detials… Link: The Three Ways the Castros Betrayed Socialism

Cuba 2018: Change is Pressing

Source: Havana Times Nearly 60 years after the Cuban Revolution, this higher educated and more healthy people are asking that the principle of “change whatever needs to be changed” be applied in this life and not in the life that believers hope will come after death. Link: Cuba 2018: Change is Pressing

EU Advocates Building Bridges with Cuba

Source: Havana Times Amidst new tensions in US-Cuban relations, yesterday, the EU’s Foreign Policy chief, Federica Mogherini, advocated for “building bridges and opening doors” between the island and the European bloc via dialogue and cooperation efforts to put the first bilateral agreement, which came into force last November, into practice. Link: EU Advocates

Baltimore Students Left Freezing in Unheated Classrooms

Source: Havana Times As a severe cold snap hits the East Coast of the United States, in Baltimore Maryland, parents, teachers and students are protesting frigid conditions at public schools, with schoolchildren left shivering in classrooms and temperatures barely rising above freezing, reports Democracy Now. Link: Baltimore Students Left Freezing in Unheated Classrooms

Are the Cuban People to Blame?

Source: Havana Times I have absolved the Cuban people of their alleged responsibility for what has happened over the past 59 years on more than one occasion, but this time, I want to analyze it from a historiographical perspective. My thesis is that history unfolds as a result of two different kinds of…

Challenges for Cuba’s New President

Source: Havana Times Changes in the Cuban government are slated for 2018, although the President is the only one who is planned to be replaced. The landscape in which the new leader will take the reins of power is one of a nation which is half-way across the river, with a reform process…

Havana Weather for January 4-10

Source: Havana Times Expect mostly cloudy days from the morning, with the presence of scattered showers. There will be a decrease in temperatures, the highs will be between 18 and 23° C (64 and 73 F) while the lows will be between 14 and 18° C (57 and 64 F). The sea surface…

Honduras Presidential Candidate Calls for Uprising

Source: Havana Times Less than two weeks after Honduran presidential candidate Salvador Nasralla said he was going to withdraw from the struggle, he and other opposition leaders have called for an uprising against incumbent President Juan Orlando Hernandez, saying the November 26 presidential election was stolen, reports Democracy Now. Link: Honduras Presidential Candidate

A New Year with a More Dangerous and Unequal World

Source: Havana Times When a new year begins, good people wish for a year of peace, health and progress for themselves and others, for things to get better. For some strange reason, there are people who selfishly only think about themselves and they don’t care about other people’s suffering. Link: A New Year

Year End in Cuba with Family, Problems Aside

Source: Havana Times In Cuba, spending Christmas and new year’s eve with your family still continues to be a beautiful tradition. Even more so if you spend it eating roast pork, rice and beans, cassava with sauce, mixed salad and bitter orange peel dessert. But, not all families can pay for the great…

Making Political Theater in Cuba

Source: Havana Times After my furious state in front of the police and State security forces, when they tried to prevent my play “Enemies of the People” from making its debut (I say “tried” because, in spite of the pain it caused to have to bid farewell to all my guests, the play…

Hollywood Women on Offensive Against Sexual Abusers

Source: Havana Times In Hollywood, more than 1,000 prominent actresses, writers and directors have launched a project called the “Time’s Up” campaign aimed at combating sexual abuse and harassment in the film industry, reports Democracy Now on Tuesday. Link: Hollywood Women on Offensive Against Sexual Abusers

Nicaragua: Cadavers Withheld

Source: Havana Times I don’t know if it was out of scorn or morbidity, but Somoza used to publish the photos of dead Sandinista guerrillas on the front pages of the newspapers. These photos would show the bodies riddled with bullets, their faces nearly unrecognizable. For those of us who were their comrades…

Venezuela’s “Pork Revolution”

Source: Havana Times It’s a tradition here in Venezuela to eat a meal of hallacas (a kind of seasoned cake or tamale), chicken salad and a ham and roasted pork for the holidays at the end of the year. This Christmas, many Venezuelans weren’t able to enjoy this meal, not even in part.

Russia: between authoritarianism and active citizenship

Source: Havana Times Five years ago, many Russians took to the streets to demand that the government respect their right to freely elect their authorities. Since then, social movements demanding different social, civil and political rights have figured in the news arriving from the Eurasian country. Link: Russia: between authoritarianism and active citizenship

What Are Cubans Celebrating with the New Year?

Source: Havana Times As Cubans awaited the New Year, we spoke with several in Havana about their expectations. One enraged man outside the Gothic church on Reina Street said: “They (the leaders) spend all day pointing the finger at each other while we, the underdogs, go from bad to worse. Link: What Are

As the Cuban Revolution Turns 59

Source: Havana Times January 1, 2018, marks the 59th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution. Some Cubans will celebrate as stated in the official media: “Inspired by the example of the eternal Commander and Chief Fidel Castro, Havana celebrates the 59th anniversary…” while others will just be celebrating the New Year. (20 photos) Link:

Forgive me (video)

Source: Havana Times Forgive me, for not being how you wanted me to be. Forgive me, for being honest and for feeling free when it came to showing what I think with pictures and words, without worrying about what the consequences could be. Link: Forgive me (video)

Adopting Foreign Influences and Not Fighting Them

Source: Havana Times “El Ciervo Blanco” is an alternative space where its audience can enjoy music they can’t find on Cuban TV. With a newsletter on Facebook and a book club that used to run on the roof terrace of a private home in Old Havana for five months, it sets out to…

Guantanamo Prison Remains a Global Symbol of Injustice

Source: Havana Times Last week US Defense Secretary James Mattis visited troops at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba Naval Station for the holiday. This visit came after recent UN reports of torture there, but the Secretary insisted that he was only going to meet with the troops to thank them for their service. Link:

Cuba’s Presidential Line of Succession Will Ensure Continuity

Source: Havana Times After Raul Castro’s announcement in his latest speech in front of the National Assembly, him stepping down as president seems to be pretty much definite. Everything is pointing towards Miguel Diaz-Canel being named his successor, the First Vice-President who rose up to the highest ranks of Cuban politics thanks to…

Trap, Modern Music

Source: Havana Times According to those who claim they know, trap music was born last century in the ‘90s in the US, although it has now spread to Latin America and other parts of the world. Its lyrics promote drugs and addictions, gender violence, a lot of sex, gun use, crimes and no-one…

Cuban Artists and a Half Century of Repression

Source: Havana Times Art doesn’t have a homeland, but artists do. Censorship became a state practice when Fidel Castro pronounced in front of a large group of intellectuals one of his Solomonic declarations (typical of authoritarianism) in 1961: Within the Revolution: everything; against the Revolution: nothing. Link: Cuban Artists and a Half Century

Havana Weather for Dec. 28 – Jan. 3

Source: Havana Times The days will be partly cloudy, with occasional showers in the areas near the north coast. The winds will blow from the northeast, with speeds between 10 and 20 km/h. The high temperatures will be between 27 and 29° C (81 and 84 F) while the lows will range between…

Chilean Court Sentences Four ex-Military Officers for Deadly 1974 Kidnapping

Source: Havana Times Torture and murder 43 years ago catches up on 4 ex-officials in Pinochet’s Chilean Army. The victim’s families and friends don’t forget. Read all of today’s international news briefs from Democracy Now. Link: Chilean Court Sentences Four ex-Military Officers for Deadly 1974 Kidnapping

Cuba Begins its Baseball Postseason on January 4th

Source: Havana Times The performances of Matanzas and Las Tunas stood out, the latter with their best result ever, while the team from the capital (Industriales) took advantage of their good first half, because in the second they lost more than they won. Meanwhile, Granma hopes to repeat last years crown. Link: Cuba

Christmas Celebrations in Cuba?

Source: Havana Times Here in Cuba, these celebrations were banned for a long time but they gained new life in the ‘90s, I remember going to the midnight Mass with a friend and I loved it. That time, cups of hot chocolate, sandwiches and sweets were handed out after the religious ceremony. Link:

Cuba Enters a New Phase of Artist Persecution

Source: Havana Times While watching the images of the latest wave of repression to befall independent Cuban artists , one word kept popping into my head: Shame. Arbitrary arrests, stopping people from walking down certain streets or entering certain homes reveal a lack of respect that not only exists with artists, but with…

Fujimori Gets Pardon Deal in Peru

Source: Havana Times Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski pardoned former president Alberto Fujimori on Monday and protests erupted immediately, reports Democracy Now. Many saw the pardon as a tradeoff between the current president and the opposition legislators. Link: Fujimori Gets Pardon Deal in Peru

Cuba’s Special Period as a Pedal-Driven Space Odyssey

Source: Havana Times Conversation over New Year’s dinners in Havana will surely include Ernesto Daranas Serrano’s lastest movie Sergio y Serguei. Set at the end of the Soviet Union and the start of the Special Period, this melodrama pokes fun at dogmatism and corruption while celebrating transnational person-to-person ties and grassroots initiative. Link:

A Superhero with a Cuban Flag on his Chest

Source: Havana Times Express yourself! I can see you without ink. This invitation appears in the digital magazine Apulpso, which can be downloaded or obtained via the Weekly Package. It is a project created by five young enthusiasts who “wanted to do” more rather than go after money. Link: A Superhero with a

What I Will Tell My Grandchildren about Raul Castro

Source: Havana Times I could tell you exactly where I was when I found out about the transfer of power from one Castro brother to another [July 31, 2006]. It was something I feared would happen as it would further entrench the regime. Link: What I Will Tell My Grandchildren about Raul Castro

Paco, a Fighting Champion

Source: Havana Times Francisco Vila Flores (Paco) is 73 years old, is one of the founders of Cuba’s National Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired, An avid reader, he feels fulfilled with his work as the editor of Braille reading books. Link: Paco, a Fighting Champion

Cuba at the Close of 2017: Raul Castro’s Plan in Crisis

Source: Havana Times If the shoes were too big for Raul, you can just imagine how they’ll fit on Diaz-Canel or anyone else. Only a change in Cuba’s economic and political systems, which they haven’t wanted to do because they are so arrogant, could have ensured some continuity of Castrismo without Fidel. Link:

Barbarian Times

Source: Havana Times You don’t realize that things have gone from bad to worse until the time comes in your life when, without really understanding it, you find yourself outside the eye of a hurricane, where there is no longer any calm and everything is pointing towards an imminent disaster, and worse still,…

New Blow to US-Cuba Relations

Source: Havana Times The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on Friday the temporary suspension of its operations in Havana, a sign of the further deteriorating US-Cuba relations. The USCIS gave no date for a possible resumption of services and noted that “its field office in Mexico City will assume Havana’s…

End of Year Photos from Downtown Havana

Source: Havana Times In his photography Juan Suarez is often trying to give us a look at day-to-day life in the center of the Cuban capital where he lives. He captures people going about their daily activities, the buildings and the streets. Today he brings us a selection of end of year pictures…

What’s Happening to Cuba’s Film Industry

Source: Havana Times Cuban institutions have become derelict buildings, where fear rules, while a select few pocket everything. The Cuban people’s reality is something like an emaciated buffet where everything is controlled, where plates come in and leave, but they can’t have access to the restaurant’s real menu. Link: What’s Happening to Cuba’s

The Power of Art and the Fear of Leaders

Source: Havana Times Everything seems to return to “normal” after the repression suffered by several artists on the afternoon of Wednesday, December 20th in the Cuban capital. They were going to enjoy a play in the independent house-gallery El Circulo and suddenly they were victims of a performance by a government that prevents…

Cuba’s Gov. Hints that Recession Is Over

Source: Havana Times The Cuban government announced Thursday that the national economy grew 1.6 percent in 2017, leaving behind the recession of minus 0.9 percent with which it closed 2016. What that will mean for ordinary Cubans was not stated. Link: Cuba’s Gov. Hints that Recession Is Over

Donald Trump’s Ignorance about Cuba

Source: Havana Times Donald Trump has given crystal clear displays of his obsession to reverse everything his predecessor Barack Obama did, in all fields: military, political, economic and scientific. When it comes to relations with Cuba, he has shown complete ignorance about the country’s situation, its political system and its history. Link: Donald

How Cuba’s News Policy Affects the Economy

Source: Havana Times During this year that is now drawing to an end, the private sector of the economy has received several blows with cooperatives, restaurants and night clubs being shut down, as well as new licenses being suspended for the most profitable and popular types of businesses. Link: How Cuba’s News Policy

Raul Castro’s Presidency Extended for 2 Extra Months

Source: Havana Times Raul Castro will stay in office as president until at least mid-April, the Cuban Parliament announced today in extending its legislative period, scheduled to end in February. The decision to postpone the departure of Castro was taken over “the exceptional situation” caused by the passage of Hurricane Irma last September.

Havana Weather for December 21-27

Source: Havana Times Mornings will be cool with isolated cloud cover, which will increase slightly in the afternoon with little chance of rain. The maximum temperatures will be between 28 and 29° C (82 and 84 F) while the lows will oscillate between 21 and 22° C (70 and 72 F). Link: Havana

Cuban Government ¿Rehearses? against Artists

Source: Havana Times Art continues to be censored in Cuba. Or maybe the government just wants to be an artist and develops violent performances against freedom of expression. Link: Cuban Government ¿Rehearses? against Artists

Havana Times Opens to Advertising

Source: Havana Times Our publication is now in its 10th year and to date we haven’t accepted any advertising on the site. Several potential advertisers had asked us over the years but we were never ready to begin. Now with our new web design we are ready to offer those interested in some…

Argentina Faces Unrest over Pension Benefit Roll Back

Source: Havana Times The Argentine legislature has narrowly approved big changes in the country’s pension system, repudiated by organized labor, which called for a 24-hour general strike, and other sectors of society, reports Democracy Now on Wednesday. Link: Argentina Faces Unrest over Pension Benefit Roll Back

Gender Violence in Cuba: There Isn’t Reliable Data

Source: Havana Times A recent survey about gender equality, presented to the National Assembly’s current legislative body, confirms that 27% of the population surveyed has suffered acts, both physical and psychological, of gender violence in the past 12 months. The survey carried out in 2016 has yet to be published and only some…

Could Cuba Stop its North Korean Friend?

Source: Havana Times Dealing with North Korea has become a real headache for many international leaders. Concessions and a soft-handed approach haven’t stopped the North Korean Communist regime’s nuclear program; on the other hand, sanctions and threats have only served as an excuse for dictator Kim Jong-un to hike up his warmongering fanaticism.

The Struggle in Cuba to Learn English

Source: Havana Times Looking back over all of the years I’ve spent studying English, I’ve realized that the teaching methods used in schools haven’t been effective. The classes have too much theory and zero conversational practice. The thing is that we don’t learn it like we should: with daily feedback. Link: The Struggle

The Girls of Rural Nicaragua

Source: Havana Times The Tepesomoto hill, 231 kilometers from Managua, offers a rainy season panorama of green and navy blue. Marely Albir Figueroa, 16, is all too familiar with this view. She gets up at 4 in the morning to fetch water from the well near her community; on the way back, with…

Hurray! Sanitary Towels are in at the Pharmacy

Source: Havana Times On Thursday 14th, around midday, my father passed by one of Mayari’s pharmacies. He did it out of habit to see if, by chance, he would find any of the medicines we needed at home. He was surprised to see a big crowd, however, there wasn’t anything that he was…

Did nearly 1,000 Die When Hurricane Maria Hit Puerto Rico?

Source: Havana Times The government of Puerto Rico said on Monday that it will launch an official body count of those who died with the passing of Hurricane Maria last September 20th. At first greatly underestimated by the authorities, several investigations maintain that nearly 1,000 people died in the storm, reports Democracy Now.

Cuba Is Suffering a Blockade… by Cuban Customs!

Source: Havana Times Then, there is what they call the “Blockade” which serves as an excuse to why there isn’t any “made in China” aspirin or why a pound of pork costs 10% of a worker’s average monthly income. Any excuse sticks well in the new Cuban’s mind, conditioned to take whatever occurs…

What’s Left for the Losers?

Source: Havana Times With the first LCD (Cuban DotA League) kicking off in early September, it is finally coming to an end after a long period of time and interruptions. On Saturday December 23rd, teams “Pirates Gaming” and “Big Monkeys” will have a face-off in the final stage of the competition. Link: What’s

May the Good Ones Excuse Me

Source: Havana Times A friend suggested I write about a comment one of his acquaintances made: “Black and shit is the same; may the good black people excuse me.” If I had been the other person in that conversation, I would have turned my back on him, because with such a precedent, the…

Freedom, fear and madness

Source: Havana Times Cuban filmmaker Miguel Coyula: “I can’t remember when it was that I realized I was free. It wasn’t a sudden revelation, nor was it an impressive one. When I think about jail time or even death as a result of my work, without any kind of fear, I don’t think…

Nevada Congressman to Cut Short His Political Career after Sexual Harassment Claims

Source: Havana Times In the near daily news about US politicians, show business, media and business personalities being accused of sexual abuse and/or harassment, today’s turn is for Nevada Democratic lawmaker Ruben Kihuen who announced he will not seek reelection. Link: Nevada Congressman to Cut Short His Political Career after Sexual Harassment Claims

Cuba: Artist’s Detention Takes a New Turn

Source: Havana Times When you want to silence someone, the most common methods used are blackmail and repression. But when it comes to a good idea, shared by many in its fundamental principles, it is difficult for it not to fly by itself. The person who created it may be stopped but the…

Venezuela’s Collapsing Oil Industry

Source: Havana Times Corruption in Venezuela’s state-controlled oil industry, denounced by the government itself and where former ministers and senior managers are behind bars, is the most recent piece of evidence that the country with the greatest oil reserves on the planet, the sector its economy depends upon, is collapsing. Link: Venezuela’s Collapsing

Fear of Faith

Source: Havana Times Cuban artist Luis Manuel Otero is still being held at the Aguilera Police station in Lawton. All day (December 15th) the officer on duty told me that they are waiting for the CI (Counterintelligence) to interrogate him to see what decision will be taken with him. But nothing. Only a…

The Global Left’s Romance with Cuba

Source: Havana Times After 60 years, the Cuban political project continues to be a paradigm for a group within the global Left. Let’s take a simplified look at the milestones in this ambivalent love story of those who admire Cuba, but haven’t moved here just yet, preferring to defend the Revolution from Boston…

Raul Castro Won’t Leave Power in 2018

Source: Havana Times Raul Castro’s strategy seems to be to delegate tasks, which were concentrated in one person up until now, including to the second in command of the state-party dichotomy, Jose Ramon Machado Ventura. Castro is 86 years old, Machado Ventura is 87. Link: Raul Castro Won’t Leave Power in 2018

Cuban Artist Found at Havana Police Station

Source: Havana Times The whereabouts of Cuban artist Luis Manuel Otero, reported as disappeared last night while on a long pilgrimage to the San Lazaro Sanctuary, is now known. Luis Manuel is being held without charges at the Aguilera police station in Lawton. Link: Cuban Artist Found at Havana Police Station

Cuban Artist Luis Manuel Otero Disappears

Source: Havana Times At the beginning of his pilgrimage to the Rincon de San Lazaro sanctuary, Cuban artist Luis Manuel Otero has been arrested (apparently) by the Cuban State Security, when he was at Carlos III and Belascoain streets in Centro Habana. Link: Cuban Artist Luis Manuel Otero Disappears

Ecuador VP Gets 6-Years for Corruption

Source: Havana Times Ecuador’s Vice President Jorge Glas was sentenced Wednesday to six years in prison for receiving huge bribes from the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht. The court also sentenced eight other defendants to various sentences, including Glas’s uncle, Ricardo Rivera. Link: Ecuador VP Gets 6-Years for Corruption

Venezuela: Christmas with Hyperinflation

Source: Havana Times This Christmas season most Venezuelans aren’t thinking much about sprucing up the home, buying gifts and special meals as they are preoccupied with how to put the bear basics on the table today and then tomorrow. Foto: caratodigital.net Link: Venezuela: Christmas with Hyperinflation

With What Resources Will Cuba Face 2018?

Source: Havana Times If Raul Castro leaves day-to-day administration, he will only be looking for a “successful” way out of his greatest failure: the attempt to move the country towards a more efficient economic structure within an authoritarian regime. Link: With What Resources Will Cuba Face 2018?

US Reinvents Attacks on its Diplomats Stationed in Cuba

Source: Havana Times he press in the US says that “bipartisan leaders of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Lower House asked the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health to direct the investigation into the mysterious sonic attacks on personnel of the US Embassy in Havana.” Link:

Animal Rights Law Still Pending in Cuba

Source: Havana Times It will seem contradictory, but I was very happy to find a post on Facebook that denounced the abuse some lion cubs were subjected to at the Camaguey zoo. Of course I was sad for these animals and my city, but my happiness came from the long list of comments…

Havana Weather for December 14-20

Source: Havana Times This week the days will be cool, with isolated and scarce cloudiness. Early mornings will be slightly cold, with temperatures between 16 and 18° C (61 and 64 F) while during the day the maximum temperatures will oscillate between 24 and 27° C (75 and 81 F). Link: Havana Weather

We Visit Bayamo, Granma in Eastern Cuba

Source: Havana Times Bayamo was one of the first villages founded in Cuba by the Spanish. Nowadays Bayamo has a population of around 250,000 inhabitants. It is a quiet, clean city, with hospitable and friendly people. (26 photos) Link: We Visit Bayamo, Granma in Eastern Cuba

Gaddafi’s Nephew Nicaragua’s New Ambassador to Kuwait and Egypt

Source: Havana Times The government of Daniel Ortega named the controversial Mohamed Lashtar, a Nicaraguan citizen of Libyan origin and nephew of the former dictator Muammar Gaddafi, as the new ambassador of Nicaragua in both Kuwait and Egypt, reported Confidencial. Link: Gaddafi’s Nephew Nicaragua’s New Ambassador to Kuwait and Egypt

Technical Problems at the Havana Film Festival

Source: Havana Times This 39th edition didn’t get off to a bad start until one of the most important screenings of the Festival had to be canceled at the Charles Chaplin movie theater just two days after the festival began, the screenings of one of the most important films in the festival from…

Ileana the Painter: Art is the Path to Happiness

Source: Havana Times Ileana the Painter moves with the force of a torrent and irradiates the joy of a little girl. She confesses that she has always been “different” and challenging implacable society hasn’t been the greatest challenge in her life. She paints, she cooks, she lives with contagious and authentic freedom. With…

Havana Advances with Public Works

Source: Havana Times Journalist Fernando Ravsberg reports there are currently numerous large-scale public works projects visible in different parts of the Cuban capital. “In the almost 3 decades that I have been living in Cuba I have never seen this amount of public works with the concept of doing comprehensive repairs that guarantee…

Violence, oh Violence

Source: Havana Times Like many women who are abused, Tamara felt she was to blame for what had happened: that she should have gone straight home after work, that she didn’t tell her partner she was going to go to the market, that she really did take a long time, that something else…

Restaurant Tycoon Faces Sexual Abuse Allegations

Source: Havana Times One of the latest accused in the coming out by women sexually abused and harassed by powerful men is celebrity chef Mario Batali, reports Democracy Now on Tuesday. Batali stepped down from his TV and restaurant empire, in the face of numerous women accusing him of sexual harassment and groping…

Venezuelan Pensioners Ordeal at the Banks

Source: Havana Times Sebastian and Aurelia are two elderly persons I met a few months ago. Sebastian is about 70 years old and Aurelia is almost 90. They don’t know each other personally, but aside from their advanced age, they have something else in common: they both receive a state pension. Link: Venezuelan

The Giant Puppet Tradition in Sutiava, Nicaragua

Source: Havana Times In Sutiava, a suburb of Leon, a family of “gigantona makers” have held on to the tradition of these giant puppets for decades, although in some periods of history it’s been menaced. Wilfredo Arostegui works with rigorous historical accuracy. He notes that to make the body of a gigantona, he…

Childhood Joy in Cuba Is at Risk

Source: Havana Times She moves her hips to the rhythm of the music. They sing along and clap. She laughs and shakes her body even more, making her miniskirt dance like a flower that moves about it the wind. The song ends and everyone shouts Bravo!, because “it’s funny” to see her dance…

Cuban “Salsa” in Europe

Source: Havana Times Over recent decades a number of talented Cuban dancers have made new homes in various European cities and, thanks to their efforts, along with those of a large number of dedicated European enthusiasts, a fertile Cuban dance scene has blossomed from Madrid to Moscow, Scandinavia to Sicily. Link: Cuban “Salsa”

Cuba Art: Untitled Goes for $7,000 Dollars

Source: Havana Times Cuban avant-garde art, and whatever resembles this, is experiencing a new moment of glory. Not only has artistic creation become more diverse, but production has multiplied thousand-fold, by the many thousands that collectors, and those who appear to be collectors, are paying for it. Link: Cuba Art: Untitled Goes for

The Atrophy of Collectivization

Source: Havana Times Ever since its triumph the Cuban Revolution has proved to be a sound example of unity. Cuba has never had citizens but a multitude throbbing with revolutionary spirit. Those individuals who do not manage to fit into this “everyone” are left without room and are rejected. Link: The Atrophy of

Maduro Proclaims Victory over Trump in Local Elections

Source: Havana Times Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro affirmed that the ruling United Socialist Party won more than 300 of the 335 mayor’s races in Sundays elections, in which most of the opposition did not participate after denouncing that the elections would not be transparent. Link: Maduro Proclaims Victory over Trump in Local Elections

Venezuelans “Elect” Mayors in Unopposed Elections

Source: Havana Times Venezuelans will vote tomorrow in the elections for 335 mayors and one regional governor, which will be held without formal participation of the opposition, which protested the lack of fair conditions. The vote, with a predictable victory for the United Socialist Party (PSUV) of President Maduro, were preceded by the…

Do you have any news about Ernestito?

Source: Havana Times The Revolution had entered this impasse that even couples experience after their initial lust, rumbling around on sofas and beds. It was facing dilemmas about which path to take to leave this Utopian island behind and to concentrate on the harsh differences that reality posed. Link: Do you have any

The Flip Side of Arts Education in Cuba

Source: Havana Times There’s no doubt that Cuba’s Arts Education system is a global reference. Since January 1959, the arts and literature were put in everyone’s reach as part of the Revolution’s new cultural policy and society’s poorest classes had the opportunity, for the first time ever, to see their dreams of becoming…

When Cuba Opened Its Doors to Jewish Refugees

Source: Havana Times When most people think of Cuba, escaping Jewish refugees and the Second World War what pops in mind is the MS St. Louis ocean liner which tried to dock in Havana in 1939. However there is another related and little publicized story that began in the early 1940s, and had…

Havana Film Festival Opens in Cuba

Source: Havana Times The 39th International Festival of the New Latin American Cinema (Havana Film Festival) began on Friday in Havana with more than 400 films on display and a tribute to the US director James Ivory. The largest film event in Cuba and one of the most important in Latin America will…

The “Culture” of Violence in Cuba

Source: Havana Times Although it might not be apparent to the tourist, our society is very violent in many ways. It’s sad to admit it, but that’s our reality and we don’t get anywhere by minimizing it or denying it. If selling firearms was legal here, Cuba would be the Wild West. Link:

A “Tribute” to Cuba’s State Security Agents

Source: Havana Times “The Comrade assigned to me” is a must read. Its existence is an important resource to stop paranoia, double standards, hypocrisy, and persecution. It’s a noble step forward to try and rebuild Cuba. We want every November 22nd to be a celebration of NO FEAR. Link: A “Tribute” to Cuba’s

The Typical Receptionist in Cuba

Source: Havana Times A friend tells me that there is a new breed of dog in Cuba and she isn’t exactly referring to the kind of dogs we’ve known all our lives. There is a breed of dog that sits behind reception desks in different places that offer public assistance. And these bark…

Cuba and its Pending Matters

Source: Havana Times The year 2017 is drawing to an end with its almost paralyzed “reform process” and the economy hasn’t changed in the way the Communist Party Guidelines proposed, which the government itself had put forward and had been ratified by millions of Cubans at assemblies. Link: Cuba and its Pending Matters

Do Women Keep Households Running in Cuba?

Source: Havana Times I want to share my impression with you on this subject. In the afternoon, after every working day, nearly all the women I know or see on the street go home carrying everything they might need there. From food, a tap for the sink to even shoes for their child…

Doctors Who Don’t Return to Practice in Cuba

Source: Havana Times In March 2015, Alioth Guerrero received a grant to attend a congress in Colombia. While there, he found out about the opportunities that other Latin American countries offer those who want to study doctorate degrees. When he came back to Cuba, he mentioned it to his professors and began to…

A Brave Cuban Woman

Source: Havana Times People still talk about Luanda Perez Hernandez (56 years old), a woman who decided to fight for her happiness in spite of the prejudice a machista and homophobic generation hold. Working in a Catholic church was her refuge during her marriage. She lives in a small town in the Artemisa…

Where Sexual Abuse News Remains Under Wraps

Source: Havana Times Almost every day for the last few months, brave women and some men have brought to light the cases in the United States of sexual abuse and misconduct they were victims of in the past at the hands of the powerful. While some of the perpetrators claim amnesia, framing the…

Unlimited Reggaeton in Cuba

Source: Havana Times As well as dengue fever or Zica, Cuba is suffering the scourge of another unknown virus that has become a plague: reggaeton. You mustn’t underestimate the power of noise. It travels through space like an overwhelming invasion and it doesn’t need to ask for any bureaucratic red tape or permits.

Havana Behind Bars

Source: Havana Times For a long time iron grids have been part of our architectural structure. Evidently we live behind bars. To feel safe we need something to protect our doors and windows and there is nothing better than an iron trellis. (60 photos) Link: Havana Behind Bars

They Want to Vanish the Memory of My Father

Source: Havana Times Marialys father waited in a maximum security prison for 18 months to then finally have his trial and receive his sentence. When that happened, Marialys was only a 13-14 year old girl and she jealously kept the letters her father sent from jail. Link: They Want to Vanish the Memory

Cuban Pop Culture with Magic

Source: Havana Times The Dialfa project celebrated its 10th anniversary. It was proven that you can break the reduced concept of Cuban institutions, the “damn situation of water everywhere”, look the world in the eye and create events with their own identity, like a speaker said referring to the doom that the cartoon…

Venezuela and Public Disdain for Mayoral Elections

Source: Havana Times On December 10th, mayoral elections will be held in Venezuela’s 335 municipalities. It’s Nicolas Maduro’s priority right now in the middle of a never-ending crisis that has been beating our vast and beautiful country relentlessly. According to the president these elections promise to be the solution to all of the…

Changes in Cuba: Violence, Reforms or?

Source: Havana Times If we draw comparisons between the political climate in the late 19th century, Cuba at the end of Batista’s dictatorship, and our current situation, we will find lots of similarities. During all three of these times, the island suffered a tyrannical power which restricted its political and economic freedoms… Link:

Cuba Advances Towards Replacing Raul Castro

Source: Havana Times Cuban authorities have concluded the local elections phase, the only one with a direct vote, of an electoral process that should culminate in February with the announced replacement of the current president, Raul Castro. Link: Cuba Advances Towards Replacing Raul Castro

Nicaragua: They Also Want to Kill the Truth

Source: Havana Times The era of false news, the manipulation of the truth and the imposition of so-called “alternative facts” as State policy, wasn’t invented by Donald Trump in the United States. In Nicaragua, it was inaugurated a decade ago, when President Daniel Ortega launched his first offensive against the independent press… Link:

Cuban Parliament Should Cut its Representatives by Half

Source: Havana Times Today, public policies regarding labor rights, state sector wages, freedom of cultural creation, infrastructure and education curricula and teacher salaries are all wrong and urgently need to be changed for the good of the country. Link: Cuban Parliament Should Cut its Representatives by Half

Quality Basketball Returns to Havana’s Sports City

Source: Havana Times The new qualifiers for the 2019 Basketball World Cup meant that Havana’s Sports City Coliseum was able to receive a national team from Puerto Rico, an excellent opportunity for fans of the game. Thanks to a donation from the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), the sporting arena also put on its…

Angel’s Hill in Havana’s Historic Center

Source: Havana Times In Havana’s historic center, near the Museum of the Revolution, you can find the place that inspired Cirilo Villaverde to write his famous novel “Cecilia Valdes or Angel’s Hill.” Ernesto Gonzalez brings us his photo feature. (12 photos) Link: Angel’s Hill in Havana’s Historic Center

Cuban Artists and Civil Servants under Attack

Source: Havana Times Reprisals and acts of terror continue to be directed at Cuban artists. Adonis Milan, a talented and young theater director, has received a subpoena from the Interior Ministry, which has no grounds as he hasn’t committed any crime other than exercise his: “right to freedom of association.” Link: Cuban Artists

The Answer to a Routine Question Here in Cuba

Source: Havana Times I have been asked whether I want to leave the country on more than one occasion. It had been a while since I had forgotten the issue, but somebody insisted that I speak about it again a few days ago and once again, the same answer came to mind. Link:

“The Imprisonment of My Father Was a Crime against Humanity”

Source: Havana Times The daughter was 13 years old when her father, Roberto Arias Gomez, was arrested on November 18, 1991 for the alleged crime called “Enemy propaganda”. It had to do with a poster with the words Down with Fidel…(2 photos) Link: “The Imprisonment of My Father Was a Crime against Humanity”

To George Harrison, You Still Live Among Us

Source: Havana Times On November 29th, dawn broke with rain and trees invoking autumn. The sun replaced the rain at some point. Pain doesn’t last forever. All pain has a bright side. Link: To George Harrison, You Still Live Among Us

Nicaragua Canal Magnate Wang Jing Linked to Ukraine Scandal

Source: Havana Times The wealthy businessman heads the Hong Kong-Nicaragua Development Company, the firm that was going to construct an inter-oceanic canal in Nicaragua. However, his projects have faced setbacks around the globe, indicating that “his canal dreams may look more and more like a fantasy.” Link: Nicaragua Canal Magnate Wang Jing Linked

USA and Cuba, the Same Old Questions?

Source: Havana Times The dilemma between Cuba and the US has all the signs of prolonging itself in time. Miguel Diaz Canel, the candidate of the Communist Party for the Presidency, has just said that the future of relations depends on the attitude assumed by Washington. Link: USA and Cuba, the Same Old

The Violator State and Outraged Citizens

Source: Havana Times On November 26th, tributes on the first anniversary of Fidel Castro’s death and voting (a more exact term than “elections) at a local level of the so-called People’s Power, coincided in Cuba. Link: The Violator State and Outraged Citizens

Steps Outside the System

Source: Havana Times Leaving the “system”, “matrix” or whatever you want to call this wild and psychopathic group of people, with or without traditions and with more or less “civilized” ways of surviving, is a long journey. Link: Steps Outside the System

Russia-Cuba Relations, Back to Old Times?

Source: Havana Times The Russians have returned to Cuba again but this time with a different face just like that character Melquiades in Garcia Marquez’s “One Hundred Years of Solitude” who appears in Macondo, after being absent for many years, with a beautiful smile that is the result of a denture. Link: Russia-Cuba

Cuba’s General Elections: a Work in Progress

Source: Havana Times There was hardly any abstention, in spite of voting not being mandatory, as the majority of those who couldn’t go and vote were outside of the city where they live for work-related or other reasons, both in and outside of Cuba. Link: Cuba’s General Elections: a Work in Progress

Ecuador: Correa to Testify in Favor of Glas in Corruption Case

Source: Havana Times Former Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa returned to Quito from his home in Belgium last weekend. On Tuesday he expressed his willingness to testify in favor of imprisoned Vice President Jorge Glas in the trial over illicit association following alleged bribes by the Brazilian company, Odebrecht. Link: Ecuador: Correa to Testify

Havana Times Undergoes Changes

Source: Havana Times Dear Readers, it’s time to upgrade our website and how it operates. While the final migration takes place starting early on Wednesday we will be offline for a day or two but will be posting our articles on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/havanatimes?fref=ts Link: Havana Times Undergoes Changes

Recycled Materials Become Planters

Source: Havana Times With clay pots relatively expensive, those who are interested in planting a range of plants at their homes are improvising containers, the kind that pop up everywhere and don’t cost a cent. (11 photos) Link: Recycled Materials Become Planters

Borrowed Freedom: Necessary Art in Cuba

Source: Havana Times Alternative art projects on the island has been treated worse than a bastard child. And not exactly by Cuba. People embrace them and are thankful. For every natural event, there is also a natural audience that identifies with it. Link: Borrowed Freedom: Necessary Art in Cuba

Trying to Kill Ideas Doesn’t Work

Source: Havana Times The quotation “Ideas cannot be killed” is very well-known in Cuba whereby a Batista army officer stopped his angry colleagues who wanted to kill Fidel when he was captured after the failed attempt to take the Moncada barracks. It was the most convincing argument used by that enlightened sergeant, Sarria.

Big Turnout for Cuba’s Local Elections

Source: Havana Times If the results from the neighborhood elections held on Sunday are a good indicator, they showed considerable support for the Castro government. According to the Electoral Council the turnout was 85.94% and of those, 91.79% cast valid ballots. Link: Big Turnout for Cuba’s Local Elections

Our Work “Enemy of the People” Censored

Source: Havana Times After the vertigo of seeing empty seats during the performance, which only two viewers could come to, the collective of Teatro Kairos, especially we the author and the director of the play, want to share some of our impressions of this event. Link: Our Work “Enemy of the People” Censored

Final Results for Cuba’s Local Elections on Monday Afternoon

Source: Havana Times The lead story today in Granma, the Communist Party newspaper that circulates throughout the island, is that President/General Raul Castro voted on Sunday. In reality nobody thought that he wouldn’t. Final voter turnout figures are expected at 3:00 p.m. on Monday. Link: Final Results for Cuba’s Local Elections on Monday

Cuban VP Bets on Continuity of the Socialist System

Source: Havana Times The Cuban first vice president, Miguel Diaz-Canel, said today that continuity of the island’s socialist system will take place in 2018 when a new president is chosen. Link: Cuban VP Bets on Continuity of the Socialist System

Nicaraguan Police Block March against Violence

Source: Havana Times Nicaraguan police prevented groups of women on Saturday from moving from different provinces to the capital to participate in a national march for the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Link: Nicaraguan Police Block March against Violence

Cuba Holds No-News Elections

Source: Havana Times Cuba holds neighborhood elections today to elect local delegates some of whom will make it to the city councils or even become national legislators. At most polling places voters will choose between two or more candidates all swearing to support the national government’s policies. Link: Cuba Holds No-News Elections

Who Needs a Visa to Enter Nicaragua?

Source: Havana Times Entering Nicaragua as a tourist is a simple process for citizens from 92 countries who don’t need a visa or special documents to enter. For 30 countries including Haiti and Cuba its quite an ordeal to enter the country. Link: Who Needs a Visa to Enter Nicaragua?

Spanish Co. Denies Reports of Sonic Attacks at Capri Hotel in Havana

Source: Havana Times The Spanish chain NH, owner of the Capri Hotel, has stated that it didn’t receive any complaints from clients with regard to the alleged sonic attacks that US diplomats based on the island suffered. Link: Spanish Co. Denies Reports of Sonic Attacks at Capri Hotel in Havana

The 9th HT Cuba Photo Contest Winners

Source: Havana Times Its time to bring you the winners and special mentions of our 9th Havana Times Cuba Photo Contest. The competition was very close this year with many excellent photos in each category. The 19-member jury worked hard to come up with their final selections. Link: The 9th HT Cuba Photo

Nostalgia and the Plight of Cuba’s Elderly

Source: Havana Times Comparing is one of the most difficult human things to do, whether that’s in writing or verbally including cries or applause. Nevertheless, it’s inherent to our nature and so we can’t avoid it. Link: Nostalgia and the Plight of Cuba’s Elderly

The Aptitude of Cuba’s Lawmakers

Source: Havana Times University degrees in Political Sciences or Public Administration don’t exist here in Cuba. Some postgraduate degrees in Public Administration are taught by Economy and Law professors who try to train up public officials in how to manage an institutionalism that has been inherited from the Soviet Union. Link: The Aptitude

The worst months in the year

Source: Havana Times Word has it that there are some people who are taking advantage of any situation and robbing what they can find: wallets, cellphones, money… I’m well aware that this happens in many countries, but today I’m talking about Havana. Link: The worst months in the year

My Neighborhood Candidate Selection Meeting

Source: Havana Times There was recently a meeting to choose the candidate/s for my district’s representative (el delegado), in my neighborhood of Guanabacoa, one of Havana’s outlying municipalities. Very few people came out for the 8 p.m. gathering, maybe 20 more or less. Link: My Neighborhood Candidate Selection Meeting

Havana Weather for November 23-29

Source: Havana Times Mornings with little clouds, which will increase in the afternoon and bring some isolated showers. Humidity will be high. The winds will be variable and weak, with speeds between 10 and 20 km/h. Link: Havana Weather for November 23-29

Havana Film Festival Preview

Source: Havana Times Cuba will be one of the countries with the greatest number of movies at this 39th edition of the Havana Film Festival and it will compete with two fiction feature films this year. Los buenos demonios by Gerardo Chijona and Sergio y Serguei by Ernesto Daranas. Link: Havana Film Festival

Cuba Rent Car, a Reason to Never Go Back

Source: Havana Times Car rental companies buy a car for 8,000 USD and then rent them out to tourists for two years, raking in approximately 50,000 USD and then they sell them on the national market for 40,000 USD. Renting out 1000 cars brings in 80 million USD every two years. Link: Cuba

Distorted Images: Being a Parent and Remember Back When…

Source: Havana Times As parents, it’s in our interest to forget how rebellious we were, our hate for school, our getaways, our drifting around. However, everything is born out of something, nothing just happens. Link: Distorted Images: Being a Parent and Remember Back When…

Cuba and North Korea Strengthen Close Ties

Source: Havana Times North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-Ho met in Havana with his Cuban counterpart Bruno Rodríguez on Wednesday as the two countries reiterated their mutual support and rejection of foreign interference in their internal affairs. Link: Cuba and North Korea Strengthen Close Ties

Nicaragua Ready to Receive Central American Games

Source: Havana Times Nicaragua is ironing out the final details before receiving around 3500 athletes from 28 different sports disciplines next month for the XI Central American Games, government authorities in Managua reported on Tuesday. Link: Nicaragua Ready to Receive Central American Games

New Abuse of Power against Cuban Artist

Source: Havana Times If you wanted to make a film about the abuse of power, police violence, totalitarianism, repression and legal vulnerability that exists in Cuba, what happened yesterday to the artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara could serve as a good script. Link: New Abuse of Power against Cuban Artist

Moreno Challenges Correa to Hold Rallies in Ecuador

Source: Havana Times Ecuadorian president, Lenin Moreno, challenged his predecessor Rafael Correa to travel to the country and hold mass rallies so that people could tell him what they thought about the last years of his leadership. Link: Moreno Challenges Correa to Hold Rallies in Ecuador

Fidel Castro, a Man Who Never Dies

Source: Havana Times Fidel Castro is a man who has been defamed and hated by the Revolution’s and socialism’s enemies, but admired and loved by every revolutionary in the world, and respected by those who, even though they aren’t revolutionaries… Link: Fidel Castro, a Man Who Never Dies

Havana from the Waist Down

Source: Havana Times Of the many ways to photograph people in the Cuban capital Juan Suarez decided to capture people going about their daily business or just hanging out but from the waist down. Here is what he saw. (24 photos) Link: Havana from the Waist Down

What It’s Like to Be a Doctor in Cuba

Source: Havana Times Exporting services is one of the Castro government’s most profitable businesses. When I say exporting services I’m saying leasing out specialized Cuban personnel to other countries, international organizations or even private companies. Link: What It’s Like to Be a Doctor in Cuba

CITGO-Venezuela Oil Executives Arrested for Corruption

Source: Havana Times Venezuela’s acting attorney general, Tarek William Saab, today informed of the arrest of the president and five executives of Citgo, a subsidiary in the United States of state oil company PDVSA, accused of signing financial contracts with conditions harmful to the industry. Link: CITGO-Venezuela Oil Executives Arrested for Corruption

More Harassment for this Democratic Socialist

Source: Havana Times Before being arrested for writing independent journalism and for believing in democratic socialism, I was getting things ready to take part in a course/workshop in Lima, Peru. As soon as I got out of jail, it was a race against time. Link: More Harassment for this Democratic Socialist

Old Havana Gets a Make-over at 498 Years Old

Source: Havana Times Works have been stepped up in the run up to the city’s 498th anniversary and they will continue to increase until the 500th anniversary, which will be celebrated on November 16, 2019. (12 photos) Link: Old Havana Gets a Make-over at 498 Years Old

Cuba’s Legislature Should Session Year Round

Source: Havana Times There is a permanent “state of emergency” style of leadership in Cuba that stands in the way of Cubans participation in the legislative process. Our Parliament only meets twice a year, a few days in July, another few days in December… Link: Cuba’s Legislature Should Session Year Round

Cuba Hosts Visit from North Korean FM

Source: Havana Times North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Young-ho arrives Monday in Havana for an official visit to the allied nation. He will meet with the Cuban FM Bruno Rodriguez, reported Telesurtv. Link: Cuba Hosts Visit from North Korean FM

The 10-Block Pedestrian Zone on Cuba’s Isle of Youth

Source: Havana Times Boulevards for pedestrians are in fashion here in Cuba and provincial capitals compete to be the most beautiful and attractive. Nueva Gerona, the main city on the Isle of Youth, wasn’t left behind as the capital of the so-called Special Municipality, which is in fact an island province that appears…

In Cuba, Nothing Seems to Change

Source: Havana Times Roberto is an old neighbor who always talks to me about the same things over and over again. Julio, another old neighbor, repeats the same things to me, and these are the same things that are always going round and round in my head. Link: In Cuba, Nothing Seems to

What’s Cuba doing about violence against women?

Source: Havana Times In Cuba, we are advocating for an end to violence against women, but it continues to be institutionalized somewhat, justified by our idiosyncrasy, concealed by our kind of culture and in everyday life. Link: What’s Cuba doing about violence against women?

Abdel Legra, a Democrat More Than an Opponent

Source: Havana Times During the current Cuban electoral process, 650 dissidents and opponents attempted to become district representative candidates, exercising their due right as recognized in the Constitution and Electoral Law, as Cuban citizens. None of them were successful. Link: Abdel Legra, a Democrat More Than an Opponent

Finalists of the HT Cuba 2017 Photo Contest

Source: Havana Times After three rounds of selection today we bring you the finalists of the HT Cuba 2017 Photo Contest, our ninth event. The 19-member jury started with 1105 pictures from 144 photographers in the six categories. The final round includes 64 photos from 40 photographers who have at least one entry.

Havana Architecture: a Battle of Symbols

Source: Havana Times Since the very beginning, the formal elements desired since the beginning of the Republican era in 1902 complied with the search for a national architecture, relating to its own traditions, weather factors and Cuban lifestyle. (25 photos) Link: Havana Architecture: a Battle of Symbols

Nicaragua: “Enhancing” the Dictatorship?

Source: Havana Times There were no surprises in the November 5th municipal elections in Nicaragua. Just as in last year’s Presidential election, the official polling places shone empty due to the massive abstention, even as the Supreme Electoral Council took great pains to declare another record level of participation, manipulating at whim the…

The World Doesn’t Have Extremes

Source: Havana Times I’m sure that Cuba’s experience is already enough to find a path that can make Marti’s dream (“for all and for the well-being of all”) a reality without committing itself to any “-ism” and only using what works, ignoring parts of the world that only check minds and maps. Link:

New Cuban Photography Talents

Source: Havana Times I like it when Friday rolls around, as it’s the day that exhibitions are inaugurated in Old Havana’s different galleries. Being able to visit them and see what young artists in my country are creating makes me very happy. (13 photos) Link: New Cuban Photography Talents

Havana Weather for November 16-22

Source: Havana Times The days will be mostly clear, with some clouds in the afternoons and isolated showers. The winds will be from the north and the northeast, with speeds between 15 and 25 km/h, with higher gusts. The maximum temperatures will be between 26 and 28° C (79 and 82 F), while…

Cartas desde Cuba Blog Reaches 10!

Source: Havana Times This November, Cartas desde Cuba (Letters from Cuba) is celebrating its 10th anniversary of existence. Link: Cartas desde Cuba Blog Reaches 10!

Free Education in Cuba

Source: Havana Times Every human living on this planet knows that education is free in Cuba. And I know because I heard the Undefeated Comandante say it 272,397 times if I didn’t count them wrong, and I shouldn’t have because my education was free. Link: Free Education in Cuba

A Beauty Salon In The Middle of Old Havana

Source: Havana Times On our return from attending a global youth event in Sochi, Russia my two Grenadian colleagues and I decided to peruse Old Havana where our hostel was located. Separated from our delegation and depressed over our misplaced luggage, I thought it best we have an adventure in case our sanity…

My Arrest: A Depressing Episode

Source: Havana Times It was Friday afternoon. My three children, aged 2, 8 and 9 years old, were playing in the living room. Somebody knocked on the door and interrupted my quiet siesta next to my wife. Four cars were outside my house and a dozen counterintelligence and crime agents and policemen too.…

Amnesty International Says that Cuba Uses Labor as a “Tool of Repression”

Source: Havana Times The government of Cuba uses its control over the labor market and the threat of dismissals as a “tool of repression” to silence criticism, the human rights organization Amnesty International reported today in a report. Link: Amnesty International Says that Cuba Uses Labor as a “Tool of Repression”

A Friendly Hand

Source: Havana Times One day, I was coming back from one of the editions of a Havana Film Festival. I was walking alone back then; I didn’t need anyone to walk through the capital’s Vedado neighborhood, from movie theater to movie theater, backpack on my shoulder… Link: A Friendly Hand

A Moment with Marta Maria Borras

Source: Havana Times We interview the young Cuban filmmaker Marta Maria Borras. “As a director and scriptwriter, I’m very interested in my stories not having a closed story; I rather try to open up the narrative to multiple readings. This is a very difficult task for me, and it’s always an attempt.” Link:

Venezuelan Government and Creditors Meeting Ended without Agreement

Source: Havana Times The meeting between the Venezuelan government and bondholders of Venezuela’s foreign debt ended Monday without an agreement, even though the government stated that the process of renegotiating to find better payment conditions has had a “postive” start. Link: Venezuelan Government and Creditors Meeting Ended without Agreement

Good and Bad News for Havana DotA Players

Source: Havana Times In spite of the first DotA tournament in Cuba, organized by ADEC (Cuba’s eSports Group), being interrupted by Hurricane Irma, it has continued to take place at the Central I.T. Palace in Central Havana. Link: Good and Bad News for Havana DotA Players

Trump, a Dangerous President

Source: Havana Times The process of establishing bilateral relations between Cuba and the US has been hurt lots of times. The Cuban government position has always been the same, inflexible and with its backward politics. Link: Trump, a Dangerous President

Hunter Hunted, More on Gender Violence in Cuba

Source: Havana Times Conner Gorry’s article, Me too: Gender Violence in Havana, took me back to an incident that happened a long time ago, which I still remember, even when, let’s just say, my memory isn’t the best. Link: Hunter Hunted, More on Gender Violence in Cuba

Cuba State Security Frees HT Writer Osmel Ramirez

Source: Havana Times Osmel Ramirez Alvarez, a Havana Times contributing writer, arrested last Friday at his home in Mayarí and later taken to a State Security facility in the city of Holguin, in northeastern Cuba, was released late Monday afternoon. Link: Cuba State Security Frees HT Writer Osmel Ramirez

“Work” in Cuba Means Working for the State

Source: Havana Times This “work” business has so many implications here in Cuba and there are so many ways of looking at it which are the same in number as any sea urchin’s razor-sharp spikes. Working implies, among other things, that there is payment for the work being done. And this payment, at…

I Don’t Want to Live to 120 Years Old

Source: Havana Times In Cuba, it’s no secret to anyone that the population is aging more and more as the days go by. The reasons for this are many, but there are two main ones: low birth rates, also for many different reasons, and the advances made in medicine and healthcare. Link: I

Bribes and red carpets

Source: Havana Times A friend told me about an ethical conflict: he had managed to get a medical appointment for his wife who has problems with her thyroid. He was even given the “gift” he’d have to hand over to the specialist. Link: Bribes and red carpets

Nicaragua: Why There Was No Abstention in 1990

Source: Havana Times The reasons for the abstention, and for which it will be ever more difficult to mobilize the population to participate in these civic campaigns, aren’t on account of the opposition leaders but are directly attributable to President Ortega and Vice President Murillo. Link: Nicaragua: Why There Was No Abstention in

Why Did Granma Fire its Director?

Source: Havana Times According to the announcement published by Granma newspaper, the Cuban Communist Party’s official press, Pelayo Terry Cuervo, the director of this newspaper, the country’s main one, was “released” from his position because of mistakes he had made. Link: Why Did Granma Fire its Director?

HT Writer Osmel Ramírez Moved to State Security Center in Holguin

Source: Havana Times We learned that on Saturday morning HT contributing writer Osmel Ramirez was transferred to the city of Holguín, about 90 kilometers away, and is currently being held in the State Security Police Training Center, better known as Pedernales. Link: HT Writer Osmel Ramírez Moved to State Security Center in Holguin

A Cuban Trait or the Result of a Sociological Experiment?

Source: Havana Times I don’t know if living by day by day is a trait of the Cuban people or whether it’s another result of the sociological experiment that has been carried out on our people, but this conversation with my barber (which I’ve transcribed word for word) has left me thinking about…

HT 2017 Cuba Photo Contest – Second Cut

Source: Havana Times Here are the 135 pictures from 52 photographers that have made it past the second cut of the 2017 HT Cuba Photo Contest. The 19-member jury has begun making their picks in Round Three. We hope to post the finalists on or before Saturday November 18. (135 photos) Link: HT

Havana Times Contributing Writer Arrested

Source: Havana Times Today, our contributing writer from Mayari, Holguín, Osmel Ramirez Alvarez, was arrested, reported a family member. The agents also took with them Osmel’s laptop, hard drive and other belongings. His whereabouts are unknown at this moment. Link: Havana Times Contributing Writer Arrested

Cuba Looks to Expand its Open Pit Nickel Mines

Source: Havana Times Cuba’s nickel industry is looking to expand its strip mines in search of this precious metal. According to Juan Ruiz Quintana, the managing director of Mining at the Ministry of Mines and Energy, “geological studies to discover new areas rich in this and other metals” are underway. Link: Cuba Looks

Me Too: Gender Violence in Havana

Source: Havana Times I’ve been physically assaulted twice. Both times I was walking home alone at night. And both times I was compromising my safety. In the first instance, circa 1993 in Monterey, California, I was drunk. In the second instance, I had earbuds in, music blasting, as I walked down Calle 23…

Havana Alternative Biennial Promoter Luis Manuel Otero Released on Bail

Source: Havana Times Cuban artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcantara was released on bail from Police custody on Thursday at 4 in the afternoon. His legal situation is still complicated because he is awaiting trial, without a precise date. Link: Havana Alternative Biennial Promoter Luis Manuel Otero Released on Bail

Granma Newspaper Director Gets the Boot

Source: Havana Times The director of Granma, the official Cuban Communist Party newspaper, is dismissed and the explanation given does not complete 4 lines. The lack of transparency of those who control the Cuban press is proverbial, their sanctions are always exemplary and their power continues to be unlimited. Link: Granma Newspaper Director

Old Cars in Havana

Source: Havana Times At the beginning of the 90s, when the only expectation that Cuba generated towards the world, was to see how long the socialist regime lasted, a friend told me that Havana was known as the rolling museum, referring to the number of US-made cars prior to 1959 that were still…

Trump Ends Temporary Protected Status for Nicaraguans

Source: Havana Times US affirms that Daniel Ortega’s government never requested an extension of the Temporary Protected Status for the over 5,000 affected Nicaraguan immigrants. EFE / Confidencial HAVANA TIMES – The Trump administration has ended the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Nicaraguans, leaving more than 5,000 Nicaraguan immigrants in limbo. The status…

Cuba Has Great Potential for Healthy Tourism

Source: Havana Times Tourism in Cuba should be developed taking into account the permanent presence of Irma and Trump, thinking that there will always be a hurricane in the Caribbean or a president at the White House who is willing to run the locomotive of Cuba’s economy off the tracks. Link: Cuba Has

The Land of Exile

Source: Havana Times Ever since I can remember, I remember that I used to imagine foreign countries as alien civilizations or lands from another world, like other children did from my generation. Link: The Land of Exile

Havana Weather for November 9-15

Source: Havana Times The days will be warm, with the presence of low clouds and isolated afternoon showers associated with daytime warming and high humidity. The high temperatures will be between 29 and 30° C (84 F and 86 F), while the lows will be 22 and 23° C (72 and 73 F).

The Detention of Cuban Artist Luis Otero is Everyone’s Business

Source: Havana Times Among artists an admirable support for Luis Manuel Otero has generated; social networks have been active and we know that they can be a good tool even in Cuba, where few access them. Link: The Detention of Cuban Artist Luis Otero is Everyone’s Business

New US Policy Changes on Cuba Take Effect

Source: Havana Times The Trump administration announced today regulations that will make it more difficult, but not impossible, for US citizens to visit Cuba and establishes new limits on commercial transactions with the island. Link: New US Policy Changes on Cuba Take Effect

US Blockade on Cuba, Mistake or Wise Move?

Source: Havana Times Any act of blocking is wrong and can even be a crime depending on the circumstances. Whether that’s between countries, ethnicities or even between people from the same country. Cuba, poor Cuba, who has suffered so many blockades! Link: US Blockade on Cuba, Mistake or Wise Move?

Is Censorship of Artists a Tradition on Cuban TV?

Source: Havana Times Over the past three years, several members from the Vivir del cuento (Living by one’s wits) team, including the director and the more well-known actors, had asked me to write for the program. I told them yes from the beginning… Link: Is Censorship of Artists a Tradition on Cuban TV?

Alternative Havana Biennial Still Happening

Source: Havana Times Let me explain why the press conference scheduled Monday afternoon to formally announce the opening for submissions to the #00 Havana Biennial was canceled. Link: Alternative Havana Biennial Still Happening

FSLN Takes 135 City Halls after Local Elections

Source: Havana Times The Supreme Electoral Council (CSE) has awarded 135 of the country’s 153 mayoralties to the Sandinista Front, after receiving 98.76% of the Voting tabulation sheets from Sunday’s municipal elections. The ruling party will control the 15 departmental capitals of the country, and the two main cities of the autonomous regions…

Abuse Isn’t only a Beating

Source: Havana Times This year, I was invited to take part in the Pinar del Rio carnival celebrations. There was a healthy and festive atmosphere in spite of the suffocating heat and the exorbitant prices of food on offer at kiosks. Link: Abuse Isn’t only a Beating

Foreigners and a Credit Card

Source: Havana Times In Cuba, where we all know the average wage is low and is not enough to satisfy our basic needs, people find themselves forced to look for an illegal way to improve their lives, other times it’s just not a very honest way. Link: Foreigners and a Credit Card

A 100 years after the Russian Revolution

Source: Havana Times On October 25th 1917 (November 7th using the Gregorian calendar), events unfolded that “shook” the world, according to US author John Reed. Link: A 100 years after the Russian Revolution

Cuba: A Lot of Noise, Not Enough Respect

Source: Havana Times The issue of noise in Cuba has been one of the most popular and repetitive on a daily basis, for a while now. Not precisely because of the science fiction saga where US diplomats have been affected by sonic weapons and left with hearing loss, but because of contemporary Cuban…

Call for Entries in the Alternative Havana Biennial May 2018

Source: Havana Times The Museum of Politically Uneasy Art, alongside a group of independent Cuban spaces, artists, theorists and curators are calling for entries for the #00 Havana Biennial which will take place from May 5-15, 2018 in the Cuban capital. Link: Call for Entries in the Alternative Havana Biennial May 2018

Ortega’s FSLN Wins Local Elections Throughout Nicaragua

Source: Havana Times After a lackluster campaign with virtually no legal opposition, the candidates of the FSLN party of the presidential couple Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo, swept to victory Sunday as expected throughout the country. Link: Ortega’s FSLN Wins Local Elections Throughout Nicaragua

Island II the Continuation of a Project (video)

Source: Havana Times The short film is dedicated to everyone who has needed to emigrate to find opportunities and try and prosper in another place. It is the second installment of something that was initially going to be a trilogy, and is dedicated to my friends and acquaintances. Link: Island II the Continuation

Joke of the Day

Source: Havana Times Last Thursday at 3 PM, somebody knocked on my house door. Who is it at this time of day? I asked myself, curious, as I’m not used to receiving visits at home at this time in the afternoon. Link: Joke of the Day

FSLN without Competition in Sunday’s Municipal Elections

Source: Havana Times On Sunday November 5, Nicaragua holds nationwide local elections but only in 19 of the 153 municipalities in the country is there a resemblance of electoral competition between the Sandinista Front and other authorized parties. Likewise, the process has been plagued by irregularities. Link: FSLN without Competition in Sunday’s Municipal

Nicaragua Votes Sunday for Municipal Authorities

Source: Havana Times Some 3.6 million people are eligible to vote Sunday in the municipal elections in Nicaragua, where the ruling Sandinista Front will seek to impose itself on seven weak rivals (some considered allies) and expand its power to nearly all of the 153 cities in the country. Link: Nicaragua Votes Sunday

Cuba’s State-run Food Establishments Obsessed with Repairs

Source: Havana Times Even though a large number of establishments used during the last half a century by the state-owned food service sector were leased out or managed by cooperatives, over 50% still remain under government control. Repairing a state-run establishments is a lucrative business, they allocate materials and a lot of them…

HT 2017 Cuba Photo Contest – First Cut

Source: Havana Times The time has come to present the surviving photos from the first cut of our HT 2017 Cuba Photo Contest. A total of 81 participants managed to have at least one photo make it to round two, which now includes a total of 235 pictures, down from 1,105 from 144…

Yuliesky Gourriel, the Rookie Champion from Cuba

Source: Havana Times For 13 seasons, Yuliesky Gourriel was unsuccessfully looking for the crown in Cuba’s National Baseball League. However, in his first full season in Major League Baseball, he won the champion ring with the Houston Astros. Link: Yuliesky Gourriel, the Rookie Champion from Cuba

Venezuelan petrocasas: a Polluting Solution for Cuba

Source: Havana Times Losing your home or roof after a hurricane hits can be one of the most awful experiences you can ever have. Maybe protected by this sad reality, the Cuban government is taking the luxury of building the famous Venezuelan petrocasas (“oil houses” a kind of family house that is produced…

Souls have no color

Source: Havana Times We all know that children come into this world without any prejudice. Their way of thinking and expressing themselves is so sincere that they can even be cruel to each other, but they are so naive at the same time that they forget any brawl they’ve had a few moments…

Where Cuba Fits in the Newly Declassified JFK Files

Source: Havana Times The declassified documents reveal that self-harm attacks were a part of the US strategy against Cuba. They ome at a very interesting time when Washington is accusing Cuba of attacking US diplomats at its embassy in Havana with a fantasy sonic weapon. Link: Where Cuba Fits in the Newly Declassified

Havana Weather for November 2-8

Source: Havana Times The days will be pleasant with isolated cloud cover and occasional showers. The winds will be from the northeast with speeds between 15 and 25 km, higher on the coast. The high temperatures will be between 28 and 30° C (82 F and 86 F), while the lows will oscillate…

Perspectives for Cuba and its Diaspora

Source: Havana Times The long-awaited and highly-acclaimed suspension of the first immigration measures, which have had such a negative effect on Cubans on both sides of the Florida Strait, is an encouraging sign of the upper echelons in the Cuban government’s capacity to reflect, be mature and willingness to correct what needs to…

US-Cuba: Bridges vs. Walls

Source: Havana Times A bridge manages to unite something that has been divided by geography, politics or prejudice. In the case of the United States and Cuba, it’s a pressing need rather than a symbol. (10 photos) Link: US-Cuba: Bridges vs. Walls

Cuba-US Dispute, All in the Family?

Source: Havana Times I won’t pull any punches… I believe that there isn’t a Cuba-US dispute. It doesn’t exist; I think it’s a publicity ruse by a family, the Castro-Diaz-Balarts, who managed to take control of Cuban politics in the two places it exists, Havana and Washington, over the past more than half…

UN Votes Wednesday on Resolution against US Embargo on Cuba

Source: Havana Times The UN General Assembly will once again vote on Wednesday to condemn the US embargo on Cuba. The non-binding resolution has been submitted by Cuba for the last 25 years, receiving overwhelming approval. Link: UN Votes Wednesday on Resolution against US Embargo on Cuba

Sex and Songs

Source: Havana Times Like everyone else, among most of the things I have heard about and have learned something about are those that are sex-related. Some go back to the days of my childhood, as is common. Link: Sex and Songs

Getting Used to Living in Misery

Source: Havana Times On a normal day, you plan to go shopping early in the morning so you can get back quickly and make the most of your time, but, the illusion of having a productive day is quickly shattered. Link: Getting Used to Living in Misery

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