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Cuban journalist speaks about state of revolution
Sebastian Murdoch-Gibson
News Writer

The Argus was able to meet with Cuban journalist Felix Flores Varona last month to discuss the state of the revolution in Cuba. Cuba has recently undergone a period of economic hardship, and Flores spoke about the current economic climate and the United States’ ongoing policy of isolation.

Since 1962, the United States has imposed a total embargo on Cuba, which Cubans informally refer to as the blockade. Flores dedicated considerable attention to the ongoing blockade.

When asked if he felt that the blockade was directed at ending Cuban sovereignty, Flores responded, “I think so. I think they want to make Cuba their backyard as it was before 1959. I was born in 1958; I know what it is like to live in a country that cannot get the medicine it needs for its children or the study material it needs for its schools.”

United States policy towards Cuba has been shifting under the Obama administration. While the blockade remains in force, the government has expressed an interest in improving relations with the Cubans. Last year, the United States lifted the travel ban to Cuba for students and religious groups.

About this policy of isolation potentially coming to an end, Flores said, “I am hopeful but I don’t think it is in the mind of the government of the United States. I don’t think the American people know what the blockade is like.”

Under present trade laws, any company that does business with Cuba is barred from doing business with the United States. However, it appears that Cuba may have within its territorial waters a considerable undiscovered oil reserve. Last week, a Spanish oil exploration company began exploratory drilling off the coast of Havana. The present trade laws effectively bar American oil companies for competing for oil contracts in the county.

When asked if he felt that this development might reshape relations Flores said, “I don’t know what to tell you. What I do know is that they won’t take it for free. We have oil. It is our oil. They won’t be taking anything for free here. They have not been able to in 50 years and they won’t be able to in the future. That can be assured.”

Around last Christmas Eve, the Cuban Government issued a general amnesty to approximately 2,900 prisoners. Many of those released were political prisoners. The nation has since been determined by Amnesty International to hold no prisoners of conscience.

“That’s a signal of goodwill of the Cuban Government. I take it as a sign of our strength because if we were weak we could not afford to release prisoners that were against the political system. If we can do that it’s because we feel strong enough to do it.”

Flores works for the Cuban newspaper Invasor, which is based out of Ciego de Ávila. The Argus met with him in Jibacoa.


  • SERENITY says:

    Onu see how people run other people article & gi dem credit?!? Tek a good bloodclaat look otay

    Onu know mi a think bout go Cuba go study? I am attracted to their rebel-like spirit. They are real scholars & I think they can teach the world a lot.

  • milikeit says:

    After decades of blockade of the Cuban economy, the pressure could intensify if its proven Cuba has oil. Americans, eat shit and piss oil. Firt of all, drilling for oil takes advanced technology, and so does getting it out of the ground. Most of the companies with that technology are Western Countries. Cuba, could find itself even more isolated if they do not play ball. I’m not sure if oil income would actually trickle down to the Cuban people (look at what’s happening in Nigeria with all the corruption),but if it does it would prop the country into the 21st century over night. Cubans are amongst the most literate of nations, well educated and disciplined. As i said before, could be a gift or a curse

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