“Does Cuba exist?” But which Cuba are we talking about?

The consul general of Cuba in São Paulo, Pedro Monzón Barata, gained space in the Folha de S.Paulo newspaper to complain about the international press. In his article, he complains that sectors of the press only remember Cuba to lie, defame and repeat the booklet written by Washington that says that the island lives under a dictatorial regime and that it does not respect human rights.

Monzón is an ingrate.

In the world – and in Brazil – there is no lack of people who turn a blind eye to the dictatorship in Cuba. Last July, when Cubans took to the streets to protest against the regime, Folha generously opened its pages to a hallucination, according to which “the popular revolt in Cuba only existed in delirious versions on social networks or in a hate-filled press.” .

The dissatisfied consul – or rather, insatiable – goes so far as to prescribe what should be said about the marvels of the regime he represents. The list is huge and not worth reproducing. In fact, Brazilian newspapers should do the same. It is disturbing how the media accept to publish texts signed by representatives of dictatorships, whether they are diplomats or not. Texts often filled with lies that serve only to put a veneer on atrocities.

The Cuba of Consul Monzón is not the same Cuba that has dozens of minors arrested and prosecuted for having taken to the streets in last July to protest the oppression of the regime. The island of Monzón is not the island from which people flee in improvised boats, facing the risk of dying in an ocean crossing to escape poverty.

The regime defended and praised by him is not the even though in the 21st century it is under investigation and has already been judicially condemned for enslaving its citizens. Slavery that the Cuban dictatorship calls “international solidarity”. A super cute concept that is not exclusively used by official channels as a front to cover up their crimes. It is the mantra of its members around the world, as in Brazil, where the Mais Médicos Program served as a pretext for the exploration of more than 15 thousand Cuban doctors who passed through the country.

The island of fantasy of the consul Monzón is not the same where only last year, after six decades of restrictions, rural producers won the right to be able to make the decision to kill or not the cows they raise without having to resort to special authorization from the State. Even if it was for their own sustenance.

The visitor who is enchanted by the tourist version of Cuba has no idea that many people reached adulthood without remembering or knowing what a steak tastes like. . Anyone who has tasted beef has possibly bought it on the black market, risking up to ten years in prison. The concession only came last year as a way to calm the population amid the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, which made the regime’s effects on the lives of ordinary Cubans even more severe.

Ah! But it’s the blockade’s fault, reminds the consul.

The island of Monzón needs this excuse that is repeated to the four winds. But the infamous “blockade” does not prevent anything from entering the island. In practice, it provides for punishments for those who also make transactions in the United States, but it is far from being an asphyxiating and fatal siege. The rules imposed do not affect the shipment of food, medical supplies, for example. An overlooked fact is that the United States is Cuba’s fourth largest trading partner. Food is one of the main products the island buys from Americans. He just doesn’t buy anymore because it’s a bankrupt and deadbeat regime.

In his article in Folha, the consul asked if “Cuba exists?”. A rhetorical tool to accuse those in the press who do not board the “Official Cuba”. This year, the island is the subject of presidential campaigns across Latin America. It was in Chile, it is being in Costa Rica, it will be in Colombia and, of course, in Brazil. Nobody wants to be like Cuba.

But which Cuba are we talking about, Consul Monzón? Instead of letting a spokesman for the regime ask the question, give the answer himself, and on top of that, pass the soap on to the press, wouldn’t it be a case of listening to the Cubans themselves? Those Cubans who live in the real world without the benefits of being sheltered by the regime? I’m talking about Cubans who dream of the taste of meat. Of those people who, given the lack of toilet paper, give a nobler end to the pages of the official Granma newspaper.