Raising the U.S. embargo on Cuba will make no difference, top dissident blogger Yoani Sanchez said during her trip to Miami, because the island “lives off of economic subsidies from Venezuela.”
Sanchez is a controversial blogger who runs the Generation Y blog through a server in Spain and also manages multiple Twitter accounts to get the word out about living in communist Cuba to the rest of the world. She is currently on a nearly three-month world tour after being barred from leaving the island for 10 years.
The writer stopped Monday at downtown Miami’s iconic Freedom Tower, where many Cubans who came to Miami made their first stop after escaping Castro’s dictatorship. She spoke at a talk hosted by Miami Dade College.
Speaking in Spanish with The Miami Herald Editorial Page Editor Myriam Marquez, Sanchez discussed Cuban politics, her first impressions of the United States, and her efforts to reveal what is going on behind the curtain surrounding the Caribbean island.
Not only did Sanchez express low hopes for the embargo, but she added the Cuban government has “has exaggerated this topic to deviate from the more important things.”
Sanchez has previously spent time in Germany, and could relate to the once communist-run East Germany.
“[Cuba’s] Berlin Wall is not made of concrete and bricks, but rather of lies,” she said.
On the upside, although religion has been banned for decades in Cuba, Sanchez said people have found their own ways to practice in a burgeoning return to faith.
“People need to believe in something,” she said.
Several leaders from the local to the national level were at the event, including U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson and Rep. Joe Garcia.
“[Yoani’s visit] speaks to a broad relationship that exists, a bond that goes now several generations with this community and Cuba,” Garcia said. “This is the last dictatorship in the hemisphere and we should be pushing, as we have been, for democracy for a very long time.”
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