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On March 23, Cuban activist Aniette González was arrested after publishing and sharing on social networks photographs of herself dressed and draped with the flag of her country. The Prosecutor's Office of the Nation asks her for "four years in prison for outrage to the patriotic symbols". His case recalls the sentence against the visual artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara, sentenced on March 31, 2022 to 5 years of imprisonment as perpetrator of the crimes of "outrage to the symbols of the homeland, contempt and public disorder". The artist carried out in 2019 the performance "Drapeau o 24h del mes de agosto la bandera como mi segunda piel", which consisted in wearing the Cuban flag on the body for a month and inviting others to join the viral challenge #labanderaesdetodos through social networks.Also in Nicaragua, the Ortega and Murillo regime has appropriated the patriotic symbols and has even advanced on the intangible cultural heritage of Nicaraguans. After the April 2018 protests, the regime de facto criminalized the carrying of the national flag and its cobalt blue and white colors, the use of which it had previously disdained in favor of the red and black flag of the Sandinista Front. According to the testimony of activists and opponents, the police authorities, without any kind of protection or legality, detained those who carried or raised the Nicaraguan flag, as well as those who carried any kind of badges, including balloons, with the patriotic colors.Three years later, the National Assembly approved Law 1066 that declares the flag, seal, written and audiovisual documents, songs and anthem of the Sandinista army as national cultural heritage, overlooking the fact that, in many cases, these are creations of authors who today oppose the government and its interpretation of Sandinismo, and for that reason have been forced into exile. Ortega in Nicaragua and Díaz Canel in Cuba should remember that cultural heritage and national banners are not the property of a government, but belong to societies.Benedict Anderson's study of nationalism sheds light on the actions of both dictatorships. In his theorization, the historian defines the nation as a "political community imagined as inherently limited and sovereign" and adds "it is a community because it is always conceived as a deep and horizontal fellowship". In light of these reflections, it is possible to understand that the appropriation of patriotic symbols and cultural heritage is a reaction to the construction of other community projects. The authoritarian governments of Ortega and Diaz Canel have lost the capacity to imagine a country, a society, a community in the hands of civil society.In fact, today, it is the activists, the opponents, the networks formed by the diasporas and the Nicaraguans and Cubans who defend human rights in their countries who have the capacity to imagine inclusive and democratic projects and to create the sense of community that nation-building requires. Now it is time to conquer for themselves the sovereign state.