By Dr. Hilda Molina
Fidel Castro has died at 90 years of age. He ruled Cuba until his last breath. Since his false retirement, he continued to dominate Cuba’s political life. His brother Raúl never dared to make an important decision without consulting him. Fidel Castro passes on, leaving Cuba literally destroyed; and XXI Century Socialism, his dangerous creation, has swept across much of Latin America.
I believe that he partially achieved his goals, but not all of them, since he had dreamed of dominating the world since adolescence. He destroyed, sowed hatred and subversion, led all the resentful the world; and thus achieved some of his essential aspirations: power, money, and the illusion of the true revolutionary who never really was.
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And in this hour of reckoning, some observations on his legacy:
In 1958 Cuba welcomed with open arms people who emigrated from all continents and came to our beautiful island in search of a better life.
Today we are more than four million who make up the Cuban diaspora. Today we are more than four million Cubans who, far from the land that gave birth to us, try to survive spread throughout all regions of the world, while we remember our island with fond nostalgia.
In 1958 the intelligent and creative Cuban people dedicated their talents to create, to produce, to constantly improve, yearning to leave to its descendants a better Cuba.
Today Cubans are primarily occupied with basic survival, or finding a way to escape the nightmare that the country has suffered for more than half a century.
In 1958 the skilled hands of the Cubans, workers, peasants, professionals, and artists, worked diligently to produce prosperity and happiness.
Today, the Cuban people have been turned into beggars by the Castro dictatorship; we stand with our hands outstretched in a gesture of supplication, waiting for help that will be sent to us by some family member living abroad. And waiting to receive the gifts of foreigners, or suffer at the hands of unscrupulous tourists who amuse themselves at the expense of the humble Cuban people: when they distribute candy in the streets to the poor children of my country; when they seek sexual services from our children, adolescents, and young people; when they give hotel soap to the humble Cuban workers.
In 1958 the Cubans were prepared to die as Christian. Cubans planned to be buried next to the remains of our ancestors, on our dreamy island, that island of the generously fertile earth, that island of the whitest sands, that island of the bluest sky, and the most crystalline sea.
For almost fifty-eight years, thousands of Cubans have died like my mother, in distant countries that welcomed them as children, but far from the land that gave birth to them, and with the infinite longing for the homeland that Castro stole from them.
In 1958 Cubans were respected throughout the world.
Today, the international media, with few exceptions, and the free citizens of the civilized world, congratulate us when the fifty-year Castro dictatorship “gives” us the least bit of freedom. Like the supposed freedom to emigrated. They forget that we Cubans are legitimate children of the human family and as such we are entitled not to handouts or crumbs, but to all the rights and freedoms inherent to the human condition.
In 1958 the Cuban people were a people of faith, intelligence, generosity, forgiveness, and industriousness, devoted to their families and happy.
Today, almost fifty-eight years after the establishment of one of the longest and cruelest dictatorships in contemporary history, the Cuban people continue to suffer the dehumanizing effects of that dictatorship; violent rips and tears in the social fabric of society which ultimately is characterized by depersonalization: loss of self-esteem, horror, despair, disinterest, depletion, ethical moral and spiritual precariousness; the absence of ideals and a means for personal advancement.
Today, almost fifty-eight years after the arrival of Fidel Castro to power, our values have been erased. Castro destroyed the institution of the family. He abolished freedoms. He used hatred and fear as instruments of government. He tried to transform the generosity and natural call to service of the Cuban people, into servility to his sick regime.
Today, almost fifty-eight years after Fidel Castro’s arrival in power, the Cubans who dedicate our lives to working for a better Cuba weep as we see our childrens’ dreams reduced to rubble. We cry because this regime, legitimized by hypocrites on the left and right, has converted my country into a Cuba for the Castro dynasty and its generals; and also for foreigners.
We weep because after more than five decades of hardships and sacrifices, the end result is a country plunged into the most utter moral, ethical, civic, spiritual, economic, anthropological, and environmental destruction … The end result is a Cuba where vice and corruption have seeped into the regime at the highest levels; and where socio-economic inequalities, which reward crime and not merit, deeply wound the soul of the country.
I am convinced that very little will change in Cuba in terms of freedoms, human rights, values, and ethics. The regime has long prepared a carefully designed plan to perpetuate itself on the island and to expand its ideas and influence throughout Latin America. A multimillionaire military caste and members of the Castro Dynasty control all realms of Cuba: the government, the military, society, and the dollarized economy.
And that caste will vigorously defend the legacy of Fidel Castro: a symbiotic concoction in which wild military state capitalism and a Stalinist military dynastic dictatorship coexist. They will defend the status quo with force to guarantee the longevity of their power, and the enjoyment of the enormous fortunes that they have amassed, paid for by the blood and misery of the Cuban people.
However, I am also convinced that despite the massive damage they have inflicted upon us, good Cubans will continue to struggle because we will not forget the glorious history of our Nation. We will continue to fight because we will not forget the thousands of victims of Fidel Castro and his regime.
We will continue to struggle because we will not forget that we are legitimate children of the human family and therefore, we have the right to enjoy all rights and freedoms thereof. We will continue fighting; and despite the fifty-year dictatorship aided and abetted by foreign accomplices, with the help of God we will be able to restore dignity to our country.
Dr. Hilda Molina is a Doctor of Neurosurgery, and an advocate in defense of human rights.