Havana, April 26th, 2010
To: Lic. Guillermo Fariñas Hernández
Calle Alemán No. 615-A e/ Hospital y Misionero
Santa Clara, Villa Clara.
Our brother and compatriot,
We, the signatories of this Plea from the Nation, assume the responsibility of coming to you once more to urge you to end your hunger strike.
This petition falls in line with so many other similar requests made by international organizations, religious institutions, personalities and governments with the conviction that life is our most precious asset to preserve.
Compatriot and brother, here is what is at stake: to sacrifice your life would deprive your entire family, especially your daughter, of the harmony and equilibrium provided by the love, guardianship and affective ties. It would also deprive us of a very valuable champion for the Cuban nation’s future life. Neither family nor nation can afford such loss.
The reaction of the [Cuban] government to all these dramatic events reveals the ever growing divorce between the moral bases that cemented the foundations of Cuba, and the attitudes of those who pretending to care for the people, mortgaged the future of our nation. A state reaction that mimics that of the street thug who caught in an immoral act, instead of responding suitably to this ethic dilemma, threatens the whole community with destruction.
This persistent obstinacy, this inherent malevolence, and that blissful ignorance that without even blushing the [Cuban] authorities continue to publicly proclaim, keep shocking the world and uniting all decent persons, regardless of their differences, around basic values that define modern coexistence. This is something for which we, in the midst of all our struggles, must thank the world. We thank you as well.
In the light of these current events, it is clear that the [Cuban] government’s cruelty is its most valuable resource to stay in power. And, as you know, and as [Father] Félix Varela taught us, cruelty is the clearest sign of a lack of any virtue to exercise power ethically. Faced with that, our strength begins by defending life.
The greatness of your gesture continues to inspire respect and admiration everywhere, in all cultures. It has made clear to all that the image portrayed by Security of State does not coincide with the nation’s real image. Cuba is closer to you than to its government.
The sad death of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, condemned by all civilized peoples, the brutal repression against the Ladies in White –witnessed by the whole world– and your prolonged hunger strike, have increased the global awareness of the human rights situation in Cuba and created a new opportunity to also increase that awareness among as many other Cubans as possible. Your leadership on this most urgent endeavor can be of much greater value than any symbolism derived from your current actions. Your leadership can be combined with that altruistic ability to put other’s lives before yours. It is a symbolic ability that reveals, in its extreme determination, the odyssey of a country in desperation.
This new chance for Cuba has been perceived in all latitudes. The organizers of the [Orlando Zapata Tamayo] I Accuse [the Cuban Government] Campaign have suggested a new initiative that you should lead within the island: to collect 10,000 signatures to petition the National Assembly for the liberation of all political prisoners, and especially that of our 25 brothers in precarious health. These signatures would be joined to the more than 46,000 other ones from personalities and plain citizens from around the world – who have decided to accompany us in this difficult hour, and to the condemnation [of the Cuban regime] by parliaments and other international institutions.
We, who subscribe this Plea from the Nation, are already with you in this endeavor that should surely increase awareness within Cuba about the natural rights of all Cubans.
In fact, this is already happening. The cold reaction of the Cuban government to Zapata’s death and your hunger strike moved a Cuban citizen to exclaim: “Lord, who are these Castro [brothers]??” That question captures and summarizes a fate that we do not deserve, and its ethic implications are as deep as Orlando Zapata’s offering and your vital solidarity with those who need it most: the [political] prisoners.
Remember this, Nelson Mandela eminently said that a government is not judged by the way it treats its most prominent citizens, but by the way in which it treats those suffering the most: those in jail. And you, together with Orlando Zapata Tamayo and the Ladies in White, have touchingly shed light on the suffering of those marginalized by the regime. History has pronounced its judgment.
In the next phase of this new project so desperately needed by this nation, we need you. Your life is indispensable to us. It is that simple.
Walk with us.
Members of the Civil Society who sign this Plea from the Nation:
1. Leonardo Calvo Cárdenas – Political Activist, Member of Orlando Zapata Tamayo Committee (COTZ)
2. Juan del Pilar Goberna – Human Rights Activist COTZ-CCDHRN
3. Eleanor Calvo Martínez – Civic Activist CIR-COTZ
4. Juan Antonio Madrazo – Civic Activist CIR-COTZ
5. Víctor Manuel Domínguez – Cuban Writers’ Club
6. Jesús Díaz Núñez – Political activist – Arco Progresista Group
7. Jorge Olivera Castillo – Cuban Writers’ Club
8. Fernando Sánchez López – Democratic Solidarity Party –COTZ
9. Oscar Mario González – Independent Journalist
10. Carlos Jesús Menéndez – Human Rights Activist
11. Marcelo López Bañobre – Independent Journalist and Photojournalist
12. Elizardo Sánchez Santacruz – Human Rights Activist -CCDHRN
13. Bárbara Josefa Estrabao – CCDHRN-CA
14. Juan Juan Almeida García – Cuban Citizen
15. Lázara B. Sendiña Recalde – FLDBOZT
16. Hugo Damián Prieto Blanco – FLDBOZT
17. Francisco Leblanc Anafe – Director of the Independent Cuban Institute of Syndical Studies
18. Víctor M. Gonzélz Buduen – Civic Activist –CIR
19. Manuel Cuesta Morúa – Political Activist – Arco Progresista Group -COTZ
20. Carlos Serpa Maceira – Free Cuban Journalists Union
21. Roberto de Jesús Guerra Pérez – Hablemospress (independent news agency)
22. Magali Norvis Otero Suárez – Hablemospress (independent news agency)
23. Fidel Mojena Rivero – Partido 30 de Noviembre
24. Carlos Ríos Otero – Hablemospress (independent news agency)
25. Roberto Ávalos – Hablemospress (independent news agency)
26. Dulce María Díaz Quintana – Lady in White
27. Eriberto Liranza Romero – Independent Association of Educators
28. José Antonio Sánchez Santoyo – Alternative Republican Movement
29. Maritza Castro Martínez – Lady in White (Suporter)
30. Ivonne Malleza Galano – Lady in White (Suporter)
31. Luis Cino – Periodista Independiente- Primavera Newspaper
32. Amalia López Morera – Cuban Citizen
33. Julio César Jorrin Campos – Civic League Martiana
34. Sergio García Argentel – Partido Democrático 30 de Noviembre
35. Jeydi Coca Quesada – Lady in White (Suporter) Partido Dem. 30 de Noviembre
36. Moisés Leonardo Rodríguez Valdés – Corriente Martiana – United for a Free Cuba
37. Jaime Leygonier Fernández – Independent Journalist
38. Edel González Hernández – Cuban Citizen
39. Jorge Luis Quicutis Romero – Independent Librarian
40. Lisbán Hernández Sánchez – Independent Journalist
41. Liuba N. Kawooya Toca – Independent Democratic Cuba
42. José Antonio Martínez Márquez – Independent Democratic Cuba
43. Lucía Hernández Farah – Political activist – Arco Progresista Group
44. Carlos Romualdo Purniel Ramos – Independent Democratic Cuba
45. Ricardo Santiago Medina Salabarría – Priest
46. Vicente Rodríguez Hernández – Independent Democratic Cuba
47. Katia Sonia Martin Vélez – Independent Democratic Cuba
48. Lizbuz Marina Posada Licea – Cuban Citizen
49. Xiomara Sujo Fernández – Independent Association of Educators
50. Raúl Velásquez Valdés – Independent Association of Educators
51. Héctor Cruz Hernández – Independent Association of Educators
52. Ricardo L. González – Independent Association of Educators
53. Jimmy Jaime Jorge – Independent Association of Educators
54. Humberto José Bello Laffita – Independent Association of Educators
55. Lázaro Jaime Martínez – Independent Association of Educators
56. Roberto de Miranda Hernández – Independent Association of Educators
57. Soledad Rivas Verdecia – Independent Association of Educators
58. Yasea Pineda Alfonso – Independent Association of Educators
59. Ruviere González Mia – Independent Association of Educators
60. Rafael González Ruiz – Liberal Cuban Party
61. Walter Miguel Lahens Rodríguez – Independent Association of Educators
62. Lucas Garve – Independent Journalist
63. Fernando Palacio Mogar – Cuban National Liberal Party
64. Ronald Mendoza Méndez – Cuban National Liberal Party
65. Pedro A. Bello Méndez – Cuban National Liberal Party
66. Iván Valdés Rodríguez – Cuban National Liberal Party
67. Gerardo González Morales – Cuban National Liberal Party
68. Eroisis González Suárez – Cuban National Liberal Party
69. Esther González Pérez – UPCI
70. Roberto Díaz Morales – FUN
71. Juana Vázquez González – Cuban Citizen
72. Evaristo Pérez Rodríguez – FUN
73. Carlos Trujillo Goicochea – Cuban Citizen
74. Clara Mendoza Méndez – UPCI
75. Faustino Suárez de la Nuez – UPCI
76. Fernando Concepción Pérez – FUN
77. Caridad González Vázquez – FUN
78. Misleydys Rodríguez Páez – Cuban Citizen
79. Magdalena Rojas Espinosa – UPCI
80. Miguel Castellanos Sánchez – FUN
81. Sandro Tersidor González – FUN
82. Leonardo Padrón Comptiz – Political Activist – Arco Progresista Group
83. Javier Helbello – Political activist – Arco Progresista Group
84. Yusnaimy Jorge Soca – Civic Activist
85. Aida Valdés Santana – Human Rights Activist
86. Raúl Borges Álvarez – Christian Democratic Unity Party -COTZ
87. Mayra Sánchez – Political Activist – Arco Progresista Group
88. Rigoberto Rodríguez Capaz – Political Activist – Arco Progresista Group