Cuban political prisoners in the Castro gulag have few weapons in their struggle against their captors, but one of those weapons is especially powerful: The force of their will.
If they are a victim of abuse, or even witness the abuse of a fellow prisoner, Cuban political prisoners have repeatedly demonstrated their willingness to stand up and push back by demonstrating their resistance. The most usual method is a hunger strike, a sign of resolve to which the dictatorship has yet to show an adequate response.
Imprisoned independent journalist Fabio Prieto Llorente is trying another approach. An inmate at the El Guayabo on the
Isle of Youth Isle of Pines, Prieto has been subjected to physical assaults, threats and other abuses by his captors.
Last week, on May 20, Prieto had enough, and refused to go outside for the one hour of sunlight a day he is allowed. That may seem like only a minimal protest by Prieto, especially when compared to a hunger strike, but it did deliver a powerful message.
With his protest, Prieto exposed the cruelty of a gulag that limits the sunlight many prisoners receive, and more importantly, showed again he wouldn't live by its rules.