War Games In Cuba

Someone shoved a piece of paper under my door. A sheet cut in half with instructions about how to evacuate in the case of a hurricane or an invasion. One phrase struck me like the refrain of a bad song: "Sew a tag to the clothes of minor children with the identity of their parents (in wartime)." I imagined myself putting stitches into my son's shirt, so that in the middle of the chaos someone would know that his mother was named Yoani and his father Reinaldo.

The "War of the Whole People" -- currently undergoing a practice run in the military exercise called Bastion 2009 -- has an assigned job for each of us. It doesn't matter that they make us fear weapons, or if we have never believed in confrontation as a path to solutions, or if we have no confidence in the leaders who will head up our squad. Those who sit at a table covered with tiny plastic tanks and planes, playing at conflagration, want to hide that we citizens have dug the deepest trench to protect ourselves from them.

The news is full of soldiers with their weapons, but the martial maneuvers fail to hide that our real "enemies" are the restrictions and control imposed by the powers that be. War as a distraction no longer works. The threat of parachutes landing and bombs echoing as an antidote to the desire for change has ceased to be effective. I think more and more people are pointing a finger at the true origin of our problems and, though it comes as a surprise to the champions of the battle, their fingers do not appear to be pointing abroad.

Yoani's blog, Generation Y, can be read here in English translation.