Die Raúl Rivero, poet, journalist, dissident and example of the dignity of Cuba

Exile is a crusher machine that has taken Raúl Rivero to a corner of Miami in which he has died at 75, 16 years after leaving Cuba, banished by the dictatorship

Die Raúl Rivero, poet, journalist, dissident and example of the dignity of Cuba

Exile is a crusher machine that has taken Raúl Rivero to a corner of Miami in which he has died at 75, 16 years after leaving Cuba, banished by the dictatorship of Fidel Castro, for some of those who were his Companions of idealisms. Rivero, poet, journalist and dissident, winner of the Freedom Freedom Awards of UNESCO and Ortega and Gasset, then had several years entering and leaving the prison, persecuted for having founded the first independent news agency in Cuba after The revolution of 1959. The State had accused him of being on the salary of the enemies of the island; No Cuban, neither more nor less close to the government of Fidel Castro, was even seriously taken those charges. Interestingly, in Spain, the first country that welcomed him in 2005 and who gave him the second nationality of him, there were one who followed that game.

Raúl Castro's life is a kind of synthesis of the history of Cuba in the second half of the 20th century. He was born in Morón, in provinces, son or grandson (he was never very clear) of Canarian emigrants, in time to remember the tank before the revolution and to record the euphoria of the fall of Batista. Rivero moved through those years to Havana to enter the first promotions of the Official School of Journalism and to participate in a world that today seems dreamed: Cabrera Infante, Lezama Lima and Elisha Diego represented the different generations of a golden age of Cuban literature that Rivero had very early access.

The memory of those early years in which Castrism seemed to have more to do with what would have to be May 68 than with Soviet totalitarianism. In the cinemas the films of Elvis Presley were projected and danced with the Rock'n'roll of the North Enemy, the love was almost free and the foreigners reached the island and participated in a kind of great socialist and cosmopolitan carnival.

But the island was small and soon the omen of the turn were known that would have to give history, accessible for any journalist apprentice as Rivero, who soon entered the newspaper El Mundo de Havana: fallen stories in disgrace, Brutal reprisals, of corruptions ... Rivero often remembered a companion of arms of Fidel Castro who innocently noticed the commander that the communists were wanting to adamen the revolution.

I had not yet arrived the key moment in Rivero's life. By then, Raul had everything to receive the thanks of the dictatorship: Early and Eternally Toynil poet, almost a Caribbean Beat; Writer of talent to convert the air of optimism and carelessness that surrounded him in poetry; cult journalist and full of social skills; attentive and generous interpreter of the popular culture of Latin America, from the bolero to the radionovelas; New man, alien to the old elites of the island ... Rivero built with these attributes a promising writer race within the Cuban Officiality. He met the whole world to all the writers who went through Cuba at that time, from Vargas Llosa and Jorge Edwards to García Márquez and Roque Dalton. Enthusiasts and skeptics, cynics and naive. He was also witnessing the way the State killed Cabrera Infante, Carlos Franqui, Belkis Cuza Malé and Heberto Padilla, the first members of the revolutionary fraternity expelled from the sanctuary. The case of Padilla, a poet almost alien to reality, a harmless shoulder for anyone who was not himself, was a first crack in the way Rivero adhered to official Cuba.

That happened in 1971. Rivero was still a decade and a half ago to larcome his detachment and sadness, to find the necessary forces to face those who were still his personal friends. His race as a journalist did not stop. He was a correspondent in Moscow, traveled to China, North Korea and throughout the Socialist EUROPA and returned discouraged to Cuba. He informed from the Angola war, the Vietnam of Cuba, and the experience of him took him on the edge of cynicism. He found himself, on the way back, with the fall of the wall, with the end of societal aid and with the special period, the years of hunger and the blackouts. With all lost, in the middle of a world in which there was only survival, Rivero had the gesture that turned it into a hero for many. He challenged the dictatorship.

His challenge also had phases: first was a passive opposition, a dropping from the merit race within the system. Renounced the journalist's office, led a new generation of letters to Fidel in defense of prisoners of conscience, became an untouchable, he dismissed a thousand friends who explained that he was ruining his life ... and, in 1995, he went to The action and founded the news agency Cuba Press, a myth of free journalism whose infrastructure today causes a smile. A table, a typewriter and some photographic equipment that always had to be rescued from the hands of a collaborator not entirely loyal. In that, Cuba Press consisted.

Rivero was not alone: By those years, his life was ligated to that of Blanca Reyes, his third woman, a leader of another dissident family, that of the ladies of white, the person who has accompanied him until his last months in Florida, the that mobilized the world every time the dictatorship imprisoned the journalist. In the end, the persecution was so cruel and the international scandal so counterproductive for Cuba that the Governments of Castro and José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero agreed on the evacuation of Kings and Rivero to Madrid. It is difficult to know if the proper word was expulsion, exile or exile.

Did the prison last? He must have been, but the story that Castro was born of that experience seemed a thing of a philosopher: the prison had not filled him with resentment but an understanding full of good humor. When he was referring to the old friends who never broke with the revolution he was always affectionate and sweet. When he exiled in Madrid and began to write in the newspaper El Mundo (again, a newspaper called the world), he was always willing to receive the Cubans who will pass through Spain, whatever the political position of him.

During his years in Madrid, Rivero wanted to build after Fidel since the reconciliation of the two cubes. He imagined for the island of him a future like that of the Spain of the transition, a liberal democracy in which he could re-play journalism. He looked himself as a social democrat and hardly he was able to connect with the hard line of Cuban exile.

Updated Date: 06 November 2021, 12:41

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