The Cuba Fixation

Source: Counterpunch

BY JEFFREY ST. CLAIR

July 16 2021

+ The hatred of Cuba by the ruling class of the US is a kind of political neurosis. It’s visceral, irrational and violent. Cuba poses no threat to the US, militarily or economically, Yet its very existence seems to drive US policy makers crazy. This week the mayor of Miami, an anti-Trump Republican, suggested that it might be necessary to bomb Havana. Why? Because it’s there. Well, it wouldn’t be the first time. The US has invaded Cuba, funded multiple insurrections, tried dozens of times to assassinate its leaders, used biological weapons to wilt its crops and poison its livestock, tracked down and executed Che Guevara, bombarded the island with hysterical propaganda, ranted against it at the UN, financed, trained and protected a gang of thugs that planned and executed the bombing of a Cuban passenger plane (killing 73 civilians), plotted false flag ops in Miami to blame on the Castro government, and enforced a decades long embargo (that even China finds it hard to break) that would have crippled almost any other nation. The fact that Cuba is still standing, a little wobbly at times, but still defiant, simply drives the US nuts. It’s a living example of another way to organize a society can’t be tolerated, especially so close to home.

+ As the US continues to rant incessantly at Cuba, we should not forget in this age of heightened sensitivity to infectious diseases that among the US’s many crimes against the Cuban people two stand out: introducing Asian Swine flu in 1971 (causing 500,000 pigs to be slaughtered) and Dengue Fever in 1988, an outbreak that killed 113 children.

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The Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines rejects meddling in Cuban internal affairs

Prime Minister Ralph Gonzales

Source: TeleSUR

Published 14 July 2021

The Prime Minister St. Vincent and the Grenadines West Indies, Ralph Gonsalves, rejects meddling in Cuban internal affairs and stands in solidarity with the island.

STATEMENT ON CUBA’S REMARKABLE AND HEROIC REVOLUTION 

The protests in Cuba last weekend, fueled by unlawful imperialist economic sanctions, and carried out by a small minority in a nation of 11 million people, in relation to certain shortages of commodities for life and living, bring into focus again the remarkable and heroic achievements of the Cuban people and their Revolution despite monumental challenges. Immediately, it must be acknowledged that the protests are a purely internal matter for the Cuban authorities and the people of Cuba. Foreign interference in this internal affair is entirely unacceptable and is to be rejected. In the context of the inhumane, harsh, unilateral, externally-imposed, and illegal sanctions, no reasonable person can ever accept the pious, hypocritical, and self-serving imperial advocacy of “humanitarian intervention” in Cuba. 

RELATED:
 Lula Rejects the Manipulation of Narrative Against Cuba

It is well-known that the Cuban Revolution, the embodiment of the Cuban people as a whole, has accomplished an immense socio-economic transformation of their country, for the better, since 1959 and has, through their internationalist solidarity, contributed selflessly to the global struggle for liberation, the defence of sovereignty and independence, and all-round social and material development of dozens of countries world-wide, particularly those in the Caribbean, Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific. 

The Cuban people, in affirming their right to pursue a socio-economic and political path of their choice, in their own interest and on their own terms, have been subjected relentlessly to an ongoing criminal destabilization, terror, sabotage, and harsh economic sanctions, inclusive of an economic blockade which was again recently denounced by an overwhelming majority of the United Nations General Assembly as contrary to international law — only two countries out of 193 voted in favour of this criminal and imperialist blockade. 

In all this, we ought to be reminded that the Trump Administration in the USA tightened the embargo against Cuba with 243 specific measures which rolled back the partial easings under President Obama. The Trump measures are still in place and are causing real hardship for the Cuban people. International law and elemental justice demand their removal. 
Despite the concerted attempts, historically and currently, by imperialist and neo-colonialist forces to subvert the Cuban Revolution, to harm the Cuban people, and even to assassinate their principal leaders, the Cuban people and their Revolution have prevailed for 62 years, thus far. 

The global pandemic of COVID-19, the sharp down-turn in the global economy, and the devastating knock-on effects for developing countries, including tourism-dependent economies such as Cuba, coupled with the criminal economic sanctions and blockade against Cuba, have caused real hardship to the Cuban people and economy. All this the Cuban government has made plain to the people of Cuba and the world. The Cuban leaders have spoken honestly to their people about this. 

The government and people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines stand in solidarity at this difficult and challenging time with the Cuban Revolution and the Cuban people. We understand the pain and anxiety of the people concerning the shortages of some commodities. The Cuban government has repeatedly acknowledged these difficulties and has advanced credible steps to address the attendant challenges. 

We in St. Vincent and the Grenadines are unalterably opposed to the further attempts by imperialism to take advantage of the current difficulties of the Cuban people so as to destroy the Cuban Revolution and roll back the gains of this very Revolution. Imperialism’s quest to enthrone its hegemony in Cuba, to impose monopoly capitalism under the guise of hypocritical talk of “freedom”, and to bring war, intervention, and suffering to the Cuban people, must be resisted by all persons who uphold peace, justice, sovereignty, independence, and the people’s right to choose their own path of development, 

The government and people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines commend the Cuban Revolution on its extraordinary achievement of producing at least two vaccines in the fight against COVID-19 and on its selfless commitment to share these vaccines with the developing world on their approved roll-out. 

The government and people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines have benefited considerably, particularly over the last twenty years, from its collaboration and partnership with Cuba in a wide range of areas touching and concerning our people’s lives, living, and production. We thank yet again the Cuba Revolution for its selfless generosity. We remain steadfast in our solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Cuba, in this our Caribbean civilisation. 

We reject completely the attempts by certain unprincipled forces who seek to make the Cuban Revolution and the Cuban people prisoners of Presidential and Senatorial politics of Florida. 

We urge calm and peace in Cuba as the Cuban government and people seek to address in a focused way their current difficulties and challenges. We urge imperialism, the monopoly capitalists, and their allies in and out of Cuba to cease their nefarious activities against the Cuban Revolution and the Cuban people. 

Hatred cannot take possession of the Cuban soul, which is one of goodness

President Diaz-Canel again addresses the nation on Cuban television, calling for peace and tranquility, respect and solidarity among compatriots and others around the world, saving Cuba to continue building and dreaming

-Source: Cubadebate

Communist Party of Cuba First Secretary and President of the Republic, Miguel Díaz-Canel, appeared on Cuban television, yesterday evening, and stated, “Peace and citizen tranquility, respect and solidarity among compatriots and others in need around the world, saving Cuba to continue building, growing, dreaming and achieving the greatest possible prosperity. This is our message to our people.”
– If they remove the blockade, if they leave us alone and allow us to act with our own talent, we can achieve prosperity and expand the Revolution’s immense work for social justice, he insisted.
– We have not been able to address many of the people’s dissatisfactions, because of the blockade, among other factors, he said.
– In the midst of fake news reports and perverse manipulation regarding Cuba, he noted that Army General Raúl Castro Ruz is present, ready to support the Revolution, with his boots on and a foot in the stirrup.
– He added that the way social networks are being used to attack Cuba constitutes media terrorism.
– We cannot allow them to disunite us, to divide us, he said.

Fidel’s words about difficult times

– The First Secretary referred to Fidel’s words in 1992: Difficult times are difficult times; in difficult times the number of people wavering increases. In difficult times – and this is a law of history – there are those who become confused, there are those who become discouraged, there are those who are intimidated, there are those who become soft, there are those who betray, there are those who desert.

We cannot allow those who do not want the best for our land to disunite us, to divide us. But it is also in difficult times that men and women are tested; it is in difficult times that those who are worth something are really tested,” and Diaz-Canel added: “Our people are worth something; they are worth a lot and will act in this way, fearlessly, with courage and determination. This people will never lack patriotic virtues.
– We are calling for peace, understanding and harmony, the President reiterated.

We call for the unity of the entire Cuban family

We are going to defend the Revolution, whatever the cost, we are calling for harmony and for no one to allow hatred to be introduced. Let us not allow anyone to divide us. Our problems will be solved by Cubans. We call for the unity of the entire Cuban family, our institutions and the people… This is a country of security and tranquility, Díaz-Canel insisted.

The streets of Cuba belong to revolutionaries and we will defend them

Enemies of the Revolution want to take advantage of our problems to apply the social unrest formula they have used in other countries; but with Cuba there are no formulas that work

Author: Juan Diego Nusa Peñalver | internet@granma.cu

Author: Yudy Castro Morales | internet@granma.cu

Author: Milagros Pichardo Pérez | internet@granma.cu

july 13, 2021 15:07:11

“We are here because the streets belong to Fidel, because the streets of Cuba belong to revolutionaries.” This was the phrase we heard the loudest walking along several Havana avenues Sunday afternoon, July 11, when an entire people came out to defend their Revolution.

We heard it, for example, in front of the Capitol, seat of the National Assembly of People’s Power, and along Prado down to the waterfront Malecon. We heard it up to Belascoaín, and along Carlos III, where neighbors gathered, waving flags and, above all, ideas.

A woman shouted from her balcony, “Viva la Revolución!” and “Viva Cuba Libre!” Her voice joined those of many younger residents who, on the street below, waved the 26th of July Movement flag and repeated, louder and louder, clearer and clearer: “Fidel, Raúl and Díaz-Canel are here,” “Patria o Muerte, Venceremos” (Homeland or Death, We will win).

We heard it along Infanta, from women and men, Cubans with few and many years of age, all with the same conviction: a country like ours, with so many dreams and more than a few pains, is defended tooth and nail, knowing that, as the poet said, “For this freedom/ beautiful as life/ we must give our all/ if necessary/ even the shadow/ and it will never be enough.”

We heard it from Julio Alejandro Gómez, a blogger who joined the honest demands of those who love and create and took to the streets, “because I am a revolutionary and I know that this is a manipulation. They want to take advantage of our needs and problems to apply the same formula of ‘social unrest’ that they have used in other countries; but with Cuba there are no formulas that work. The Revolution belongs to the people and is defended by the people.”

We heard Alberto Bermudez, who lives on Infanta, and in the midst of the racket, hummed “I die as I lived” with a group of buddies and, soon thereafter, it was the notes of the national anthem they offered.

“Unity and continuity,” others shouted, while Alberto interrupted his song to affirm, “Fidel, this is your people, and the streets belong to the people. The order has been given and we are here. We are going to win, in spite of COVID-19, in spite of whatever.”

The same phrases, shouted along the way, led our group of reporters to Alfredo Vázquez, provincial secretary of the Federation of Cuban Workers in Havana, who was injured in one of the confrontations with the “destabilizers.”

“They hit me hard on the head and I ended up with a seven-stitch gash. But here I am, my flag stained with blood, ready to continue defending the Revolution, because to die for the Homeland is to live,” he insisted without slowing his pace, just like Cuba, the land of revolutionaries who are never intimidated.

And there beside Via Blanca, Faustino Leonard, a resident of Cerro municipality, also spoke to us about the day, with the remains of rocks thrown still on the street.

“The quarrel was tough here, but there were more revolutionaries. The saboteurs ran away to hide, probably to some cave, like rats usually do. Let no one doubt it, this country belongs to the people, and will continue to belong to us.”

San Antonio de los Baños: Whatever it takes, Díaz-Canel!

Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez arrived in San Antonio de los Baños in the province of Artemisa to talk with inhabitants about a provocation by a group of counterrevolutionaries attempting to subvert the public order, while Cuba is struggling against COVID-19, as well as the brutal blockade imposed by the U.S. government

Author: Laura Mercedes Giráldez | informacion@granmai.cu

july 12, 2021 13:07:58

Foto: Estudios Revolución

Yesterday afternoon Benito Alonso Gonzalez left the comfort of his home in the municipality of San Antonio de los Baños, in the province of Artemisa, because a group at the service of foreign and annexationist interests, paid and directed by the United States, was looking to provoke a social explosion.

He went to the park, and spoke to reporters there about “the traitors who want to sell the Revolution for a few pesos,” the revolution that helped save his brother from COVID-19 just two weeks ago, the revolution that asks us to stay home, to avoid seeing more people die due to the pandemic.

There, the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba Central Committee and President of the Republic, Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, Benito himself, and the provocateurs came across a crowd of residents carrying Cuban flags and shouting: Long live the Revolution, Homeland or Death, Venceremos!

“Those of us who have come this far are faithful custodians of the Revolution, we want it strong, we were raised by the Revolution. And now, with the presence of Díaz-Canel, we feel firm, secure, because the Revolution is with the people, who are the true owners of the streets. In Cuba we will not allow those who want to take away what we have conquered to enter,” warned Antonio Crespo, a resident of San Antonio who joined the popular response.

Also in the park where Díaz-Canel went to confront those who intended to fracture the unity of the Party, the state, the government and the people, were father and son, Roberto Reyes Herrera, president of the Antonio Briones Montoto agricultural cooperative production unit, and Yosbel Reyes Sotomayor. The former recalled the hard times Cubans faced before 1959, which his parents told him about, and insisted that he is grateful for “the opportunities the Revolution has given me, that a few do not want to recognize.”

His son likewise stated, “I’m sure that it was the Cuban-American mafia who paid the provocateurs who wanted to take advantage of the difficult situation Cuba is experiencing,” adding, “The youth of San Antonio are on the side of our leaders, that is why we have taken to the parks and the streets.”

The flags, the cheers, the revolutionary conscience and confidence in those who are working every day to move our nation forward, left drowning in a sigh of impotence the malicious imperialist lackeys who made Benito leave his quiet Sunday at home. He insisted, “Let it be known, the people of Cuba are not those who disturbed the peace today, those who love the empire so much. The people of Cuba are the doctors, the scientists who made the vaccines, those of us who came to tell the President: Whatever it takes, Díaz-Canel, whatever it takes!”

We are Cuba Viva, the country that resists and triumphs

Source: Granma

Speech by Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, President of the Republic of Cuba during the closure of the Ninth Legislature of the National Assembly of People’s Power’s Sixth Ordinary Period of Sessions, at the Convention Center, December 17, 2020, Year 62 of the Revolution 

President Díaz-Canel condemned U.S. insistence on attempting to destroy us, while we insist on living and winning, stating, “Cuba Viva rose above our own possibilities. Photo: Estudios Revolución

Dear Army General Raúl Castro Ruz and compañeros of the Historic Generation;

Compañero Esteban Lazo, President of the National Assembly of People’s Power and of the Council of State;

Deputies;

Compatriots:

Cuba is honored to have compañero Gerardo Hernández Nordelo as a member of our Council of State, today, six years since his return to the homeland. (Applause)

A year ago, from this same podium, we said: They threw us to our death and we are alive! We imagined, at the time, that nothing could be worse than that escalation of measures to tighten the imperialist blockade and attack the sources of our energy supply, our medical brigades and any option of financing.

Until 2020 arrived, a year that has been as hard and challenging as few others, a product of the startling COVID-19 pandemic that, suddenly, and for months, closed the doors on our economy and life itself.

Everything was worse, since its impact was universal and reached unbearable levels, with the opportunistic tightening of the U.S. blockade, definitive proof of the maliciousness of our adversaries.

They insisted on trying to kill us; but we insisted on living and winning. Cuba Viva (alive) rose above our own possibilities.

This is the destiny of our people, growing in the face of challenges. This is in the genes of the Cuban nation, forged in the resistance and rebellion of slaves who refused to be enslaved and the will of immigrants full of dreams; this is the legacy of our independence leaders who burned their riches in the fire of Revolution, of the mothers who bore their children amidst the battle, and the strong creole identity that matured over the long years during which the homeland was only free in the scrub. It lies in the successive generations that shed their blood and planted seeds in unequal fights in the streets and mountains, until victory.

Read full speech here

Fidel’s valuable example of brotherhood with Africa

Source: Cuba – Network in Defense of Humanity

August 4 2020

 By María Inés Álvarez Garay

The struggles against racial domination and discrimination in Africa had in Fidel the highest expression of internationalism, as defender of the rights of man. The leader of the Cuban Revolution extended his help to the African people oppressed for decades by the colonialism and segregationist regimes.

With the triumph of the Cuban Revolution in January 1959, Algeria was in the midst of the struggle for  independence against French colonialism, Cuba decided to support the African country.

 Algeria marked the beginning of the internationalist collaboration of the largest of the Antilles in Africa.

 In 1961 the Cuban government sent a ship with support to the Algerian military forces, on its return to Havana it brought hundreds of wounded and orphaned children to be cared for.

 “We will never forget how you [Cubans] took care of our orphans and our wounded. Ahmed Ben Bella, Prime Minister of the Republic of Algeria, 16 October 1962. Later, Cuba’s participation in internationalist missions for the liberation from racist and colonialist regimes was present in countries such as Ghana, Congo (Brazzaville), Zaire, Equatorial GuineaZimbabwe, Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea, Yemen, Tanzania, Angola, Namibia and Guinea Bissau.

The decisive battle against apartheid was that of Cuito Cuanavale, in Angola between December ’87 and March ’88. After months of confrontation, Cuban and Angolan soldiers staved off the advance of the South African troops.

“The crushing defeat of the racist army in Cuito Cuanavale was a victory for all of Africa! That resounding defeat of the racist army in Cuito Cuanavale gave Angola the chance to enjoy peace and consolidate their own sovereignty! The defeat of the racist army allowed the fighting people of Namibia to finally reach their independence!” Nelson Mandela, anti-apartheid leader and former president of South Africa.

Currently, the bilateral links between Cuba and African countries are based on that feeling of solidarity and internationalism, for which the most oppressed nations for years feel grateful and honest. Thanks to Fidel Castro, the forerunner of those revolutionary ideas.

Africa is an essential part of what we Cubans are today, and Fidel was consistent with this postulate that guided from the very beginning of the Cuban Revolution the special relations with the African continent.

Fidel referred to his country’s presence as a “duty of compensation”, for what the Africans contributed to the formation of Cuba, its roots, its independence and its culture.

 Our eternal Commander-in-Chief foresaw the future. A little more than half a century later, thousands of professionals have passed through Africa in health and education, the education of children, culture, sports, agriculture. and many others.

Our Party has never failed to play a leading role in every struggle, every accomplishment

Events on August 16-17, 1925, forever marked Cuba’s destiny. On these dates, a group of courageous men founded our first Communist party, the indispensable link between patriotic thinking of the 19th century, fundamentally that of Martí, and the ideals of social emancipation of later eras.

Author: Ángel Freddy Pérez Cabrera | freddy@granma.cu

August 20, 2020

Events on August 16-17, 1925, forever marked Cuba’s destiny. On these dates, a group of courageous men founded our first Communist party, the indispensable link between patriotic thinking of the 19th century, fundamentally that of Martí, and the ideals of social emancipation of later eras. They understood the value of continuity.

Two exceptional Cubans played a key role in the Party’s founding, Carlos Baliño and Julio Antonio Mella.

The first was a member of a patriotic generation that took to the scrub to wage an armed struggle against Spanish colonialism, and an unconditional friend of José Martí, with whom he founded the Cuban Revolutionary Party, the new organization’s valuable predecessor; while the young Mella, at only 22 years of age, represented the best of the generation that would give continuity to the struggles of Céspedes, Agramonte, Gómez, Maceo and Martí.

The principal mission of these visionary individuals, upon establishing the Party and joining the Third International founded by Vladimir I. Lenin in 1919, was to set about developing a program of demands for workers and campesinos; work actively in trade unions; and defend the rights of women and youth.

This was a difficult era and, on a daily basis, Cuban revolutionaries faced the iron fist of dictator Gerardo Machado, who organized brutal repression of the newly founded organization. The Party’s elected first secretary, José Miguel Pérez, was forced into exile, while other members, like Mella, faced trumped-up charges for crimes they did not commit.

But the nascent organization continued its work valiantly, with the leadership of individuals of the stature of Rubén Martínez Villena and others.

With the world stage dominated by the historic struggle against fascism and the creation of popular anti-imperialist fronts, the Party, known at that time as the Revolutionary Communist Union and later the Popular Socialist Party, defended the people’s rights in the bourgeois parliament.

No less important was its work during the struggle against the Batista dictatorship, under very dangerous conditions, with most efforts carried out underground.

After the triumph of the Revolution, January 1, 1959, under the leadership of Fidel and Blas Roca, a process began to unify the Party and the two political organizations that had carried the most weight in the revolutionary struggle against Batista – the July 26th Movement and the Revolutionary Directorate.

Thus, in 1961, the three groups merged to form the Integrated Revolutionary Organizations (ORI), as the antecedent to the constitution in 1963 of the United Party of the Socialist Revolution of Cuba (PURSC), which on October 3, 1965, adopted the name it has maintained to date, the Communist Party of Cuba.

Since then, our Party has never failed to play a leading role in every struggle, every accomplishment, as the vanguard of Cuban society during the most important moments the nation has faced.

If the Party has earned one merit in its history, it is to have preserved the nation’s unity, which has allowed us to confront persecution, genocidal blockades, wars, and threats of all kinds – and emerge victorious.

For this and other reasons, Fidel described the Party as the soul of the Cuban Revolution, as the organization that synthesizes the dreams and aspirations of a people over more than 100 years of struggle.

Today, as the homeland faces new challenges as a result of the pandemic that is ravaging the world and affecting us, as well, aggravating the impact of the vicious U.S. blockade, the Communist Party of Cuba stands firm and guarantees the historic continuity of the Revolution.

What Cuba reaffirms

August 13 2020
Source:  Granma

Fidel
Photo: Archivo de Granma

The world is living hard times; Cuba, for its part, is, too. After a year of arduous battles, with our neighbor to the North holding our neck, attempting to force us to surrender and accept the imperialist yoke, in mid-March the pandemic reached our shores.

Horrendous images from all parts of the world of a desperate battle with death; a British cruise ship in trouble, with infected passengers aboard, which Cuba allowed to dock, to facilitate their safe return home; rich countries with health systems overwhelmed by the rapidly spreading disease; Cuban medical brigades preparing to save lives around the world, and the empire maliciously attempting to discredit what can only be described as glorious: a small island nation challenging Goliath, protecting its own, while making whatever it has available to all, without a single soul turning away from the task.

When the adversity gets worse, at a bad moment, when all our effort is not enough, and we must find another way; when a hopeful project is cut short, given the countless difficulties caused by the blockade, that anyone with any common sense can see, we ask ourselves: What would Fidel do? As if, in him, all answers can be found.

Wherever he might be – if in addition to breathing in the very essence of a people, he may live someplace else – Fidel is watching us.

The man who lived to return to his compatriots the dignity we were denied for centuries; who made sure all of Cuba could read, to ensure that ignorance did not prevent understanding; who made the happiness of children the homeland’s first priority, with no exclusions of any kind, offering all the right to shine as who they are and not what they have; who demolished barriers so no human being might believe him or herself superior to others; who trained doctors for Cuba and the world; Fidel knew how, with no other lesson than his own example, to create continuity.

It is no accident that President Díaz-Canel, who, with the sure guidance of Raúl, is today conducting the destiny of Cuba along a clear path, bases every one of his decisions on Fidel’s principles, those of the Cuban Revolution. Working very closely at his side in the last years was enough for our President to appreciate the rigor and value of Fidel’s essential teachings.

He knows that, to put an end to the neoliberal catastrophe that has cost us so much, the world needs a categorical change, and therefore upholds the banner of socialism, as the most just and humane of social systems.

His confidence in the people; his tested solidarity; his natural eloquence, always in front, calling everything by name; his hope for the future; his unassuming decency and willingness to work and build, leave no doubt. Fidel would do, in every new task, what Cuba, with the direction of our President, has reaffirmed.