In November 2016, it emerged that the Cuban’s secret service collaborated extensively with its East German counterpart, the notorious Ministry of State Security (“Stasi”). The two secretive organisations jointly hacked into the U.S. base at Guantanamo, creating a system that could shut down the communication between the base and the American mainland. It became known that the Germans helped Cuba build its system of repression.
The man behind these revelations is Jorge Vazquez, a man who worked as an interpreter in communist East Germany in the 1980s. The Cuban secret police tried to draft him as an informer, asking him to provide information on a visiting jazz musician, Rodolfo Santana. Yet instead of spying on his fellow Cuban, Jorge confessed to the visitor that he had been asked to tell on him. Taken aback by Jorge’s honesty, the visiting musician told him that he intended to flee to the west. Instead of reporting this to the secret police, Jorge offered to help Rodolfo escape from the Communist block. Ultimately, the musician succeeded and ended up a free man in Canada. But Jorge was arrested as a traitor and imprisoned in the notorious Stasi prison at Hohenschönhausen. After several years he was extradited to Cuba where he suffered years of hardship. Finally, the Cubans released Jorge to the West. He moved to West Berlin where he still lives today. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, he started sifting through the archives of the former Ministry of State Security, extracting files on the strange and terrifying collaboration between the East Germans and the Cubans.
Jürgen Kleinig, Neue Celluloid Fabrik