Harold Cepero and Oswaldo Paya, members of the Christian Liberation Movement in Cuba, were both killed in a car crash on the Island earlier this year, the cause of which is yet to be satisfactorily explained. Harold would have turned 33 today.
Nice! Rosa Maria Paya in her blog.
Cuban journalism is too important to be left in the hands of Cuban journalists.
Rosa Maria Payá hands a treat to the salaried employees of the International Press Center in Havana, whining cowards who don’t know how to read freely and without fear what there is to read.
January 13 2013
January 14 2013
Note: This is the same video as on the post below, but the video appears to be “unstable” on this site so we are loading a “back-up” version here.
If you cannot see the video please go to this link at Rebeca’s blog.
Upon arriving in this corner of France and reuniting with my family, whom I had not seen for seven years, I had the great pleasure of receiving a visit from the son of a very dear friend, whom I had first seen when he was born. Later on, as you might imagine, the subject of the far-off homeland came up, as well as the problems and frustrations that come with abandoning, almost against your will, the place where you were born. This is his case.
This Cuban is not resigned to remaining in forced exile. Life has played him some dirty tricks, so he is undocumented here. They cannot repatriate him, as he would like, because Cuban authorities repeatedly refuse him entry. The last time he was in Cuba, he remained in prison for four months for refusing to leave the country.
This man, who is still young, has two names and a head, so he never stops thinking about the misery to which his homeland is subjected. He has dedicated his free time — which unfortunately is all that he can do since he does not have papers and can work only sporadically — to investigating Cuban issues in-depth.
I was truly impressed when he showed me photos, articles and a wealth of details, to which we Cubans on the island do not have access, regarding the strange accident in which Oswaldo Payá and Harold Cepero were killed.
For this reason I am uploading the video that my friend provided for your consideration.
Site manager’s note: This video is not subtitled but here is a summary of the contents: The person speaking, a friend of Rebeca’s, is Israel Alejandro Cabezas González. He has put together the evidence he shows in the video, with regards to the death of Oswaldo Paya and Harold Cepero in a car crash. He believes that the photo of the car — driven by the Spaniard Carromero — was “fixed,” that is altered, and as a point of comparison he offers a photo that appeared in the Spanish press. He says that the official report of the crash was prepared to match the “fixed” photos.
Using Google maps he shows where the crash occurred, and the little collection of houses located 2 km before the crash. He believes that the “operation” was planned there and that the “supposed ambulances” were already waiting there.
The farmer speaking in he video says he was biking from the nearby town to the rice fields where he works, the entrance to which is directly across from the crash site. While he was biking a car passed him and he saw the dust cloud, based on which Alejandro estimates he’s about 1 km (half a mile) from the crash. By the time of the crash he was just meters away and arrived there in 2 to 3 minutes. He said people were already there taking each of the 4 men out of the car.
The person speaking in English is Jan Modig, the Swede who was in the car. He says, “The second memory I have is that I found myself in some sort of ambulance,” which means it wasn’t an ambulance… it was ‘sort of an ambulance’. Alejandro also says the foreigners were saying “why did you do this to us?” and he believes it was a huge premeditated operation to kill them.
He says they took “the Swede” and Carromero (the Spaniard who was driving) away separately and they didn’t know what happened to Oswaldo Paya. Paya was sitting where he received the direct impact from the crash, but that he served as a sort of ‘airbag’ for Harold Cepero who ultimately also died. Alejandro says that since they were being hit from behind everyone was wearing their seatbelts [the official version is that they were not] and that Harold was alive after the crash; he had a very small fracture of the femur.
When they arrived at the hospital — Alejandro goes on to say — State Security kicked the regular doctors out of the hospital and brought in “G2″ military doctors, and that he hopes Cepero’s body was not cremated because he did not die of natural causes.
Alejandro’s personal version of what happened was that somebody who was G2 (State Security) infiltrated Carromero and Modig’s visit and told G2 where they were going. G2 followed them from Havana and also there were more G2 agents waiting for them in the collection of houses, where everything was prepared, including the ambulances and doctors.
Translated and video summary by Unstated and BW and Chabeli
January 4 2013
It’s rumored that his interrogators, in imitation of King Juan Carlos facing some babbling idiocy from Chavez, have forced him to remain silent and not make a fuss: “Angel, why don’t you shut up already?!”
We will see each other on the 12th in the cafe at the Spanish embassy in Havana
Before Carromero and After Carromero
Anything he says will be used against him. His biography itself accuses him: speeder with dozens of fines, entangled in matters of finance, twitterer in favor of the cuts of the Spanish government while dancing drunkenly in Seville.
Angel Carromero, in addition to being a member of a party considered fascist in Cuba (in imitation of Comandante Hugo Chavez), had his 15 minutes of infamy this first Friday of October, when he was condemned in a brief trial (according to the dictates of our Foreign Minister), where no Cuban demands anything at all from this Iberian.
It doesn’t stop drizzling in Havana lately. After the flood of more than a hundred thousand hours with Fidel, the Socialist State is mired in its transition to a Chinese-esque capitalism light, where the only thing that won’t fit well are the rights of the Cuban people, on the Island as well as in the Exile. And Angel Carromero will be a key piece in this unlikely vaudeville against all and for the evil of all. Although the coquettish prisoner from Spain’s People’s Party doesn’t imagine it on his Cuban Communist scaffold.
Only a foreign “enemy” fully immersed in “subversive activity” within the Island could be a pretext for the violent death of Oswaldo Paya Sardinas. A death announced for years by paramilitaries, even in front of his own family (and foreigners, to openly disseminate the terror of such an exemplary punishment). Well then, promise kept. There are things that the Castro regime doesn’t play with. Things about which the Castro regime never lied. Those who lack the revolutionary genes to assimilate this sinister sincerity, we don’t want them, we don’t need them…
That fateful Sunday of July 22, hours after the impact and the text message in Swedish heatedly typed after the harassment, in a hospital in the provinces and without evidence of urgent intensive care, another pillar of the Christian Liberation Movement also died, Harold Cepero Escalante, who survived the crash conscious but it didn’t occur to anyone to take a declaration from him (or to allow his family to see him before he died).
Much less do we know the testimony of the ambulance attendants, forensic doctors, and the security personnel who, within minutes, seized this stretch of highway and the city of Bayamo (who alerted them that the ID card of the dead-on-impact read: Oswaldo Paya Sardinas, putative president of post-Castro Cuba?). Only some half-literate peasants declared with precision on Cuban TV that the death car was traveling at a rate of speed of more than 60 mph: “a tin can…”
That dawn, as Oswaldo Paya Sardinas left home without saying goodbye to his wife Ofelia Acevedo Maura, the apocryphal Twitterer @Yoahandry8787 had already revealed in real time his trip to the interior of the country, misrepresenting that it was an excursion to the beach in Varadero. Indeed, nearly a decade before, in the official book “The Dissidents,” we could enjoy some photos violating the privacy of the vacationing Paya-Acevedo family.
There, a teenager of 14 appears to look into an empty future while her father dives and disappears under the grayness of the sea. It was Rosa Maria. It is Rosa Maria, suddenly become, today, the new leader of the Christian Liberation Movement (MLC), the principal moral voice of recrimination against all the violence of the State that corralled her citizen father from the time she was born. Rosa Maria Paya Acevedo, accused before she opened her mouth of meeting false foreign tourists at the edge of the sea for a handful of euros, to fund the youth wing of the MLC.
Not one of the loved ones of Oswaldo Paya Sardinas or Harold Cepero Escalante is accusing the exterminating angel of the New Generations of the People’s Party. The State enterprise that owns the Hyundai Accent with license plate T311402 has not publicly demanded compensation for a single screw of its vehicle. Nor has any rice or forest cooperative spoken out in defense of the crops mowed down by the scars of the homicidal tree. It is a case, then, where legally no one is affected, except governmental innocence.
After the videoclip presented to the press, where a young Spanish politician asks the world not to politicize his case (filmed by the political police, but that’s a circumstantial detail), we already know Angel Carromero’s worst enemy will not be the Cuban State, but the drugged panic of Angel Carromero himself.
At the right hand of his steering wheel, like a perverse character of Perrault or the Brothers Grimm, a Social Democratic Swede snored through the nightmare under the midday sun on a pavement under repairs and a slamming on of the brakes at top speed. According to his testimony and with “European soil under his feet,” and despite his dreamlike innocence, Jens Aron Modig was also taken prisoner and held incommunicado in a windowless room, where his interrogators offended him with impunity, until they coerced him to testify against himself on camera.
From Kafka we know that justice in totalitarian systems is never interested in the Truth, this bourgeois prejudice of the Gospels. Much less in Life, this bizarre statistic. Angel Carromero, the talking cadaver, like the American Alan Gross, and countless Cubans who have been through the experience, declared like a ventriloquist that he still holds out a certain hope that he will come out safely. It’s called self-preservation and is a symptom of the mediocrity with which the old Europe of the 21st Century throws a tantrum.
In extreme situations, democracy is only for oneself. Western Christianity, then, has no neighbors. Angel Carromero wants to be Angel Carromero, even though he’s sunk in a concentration camp or humiliated in the cemetery where two human beings were plunged and disappeared under the grayness of the Sea.
The drizzle will not stop these days in Havana, before Castro and after Carromero. When this Friday the 5th what we all know and don’t know how to pronounce is finally verified, a new Cuban era in the history of the Revolution will commence. We will all be more alone, more desolate, more exposed to the paparazzi lenses that pornographically exposed his family and later expired Oswaldo Paya Sardinas.
As in the foundational good times of a cynical more than civic war, we will go quietly to survive under the obscene downpour. The free exile will be a million euros farther away than now. The pro-human rights solidarity activists will prefer to operate in any other corner of the world. The Chinese scribbles and the squeal of this collectivist language will make a little more sense to our individualistic sensibilities. The unethical etymology of the word “disappeared” will suffer a terrible updating. In a small air-conditioned room in eastern Cuba, the year zero of the Carromero cosmology is about to begin. Praise be.
Translated from the original in Diario de Cuba
October 4 2012
The Heredia Project can be signed or at least freely disseminated for Cubans and the great media (scaredy cats) of the international press. To the imprisoned national press it’s preferable not to mention it, because no Cuban journalist knows how to read…!
October 17 2012
On Friday night, December 7 was a good opportunity to inaugurate the Oswaldo “Payá Sardiñas” Circle of Democratic Thought. In the evening I gave a reading of the most recent paper from the Cuban Christian Liberation Movement, and had the opportunity to publicly express myself on the current Cuban situation, speaking from my own experience.
Several activists of the Christian Liberation Movement (MCL) who worked with Oswaldo in Cuba and from abroad, talked about this thinking. The idea of Paya’s working door-to-door with Cubans made it clear that any gap left in the power of a closed system must be taken advantage of by independent civil society. To one of the questions from the audience to the panelists, Antonio Diaz Sanchez, from the cause of the Black Spring 75, expressed his opinion that the MCL’s work to develop the unity of the Cuban people built on the ideas of Vaclav Havel.
In my view the main currency of Oswaldo Paya drew on the sharpness of his own critics, his detractors in Cuba always suggested that Paya “was just collecting signatures; however, that action was one of the ways in which the MCL had the greatest connection with the people of Cuba. The decision of more than eleven thousand Cubans to express their discontent — and exposing their identity as they did so against such an oppressive regime — was only a shadow of what independent Cuban civil society could have done with a little more articulation and effectiveness.
The night was honored by the presence via telephone of Rosa Maria Paya, the daughter of Oswaldo, who spoke to those present about the different projects the MCL is still engaged in. Rosa Maria responded with clarity to a question about the investigation of the strange circumstances that killed her father and activist Harold Cepero Escalante and demonstrated that her youth and her commitment to fight for the freedom of Cuba will be a problem for the current repressive dynamics.
Family, and friends of Oswaldo Paya and a large group of former prisoners of the Cause of the Black Spring 75, three Ladies in White and some of the executive of the Cuban Democratic Directorate joined the tribute, a night whose work would have greatly pleased and encouraged the leader of the Christian Liberation Movement.
December 8 2012