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LA ALBORADA: Madame Y Foretells the Future

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  • La Alborada
    Madame Y Foretells the Future La Alborada - Mar 21 On February 24, while in Rio de Janeiro, Yoani Sanchez referred to the new First Vice-President of Cuba,
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 21, 2013
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      Madame Y Foretells the Future
      La Alborada - Mar 21

      On February 24, while in Rio de Janeiro, Yoani Sanchez referred to the new First Vice-President of Cuba, Miguel Diaz-Canel, as "rather faithful to the government." "It's easier for us to have a surprise here on the beach than in Havana," she opined. She appeared to declare that Diaz-Canel would be but a young apparatchik.

      Three days later, Sanchez wrote, on the same topic, that in Cuba "one must interpret the silences as well as the seemingly inconsequential data." Offering to do that, she described Diaz-Canel as "a man who shines very little"...restrained and sober in public." She asserted that "[his] climb to the top was short," and that "his trump card has been obedience." But, she warned, "this could be the strategy of a chameleon who prefers to blend in...until he rose to a real position of power." (The English version is from her own translator.)

      So, one could infer, he might be one thing, or he might be another.

      Her description is not what one hears from other sources. Diaz-Canel was known in Cuba as a former long-hair who listened to the Beatles when they were not in favor, and who liked to ride a bike while on official functions. The higher-ups asked him to not be so informal in public. His trajectory was not short: it covered some 30 years. Among several other assignments, he was the head of the Communist Party in one province for ten years, and in another for six years, and he was successful in both cases. He knows life in the provinces as well as in Havana.

      By March 18, Sanchez was in New York, where she developed her theme, adding a historical reference. �For now (Diaz-Canel) looks like a continuer, but that could easily be the mask of opportunism to reach positions of power, and once on top he could be another Gorbachev.�

      In other words, he might be one thing, or another. Who knows? Maybe something else, too. For example, he might be a competent administrator and political leader, although Sanchez does not contemplate that possibility.

      She implied that Gorbachev was an opportunist. But the former Soviet leader presided, albeit unwillingly, over the dissolution of the USSR, of which she surely approved, so the further implication is that it would be good for Cuba --at least her version of Cuba-- to have an opportunist leader. One can only hope, she seemed to be saying.

      Seeing the future five years down the road is not easy, especially in a world that is changing rapidly, but Yoani is for now the designated oracle of all things Cuban for the mass media. She's not afraid to do what she does well --misrepresent the facts--, nor to take a bold stance concerning a possible future leader of Cuba: Diaz-Chanel might be one thing, but, then again, maybe another. I see a body of water� a woman will come back into your life�a promotion at work is possible�

      Any good fortune-teller can hedge his or her bets; to paraphrase Marco Rubio, in five minutes, and without charging the kind of money that Madame Y does.

      We predict that, in the near future, it will be said that she was overpaid.
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