Younger Cubans Pressured into Navy Service

Foto: ADN Cuba

By Pedro Pablo Morejon

HAVANA TIMES – Weeks have handed by because the horrible hearth on the tremendous tanker port in Matanzas. I nonetheless can’t neglect how the younger firemen misplaced their lives throughout one of many explosions. I can also’t cease fascinated by their dad and mom’ ache, how absurd and pointless their deaths had been.

Younger individuals within the prime of their lives, with goals and hopes. They had been simply kids who had been there, with none coaching to cope with that catastrophe, coerced right into a navy service they didn’t wish to do.   

Worse but, they died due to the carelessness of some males who ought to have identified they had been sending them to their sure deaths.

These firemen are only a clearer instance, however what number of younger males die yearly due to a bullet, accident or another purpose at one among these navy models? What about all the lads who died in Angola, Ethiopia and different nations?

Now, they’re heroes based on nationwide propaganda, though they’re nothing greater than victims of a system that used its totalitarian and absolute energy to power them to be militarymen, when a lot of them nonetheless hadn’t reached maturity.

Not too way back, I noticed a enroll in entrance of a navy fee’s workplace (recruitment heart) saying “Defending the Homeland isn’t an extra-curricular exercise, however a civil responsibility.”

I ponder: is it the protection of the Homeland or the depressing pursuits of a household and their closest mates who take pleasure in feudal privileges in a rustic that’s bleeding by the day?

That’s after I remembered how I personally was recruited years in the past for this navy service younger individuals name “the inexperienced”.

I bear in mind the day I bought right into a truck filled with younger males like myself, heading in the direction of the previous San Julian air base, within the far western a part of Pinar del Rio.

We arrived at sundown, we didn’t eat and we spent the evening beneath the celebs. The following day, we got our provisions and a bunk-bed.

Shaving our heads nearly all the way down to the scalp, marching and working with a rifle, bayonet, bandoliers on our chest, the helmet, infantry blades at our waist, backpack with a hammock and fuel masks. We took orders from coaching sergeants who had been solely somewhat older than us however nonetheless younger, who thought that they had the best to insult, shout and harass us similar to that they had been harassed and humiliated however passing a course in a few months.

There we had been, stuffed with concern and submissive, most of us twigs. I used to be 180 cm tall and didn’t weigh greater than 60 kgs.

I bear in mind the starvation, a lot starvation (one time we discovered days previous bread, with mildew and we ate it), the blisters on our toes, the stress and the sensation of cursing all of these officers and everybody greater up.

That’s as a result of I used to be pressured to be there, like everybody else, as a result of with out figuring out something about Life, Socio-political Concept, Regulation or Philosophy, I used to be conscious that my particular person rights had been being trampled throughout.

Serving within the military must be one thing individuals do out of vocation and selection, in a democratic nation, the place particular person rights are revered.

This is the reason it’s all the time been crystal clear to me; I don’t wish to put my life on the road to defend a totalitarian system that assaults my freedom and my proper to be completely satisfied and affluent within the nation that gave me life.

Learn extra from diary of Pedro Pablo Morejon right here.

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