It was a great morning. We met one side of the Cuban history that we were all involved at some point. It was a turning point for the Cuban people and the solidarity movement in the world.
It is an honor, a privilege for ETECSA’s workers to be able to enjoy Antonio Guerrero’s exhibition “Absolved by Solidarity” in the headquarters of ETECSA Presidency.
Engineer and poet, Antonio (Tony) is one of the Cuban Five who infiltrated in terrorist cells of the anti-Cuban mafia in Miami, place where criminal attacks against Cuban soil are organized with total impunity.
He was arrested by the FBI charged with espionage along with his brothers. He was imprisoned in the US after warning Cuba of such terrorist attacks. The Cuban Five cause had great impact worldwide.
The exhibition —unveiled on Monday, January 29th by Antonio Guerrero in a simple but moving ceremony chaired by ETECSA president Eng. Mayra Arevich Marin— is opened in the Beijing building, 5th floor, Miramar Trade Center.
Being with Tony
You cannot spend your time with a “flesh and blood hero” everyday. Tony, clearly moved and with a slow pace while talking, detailed how this idea of 16 watercolors came up. He did it in 16 days, as the Cuban Five spent 16 years of unjust imprisonment in US jails.
Exhibited for the first time in US, the exhibition portrays the endless seven months that lasted the rigged trial against the Cuban Five fighters.
In the forewords of the book that is also part of the exhibition, you can read “We will not find the suffering and abuses of the imprisonment in the watercolors. Instead, we will find the dignity, strength, and humanity of the Cuban Revolution and Five unflinching soldiers who became the face of the Revolution all around the world.”
He said that the first time he visited ETECSA, three years after being released from prison, he was stunned and surprised that the painted pictures of the Cuban Five were still hanging in the walls as a proof that “you do not forget history.”
ETECSA’s workers will have now the chance of visiting the exhibition in an organized schedule. Mayra Arevich pointed out that once the exhibition ends, the painted pictures will be again in the same spots as they represented dignity and strength in the heart of the Empire.
Tony detailed the meaning of each of the 16 watercolors. It was undoubtedly an important volume of information as he narrated some little-known anecdotes about everything surrounding the rigged trial against the Cuban Five. He also described how they lived the process from prison.
From quite some time now, Antonio and his brothers are working in the society. They are contributing to this process, and it is paramount to remember past struggles. Tony stressed that the most important thing now is to move forward and grow looking for a better society.
Mayra Arevich reiterated the honor and emotion for ETECSA workers to welcome him and his work, which commits them to work harder to the benefits to the people and the country.
Mayra also made reference to the telecom workers who supported the cause of the Five. “You are still symbols for young people and the people in general terms, along with the historical leadership of the Revolution.”
Our company, Mayra highlighted, opens its arms to welcome the Cuban Five every time you want, as Rene did some weeks ago.” Indeed, Rene will launch his diary in the upcoming International Book Fair in Havana. Rene may very well launch the book here too, she stated.
Finally, Tony gave Mayra Arevich the book that is part of the exhibition and reads: “To the executive members of ETECSA, with deep admiration and revolutionary brotherhood, I wish the upmost success in your paramount activity. Five victorious hugs, Antonio Guerrero Rodriguez.”
We thanked Antonio for his exhibition and kindness. His work will be open throughout the month of February.
Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Diaz / CubaSi Translation Staff