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Marc R. Masferrer
I'm a career newspaper journalist. I also blog.
Recent Activity
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Rosa Maria Paya The struggle for freedom in Cuba is not for anyone afraid of what appear to be insurmountable odds or without the faith to believe that they will eventually prevail. After more than 56 years of communist dictatorship,... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Uncommon Sense
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Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo In an op-ed published in PanAmPost, Cuban dissident writer Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo calls bullshit on the U.S.-Cuba rapprochement. His cynicism is well placed: A revolutionary rumor in Washington, DC, can be filtered through congressional offices... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Uncommon Sense
Eight of 15 activists with the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU) arrested Monday in Santiago de Cuba during the production of an independent video remain in jail, according to 14 y medio, which cited UNPACU leader Jose Daniel Ferrer Garcia.... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Uncommon Sense
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For the 10th Sunday in a row, the Castro dictatorship has unleashed its police and other goons on the Damas De Blanco, or "Ladies In White," and other anti-Castro activists. Some 90 arrests were reported in Havana and elsewhere, including... Continue reading
Posted Jun 14, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Christian Solidarity Worldwide has another dismal report on the state of religious freedom in Cuba: The number of violations of freedom of religion or belief held steady, while the violations themselves grew in severity, in the first half of 2015.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Cuban activist Antonio Rodiles was arrested May 24 in Havana. With American and Cuban presumably getting close to some sort of deal to reopen embassies in each others' capitals, the Castro dictatorship is making clear that an agreement will not... Continue reading
Posted Jun 4, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Coinciding with protests in Venezuela and elsewhere, Venezuelans and their supporters Saturday gathered on Tampa street corner to demonstrate against the Maduro regime in Caracas and demand freedom and democracy for their nation. Venezuelans are a proud, happy people, and... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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The Rev. Yiorvis Bravo Denis There is no freedom in Cuba, so there is no freedom of religion. The Rev. Yiorvis Bravo Denis knows that too well. Christian Solidarity Worldwide is raising the alarm: May 20, 2015 A Request for... Continue reading
Posted May 25, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Cuban dissident Antonio Rodiles was arrested Sunday in Havana. (Photo via Twitter) After more than 56 years, the United States likely will soon announce it has reached a deal with the Castro dictatorship to reopen its embassy in Cuba, where... Continue reading
Posted May 24, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Raul Castro pays homage to Cuba's former Russian masters, and it's as ugly as you might imagine. Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Reporters Without Borders has a powerful message for French president Francois Hollande, before he visits Cuba next week: President François Hollande Palais de l’Elysée 55 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré 75008 Paris Paris, 7 May 2015 Dear President Hollande, Before your... Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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State Security forces detained 51 Ladies in White dissidents and 38 other activists for over six hours on Sunday, May 3, 2015, in Havana. (Martí Noticias) There were at least 338 politically-motivated arrests in April, bringing the total for year... Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Yuriet Pedroso on hunger strike, March 2015. Notes from the Cuban Exile Quarter has the latest on Cuban hunger striker Yuriet Pedroso, whose protest against the Castro dictatorship has him near death: Opposition activist Yuriet Pedroso González was transfered to... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Cuban Ladies In White march in Havana on Sunday, May 3, 2015. (Photo: Angel Moya via Diario De Cuba) Sunday, May 3, 2015, is World Press Freedom Day, a perfect day for the Castro dictatorship to crack down Cubans who... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Sunday is World Press Freedom Day, so it's a good time to refresh your memory about Cuba's deplorable ranking as one of the world's worst oppressors of press freedom. Here's what Reporters Without Borders, which ranked Cuba 169th out of... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Be sure to watch an independent journalist's remarkable video report on Havana residents' reaction to the lack of sufficient response by the Castro regime after flooding this week. [View the story "Castro's Katrina: Havana residents blast #Cuba dictatorship's lack of... Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Yuriet Pedroso (Photo: Hablemos Press) As Cuban hunger striker Yuriet Pedroso's condition continues to worsen, the Castro dictatorship can't help but show disdain for his suffering and for his demand for justice. Pedroso, who started his protest on March 2,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
President Barack Obama's rapprochement with Cuba has been accompanied by a plethora of stories about how neat-o -- the travel, the music, the food, etc. -- it will be when full diplomatic relations with the Castro dictatorship are restored. Missing... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Not withstanding President Barack Obama's wishful thinking, political repression in Cuba is as bad as it ever was. Just listen to first-hand accounts of Cuban men and women who were beaten and arrested this past Sunday in Havana when they... Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
Cuban opposition activist Yuriet Pedroso Gonzalez is in intensive care in a Santa Clara hospital, suffering the effects of a hunger strike he started March 1 to protest a pending charge against him of "assault." Pedroso, 34, a member of... Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Kudos to the New York-based Human Rights Foundation, which has named Cuban prisoner of conscience Danilo Maldonado one of the three 2015 recipients Václav Havel International Prize for Creative Dissent. Maldonado, nicknamed "El Sexto," is a graffiti artist was arrested... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Barack Obama on Saturday sold out the cause of Cuban freedom and made a final break with this campaign promise from 2008: "My policy toward Cuba will be guided by one word: 'libertad.' ... "The road to freedom for all... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Máximo Pradera Valdés Cuban political prisoner Máximo Pradera Valdés, in jail since after he and two others were arrested in 2001 while trying to sneak onto the island, has died, according to Cuban independent journalist and former prisoner of conscience... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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Cuban people Sunday arrested more than 50 opposition activists, including members of the Cuban Ladies In White, after they displayed photographs of political prisoners while riding a bus in Havana. It is is the least-surprising news of the day after... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2015 at Uncommon Sense
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It's now official: A free, democratic Cuba is no longer the goal of United States policy toward the island. After this weekend's bro-fest in Panama, it's not exactly clear what has replaced it after 50 plus years, except for maybe... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2015 at Uncommon Sense