Cuba In Crises
The BBC reports that the head of the Catholic Church in Cuba says it is in one of its worst crises in recent times and people are openly criticising the socialist system.
Cardinal Jaime Ortega said that people were openly talking about the deficiencies in Cuba’s socialist system, calling it a Stalinist-style bureaucracy producing apathetic workers and low productivity.
“Our country is in a very difficult situation,” he warned. “Certainly the most difficult we have lived in this 21st Century.”
The 73-year-old prelate told a local Catholic newsletter, Palabra Nueva (New Word) that there was a national consensus that the government make the necessary changes “quickly”.
He also urged the Communist authorities to free all political prisoners.
According to the BBC, the global economic crisis, the continued US trade embargo, and recent hurricanes have all had an impact on the state-run economy.
Cardinal Ortega criticized US President Barack Obama for failing to restart a genuine dialogue with Cuba, and following his predecessors’ policy of demanding reforms as a prerequisite to end the trade embargo.