14ymedio, Havana, January 1, 2022 — Cubans who attempt, plan, or have no other option but to live the next 365 days on this Island cannot submit to the temptation of, beyond personal hopes, having desires, purpose and making predictions for Cuba in 2023.
Perhaps the most shared desired is that of an improvement of the situation, which translates to: fewer blackouts; the purchasing power of money to increase; and for it to be easier to acquire products and benefit from services. But at an individual level it is very difficult to achieve a purpose that contributes to those dreams.
A dilemma presents itself when people realize that eliminating the blackouts, reducing prices, facilitating use of public transportation and the possibility that purchasing chicken or sausages won’t require confronting a Kafkaesque process, could result in delays in solving The Problem. And The Problem is that citizens continue to have their hands and feet bound (and are muzzled) when launching projects that contribute solutions to The Problem.
Faced with the evidence that the specific does not solve the systemic and that momentary balms could represent additional long years of struggle, many could end up packing their bags, convinced that at some point in history the situation might take a turn for the better, but a lifetime provides only a small margin for this change to benefit the living generations.
Still, for those possible migrants, their departure will take time, and questions abound about the next several months.
Where do those desires end up? What are they reduced to? Or better yet, how far do they go?
The desires of 14ymedio’s editorial board are that, in the coming year, a space will open up for diverse and inclusive citizen participation, with legal protections, where political differences are definitively decriminalized, where all voices have a place, and for a consensus to be reached. Without violence, without shame, without forgetting.
While people remain incarcerated for political reasons, this will not be possible. They should all be released.
To contribute to achieving these desires, this daily will continue covering the painful day-to-day of the Cuban people. At the same time, we will not cease in our efforts to denounce human rights violations and propose solutions to lift this country out of the destructive process in which it is mired.
And predictions for 2023? The predictions are a pendulum that swings from conformist pessimism to triumphant optimism.
Not even this system will be forever, nor will it change tomorrow. It requires pushing in the right direction. Openings will result from the pressure of independent civil society and its communications channels; they will make gains, bit by bit, in the space this regime has denied it, stubbornly anchored to the past.
Translated by: Silvia Suárez
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