To commemorate the Europe Union's Day of Remembrance for the victims of all totalitarian and authoritarian regimes, President von der Leyen issued the following statement excerpted here:
“On 23 August, we honour the memory of the victims of totalitarian and authoritarian regimes, in Europe and beyond. Today, on the 83rd anniversary of the signature of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, this date carries a special significance. This year, Putin brought the horrors of war back to Europe, along with the reminder that peace cannot be taken for granted.[ Rest of statement here ].
Frank Calzon writing in National Review on November 10, 1978 about the six year peasant uprising in the Escambray and numbers killed citing official and non-official sources. "Raul Castro estimated that five hundred government soldiers died in order to kill or capture 3,591 " bandits." Writing in 1971, the British historian Hugh Thomas put the total slightly higher: "Minor guerrilla skirmishing has gone on most of the time in Oriente and other mountainous districts in an unsung war; rumors abound but probably at least four thousand guerilleros have been killed since 1962."
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) reported that on October 23, 1966 a group of young Cubans tried to flee Cuba swimming from the populated coast of Caimanera to the Guantanamo naval base. The "Frontier Batallion" of the Cuban government pursued them and shot them with automatic weapons killing three of the four, of which two were identified:Pedro Baraña age 35 and Francisco Arcano Galano age 21. Their bodies were found floating in Guantánamo Bay. The same type of action was denounced in 1993 when regime officials used snipers and grenades against defenseless swimmers.
In February of 1991 news accounts of the death by dehydration of 15-year-old Gregorio Perez Ricardo, a rafter fleeing Cuba, as U.S. Coast Guard officials tried to save his life made the news, but the question that arises is how many rafters since 1959 have perished in the straits fleeing Castroism or been murdered by Castro's border patrol?
In the 1995 monograph, The Cuban Balseros: Voyage of Uncertainty authored by human rights expert Holly Ackerman, and sociologist Juan M. Clark and published by the Policy Center of the Cuban American National Council placed the number of balseros, Cuban boat people, to have died trying to leave Cuba in a range with an upper limit of 100,000 over the first 36 years of the Castro regime. Professor Clark, who passed away in 2013, is the author of Castro's Revolution: Myths and Reality that was published posthumously in 2016 and covered with great detail the sociological impact of Castroism on Cuba and its human cost.
Killings have continued to the present day
Authorities recognized one death in these protests. Diubis Laurencio Tejeda was a 36-year-old singer who was shot in the back by the National Revolutionary Police (PNR) in Havana on July 12. There are others, but they have not been officially recognized.
Christian Díaz, age 24, disappeared after joining the protests. Relatives on July 12 reported him missing to the PNR in Cárdenas. Police told his father that Christian was jailed in Matanzas. On Aug. 5, officials informed his family he’d drowned in the sea and was buried in a mass grave. His family is convinced he was beaten to death.
|Diubis Laurencio Tejeda and Christian Díaz killed in 2021.|
Glenn Garvin wrote an important essay on December 1, 2016 titled "Red Ink: The high human cost of the Cuban Revolution" and in it addresses the question of how many extrajudicial executions have taken place in Cuba. This blog addressed this issue before in 2012, but Garvin adds some new and critical insights to understanding the real nature of the Castro regime.
"University of Hawaii historian R. J. Rummel, who made a career out of studying what he termed “democide,” the killing of people by their own government, reported in 1987 that credible estimates of the Castro regime’s death toll ran from 35,000 to 141,000, with a median of 73,000."