About Sugar and prostitution
Dear "GUARACABUYA" friends,
In 1959 the real Cuban revolution (even with the help of some of us who were not communists) succeeded in the struggle against the corrupt government of Fulgencio Batista. One of the original goals of the revolution was the eradication of prostitution from Cuban cities. According to a young Fidel, prostitution was a disease and the fault of American Imperialism, brought to Cuba by the way of North American tourism. Accusing in long and tedious speeches, all those old and ugly bastards from the Devil North that invaded our island beaches and night spots and corrupted Cuban women (Prostitution in pre revolutionary Cuba, was then as much a social problem like in Paris, Rome, Tokyo or New York City).
Fidel Castro destroyed a very professional Cuban tourism industry, that by 1959 was well established as the premier vacation destination in the Caribbean. Cuba had modern hotels, fine restaurants, night clubs and casinos (*: A strict ban on prostitution was enforced in Cuban casinos ), golf courses, modern public transportation, international airlines, passenger/car ferries, etc., to service the tourist trade. It also provided a good income to thousands that worked in tourist related industries.
Today, Fidel has rediscovered tourism. In Cuba everyone repeats after him: "Tourism is the savior of the revolution", how about that!. During 1997/98, amazingly tourism brought more US dollars to the communist coffers than sugar, our traditional crop for export.
Hotel joint ventures with foreign companies (mainly Canadian and European) are the in the vogue and even the Cuban Army is involved in the tourist trade (through Gaviota's control of prime sea side hotel properties, dollar stores and even an airline). How about that! Fidel has rediscovered "THE WHEEL" (not remembering 1959). He has just found out that tourists are people that come into Cuba with their pockets full of US dollars (no other foreign currency is legal tender in the island), wow! mighty US dollars, The United States according to Fidel, is a country full of capitalist sins, except for its currency, the mighty US dollar!
Cubans without access to dollars simply starve. Everywhere in the socialist society the black market thrives, anyone can purchase almost anything with dollars, fish is sold in the streets, shoes, clothing (such as blue jeans- pitusas), fake watches, even rice and black beans, etc., official dollar stores have flourished selling mostly luxury goods at exhorbitant prices.
This situation creates an urgent need for the survival of Cuban families with no relatives in the USA (who send over 850 mm dollars in cash every year ). The way mostly chosen is to earn illegal Dollars through black market illegal activities or prostitution. Those beautiful, fresh, clean, well educated *according to Fidel's recent statements and very but very young. They service those nice, older, handsome men that arrive in daily plane loads from Spain, Italy, Canada, Germany and even Latin American countries like poor Santo Domingo, where it is common to hear older wealthy men (viejos ricos) talking about their "magnificent love affairs" with pretty Cuban girls. Some, even get to marry the "Jineteras" and take them to their home countries (through, JINETOUR - EXPRESS), only to eventually awaken to the reality that at the first opportunity, the "young girl" runs away from them. This situation also applies to young men. There are literally thousands of Cuban youth living all over the world and some are even displayed to prospective husbands over the internet.
It is saddening that in Cuba today, the business of prostitution offers lot's of fun and merry times for the European / Canadian / Latin American male and female tourist, a few dollars, a good meal and a night in town for the local participants, fuller hotel and motel booking's, great business in night clubs owned by the Government joint ventures, increased sales of local rum (mojitos) and the limitless development of a life of illegality and immorality. All this happening after the long, 40 years of horrible experimentation with communism, bringing to all of us decent Cubans, great shame.A LITTLE ABOUT CUBA AND SUGAR:
This years 1997/98 sugar crop was the poorest in over 50 years, production reaching only 3.1 million tons. Unseasonal bad weather was mostly blamed for reducing the crop to lower than expected levels bringing in low sugar cane production. Industrial mismanagement was also found to be one of the main reasons. Cuba exported around 2.4 million tons of raw sugar this harvest, more than one million tons less then the previous season. The decline in exports represented a reduction in sugar export earnings of at least $250 million for the island and probably more, compared to 1997. Lower world sugar prices have also contributed to the earnings losses of around $118 million in unearned potential revenue.Saludos,