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Another April 19, another victory

Raul y Diaz CanelThe fact that today Cuba has a new President is not only the result of an electoral process. There is a great deal of responsibility, and symbolism. in this transition from one historical generation to another which was not forged in the Sierra or on the plains in the hard-won victory, but one that has risen to the occasion to preserve the victory, without losing the way, to found, transform, triumph…

And there is also disinterest in this act of ceding, that does not imply quitting. There is much humility in those who leave to others the leadership of the great work of the Revolution to which they have given their all – to now accompany those bearing the responsibility, in Raúl’s case, as the highest authority in the political vanguard and from his seat as a deputy.

The events were as natural as they were transcendental.

On the first day of the Assembly’s constituent session, we saw Raúl take his seat in the first row, exercise his right to vote, ballot in hand, showing with his unassuming conduct that the time had arrived, the moment that always seemed so distant.

And when Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez was elected as President of Cuba, Raúl stepped up, without any unnecessary protocol or solemn posture, to receive him, embrace him, show his confidence in the man, the future.

Speaking of Díaz-Canel, Raúl emphasized that he is no rookie, noting his work as an engineer, an officer in the Revolutionary Armed Forces, a youth leader and later a professional Party cadre in Villa Clara and Holguín. He spoke of his performance as Minister of Higher Education, and for the last five years, as First Vice President of the Councils of State and Ministers.

The new President spoke of Raúl as a statesman, of his leadership in the development of national consensus on the updating process underway in the country, as well as his rich history as a participant in the Moncada assault, a Granma expeditionary, a guerilla, military commander, and political leader.

“I’m not here to promise anything,” Díaz-Canel said, “as the Revolution never did over all these years. I’m here to offer commitment,” to continue working and creating tirelessly, in step with the people.

In this endeavor, we are not alone, because “even our dead accompany us.”

It may not be easy to do all that needs to be done, but this April 19, there was no parting. The continuity has a face, faces.


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