Cable sobre las sospechas sobre disidentes

La Sección de Intereses de La Habana comenta que la mayoría de disidentes son mayores y que pocos jóvenes se suman a la oposición

ID: 62090
Date: 2006-04-27 19:40:00
Origin: 06HAVANA9102
Source: US Interests Section Havana
Classification: SECRET
Dunno: 06HAVANA8769
Destination: VZCZCXRO7113
RR RUEHAO RUEHCD RUEHGA RUEHGD RUEHHA RUEHHO RUEHMC RUEHNG RUEHNL
RUEHQU RUEHRD RUEHRG RUEHRS RUEHTM RUEHVC
DE RUEHUB #9102/01 1171940
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
R 271940Z APR 06
FM USINT HAVANA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6230
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES
RUEHWH/WESTERN HEMISPHERIC AFFAIRS DIPL POSTS
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 HAVANA 009102

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE DEPT FOR WHA/CCA

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/27/2016
TAGS: PHUM, KDEM, SOCI, CU
SUBJECT: ROCA, SANCHEZ RAP USINT'S INTERNET-ACCESS POLICY

REF: HAVANA 8769

Classified By: COM Michael Parmly for Reason 1.4(d).

1. (C) Summary: XXXXXXXXXXX on April 18 requested a
meeting with COM, without declaring the reason. At the April
24 meeting, they presented a list of 10 independent
journalists banned from USINT's two Internet Centers since
2004, saying they had been unfairly blacklisted. XXXXXXXXXXX
called the bans excessive and said they amount to a
professional death blow for independent journalists. They
called on USINT to reconsider its punishment. The 10 are
among a relatively small number of Cubans whose Internet
privileges were revoked for repeatedly disturbing other
users, mistreating USINT staffers or committing other
offenses. COM explained that access to our Internet centers
requires appropriate conduct. The two dissidents and COM
also discussed the Santiago/Havana divide, the transfer of
Gustavo Machin, and what keeps Fidel Castro up until three in
the morning. End Summary.

2. (C) XXXXXXXXXXX, requested a meeting with COM. At the April
24 meeting, they criticized USINT's practice of banning
visits to our Internet Centers by Cubans who repeatedly
create disturbances there. The two handed COM a one-page
letter containing the names of 10 independent journalists who
they described as "people of proven political and civil
credibility" who "work every day for democracy in Cuba" but
who since 2004 have been denied access to USINT's two
Internet-access facilities. In a possible swipe at fellow
activist XXXXXXXXXXX, with whom he has had a falling
out, XXXXXXXXXXX complained that USINT officials apparently
blacklisted some or all of the 10 in 2004 after conferring
with XXXXXXXXXXX and XXXXXXXXXXX. He said
many of the independent journalists were blacklisted after
failing to write about XXXXXXXXXXX to Promote Civil
Society, or writing about it in an unfavorable light. XXXXXXXXXXX
asked the COM to reconsider the bans, calling
them draconian and saying they put independent journalists --
already tormented by the GOC -- in a double bind.

COM DEFENDS NEED FOR DISCIPLINE
-------------------------------

3. (C) The COM accepted the note and promised to discuss its
contents with other USINT staffers, who he characterized as
committed to fair play. However, he defended the need for
discipline at USINT's Internet centers and said USINT does
not play favorites or politics with regard to access to the
Lincoln or Roosevelt Centers. The COM noted that USINT is
encouraging other countries with a diplomatic presence in
Havana to offer Internet access. (Note: The Norwegian
Embassy provides Internet access to some Cubans through one
computer terminal. The Dutch are reportedly planning a
center, while the British and Czechs are said to be
considering such a move. The Canadians are planning an
Internet center with some eight computers. End note.)

CUBA'S EAST/WEST DIVIDE
-----------------------

4. (C) Discussion then turned to the physical and
psychological divide between Havana, in the West, and
Santiago in the East. XXXXXXXXXXX, just back from a trip to his
native XXXXXXXXXXX, said the city is virtually garbage-free,
unlike Havana, and that XXXXXXXXXXX take tremendous pride in
their city. He added that they are loath to criticize Fidel
Castro for the GOC's shortcomings, choosing instead to vilify
local leaders, including the First Secretary of Santiago's
Communist Party office. XXXXXXXXXXX then criticized Castro as
"mono-thematic," saying he is unable to focus on more than
one thing at a time. He added that from 8 pm to 3 am each
day, Castro reviews the latest reports on State Security
operations, in an effort "to continue the control, the
blackmailing." On the Cuban Foreign Ministry's reported
assignment of Gustavo Machin, head of the North American
bureau, to an ambassadorial post in Pakistan, the COM said
the move appeared to be a demotion. XXXXXXXXXXX agreed that at
worst, it is a demotion, but at best, it is an opportunity
for Machin to focus on examining U.S. intelligence efforts in
Pakistan.

COMMENT
-------

5. (S) It's unclear what prompted XXXXXXXXXXX to

HAVANA 00009102 002.2 OF 002


criticize the Internet-access policy of USINT, historically
their strongest and most important ally. They could be
acting out of principle, trying to win favor with other
dissidents, attempting to burnish their own credentials - or
all three. Either way, we found it unpalatable that at a
time when very few Cubans enjoy Internet access and one
activist is starving himself to make that point, key
dissidents would fault USINT for acting to ensure that the
Centers function fairly for all approved users. It should
also be noted that the credibility of both Sanchez and Roca
has long been a matter of speculation. Sanchez was at one
point undeniably linked to State Security, and similar
accusations have long surrounded Roca. Roca's past as a GOC
insider lends credence to his astute observation that Machin
may have been sent to Pakistan to develop spy networks.
Regarding Roca's assertion that Fidel is "mono-thematic," we
acknowledge that the dictator can be seized by a single
issue. However (reftel), he has managed to juggle a number
of issues this year, including energy revolution, moves
against corruption, and the GOC's propaganda response to U.S.
"terrorism."
PARMLY

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