According to the local news reports by 6pm, today's Code Pink demonstration across the street from the Versailles Restaurant in Little Havana was a success [video]. It seems that the barricades assembled along Calle Ocho helped the police keep both Code Pink and counter-demonstrators away from each other.
It is among the most important duties for the police to keep the streets clear of people gathered for public assemblies, and last month's failed Code Pink demonstration showed how necessary barricades are to keep the peace.
Most local news coverage was very brief, Telemundo51 was the only station to provide brief interviews with opposing sides, but most reports were just short summaries of today's event.
Thanks to the power of blogging we have some details emerging so far of today's event. Last month, there was a blogger who provided his first-hand account of the counter-protest from Versailles Restaurant. Magdaleno Rose-Avila reported on his experience from "the middle of an active hornets nest" which he also described was "not a safe place for a liberal." It's a very interesting report.
Today, Carlos Miller, blogger and video/photo journalist, provides his thoughts on today's demonstration and describes an altercation he had with some individuals in front of the Versailles Restaurant. The description of the quarrel sounds familiar to incidents reported in the past when hard-line Cuban exiles gather in large numbers, but Carlos Miller reminds everyone of an important point :
"I know many of you will have a field day with this. I know many of you will say this just proves that I am a troublemaker with a camera. And others will say that this just proves that the entire Cuban exile community has no regards for the First Amendment. So I do want to stress that most of the Cuban exiles were extremely respectful of what I was doing."
Those who gathered today in Little Havana , from which ever side of the street they were on, do not represent by their actions any larger population to which they affiliate themselves with. The Code Pink demonstration today does not represent the actions of a larger national progressive movement, just as the hostile actions of Vigilia Mambisa do not represent the larger Cuban exile democracy movement.