14ymedio, Havana, 22 January 2020 — Singer Silvio Rodríguez pointed to the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC) as the creator of an independent “blacklist” of media aired a few days ago on Radio Progreso networks.
“What Radio Progreso airs is what the ideological department of the Cuban Communist Party (PCC, “the leading political force of society and the State”) thinks, and what they are directed [to report],” Rodriguez wrote in a comment on a post he published in his blog Segunda Cita.
“It surprises me that they have not included Segunda Cita, when ‘the pack’ has whipped us,” he added in reference to some moments in which his publications have been attacked from official voices.
“For the naive, for the uninformed, for those who still believe that the media war against Cuba is a digital story, for those who believe everything they read on Facebook, this is the list with the most reactionary sites,” said the post about Cuban radio. The comment was subsequently deleted but Silvio Rodríguez does not say if this decision was also the product of a “guidance” from the CCP.
The troubadour’s comment comes when the workers of the publications mentioned in that list have reported an attack on their pages.
Many of the media names by Radio Progreso have been blocked for years in the national servers of the Island such as the digital newspapers, Cubanet, 14ymedio, Diario de Cuba or others such as ADN Cuba and the magazines El Estornudo and Tremenda Nota.
This is not the case of Barrio Periodismo, La Joven Cuba, El Toque and OnCuba News which, in general, have been accessible. However, from this weekend until early Monday, these media now included on this “blacklist” could not be accessed.
Manuel Henríquez Lagarde, director of the official CubaSí website, was the first to make the list public, when, on January 16, he listed the 20 websites “that usually assume an open stance against the Revolution, or that, from pseudo-revolutionary positions usually coincide with the policies (…) of the United States Government against Cuba.”
At the beginning of last year the digital magazine Tremenda Nota, which deals with minority issues and the LGBT agenda on the Island, joined the list of blocked sites the same week that the Government held the referendum on the constitution.
Although, in general, the media on the list have mostly reacted by criticizing the censorship of information and showing their solidarity with the others, the editors of La Joven Cuba regretted that some official voices “insist” on placing them in that position: “Where we do not want be, nor will we be.”
La Joven Cuba joined in the past campaigns against the independent blogosphere that got started on the Island in 2007; in La Joven Cuba’s pages ample space was given to official campaigns that labeled critics as “CIA agents” and instruments of the “media war against Cuba.”
For her part, the Director of Periodismo de Barrio, Elaine Díaz, also regretted the inclusion of her site in the list of reactionary media and argued about the financial transparency of the site, which publishes its reports with the expenses and donations received, especially from embassies and foreign foundations.
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