For the update, see below.
The Cuban dictatorship has no one to blame but itself, for the trouble it claims inmate Juan Luis Rodríguez Desdín is causing at the Cuba Sí prison in Holguín. The dictatorship should have seen it coming.
After all, the regime in July 2006 declared Rodríguez, a human rights activist affiliated with the Eastern Democratic Alliance, a "social danger," — the Orwellian thought crime it frequently uses to silence, and lock up its critics — and sentenced him to two years prison. I was unable to determine exactly what Rodríguez did to "earn" his punishment; his opposition to the dictatorship probably sufficed.
Ever since he was jailed, Rodríguez has been nothing but a "danger," reporting frequently on the poor conditions in prison and the heavy handed treatment by guards.
Independent journalist Caridad Caballero Batista reports that guards frequently move Rodríguez around the prison, in order to disrupt his continued anti-castro activism.
Recently, Rodríguez apparently was the chief suspect in a very grave crime within the walls at Cuba Sí. In retaliation, the prison's chief guard, a cretin named Juan Carlos Reinaldo Lucas, recently inspected Rodríguez's belonginges, read his personal documents and seized a letter intended for his mother, according to Caballero's report.
Someone had posted signs in a prison classroom declaring, "Abajo Fidel" and "Viva Bush."
There's no word in Caballero's report whether Rodríguez was "guilty," but if he is, he's a "dangerous" man indeed.
And Cuba is better, for it.
(This profile was originally posted at Babalú.)
UPDATED, Jan. 25, 2008
Rodríguez was one of several political prisoners transferred out of the Cuba Sí prison, apparently to keep them from attending a prison concert by folk singer/Castro apologist Silvio Rodríguez. The prisoners denounced the concert, as well as a recent prison remodeling, as a farce meant to disguise the reality of the Cuban gulag.
One of the surest indicators of the repressive nature of the Castro regime is the jailing of more than 200 political prisoners. To illustrate that reality, Uncommon Sense each week profiles one prisoner. There also is a Political Prisoner archive on the left sidebar. To suggest a prisoner for a profile, send me an e-mail.
For profiles of imprisoned Cuban journalists and related information, read the March 18 Project.