When Cuba's Vice President Carlos Lage and Foreign Minister Felipe Pérez Roques were suddenly ousted on March 03, 2009, speculation ran rife as to why. No official explanation has been given. Still, it became obvious that the two had violated some unknown taboo when the Cuban press published their letters of contrition.
Last week, word leaked and the missing jigsaw pieces have fallen into place.
In mid-April, high-ranking members of the government, Ministry of the Interior, and Revolutionary Armed Forces were summoned to view top-secret videos that showed Lage and Roquez making disparaging remarks about Fidel and Raúl Castro and First Vice-President José Ramón Machado Ventura.
The two even joke about Fidel's infirmities and question Raúl's ability to govern the country.
The video demonstrates the efficiency and reach of Cuba's counter-intelligence service, G-2, which apparently recorded the incriminating conversations over the course of several months at the country residence of Conrado Hernández, the official representative and Cuban liaison for Basque commercial interests on the island.
By coincidence, Hernández had also been recording the conversations (over rum and games of dominoes) with a view to providing the Spanish government insights into the thinking of Cuba's younger generation of political leaders, and their speculations about possible regime change.
Hernández and his wife were arrested on February 14 at Havana's José Martí International Airport as they prepared to leave for Spain.
Lage and Roquez have not been seen in public since their ouster, and their whereabouts remain unknown.