A nation where the worst excesses of authoritarianism remain as entrenched as ever
National Post editorial board: Don’t go to Cuba
As the weather turns against us and holidays approach, many Canadians will eagerly begin to plan their winter escapes to hotter climes. Each year, hundreds of thousands of us travel to the island of Cuba, to enjoy the sun, surf and hospitality for which the island is justly famous.
But the island is infamous, too. While tourists rarely bother to venture far beyond their comfortable resorts, if they would, they would see a nation where the worst excesses of authoritarianism remain as entrenched as ever. This point is well made by the recent Human Right’s Watch (HRW) report, New Castro, Same Cuba, that lays bare the state of freedom in Cuba, under the new leadership of the slightly younger Castro brother, Raul.
In Raul’s Cuba, as in Fidel’s, dissent remains punishable by indefinite imprisonment, unemployment is considered antisocial and the government can lock away anyone a summary trial finds guilty of “dangerousness,” a legal catch-all.