Several prominent far-left political figures and activists in American politics have remained silent on mass protests in Cuba, with demonstrators taking to the streets demanding freedom from the nation’s communist dictatorship.
Videos posted on social media show Cubans marching in the streets, protesting the rampant poverty and lack of freedom under the far-left communist regime. Many videos show Cubans chanting “Liberty” and “Freedom” and waving American flags.
Media strategist Giancarlo Sopo wrote, “This is deeply moving. Watch as Cubans wave the American flag while marching against the island’s 62-year-old communist dictatorship on the streets of Havana.
Never forget what America represents to millions across the world. #SOSCuba #PatriaYVida.”
Cuba’s communist dictatorship has started cracking down on protesters, reportedly inflicting violence on unarmed civilians and cutting off internet access.
Popular far-left figures such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have not weighed in on the protests, choosing to remain unusually silent. Sen. Bernie Sanders finally tweeted calling on the Cuban government to “respect opposition rights,” while also bashing the U.S. for its embargo on the country.
Sanders has been criticized for repeatedly praising communist dictatorships and regimes in the past, including Cuba, as highlighted by Sanders’ political opposition.
Sanders vacationed in Cuba and has praised the Cuban revolution saying he was excited to watch Dictator Fidel Castro “rising up against the ugly rich people.” Sen. Sanders praised Communist Cuba’s “value system” while he was mayor of Burlington and even visited Cuba to meet with the dictator in 1989.
Sanders “mocked” reports of human rights abuses in Cuba, claiming that the reports of torture and executions were manufactured by Republicans. The Castro regime’s human right abuses are extensive and have been widely reported, including the sentencing of homosexuals and critics to forced labor camps , and forcing more than a million Cubans to risk drowning as they fled the country.
The Washington Post reported:
José Miguel Vivanco, director of Human Rights Watch’s Americas division, said his group had received reports that at least 20 people had been arrested. He added that the organization had received reports of violence being used by Cuban forces, a claim echoed by social media users sharing videos of wounded protesters.
“This is pretty massive,” Vivanco said. “My sense is that this is a combination of social unrest based on a lack of freedoms, and covid, and economic conditions. The lack of access to electricity. The blackouts. … People are screaming for freedom.”
“As demonstrators sought to broadcast the protest live with their cellphones through social media, Cuba’s authorities cut internet service on multiple occasions on Sunday,” the Wall Street Journal reported. “Kentik, a U.S.-based network monitoring company, reported countrywide internet outages.”