The Tokyo Olympic Games are over and my joy was riveted in gold, and on top of all that, the athlete who won the last gold medal was born in Matanzas where I am from. In these days the Covid-19 has hit Matanzas hard in a struggle to death. I know that in the midst of it all everyone is fighting even in the red zone like the accurate gloves of Andy Cruz, because the Cuban joy heals.
With the medal of last Sunday, add up 4 gold medals for the Cuban boxing and 7 for a delegation short under 70 athletes that came from a small, third-world country, blocked by the U.S. and I’m not trying to tell a story here, it’s just that things like the story told by the Olympic champion of Rio and runner-up in Tokyo, Leuris Pupo in his Facebook profile, happen:
"I’d like to thank from the bottom of my heart to all those who from Cuba have congratulated me for this silver medal which is like a gold medal to me. Won amidst the shortages Cuban marksmen have due to the blockade: always without ammunition, the electronic devices to train don't exist (...) Also to thank the federations of El Salvador, Spain, and Peru for welcoming us in these last years to make a good preparation on this important event like the Olympic Games (Tokyo 2020). thanks to Pardini, my favorite weapon which has helped me win these two medals (gold and silver) and always supporting me when I needed it, in spite of the blockade that doesn't allow us to acquire this weapons but they have found the ways to help me... "
This little and blocked island, occupied position 14 with 7 gold medals, 3 silver medals and 5 bronze medals. While sportsmen were giving it their all in Japan, in Cuba people stayed awake to enjoy each victory (not only those that won medals). However, an important European sport publication took the liberty of erasing Cuba of its own medal chart and, at the same time, we had to read the defamation on politicizing sports.
But you know what? Now that the bottom line is drawn I tell you hear me out, I will now politicize and even make speculations like this one: Marca newspaper omitted the figures of Cuba now for the same reason the BBC omitted that Cuba saved and sheltered a ship full of British passengers a year ago: because Cuba’s performance can be told: Cuba’s doings has a name, it’s Fidel and that burns in their tongues.
To make a long story short, let’s just remember the performance of this country in Melbourne 1956, where the Cuban delegation only had 16 athletes, and just one of them was a woman. They competed in 5 sports and they were not able to win a medal.
Dictator Fulgencio Batista was in power back then. That same year, Fidel returned to Cuba from Mexico in a yacht, without fleet neither foreign custody, accompanied by 82 brave men who came willing to change history (also the history of sport). When only 12 men remain, they kept the promise.
There’s no need to be an expert, not even very fond to access the data, something as used nowadays as the Wikipedia helps us to compare a before and after:
To the 226 medals counted by the Wiki, we would have to add the 15 of Tokyo that Marca newspaper didn't count and that surpass by 4 all the medals won by Cuba in the Olympic Games before 1959, that is, before the Victory of the Revolution, that damned day? Blessed! in which the Commander arrived and started to politicize the sport.
That, I dare say, it’s the little glitch that leads some to omit us: it’s either that or saying Revolution, saying Fidel... is to fade or acknowledged that we’ve been struggling against a deadly pandemic for a year, 60 years with a genocidal blockade and we’re still standing, more than survivors, alive, able to improve the performance of the last Olympic Games despite all the lacks of training, of the training equipment, the talent theft...
I'm not telling Julio Caesar la Cruz screaming Homeland or Death or Mijaín dedicating his fourth gold medal to Fidel; the audacity of setting an Olympic record in canoeing, to repeat podium in shooting or, simply, to include two athletes in the modern pentathlon, it’s a lot more than what the big liars can stand. We are just here, casual, fighting (it’s been proven how good we are at it); winning, always winning and, well, inevitably, politically, hanging another giant, collective medal, on Fidel's neck, that Fidel present in an Olympic truth: the work of the Cuban Revolution.
Translated by Amilkal Labañino / CubaSí Translation Staff