The release of Cuban prisoner of conscience Calixto Ramon Martinez, which came after a vigorous campaign in Cuba and overseas on his behalf, is a big win for the cause of freedom. Without the demonstrated solidarity of Cubans and non-Cubans alike, and the attention to his plight that his supporters were able to generate, he undoubtedly would still be imprisoned.
If you blogged or Tweeted or posted on Facebook about Martinez ...
If you told someone his story ...
If you prayed for him ...
His release was a victory for you, too.
But unfortunately, there remain in the Castro gulag an unknown number of Cubans imprisoned because of their opposition to the dictatorship and their faith in their fellow Cubans and in a free Cuba. Celebrate Martinez's release, but do not forget those who continue to suffer in Cuban prisons.
They include dissident writee Angel Santiesteban, who late last year was sentenced to 5 years in prison on a trumped-up charge. On Wednesday his supporters went to social media to sound an alarm after he was transferred to parts unknown within the Castro gulag. (Later, it was reported he had been moved to one of the island's most notorious outposts.)
And they include Cuban Lady In White Sonia Garro Alfonso, who along with her husband was arrested March 18, 2012, as part of a nationwide crackdown leading up to the visit of Pope Benedict XVI. A year later, they remain in jail, waiting for their captors to offer them some semblance of due process.
There are many more, most of whom will probably never generate the sort of campaign that helped free Martinez. Click on the names on the right sidebar to learn a little bit about them.
But each one is just as deserving of your blog posts and tweets, of your testimony on their behalf, of your prayers.
For victory in the struggle for Cuban freedom will not be complete as long as any prisoner of conscience or political prisoner, remains in jail.