Overthrow on the Radio

With a vengeance born of extremists, the radical La Voz de la Resistencia show goes straight for Castro's jugular

Encinosa sometimes refers to the instructions as "classes." His texts: U.S. Army field manuals, other treatises on urban and rural warfare, and the classic illustrated guide to sabotage the Central Intelligence Agency used in training the Nicaraguan contras during the Eighties. For example, he and his two collaborators explain the need for basic reconnaissance of targets such as warehouses or electrical plants in order to determine escape routes, and point out the best spots to attack for maximum damage.

Given the scarcity of resources in Cuba, the prescribed actions are usually simple and practical. Throwing a cloth sack in the cane field and making Molotov cocktails are among the more elaborate procedures discussed: "The best way to disable a government Lada is to pour dirt or sand into the motor. But if possible, before destroying the vehicle, drain the gasoline, since this can be used for other actions." (Encinosa is adamant -- on and off the air -- in noting that they are promoting only directed actions and expressly discourage random attacks that might injure bystanders.) "We believe this is the only way open to us," he says. "The violent overthrow of a government that has constantly abused human rights, denied a place for opposition in the political spectrum, and executed at least 10,000 Cubans."

Encinosa got to thinking about a show like La Voz de la Resistencia when he realized that more than half of the Cuban population today grew up under the revolution and thus hasn't been exposed to either the practical or the philosophical aspects of insurgency. "The people who fought underground -- the guerrillas, the CIA operatives -- are all dead or [in exile]. These people [on the island] don't have access to techniques of conspiracy, resistance, sabotage. It's fairly easy in the U.S. to go to the library or get on the Internet and learn how to make a bomb, but not in Cuba."

So about a year and a half ago Encinosa convened a "think tank" of counterrevolutionaries, recent arrivals from Cuba, and other activists, including Ramos and Zaldivar, both former guerrillas and political prisoners. Soon after the group decided to create a radio program, Ramos and Zaldivar arranged with Matos to use the Radio CID studio. Their first show aired in October 1995. As for any documentable results, the men can only speculate about the occasional news of major fires or industrial mishaps on the island -- incidents that could have been caused by sabotage but which the government calls accidents and for which no political motive will ever be established. Nonetheless, in a show this past December, Encinosa claimed that a top interior ministry official returned to his Havana home to find that "a patriot" had pushed a water hose through an open window and flooded the inside of the house. "This interior ministry official received a message from the people," he gloated. "With just a few basic materials and courage and common sense, you can send a message to this criminal regime.

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