The inevitable has occurred. The Cuban Catholic Church agreed to act as a mediator between the fierce wolf and the serene Ladies in White, according to trusty sources, none of which are coming officially from the government. We know that there is nothing new about the usual subtle silence on behalf of the authorities in Havana.
The cardinal, and maximum Vatican representative in Cuba, Jaime Ortega Alamino met with a group of Ladies in White. Such names like Berta Soler, Laura Pollan, Julia Nunez, Laura Labrada, and Alejandria Garcia de la Riva stood out at the conference.
It’s no secret that these ladies have gained lots of credibility, for neither hate, intolerance, or brutal viciousness have made them give up on their cause. In fact, they risked the destinies of their very own lives just so they could demand freedom for their captive loved ones who have been separated from them for more than 7 years due to acts of conscience.
Analyzing the situation from different perspectives, one can see the most obvious point is that a group of peaceful women have delivered a powerful blow to the owners of absolute power in the island. In my opinion I think that the Catholic Church deserves applauds and recognition from those of us who love this country, prisoners of conscience, independent journalists, and the opposition in general, as well as the diaspora and even those who are faithful to the regime.
As of right now, whatever path the nation follows is unpredictable. I am confident in the good-will of Catholics, and I will not rule out the possibility that they will play a very important role when it comes time for national reconciliation. Cuba is not the first country which has had the Catholic Church mediate in its problems. We must recall the communist governments of Eastern Europe, specifically Poland, during a time when the pope was Polish. John Paul II became the main symbol of change. It’s also true that dissidents in communist countries have a great power. In that same light, the idiosyncrasy and mentality of the old continent influenced a great amount in terms of the fundamental human freedoms.
I don’t doubt that small sectors in and out of Cuba will use aggressive language in regards to the church. It’s normal, they have the right to their opinions. I do not ignore the silent role played by the Catholics, but I am aware of the true purpose of religions, avoiding confrontations with the government which would eventually lead to sterile consequences.
Today I will sleep a bit more peacefully. The Ladies in White will march down 5th Avenue without the macabre and fanatic mobs chasing them down. It has been proven that the government had been calling forth those rabid groups which were full of hate and harm, and used them against their own daughters, rejecting thoughts proposed by Jose Marti, like his belief that the country belonged to everyone.
Pablo Pacheco Ávila, prisionero de conciencia.
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