Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Potemkin Would be Proud

Although Cuban authorities tend to reserve maintenance for tourist areas, i.e. the socialist theme park, the powers that be at Guayabo Prison on the Isle of Youth in Cuba have gone all out for music star Silvio Rodriguez's visit, along with the much ballyhooed entourage of cultural emissaries. It could be he rates, or it could be that there might be photographers along, but the performance area is to be repaved, common areas painted for the first time in 30 years. And when shown the urinal to which Rodriguez would be ushered if nature called, the man in charge of preparations for the visit said, more or less,"no way." So the offending, and one imagines offensive, pissoir was demolished and prisoners forced to construct a new one.

Oh, and any complaints during the visit will result in a one year restriction to cell, as per the head of the prison, one Julio Ordóñez. Maybe they could invite that Rapporteur fellow, who did such a good job on the food situation that he is now an advisor on human rights, and kill two dodo birds with one stone.

Article in Spanish on Cubanet here.

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