Havana - No matter whether Fidel Castro returns to office or not, diplomats and dissidents say the post-Fidel era has already begun and some foresee an ideological tug of war between "tropical Taliban" and proponents of Chinese-style economic reforms.¿De Guatemala a Guatapeor?
Miriam Leiva, a co-founder of the Ladies in White and her husband,
economist Oscar Espinosa Chepe:
Both see economic reforms managed by the Cuban armed forces headed by Raul Castro as the best hope for the near future, a sentiment echoed privately by many Cubans who tend to complain more vociferously about economic misery than the political system.
"What would be disastrous would be for the tropical Taliban to run the country," Espinosa Chepe said. The phrase refers to a younger generation of officials mentored personally by Fidel Castro.
To hear Cubans tell it, the list of true believers includes Otto Rivero, vice president of the council of ministers for the battle of ideas, Hassan Perez, vice president of the union of communists, Miriam Yanet Martin, president of the Jose Marti pioneers youth group and foreign minister Felipe Perez Roque.
No matter which way you look at it, it doesn’t look good for freedom, elections and democracy anytime in the near future.