The Cuban Revolution has its own character – an amalgam of Latin American, African, and European political, cultural, and social traditions. It is difficult to call Cuba Stalinist in the sense of wide-scale murder, violent repression, or military imperialism, but there is a lot of bureaucracy. In reality, the US embargo prevents or hinders an objective analysis of the successes (and failures) of the Revolution, but most people living in Cuba (whether supportive of the government or not) will accept the negative effects of bureaucracy. What is clear is that there is a lack of certain products in Cuba (allegedly a result of the embargo), and citizens who feel they don’t participate in a truly democratic way in the revolutionary process of their country.
It is clearly positive for a revolution for citizens to support revolutionary ideas and love their fellow citizens. It is also important to tell the truth, be honest, and talk seriously about how best to achieve real, lasting justice for those people.
However, supporting a revolutionary process blindly doesn’t strengthen it. In fact, a lack of understanding and inclusive debate can slow down or even paralyse such a process.
In the song uploaded in the following post, Cuban hip-hop group Los Aldeanos answer their critics, explaining why they are not ‘gusanos’ (worms / scabs). It is evident that they do not wish for their country to surrender to the world’s imperialist powers or their interests. Nor do they want the positive values of the Cuban Revolution, such as equality, justice, and solidarity, to be lost.
They simply support the belief that a revolutionary process must change all that needs changing, and they see that, in their communities at least, there are still many things in need of change. Their lyrics don’t represent an objective or scientific analysis of the Cuban Revolution. As a result, there may be exaggerations or understatements. However, the message of resistance to, and anger at, the daily difficulties and bureaucratic hypocrisies (and those people abandoning or opposing the positive values of the Revolution) is very clear. For the future success of the Revolution, the voices of all Cubans must be heard and respected. Genuine popular participation and critical analysis are the only ways for a revolution to be successful.