Fidel Castro and the WT
A little bit more of "cold war history".
When started to get hot and it was evident that there was going to be a serious clash with the Government, the first thing that the WT did was to protect their assets; they converted as much of their property into solid cash and got the money out of the country mostly by illegal means.
What illegal methods did they use to get the money out of the country?
So they were registered in Cuba as a Cultural Organization and not a religion , the same as was the case in Mexico ? That is interesting .Theocratic warfare practiced way back then , using deception , no we are not a religion , we are a cultural organization.
Is that an outright lie to the Governments in question or was it a subterfuge hiding the truth from those who don`t deserve it .namely the Governments in question.
We did see a similar deception against the Bulgarian Government didn`t we , regarding Disfellow - shipping for taking Blood , the WT/Jehovah`s Witnesses said , no we don`t Disfellowship anyone any more .What they did not tell the Bulgarians is they now consider ones who take blood as disassociating themselves from the religion of Jehovah`s Witnesses , and they are treated exactly the same as ones who have been disfellow-shipped .
And the Bulgarians apparently bought it , giving them legal recognition in their Country .
Is that deception honest ? even ethical ?
They've recently tried a similar corporate shell game here in the UK with Charity Commission. They tried to argue that as COs get controlled by "Christian Congregation of JWs" (which isn't registered as a charity) then anything they did (eg certain judicial committees) couldn't be investigated by the Charity Commission. Judge didn't buy it in the slightest.
Thanks for your posts Hecce. All kind of a pattern, but with horrific consequences for the individual JW when the Brooklyn stupidity clashes with authoritarian regimes.
As to the matter of illegal activities, this was mostly related to financial items. The Cuban economy was basically a cash economy, very few of the common people had a bank account; cash was king. Castro surprised everyone when the currency was changed with very little warning, if I remember it was like 48 hours advising the chance and instructing to take your money to stations for an exchange.
You were allowed to keep $250.00 and the rest was going to be deposited into a bank account, the WT was operating as a commercial institution with their bank account and they were not affected that much by this. For the friends it was a different story, the main difficulty for the Society was their monthly income from the congregation remittances; by them the pesos were worthless and the people were exchanging in the black market pesos for dollars. The WT participated in this practice in order to send whatever funds were collected to Mother.
It was illegal to send money out of the country, the Society was using friendly diplomats and brothers that had connections at the Guantanamo base to do these transactions; they were more interested in getting the money to Brooklyn than the welfare of the local brothers.
There are many examples of illegalities committed as theocratic warfare, for instance the Government had full control of supplies, paper was needed for the publishing of the study materials; brothers will buy these supplies in the black market knowing that the majority of the materials were stolen from the Government factories.
I remember the case of a very fine brother that was caught doing this, spent three years in jail; came out mentally affected, his wife died shortly thereafter and he got in trouble and was eventually DF.
Enough for today
Reading about Malawi it came to my mind that not much has been published about the persecution in Cuba. At one time it was very harsh, the Government set up some concentration camps with the disguise of Military Units and the brothers that were sent there suffered all kind of abuses.
Life in general was very rough for the JWs, as far as I know only two witnesses died; one was killed during the war by Batista's paramilitary and the other died in prison after plenty of torture from a heart attack.
Thanks for posting this, I love history especially Watchtower History it feeds my current resolution for being here.
I once asked a brother why God would allow deception or misrepresentation from his earthly organization? The most powerful force of the universe would really seem unnecessary? He said "Jehovah has allowed any means necessary for the survival of his organization even if that means deception". At the time i was fully engaged in the kool aid supplementation, now in retrospect I would of said "But wasn't Satan the Father of the lie, the one called deceiver. God vilified him because of the original LIE." We profess to have the TRUTH, yet defended by lies. Now I know there was no original lie, and there is no current truth. Its all just a billion dollar corporation trying to protect their assets. Its all quite simple really.
To all contributors:
The sad part about this, is that the brothers had complete trust in the Society, they had the confidence that Brooklyn had plans and contingencies for a situation like this. We were instructed to just follow instructions and be confident that everything will work out, that was hardly the case.
One example, the Malawi experience was in a minor scale repeated with the military service; after the initial wave of abuse and beatings, the Government offered an alternative military service under civilian control. This was an accommodation for the religious objectors, the vast majority of religions agreed but not the JWs. Once again they received the harshest punishment and went to jail for three years for something that was permitted in Mexico and that today is standard practice all over the world.
. The case went badly for the WT due to the fact the Government was able to show that the WT was just a publishing house and that they were never registered as anything else, certainly not a religion.
This sounds interesting....
There are good reasons not to put your trust in the WT. The decisions that they make, especially during difficult times are hard to understand. I give you an example:
Sometime during the 70s a directive came from Brooklyn to open up on a certain day all the Kingdom Halls. This was a clear violation of the Government prohibition, and it was an act of civil disobedience in a country where those things are not tolerated. Don’t trust me on this but I think that D-Day was on “human rights day”.
The brothers faithfully and bravely proceeded to open up the KHs and whole congregations of families went to the meetings. As expected the response from the authorities was swift, patrol cars came to the different KHs, interrupted the meeting and arrested the leaders. Some of them went to prison as a result of this and a lot of the younger brothers were taken from the meeting to concentration camps.
Before and after the meeting the families attending were subjected to all sort of abuses from governments mobs, including stoning, egg throwing, spitting and a lot of insults hurdled at them.
A complete an unnecessary mess that accomplished nothing and made the situation worse for the flock.
Good for now, another day I will tell why the WT did this.