Open the door to Cuba By Jim Ryerson + Carnaval De Cuba (vid)

By Jim Ryerson
featured writer
Dandelion Salad
(jim [at] travelingman [dot] net)
Sunday, May 4, 2008

Re: “Raul Castro walks tightrope of reforms,” April 29, 2008

Many things are officially prohibited in Cuba, but the resourceful islanders usually find a way. Many Cubans (and I would suggest the number is considerably higher than the 2% mentioned) have Internet access in their homes. Although the government is opening a TV channel with foreign programming, if you walked through a Havana apartment building on any recent Saturday night, you would hear residents singing along with the commercials on “Sabado Gigante,” just as they do in most Latin American countries.

And, as any Canadian or European tourist could attest, thousands of Cubans have had cell phones for years. That Americans are surprised to learn this is testimony to the fact that our government is denying the right of its citizens to freely visit a safe and friendly country.

Only by ending the travel ban and the punitive embargo against the Cuban people can we have any moral ground from which to comment on their political system.

Jim Ryerson

Los Angeles

The writer is a documentary film producer specializing on Cuba, which he’s visited more than 30 times. He formerly worked as a television news reporter in Los Angeles, and has won numerous national and international awards for his work. His documentary on the U.S. embargo, Looking for Cuba is currently on the film festival circuit, and he has 3 other documentary projects regarding Cuban music, art and culture, currently in editing. You can see clips from our films at

Also posted:

Los Angeles Times



Carnaval De Cuba


April 04, 2008

The celebration of Carnival in Santiago, Cuba is unlike any other in the world. Held in July, with no commercialization, it is treated as a religion, with the entire city shutting down to take part in the festivities. But this is a year long event, with rehearsals going on daily.

Directed by Santiago native Roberto Monticello, and filmed in High Definition, this clip is an 8 minute promo of a 1:20 minute documentary, set for release in Fall 2008. For investment information in Carnaval de Cuba please contact


Changes in Cuba Won’t Change U.S. Policy By Jim Ryerson + Looking for Cuba (vid)

Late Again on Cuba By Jim Ryerson

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