“Already many Cubans have discovered and soon all of them will discover that this oppression, that this imposed lie, can be overcome recognizing ourselves as brothers to conquer our rights peacefully. So there is hope.” - Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas, Somos Liberación Havana, Cuba, July 2012.
lied his way into power because he knew that Cubans rejected and despised communism and that showing his Marxist Leninist colors would lead him nowhere. He came to power publicly claiming to be a democratic humanist who respected human rights and freedom of expression but privately sent his agents to warn newspaper editors that if they spoke critically of him or the revolution they would be killed. While talking democracy the firing squads were filmed and broadcast and the terror began.
Those who had fought by his side in good faith believing it was a struggle to restore democracy became uneasy with the course of the revolution. Some, like Huber Matos, who spoke out spent decades in prison. Many returned to the hills of the Escambray to carry on the struggle for the democratic restoration. This violent resistance was finally crushed in 1966.
In 1976 within the prisons a new and nonviolent movement emerged with the founding of the Cuban Committee for Human Rights. This movement would emerge with an international projection that also reached millions of Cubans in the 1980s with the founding of Radio Marti. Different groups began to emerge.
|Oswaldo Payá delivers first batch of petitions in 2002|
|Ladies in White led by Laura Pollán marching for freedom|
|Beaten by regime agents in December 2012. Needed nearly 30 stitches|
The Castro regime's brutality continues today. Sirley Ávila León was a delegate to the Municipal Assembly of People’s Power in Cuba from June 2005, for the rural area of Limones until 2012 when the regime gerrymandered her district out of existence. The Castro regime removed her from her position because she had fought to reopen a school in her district, but been ignored by official channels and had reached out to international media. Her son, Yoerlis Peña Ávila, who had an 18 year distinguished career in the Cuban military was forced out when he refused to declare his mother insane and have her committed to a psychiatric facility.
Sirley joined the ranks of the democratic opposition and repression against her increased dramatically. On May 24, 2015 she was the victim of a brutal machete attack carried out by Osmany Carriòn, with the complicit assistance of his wife, that led to the loss of her left hand, right upper arm nearly severed, and knees slashed into leaving her crippled. Following the attack she did not receive adequate medical care and was told quietly by medical doctors in Cuba that if she wanted to get better that she would need to leave the country.
The nonviolent resistance to the Castro regime continues today in Cuba and the struggle for freedom continues.
Third part of October 26, 2017 lecture sponsored by the Young Conservatives of Texas held in the Escondido Theater of the Student Union Building at Texas Tech University. The talk was entitled 'How Communism Arrived in Cuba.