Idalberto González Gómez

* 1936

  • “I knew a commander… Ramón, who lived in Buenavista. One day he sends for me. He tells me that it was the last supper. So, I go and he told me: ‘Look, I have sent for you, because we have full confidence in you. This is the last supper. After this meal, I'm leaving the country... so that you can go with us... because you have secured work in Florida. I told him: ‘Commander, I can't leave, because my grandmother, who was the one who raised me, because my mother died when I was three or four years old… I can't go now and leave her abandoned in Santa Clara, which is there. and it's old. What you tell me remains between us… you can be fully confident that this remains between us.’ And he told me: ‘You will remember me a lot, because this is communism.’ – “But if the man [Fidel Castro] has not declared that he is a communist…’ – ‘You are going to realize it and you are going to remember me a lot.’ The truth is that this man was right… ”

  • "Well, Nene..." - they sat me down (the State Security agents) - ... 'Look, you're old... ' Well, I was old but not yet to the extreme... And he said to me: 'Why don't you retire? ' – I say: 'Excuse me? Repeat to me what did you say, I can't hear well. ' - 'You are already old, why don't you retire? ' – 'What the hell, why don't you ask your commander Fidel Castro, why doesn't he who screwed the whole world retire and continue screwing them over? He is older than me!! ' So I put the question like this. The first agent looked at the second one and I saw that he was dying of laughter. Then he said to him: 'Come on, Pablo... we’re not gonna get anything from this old man. ' And they left and never came back.“

  • “There was a man named Ramón Pando Ferrer who was a university student leader who belonged to the Directory (Revolutionary Directory 13th of March). So I asked him to join me in, but he didn't give me the opportunity. He said that I was too unexperienced and that they would kill me and then the would look for my family… (…) I looked for a way how to join. I went to Pando Ferrer: 'You hear me, I already have something for you, something difficult, hard, dangerous. Your life and my life are at stake.' And I aked: 'Can I know what it consists of?' – 'You have to enlist in the Army.' - And I: “What?” – “You have to enlist in the Army, there is no other choice. You need to look for combat preparation, that you know how to handle weapons and what military life is.' Well, I had no other choice. I enlisted here and went to Havana, they enlisted me in San Ambrosio. From San Ambrosio they sent me to Colombia. I went to school in Colombia and went to Managua to go to another school. Later I came here to the province of Camagüey and I got Che and Camilo (Cienfuegos).”

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    Cuba, 01.01.2022

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Meanwhile I am still alive, I will keep fighting against the communism

Idalberto González Gómez, 2022
Idalberto González Gómez, 2022
photo: Post Bellum

Idalberto González Gómez was born on November 26, 1936 in Santa Clara, capital of the Villa Clara province located in the central part of Cuba. His father was a tobacconist. Idalberto’s mother died when he was three or four years old. Since then, he grew up with his grandmother. When General Fulgencio Batista carried out the coup, Idalberto was 16 years old and he remembers very well the repressions of the established regime. However, he opines that despite the fact that many people called it a dictatorship, the situation was not as difficult as it is now, because there were opposition parties. Idalberto participated in small acts of sabotage against the Batista regime and wanted to join the ranks of the Rebel Army. However, he was rejected due to his lack of experience. He then decided to enlist in the official Army. In this way, he reached various regions of Cuba, including the Oriente, where he fought against the Rebel Army. He witnessed the corruption among the soldiers that, according to him, greatly helped the advance of the Rebel Army. Idalberto participated in various battles until the leaders of both sides agreed to join his forces. As a consequence, Idalberto joined the Freedom Caravan and arrived in Havana. Observing with great concern the course that Fidel Castro was taking after the triumph of the Cuban Revolution, he decided to join the Escambray rebels. He served as a messenger and helped rebel groups. These activities led to his arrest and imprisonment in November 1960. Once released, he attempted to join the 2506 Brigade, but it didn’t turn out possible. His support for the rebel groups resulted in another arrest and his subsequent integration into the UMAP concentration camps. After leaving the UMAP, he faced great difficulties when looking for work. Already a marked person he decided to devote the rest of his long life to the peaceful struggle for freedom and democracy in Cuba. He was part of several Cuban dissidence organizations, participated in projects to raise awareness among the population and, together with Tomás González-Coya, carried out Operation Rescue, which helped identify people buried in unmarked graves by the Government of Fidel Castro.