The United States is experiencing an historic surge in migrants from Cuba, according to multiple American agencies.
According to a report from The Miami Herald, over 46,000 Cuban migrants have arrived at the border between Mexico and the United States over the past five months. The figure — which emerges from the most recent U.S. Customs and Border Protection data — surpasses the over 39,000 Cubans who arrived during the “entire fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2021,” as well as the 35,000 Cubans who arrived during the 1994 raft exodus.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Coast Guard observed 1,067 interdictions since October — an increase from 838 in the previous year, according to The Miami Herald, which added that most Cubans rescued by the Coast Guard are sent back to the island.
Last summer, Cuba witnessed unprecedented and widespread protests against the island’s communist dictatorship, which cracked down harshly on dissidents. Among other government actions meant to retaliate against the protests — which initially spread through social media — was a law designating “misinformation” as “cyberterrorism.”
Cuba also relied upon Chinese technology to censor its citizens. According to a report from the Open Observatory of Network Interference, the login portal for Etesca — the sole company in Cuba that provides internet access — “appears to have been written by Chinese developers, since its source code contains comments written in Chinese.” Etesca’s technology providers are Huawei, TP-Link, and ZTE — all of which are Chinese firms.
In an opinion piece for The Daily Wire, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) — a Cuban-American — explained that the protest movement was rooted in “people who are tired and couldn’t take it anymore.”
“Communist, socialist, Marxist dictators always use the same tactic: they keep people divided. They keep people from speaking to one another; they keep people separated from one another and unable to compare notes,” Rubio wrote. “What you are hearing now is people who are tired of living in a country where you cannot have your own opinion, where you cannot express yourself, where the government wants to control everything — everything you do and everything you say. They control where you live, control where you work, control how you can travel, control what kind of work you can do — and they hold it all over your head. Cubans are tired of it.”
“The Cuban people want to live like Cubans live in Miami, and Tampa, and Orlando, and all over the United States and the world. They want to live free. They want to be able to pick their own leaders. They want to be able to work with their own hands and provide for their family,” he continued. “And they want to live in a country where thinking differently than the people who are in charge is not a crime — particularly when the people who are in charge are people who you cannot replace and have no role in putting there whatsoever.”