Saturday, November 15, 2008

Breath of Hope

Cuban dissident, Miriam Leiva, last week wrote an article published by El Nuevo Herald. In it, she congratulates all Americans who participated in the recent Presidential election and sees the political process as an "aspiration" that she hopes to fulfill in the future for Cuba.

Concerning President-elect Barack Obama, Leiva writes that a "breath of hope emerged" ever since Obama proposed to lift travel sanctions on Cuban families. But, Leiva goes a bit further too.

"The free flow of visitors and the sending of remittances and packages would be in agreement with respect for human rights, that which the Cuba government is much criticized for violating, as well as being direct help to the most needy and promote the sharing of democratic ideas essential at this time, when urgent changes are needed in Cuba under the worst political, economic and social crisis in its history.

"But contacts should also be open to all people of North America. Tourism and academic, cultural, scientific and athletic exchanges should be commonplace. This doesn't mean the exporting of North American lifestyle [to Cuba], which perhaps the Cuban government would charge, but rather of natural ties between people that should have never been prevented."

[Full article in Spanish]