The U.S. government is so stuck in time that, in its eagerness to suffocate the Cuban economy with Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, it appears not to have noticed that the steep hillsides where Comandante Juan Almeida founded, by order of the Comandante en Jefe, the Mario Muñoz Monroy Third Front, are not the same today, 61 years later.
Surely it still imagines this area filled with humble, sad-faced campesinos, and children with bulging bellies, without doctors or schools, lacking roads, electricity and communications, condemned to the irrational extraction of precious wood and the sacking of aromatic coffee.
Surely it also disregards the rebellious guerrilla forces that swept Batista’s tyranny from this mountain range forever, and planted in Loma La Esperanza the red and black flag of victory, where also immortalized in the imposing mausoleum built between palm trees and roses, are the lives sacrificed by its heroes and martyrs in Fidel’s just cause.
From that height, there is no need for Google Maps to appreciate at its feet the new Cruce de los Baños municipality, with its people dressed in modern style, its schools, pre-school day care centers, polyclinic, the coffee research station, modern homes, internet antennas, roads and even a television studio, all of which emerged after the triumph of the January 1, 1959.
The U.S. administration should have taken note of the men, women, young people and children, who on March 6 climbed up to this sacred site to pay tribute to their heroes and martyrs, alongside the floral wreaths dedicated by the First Secretary of the Party Central Committee, Army General Raúl Castro Ruz; the President of the Councils of State and Ministers, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez; the Councils of State and Ministers, and the Cuban people.
If indeed it is unaware of this history, the U.S. administration would do well to heed it, to know that in the Third Front the people sleep peacefully, aware that, as Almeida would say, here no one surrenders!