Cuban News Agency
The history of the Committees for the Defense Revolution (CDR) is treasured at a museum opened Thursday in Old Havana, a day prior to the anniversary of the 47th anniversary of the organization.
Images combine with texts to narrate the chronology of the organization, including its precedent and founding. Thus, the museum shows the development of the CDR committees, which is also about the progress of the Cuban revolution, says a report by Granma newspaper.
Twenty four panels tell the story of the CDRs participation in Cuban society. While in the beginning the organization was totally absorbed in a system of collective surveillance to counter terrorist acts, the years following its creation found it in the anti-polio campaign, the construction of schools, promoting blood donations, recycling, food distribution, and agricultural tasks, among other responsibilities.
Art also welcomes visitors, with the museum’s lobby displaying an exhibition of pieces by Aleis Leyva Machado (Kcho), inspired by the CDR’s during his early days as a sculptor.
The design of the first floor reproduces a Cuban neighborhood in which the social duties of CDR members are present. A neighboring hall depicts recent history and the battle for the return of Elian González, for the release of the Cuban Five, anti-terrorist fighters unjustly incarcerated in the United States, and Cuba’s internationalist missions.
Bibliographic material, including the card certifying Cuban president Fidel Castro’s CDR membership, conferences and documentaries enliven the third floor, which has become the CDR’s central archives and information center, an initiative enriched, moreover, with an interactive classroom in which 60 former CDR organizers will take turns to share their personal experiences with visitors.
There are also documents of Alicia Alonso showing the ballet artist’s relationship with the organization. Thanks to donations, the museum exhibits some 4,000 such items.
The opening of the museum also has a historical meaning. It wasn’t a recent idea, says the director, since on February 10, 1975, during a National Plenary Session of the CDR’s, Fidel, after receiving some gifts, said that he would keep them for one day when perhaps a museum of the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution would be created.