Dr. Hilda Molina was finally allowed to emigrate from Cuba to Argentina.
This morning in Buenos Aires, Hilda was finally reunited with her son and met her two young grandsons for the first time in their lives. The oldest is 13.
After 15 years of tireless efforts by Hilda, her son in Argentina, and the governments of Argentina and other countries in the region, the Castro regime finally gave her permission to leave Cuba.
Some news outlets are reporting that Raul Castro’s decision to let Hilda leave Cuba is a sign the regime is opening up.
But Caracas Gringo thinks that Raul Castro (and Fidel) finally blinked when confronted with Hilda’s relentless courage.
Hilda is as pure and hard as a blue-white diamond, a woman of extraordinary intelligence, class and dignity.
She never gave up trying, never lost hope that she would gain her freedom, and the Castro thugs finally ran out of excuses to continue denying Hilda her human rights.
Hilda literally had been under house arrest since 1994 in a tiny apartment she shared with her elderly mother.
Until 1994 Hilda had been the chief neurosurgeon of the Cuban revolution and also a deputy in the Cuban National Assembly. However, Hilda publicly repudiated Fidel Castro’s regime in 1994, and was particularly critical of its health and science policies.
Among her numerous charges, for example, was this:
The Cuban regime had created two separate health care systems, she said.
One served the Cuban people’s needs for free, but the state did not provide the funds required to ensure patients received the best possible care.
The second health care system charged well-heeled foreign patients very high fees for surgical and non-surgical treatment. This system was equipped with the best medical equipment and staffed with the best doctors and nurses, and it operated out of medical facilities which ordinary Cuban citizens were prohibited from entering.
Hilda related the above, and many other stories about the cruelty and inhumanity of the Castro regime, when Caracas Gringo met her in Havana in the mid-1990s.
Her courageous decision to publicly expose the lies of the Castro regime with respect to its false claims about universal free and equal care for everyone cost her dearly.
She was kicked out of the National Assembly, fired from her job, and was targeted immediately for systematic and permanent harassment by the plainclothes thugs of the Interior Ministry’s state security service.
By 1996 Hilda was basically confined with her mother 24/7 inside a shoebox apartment.
Hilda was not officially under arrest at the time, but whenever she ventured outside the apartment to buy food, take a stroll, etc., several male thugs always would follow her practically at arm’s length, menacing her verbally and, often, physically too.
The regime also kept plainclothes thugs from the Interior Ministry posted 24/7 at both ends of the street where Hilda lived so Fidel could track her movements and visitors at all times.
Everyone who visited Hilda was immediately placed under surveillance and investigated, especially if the visitors were foreign. Caracas Gringo had a first-hand experience with the regime’s state security services after visiting Hilda. It was unpleasant and frightening, but nothing even remotely like Hilda and her mother suffered every day.
Hilda and her mother were not safe even in their apartment. Regime thugs frequently would burst into the apartment by day or night, turning it upside down under the guise of conducting a “search” for contraband. The Castro regime’s thugs would threaten and rough up the women too.
The regime’s abuse of Hilda and her mother was psychological and physical torture, and a violation of their most fundamental human rights on a daily basis.
They lived in isolation, never knowing when a gang of Castro thugs might break down the apartment’s door and arrest the two women.
But when Caracas Gringo first met Hilda Molina and her mother in the mid-1990s, they radiated courage, composure and faith.
Hilda’s home was practically bare of food, yet she invited this blogger to share a late lunch and treated him like a member of her family.
Thank you, Hilda, for the wonderful afternoon we spent in Havana talking about the Cuban people.