CUBA : STABILITY, DÉTENTE, or LIBERTY?
BY MANUEL CEREIJO
The war would end, President Bush has declared, only when every terrorist group of global reach, and every terrorist government, I add, has been found, stopped, and defeated. Every terror-sponsoring regime should be replaced with democratic governments.
During the Cold War, mainly from 1970 to 1990, the erroneous policy of détente towards the Communist nations, lead by the Soviet Union, dictated the policy of the United States toward Cuba. After the collapse of the Soviet bloc, until 9/11/2001, the policy of "stabilization" of Cuba with Castro was the policy. Stability trumps democracy.
Liberty for Cuba
After 46 years of the tyranny in Cuba, we can clearly distinguished two epochs, the transient stage, and the steady state. In the transient state-roughly up to 1970- there were two groups of people in Cuba. One group was composed of those who were committed to the tyranny that is they agreed with it, or true believers. All who were opposed to the tyranny formed the other group.
From 1970, up to now, steady state of the tyranny was reached. Now, Cuban society is divided into three groups. One group is which still agree with the tyranny. They remain committed to it, because they are true believers, or are enjoying privileges from the government. We estimate this group to be approximately 10% of the population.
Another group is made up of those who are willing to defy the prevailing order, despite the risk of punishment, the opponents and dissidents. Possibly around 5% of the population. Those who do not say what they think form the third group. People who don't believe in the ideology of the tyranny anymore, but they are afraid to accept the risks associated with dissent, with opposition. They are the double thinkers; they have what is called double morale. Approximately, 85 % of the Cuban population forms this group.
This group lives in a constant tension from the debate between their thoughts and their words. They always avoid saying what is not permitted, but also try to avoid saying what they do not believe. In schools, universities, workplaces, public meetings, everywhere, they pretend to be true believers, and hide their true beliefs. This constant self-censorship becomes a habit, and it does not create any more the tension between their words and their thoughts is almost not felt.
This is why, the Cuban population will appear, to the eyes of an outside observer, to consist mostly only of true believers, when in reality it has some 9 millions of double thinkers, double morale people living in terror. Even to the eyes of the foreign press in Cuba, because in Cuba, finding out what people truly believe is not a function of whether the foreign press is given the "freedom" to ask questions, but rather whether the people feel free to answer them.
The public statements of those in Cuba, living under a tyranny, are never a reliable indication of people's true opinions. If a poll were to be conducted in Cuba, now, in 2005, asking whether respondents supported the policies of the communist tyranny, possibly more than 95% would answer yes.
The power of the fear tyranny in Cuba is not based solely on the secret police. As important is the regime's ability to control what is read, said, heard, seen, and above all, the thought of the people. State-controlled television, radio, and newspapers glorify the actions of the tyranny and incite the Cuban population against those it deems to be enemies.
The free world can not wait for the tyranny in Cuba to consent to reforms. We must also not wait for the support of international organizations. Many of the countries that wield influence in these organizations are non democratic regimes.
The resources of civilization are not yet exhausted. Those resources are largely in the United States hands, and the nation- "the last, best hope of mankind"- has an overwhelming duty to use them with purposeful justification and to the full, in the defense of the lives, property, and freedom of all of us. This is the central point to keep in mind when the weasel words of cowardice and surrender are pronounced.
We are involved in World War III. It started on 9/11/2001. A different war than any previous one. Asymmetric, terrorist battles, weapons of mass destruction, targeting civilians, innocent people.
It is a battle of civilization vs. barbarism, of dignity vs. immorality, of freedom vs. totalitarism , of one man rule vs. democracy, of human rights vs. oppression.
All terrorist groups, and terrorist governments, should be destroyed and/or overthrown. Cuba's tyranny must come to an end. Let us live a future of peace, freedom, and justice.