What It’s Like to Use the Internet in Cuba

The internet is a great resource for connecting people to people and connecting people to services and new ideas. Cuba, like other developing nations, has had a hard time connecting to the internet because of the sheer cost (laying cables underwater isn’t cheap!); and for Cuba the costs are higher since they can’t connect to the internet via nearby Florida. Despite these issues Cubans are getting online.

Over the past couple of years wifi has been made more accessible thanks to chapter technology and lessening of laws. Cubans are getting online in a way that is very unfamiliar to the rest of us and over at Huck Magazine they wrote about the experience.

There, demands overlap out loud like a public protest in which each person calls in their wish for a different future to come true.

The stories of the crowd emerge, each with its own voice, volume and hopes for a life that might some day include them.

From the other side, they are shown rooms, the view from a window, the neighbourhoods where their children or siblings have managed to settle.

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Cuba Shows Off Its Biotech Industry

Cuba has an amazing farming system which is impressive from farm to fork. The way they grow crops to how they ensure that food distribution is effective is impressive to say the least. The island nation was hit hard with the collapse of the USSR and the embargo from the USA, as a result they have a robust and advanced farming system in the nation.

At one of the largest farming conferences Cuba is showcasing its advanced biotech. Cuba has had to use natural (and locally produced) ways to increase farming production instead of relying on imports.

Among them was, “Gavac,” an immunogen that provides for better control over ticks and tick-related infections in cattle, according to Doctor Hector Machado of Cuba’s Heber Biotec company.

Cuba has been attracting attention in recent years for its model of agriculture, as it has been able to develop cheap and eco-friendly technologies that have helped the country to reach a certain level of food security without damaging the environment. With the environmental and financial challenges the world is now facing, the Cuban model – built in a time of crisis, after the USSR collapsed – is seen as offering potential solutions to many countries in the world.

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White House Planning to Close Guantanamo Bay’s Infamous Torture Centre

Guantanamo Bay on the beautiful island of Cuba sounds like a great place if you don’t know anything about it.

We do know what happens there and it’s immoral and likely illegal (probably even worthy of investigation by the International Criminal Court which the USA hasn’t ratified). The USA has been operating a prison there which is internationally known for shackling prisoners to floors, hunger strikes, and of course torture. As a result of the inhumane practices at Guantanamo Bay America’s “war on terror” has been mocked because it raises the question about who is causing the terror.

President Obama has tried to close the prison before because of it’s morally repugnant treatment of humans but other American politicians think the prison is needed. After years of trying Obama may achieve one of the promises he was elected on in 2008.

President Barack Obama, who leaves office in less than 18 months, has battled for years with lawmakers over his pledge to close Guantanamo by bringing to trial some detainees and holding others in the U.S. as prisoners of war, while arranging to send the least dangerous ones home or to third countries.

In recent months, the administration has sent several detainees from Guantanamo to countries including Oman and Qatar, and the U.S. is seeking additional options for transfering more prisoners, Earnest said at the White House.

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Cuba Creates Great Doctors

Cuba is a beautiful country filled with nice people. Many of those people are educated doctors who go around the world saving lives for free, and they do the same at home. Al Jazeera has a nice long piece looking into the quality and motivations behind these great Cuban doctors. Spoiler: it’s not about money, it’s about helping people.

Cuba has sent about 185,000 health workers to more than 100 countries since the 1960s. Medical staff have been deployed to some of the world’s worst natural disasters, such as the catastrophic 2004 tsunami in Asia and the deadly earthquake in Pakistan in 2005.

Last year as Ebola ravaged West Africa, Cuba sent hundreds of doctors and nursesto hot zones in Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea – more than any other country.

“They are always the first to arrive and the last to leave,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has said of Cuban medical deployments. “They remain in place after the crises. Cuba can be proud of its healthcare system, a model for many countries.”

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Cuba Gets New Art Installation: WiFi

Cuba has really poor internet connectivity and it costs a lot of money to connect to the web. The thawing relationship between the USA and Cuba is bound to make it easier to develop the country’s telecommunications infrastructure (cheaper to run a cable from Florida than elsewhere). This is one of many benefits from the beginning of the end of the bizarre American embargo of the island nation.

For now, the artist Kcho is launching an art installation to prepare people for the coming rise of the internet in Cuba.

Cuba’s state telecom agency Etecsa has granted approval to the artist Kcho to open the country’s first public wireless hub at his cultural centre.

Kcho, who has close ties to the Cuban government, is operating the hub using his own, government-approved internet connection, and paying approximately $900 (£600) per month to run it.

Kcho told the Associated Press he decided to offer free internet at the centre, which opened in western Havana in January, in order to encourage Cubans to familiarise themselves with the internet.

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