After the death of Fidel Castro in Cuba begins a period full of unknowns. Raul, the current president, has pledged to leave power within a year. A choice that seems in line with the “soft” transition desired by the brother of the Lider Maximo. After the thaw with the United States the country appears ready to enter a new phase that Raul wants to award to a new generation.
New generation or old guard?
The names of which they speak are essentially two. Although he likes to keep a low profile, the most prominent among the big names now emerged in the Cuban Communist Party is the current Vice President Miguel Diaz-Canel, electronic engineer and former Minister of Education, behind Raul on the dashboard of Castro’s power. In fact, the designated dolphin. In February 2013, when he was appointed vice president, some Cuban media pointed out that it was the first time that the “number two” of the government was a man born after the 1959 revolution led by Fidel and the “Che” Guevara. A step which marked the first step forward toward the replacement. The most illustrious names of the old guard are José Manuel Machado Ventura, 86, second secretary of the CCP, and Ramiro Valdes, 84, among the historical figures of the “revolucion”.
The other figure in the ascendant, however, is another Castro: Alejandro, son of Raul, colonel and intelligence co-ordinator of the armed forces and the Interior Ministry. Hard to know what will happen in an opaque world and faithful to the secrets and silences like that of Cuban politics. Much it will depend on what happens inside the two structures that manage the power and the economy, and their power relations: on the one hand the “fuerzas armadas”, the military, on the other hand, the Cuban Communist Party.
The unknown factor
The real unknown on Havana’s future, however, is represented by the relations with the United States. Archived the Obama presidency, decisive for the reconnection of relationships, to manage the dossier will be the new Republican establishment, led by Donald Trump. The president-elect has not expressed yet, by choosing a wait position. Whoever is closer does not exclude any scenery including the revocation of the agreements by Obama if Cuba fails to meet some US demands, such as, for example, to grant greater religious freedom.