From the many conversations I have had with older Cubans who lived through the Batista Regime I have come to the opinion that there was no more brutal individual in the Cuban government than Rafael Diaz Balart, Deputy Interior Minister in the brutal Batista Regime.
Diaz Balart along with his favorite assassination squad the Masferrer Brothers are alleged to have assassinated 20,000 political opponents of Batista. As a leader of the Interior Ministry Diaz Balart had control over the military, the secret police, and the national police. Virtually every firearm in the country was under his control.
Diaz Balart also had a ‘responsibility’ to the US Mafia, owners of casinos and brothels to have his goons pick school girls off the street to be forced to work as prostitutes in the Mafia brothels. I have been told that girls were plucked off the streets on Wednesday so they could be prepped and ready to service US tourists who would come in on Thursday for a weekend of gambling and sex. The girls would be held about six months and then put back out on the street as ‘replacements’ were recruited.
I had the somber occasion to meet one of the girls – now in her 70’s – after a Rosary one night in a Havana Parish Church. One of her grandchildren and their spouse had attended several Rosaries and convince her to come along and meet me. She told me a story that was both frightening and revolting. I have seen her two times since that original meeting and she has repeated her story, never wavering.
‘Rose’ says that at that time Wednesdays were referred to as Black Wednesday because that was the day that the MININT goons would come looking for girls to grab off the street. On Wednesday most parents would walk their daughters to and from school. B ut on one particular Wednesday neither of her parents was available and she was walking home from school alone. She had come part way with a friend and the friend’s mother but they had dropped off at their house.
As she walked alone a car pulled up at the curb and a man got out; he told he she would have to go with him. She says she started to cry but the man hushed her and told her she was going to a new place to live where she would have nice clothes to wear. When they got her to the location she was terrified. She thought that telling them she was a virgin, that she had no idea about sex would get her released. She learned quite the opposite.
She was put in a room that had only a bed and a night table. The room had no windows which she found odd. After a while a man came into the room who she would later learn was Rafael Diaz Balart.
Rose alleges that Diaz Balart sexually assaulted her in every way possible. “His breath smelled of alcohol and cigars. I can still smell that vile man to this day and I hate him for what he did to me and to other girls I met.”
Rose claims that she spent five and a half months working at a brothel in Centro Habana. She was let go the day before her 17th birthday, she told me. When she returned home, her parents wept with joy. They took her to the playa where she spent hours in the salt water cleansing herself. Several years later when Fidel Castro seized control of Cuba she hoped that her long nightmare was over. When he ordered the casinos and brothels destroyed, she felt she had been born again.
In the second half of 2014, ‘Rose’ was granted a visa to come to the United States as a tourist. She is planning on doing that with family membmurder, tortureers and to visit acquaintances. But she also wants to tell her story. Like all Cubans who were tormented or abused by Batista and his thugs, she kept tabs on Rafael Diaz Balart. “I celebrated when I learned he had died; I believe he is burning with the devil, something he definitely earned.”
Rose wants the opportunity to tell her story to the media and possibly even members of Congress. She knows that his two sons have served in the US Congress and believes that they are as amoral and immoral as he was. She also would like to visit Florida International University where a building is named after her alleged rapist.
As for Rafael Diaz Balart, the man wasn’t just sleazy he was slippery. He fled Cuba with his family on December 20, 1958, just eleven days before the country fell to Castro. In testimony rife with perjury before a US Senate Committee in 1960 Diaz Balart claimed he got called to Paris on urgent business, 5 days before Christmas! Unfortunately the senators asked what his business was. I find it hard to believe that a Spanish speaking Cuban government minister who oversaw rape, assassination and torture would have business in Paris.
It is my theory that he like many of the top people in the Batista Regime had money that had been stolen from the Cuban people, hidden away in a Swiss Bank account. After all Zurich was only a five hour train ride from Paris. I suspect that Rafael Diaz Balart looted millions from the Cuban people.
Paul LeBon firstname.lastname@example.org