Guillermo Farinas and the Business of Hunger StrikesAugust 16, 2016 | Print |
Elio Delgado Legon
HAVANA TIMES — Recently, I read a post on Havana Times published on August 8th entitled: Guillermo Farinas Returns, Once Again Unarmed. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. The writer makes it clear that many people criticize and hate this man for being a mercenary working for a foreign power, for being a counter-revolutionary in spite of being black, and furthermore, even though the author of this article doesn’t state this, for having studied a university degree for free, which in a capitalist country, and I say this from experience, would have been impossible for him.
I don’t criticize people who honestly voice their opinions, although sometimes I refute them, because they like capitalism more than socialism, and there are more than enough arguments to refute them. However, those who resort to telling lies and defamation, they really get me angry.
To echo the lies coming out of Farinas’ mouth is to become their accomplice, and talking about stopping the beatings, death threats, prosecutions for false crimes and confiscating their personal property, is slander, which is aimed at staining the clean and transparent image of the Cuban Revolution, which is considered globally, by millions of people, as the paradigm to follow, and this is what Imperialism is most worried about, and therefore they pay mercenaries to dull the shine of this beacon which guides so many revolutionaries in this world.
Talking about releasing political prisoners in Cuba is a very complex issue. It is true that a number of those some considered political prisoners were released when the Catholic Church and the Spanish Government mediated the process, however, these “political prisoners” had been punished for violating Cuban laws and for carrying out activities guided and paid by a foreign power who wants to change the Cuban political system and take our country back to the days of neoliberal capitalism, which those of us who didn’t live in Cuba before 1959, can inform themselves by looking at what is going on in the rest of Latin America, where this failed system rules.
The author of the aforementioned post tries to cast doubt upon the crimes committed by Farinas, before he became a dissident and world record holder in hunger strikes. However, at Santa Clara’s Provincial Court, both sanctions appear, which to my knowledge, were very light given the crimes he committed: the first, hitting a defenceless woman, and the second, beating an old man, who had to be hospitalized.
What is clear to me though is that the Cuban counter-revolution is on the look out for figures like this one to get them to join their depleted ranks and incite them to declare hunger strikes so they can use this as propaganda against the Revolution. And if they die as a result, all the better, because then they can convert them into the counter-revolutionary flag.
It’s really shocking that somebody who says he is Cuban considers and treats a potential terrorist as a hero. Farinas has met and become good friends with Luis Posada Carriles in Miami, responsible for countless crimes, amongst them blowing up a Cuban civilian plane in 1976, which resulted in the deaths of its 73 passengers, making him another terrorist. And I didn’t say it, George W. Bush said it himself when he stated that whoever is the friend of a terrorist is also a terrorist.
Lastly, because I don’t want to drag on, I think it’s awful, absurd and antihistorical to compare the hunger strikes of Farinas with those carried out by Julio Antonio Mella when he was unjustly locked up by Gerardo Machado’s bloody dictatorship.
Mella was a true revolutionary, the founder of the first Cuban Communist Party and the University Students’ Federation and he was assassinated by hitmen hired by this dictatorship, while Farinas has carried out hunger strikes directed by counter-revolutionary bosses and has taken this on as a profitable business, making him a rich man.