Cuba Prioritizes Exit from US Terrorism List

February 25, 2015 | 9 comments

Cuban authorities said today they are awaiting the United States “answer” in the forthcoming negotiations to their demand to be taken off the US list of countries sponsoring terrorism, as a prerequisite for the restoration of bilateral diplomatic relations.

What the World Series of Boxing Means for Cuba

February 25, 2015 | No Comments »

Cuban sports authorities (which tend to smell professionalism everywhere) were very skeptical when the World Series of Boxing kicked off. Three series were held before Cuba decided to enlist in the tournament. In a sense, it didn’t have much of a choice, as the competition was going to be the main way to qualify for the Olympics.

From Cuba to Ecuador to USA: Cuban Woman Tells Her Story

February 25, 2015 | No Comments »

She arrived. Hungry, with only 2 dollars in her purse (the same “lucky $2 bill” carried by many Cubans) and wearing the only decent clothes she had after crossing eight countries. Susana’s journey began on Sept. 27, 2014, when she left Cuba for Ecuador with her partner and two friends, Marcos and Alejandro.

Cuban Artist Esterio Segura’s “The Tropical West”

February 25, 2015 | No Comments »

Esterio Segura believes that one is responsible for one’s fate, and that has been his driving force in the world of visual arts. This helps explain the numerous series he has produced, one of which is on display at the Factoria Habana gallery. (11 photos)

Viñales and Trinidad: Private Rentals vs. State-Run Hotels

February 20, 2015 | 5 comments

The private lodging rental sector is one of the examples that prove how creative Cuban entrepreneurs can be. To illustrate their performance, let us take the examples of Trinidad and Viñales. At both these destinations, the lodging capacity offered by the private sector is greater than that offered by the State.

Cuba Discovers the Digital Book

February 20, 2015 | No Comments »

Despite one of the worst levels of Internet connectivity in the world, Cuba continues to take shy steps towards the digital world. Be it Fifty Shades of Grey, now a US blockbuster, or Cuban novelist Leonardo Padura’s bestseller The Man Who Loved Dogs, informal book downloads are today swelling the databases of Cuba’s still scarce but coveted e-readers.

US Embargo Shafts Cuban Players

February 17, 2015 | 2 comments

The US $102,000 that should have gone to Cuba’s Pinar del Rio team, champions of the Caribbean Series 2015, will not be collected by the players. And no bonuses will go to the four Cubans on the tournament’s All-Star team, prizes that they won fairly at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The big political excuse used so far by the US institutions to avoid paying Cuban teams was that the money would end up in the hands of the government, not in the hands of the players, something no longer true.

Cuba’s Ladies in White Harass “Traitors”

February 17, 2015 | 11 comments

The images are disconcerting. In the same place where pro-government hordes commonly harass Cuba’s Ladies in White, in front of the movement’s headquarters in Centro Habana, we see these women yelling slogans that recall the reprisals perpetrated during the dark days of the Mariel exodus.

A Pink Tank in a Havana Garden

February 17, 2015 | 3 comments

With his own, personal infantry tank, Jesus Leiva is most probably the only Cuban civilian who owns a war machine in Cuba. He keeps it parked outside his house, letting troops of children climb its belts, hang from its 75-mm cannon and enter and exit the vehicle through the hatch.

Barbies/Soccer Stars at the Cuba Book Fair

February 16, 2015 | No Comments »

The 24th International Book Fair has started in Cuba. Havana’s La Cabaña fortress is again full of people, food and books. Many are surprised by the large number of people who attend the fair.(23 photos)