Cuba: For Peace and Against War

Source:  Granma
May 3 2019

The International Solidarity Conference for World Peace and Against War, held May 2 in the Cuban capital, was a great embrace shared by brothers and sisters from around the world

by: Bertha Mojena Milián | internet@granma.cu

rising up against imperialism 1.jpg

Photo: Dunia Álvarez

The International Solidarity Conference for World Peace and Against War, held May 2 in the Cuban capital, was a great embrace shared by brothers and sisters from around the world. Approved was a Declaration of international solidarity and for world peace, in which the Helms-Burton Act was condemned; and demanded were an end to the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the U.S. government on Cuba for 60 years and the return of territory illegally occupied by the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo.

The declaration calls on the international solidarity movement to denounce the illegal nature of new sanctions levied on Cuba that violate the United Nations Charter and international law, and reiterated support for the struggles of peoples around the world for sovereignty and self-determination.

“Let us rise up against imperialist barbarism, for peace and a world without exploitation,” the document concludes.

“No matter how dark the path, the response of the Cuban people will be to resist and victory will always be ours,” reiterated the president of the Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP), Fernando González Llort, who announced the “Hemispheric fernando gonzalez.jpgAnti-Imperialist Encounter of Solidarity, for democracy, and against neoliberalism,” to be held in Havana November 1-3.The call states, “Without neglecting or moving away from the specific agendas of multiple struggles, to which our organizations and movements are articulated, we are aware that it will not be possible to face the enemies of our peoples in isolation, dispersed.”

Thus, the call invites “the continent’s networks and platforms; popular movements of campesinos; women and feminists; trade unionists and excluded workers; environmentalists; youth and students; religious, indigenous, ethnic, regional, and LGTBI movements… all sectors committed to the struggle to stop the advance of the neoliberal right, to construct and defend a common emancipatory project.”

The International Solidarity Conference for World Peace and Against War began with a tribute to the historical leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, received with a prolonged ovation. In thanking the more than 1,400 participants from more than 103 organizations in 57 countries, the general secretary of the Federation of Cuban Workers (CTC) and Party Political Bureau member, Ulises Guilarte de Nacimiento, reported that this May Day, more than six million Cubans marched across the island, demonstrating the people’s support for the Revolution, our ability to fight, and the conviction that we will always achieve victory.

The trade union leader observed that this type of gathering provides an opportunity to share experiences on social battles in many regions, disseminate ideas, and construct the consensus needed to confront the neoliberal offensive, and the escalation of U.S. attacks on the independence and self-determination of peoples.

He noted that Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba are being targeted directly by imperialism, given the determination of their peoples and governments to resist domination, despite efforts to discredit progressive government that have produced benefits for the people and made social gains.

Guilarte reaffirmed solidarity and support for the Bolivarian Revolution and its constitutional President; for Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva, unjustly imprisoned in Brazil; and for all workers around the world struggling against capitalist exploitation.

Adan Chavez

Adan Chavez

A special guest attending the conference was Venezuela’s ambassador in Cuba, Adán Chávez, who thanked participants for the numerous committed and courageous demonstrations of support for the Bolivarian Revolution around the world, recalling that the attacks on his country began as soon as eternal

Comandante Hugo Chávez was elected President the first time, but that the region’s peoples have decided to be free, and any victories of the empire and its allies are circumstantial, insisting, “The attacks will continue, and we will continue defeating them.”

The Venezuelan diplomat also pointed out that Venezuela will not be a U.S. colony ever again, just like the Cuban people, the Nicaraguan, all those who fight for just causes, for their rights, because left political projects are moving forward, adding “The peoples are in the street, fighting, more and more united”.

gail walker.jpg

Gail Walker

For her part, Gail Walker, daughter of the beloved friend of Cuba, Reverend Lucius Walker, said that it was an honor to be one of the many people from the United States who have come to express their solidarity with Cuba.

She noted that among those from the United States, marching with Cuba this May Day, were many visiting the island for the first time, and from a variety of sectors, including education and health, workers, community groups, and women. We are all here to express the continuity of our solidarity, she said, as progressive forces from different states, “united in love and solidarity.

lula da silva 3c.jpg

Lula da Silva

“Likewise, the president of the World Peace Council, Socorro Gómez, thanked those present for their support in the campaign to free former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, especially Army General Raúl Castro in his capacity as First Secretary of the Party Central Committee, and Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez. “Their solidarity reaches deep into the hearts of the Brazilian people and is an incentive to free Lula and continue fighting for democracy in Brazil,” she reaffirmed.

On behalf of the International Democratic Women’s Federation (FDIM), its president Lorena Peña said, “It is time to take the offensive in resistance to interventionist imperialism, and overcome the media war and the dangerous actions of imperialism.” The fight must be constant, without making concessions to the opponents, she emphasized.

Caribbean Heroes Park Inaugurated in Cuba

Sources: radioreloj.cu & minrex.gob.cu

April 26 2019

.- The monument to the heroes of the Caribbean reflects the dedication of the martyrs who fought for a free and sovereign Caribbean, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Rogelio Sierra said.

caribbean heroes park inauguratedDuring the inauguration of the Caribbean Heroes Park in Havana, with the presence of First Vice-President Salvador Valdes Mesa, Sierra added its coherence and interests identify the unity of our region.

The diplomat recalled that January 1, but of different centuries, is a symbolic date for the Caribbean because it marks the triumph of the Haitian Anti-slave Revolution and the Cuban Revolution led by Fidel.

The President of the National Assembly of People´s Power, Esteban Lazo; Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez Parilla, and the First Secretary of the party in Havana, Jose Antonio Torres Iribar attended the inauguration of the Caribbean Heroes Park.

Members of the Caribbean and Latin American diplomatic corps accredited in Cuba, ministers, representatives of national agencies and institutions closely linked to the Caribbean, members of the Caribbean Association of Cuba and the Chair of Caribbean Studies at the University of Havana also participated, as well as a large representation of students from the 14 member states of the Caribbean Community.

During the ceremony, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Rogelio Sierra Díaz, referred to the importance of the event, and highlighted the historic bonds of solidarity, brotherhood and gratitude that unite Cuba and the Caribbean. The Vice Chancellor highlighted “today we inaugurate a work that symbolizes the courage and commitment of those who made the independence and sovereignty of our peoples possible”.

The Ambassador of Grenada, Hon. Ms. Theresa Clair Clarice Charles, Dean of the Caribbean diplomatic corps, underscored the current relevance of CARICOM-Cuba relations, while thanking the Cuban government and people for their solidarity and cooperation throughout more than 40 years of exchanges. In her words, she said “we are grateful that Cuba has designed and built this monument, it is an imperishable symbol of our historical relations.”

Dr. Eduardo Torres Cuevas, President of the Academy of Cuban History and Director of the José Martí National Library, explained to the audience the symbolism of the sculptural work dedicated to the Caribbean heroes and said “this monument depicts unity. By building this park we are crowning a symbol that reflects all the intensity and capacity of our peoples. ”

As part of the ceremony Mr. Ellsworth John, Ambassador of St. Vincent and the Grenadines,  and Mr. Rogelio Sierra Díaz, the Cuban Vice-Chancellor, laid a wreath before the monument that pays tribute to the Caribbean heroes.

Cuba established diplomatic relations with the first four Caribbean countries on December 8, 1972. Since then, relations have been positive and have deepened from historical ties, based on the principles of solidarity, brotherhood and gratitude.

The Park of the Caribbean heroes pays tribute to personalities symbolizing the solidarity and bravery of the Caribbean peoples in their struggles against colonialism and for independence.

Díaz-Canel: Cuba is making every effort to secure the safe return of Assel and Landy

Source: Granma
April 15 2019

Miguel Díaz-Canel, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, tweeted that Cuba is working tirelessly for the safe return of Assel (Herrera) and Landy (Rodríguez), Cuban doctors abducted in Kenya, this past Friday

Assel Herrera and Landy Rodríguez. Photo: Internet

“Cuba is working tirelessly for the safe return of Assel (Herrera) and Landy (Rodríguez), our doctors abducted in Kenya,” stated Miguel Díaz-Canel, President of Cuba’s Councils of State and Ministers, on his Twitter account, adding, “We share the certainty, with them and their loved ones, that their humanitarian mission will be respected and recognized. We believe in the power of solidarity.”

Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla likewise tweeted, “I held a telephone conversation with the Kenyan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mónica Juma. We discussed the abduction of the two Cuban doctors and actions being taken by the government of this country given the unfortunate incident.”

On both of these Twitter accounts, it was made clear that other Cuban doctors are safe and fully informed of every step being taken to rescue their two colleagues.

Assel Herrera Correa is a specialist in Comprehensive General medicine from the province of Las Tunas and Landy Rodríguez Hernández, from Villa Clara, is a surgeon.

A communiqué released April 12 by the Ministry of Public Health stated that channels of communication were immediately established with authorities in Kenya to address the situation, and family members here are being kept informed.

Landy’s mother, Martha Hernández, told Granma, “I have full confidence that sooner than later, my son will return to the heart of his family. The Revolution never abandons one of its children, and this time, it will be the same.”

Despite the overwhelming pain, Martha insisted that solidarity, in Cuba and around the world, supporting the doctors’ freedom is key to their safe return.

She said that, since she heard the news, Party, government and Public Health authorities in the municipality of Placetas and on the provincial level, have kept her informed of every detail.

Assel’s family in Las Tunas is also receiving continuous support and all information available is being provided them.

In a statement to Granma, Grégory Antonio Pérez Héctor, deputy director of Public Health in the province explained that, upon receiving the news, a commission was immediately created, first to visit the home of his daughter, a high school student in the provincial capital, and then his parents in the community of Delicias.

“We have stayed in permanent contact with them, and not only on the part of Health, but political and government authorities, as well. Saturday, his parents were visited by Public Health officials who stayed with them most of the afternoon, explaining everything the country is doing to secure the return of their son. As elderly persons in poor health, they have been assigned the continuous support of a doctor, a nurse, and psychologist.”

Ruciel Tamayo Pérez, head of the clinic where Assel worked, told Granma that every day the administrator on duty visits the home of his daughter, who lives nearby.

“His daughter is finishing twelfth grade and tells us that she wants to be a doctor like her father. We have assured her that our government never abandons anyone.”

The honor of helping Mozambique

Source:  Granma
April 2 2019

A medical brigade from the Henry Reeve Contingent, specialized in disaster situations and serious epidemics, is saving lives in this sister African country

Arriving in Mozambique, the Cuban brigade unloaded all the equipment they brought to perform their work in this sister nation. Photo: Minister of Public Health on Twitter

Damage caused by Hurricane Idai in Mozambique has once again mobilized Cuban solidarity, with a medical brigade from the Henry Reeve Contingent, specialized in disaster situations and serious epidemics, providing help in the city of Beira, Sofala province. The extreme weather left 468 dead, while another 259 perished in neighboring Zimbabwe and at least 56 in Malawi. Some three million inhabitants of the region suffered damage during the storm, described by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres as one of the worst weather-related disasters in the history of the African continent.

The brigade’s 40 members traveled with a field hospital donated by Cuba with spaces for consultations, operating rooms, a clinical and microbiological lab, imaging equipment, plus 20 hospital beds. Included in the group are specialists in Comprehensive General Medicine (MGI), surgery, internal medicine, pediatrics, gynecology, orthopedics, epidemiology, and health technology, who will join the more than 270 Cubans already working in the country, where our medical collaboration has been present since 1975, when independence was declared. Dr. Miguel Zorrilla Quiñones, a comprehensive medicine general practitioner, from the province of Pinar del Río, told Granma International that, when tragedy struck Mozambique on March 27, the Cuban government immediately proposed sending solidarity and began to prepare to depart, gathering information on the location and the epidemiological situation.

He has experience working in other countries: first in the Venezuelan state of Lara from 2001 to 2006; then in Pakistan in the wake of the 2006 earthquake there; in Angola (2006-2009); and Brazil (2015-2018). “In Mozambique I expect to find families with medical assistance needs and we will make every effort to resolve all the difficulties that the people are facing, as quickly as possible.” A similar comment was expressed by Dr. Ralfys Armando Carbó Sánchez, obstetrician at the Pedro Betancourt hospital in Jovellanos, Matanzas, who provided services in the city of Ebebellín, in Equatorial Guinea from 2008 through 2010, and treated patients with conditions rarely seen in Cuba.

As soon as everything was set up, Cuban doctors began attending the population in need. Photo: Minister of Public Health on Twitter

“I was the only Ob-Gyn. Also working there were a surgeon and a pediatrician, with two comprehensive medicine general practitioners. We organized shifts in general medicine and each of us faced all the ailments with which the population arrived at the emergency room. If a specific situation occurred, the specialist was called, so we were on duty 24 hours a day,” the doctor said. There was malaria, HIV/AIDS and typhoid fever, so he began prevention and health promotion work in suburban areas and distant villages to explain hygienic-sanitary measures to address these illnesses. During these community visits, he carried medicine to treat chronic non-infectious diseases and diagnose possible epidemiological conditions, while participating in the existing national program entitled “Growing without malaria,” offering educational talks on measures to be taken to control spreading the disease.

“I have several anecdotes to recount, but I was especially moved by the case of a pregnant woman who came to us in very serious condition. She had been in labor for five days, with very high blood pressure. She had convulsions when she arrived and without many material resources available, I was able to save her life. Neither she nor the baby died. Later, she came to visit me several times and thanked me for my efforts,” Carbó said. He also lived the experience of treating women who had abortions under poor sanitary conditions and developed infections due to these unsafe procedures. In these cases, he was obliged to use all his knowledge to assist the women, and is proud to say that in his two years of service, he had no maternal deaths and the infant mortality rate was reduced.

Getting ready to leave for Mozambique, he received updated information and participated in professional classes on cholera and malaria, since these are two diseases that can trigger epidemics after flooding occurs. “We discussed the prevention and prophylactic work we must carry out, mainly by presenting hygienic-sanitary talks.” He underwent medical tests to determine his health parameters and was vaccinated to prevent endemic diseases that have been eradicated in Cuba. He reviewed steps to take to avoid getting sick and updated his medical file, that he will take along, with this recent clinical evaluation.

Some 40 members have the brigade have departed for areas affected by Hurricane Idai. Photo: Roberto Suárez

For his part, registered anesthesiology nurse Serguei León Alonso, from Villa Clara, who just arrived from Guatemala where he served in a hospital operating room, in the city of Ixchiguan, San Marcos province, commented, “In Mozambique I will face a difficult epidemiological situation. I expect to see the population very sad and in pain, after witnessing a great catastrophe,” the young man said. He said he was proud to have been selected to work in these circumstances to show the humanism of his profession, something learned over the many years of study, and as part the legacy of Fidel Castro’s life and thought, who instilled in Cubans the desire to help the most needy even if they live in faraway, remote villages, adding, “Every health professional should be wherever duty calls,” Leon said.

Likewise, Yoanky Valdés Baullosa, a 33-year-old psychiatrist at the Pedro Borrás Polyclinic in Pinar del Río, has the experience of working with indigenous peoples in a mountainous area in the municipalities of Cajigal y Cariacó, in the Venezuelan state of Sucre, 2016-2018.

He points out that Cuban professionals have sufficient academic preparation to adapt quickly to change and find solutions to their problems and those of others. His assignment involves providing clinical therapy to the local population and his own colleagues, who will no doubt experience difficult moments, given the complex situation they will face in Mozambique. “For me this is about fulfilling a duty, leaving a legacy, that is, to be part of the history of Cuban medicine.”

Cuba Sends Field Hospital to Help Mozambique amid Cyclone Idai

Source: TeleSUR
March 26 2019

  • Patients await treatment at a hospital that had roofing blown off during Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, March 26, 2019.
    Patients await treatment at a hospital that had roofing blown off during Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, March 26, 2019. | Photo: Reuter

Cuban cooperation includes doctors and equipment to counteract the public health effects of the worst southern hemisphere tropical storm ever.

Cuba’s vice minister of Foreign Affairs Anayansi Rodriguez Camejo announced that Cuba is sending Wednestay a “field hospital”, with full staff and equipment, to Mozambique, which is a form of international cooperation whose purpose is to contribute to the management of public health conditions after the devastating impact caused by Cyclone Idai.

RELATED:  Death Toll Reaches 446 in Mozambique After Cyclone Idai

This new internationalist medical brigade will join 372 Cuban doctors who are already providing their services in the African country, 36 of whom arrived on March 14, when Idai made landfall for the first time, according to the Cuban News Agency (ACN).

In Mozambique the death toll rises to 447 and the directly affected population reaches 794,035 people, 128,941 of which are currently staying in 143 shelters provided by President Filipe Nyusi administration, according to the data updated until Monday by the National Institute of Catastrophe Management (INGC).

Cyclone Idai started as a tropical storm at Mozambique’s eastern coast on March 4. Days later, Idai made landfall and became one of the worst southern hemisphere tropical cyclones ever recorded as it reached four of five categories on the Saffir-Simpson scale, causeing multiple economic losses in Mozambique and Zimbabwe.

“Our Cuban doctors, the Cuban Revolution’s most perfect work, always upholding our values, with their love of humanity, helping with a solidarity gesture to the Mozambican people. We are Cuba. We are Continuity. Let’s go for more.”

Vice Minister Rodriguez Camejo also accompanied Tuesday Gladys Bejerano Portela, who is Cuba’s State Council vice president and Comptroller General, to the Mozambican embassy in Havana, where both officials signed a condolence book with the African republic.

“In the name of the Cuban state, government and people, we express our deepest condolences, sorrow and solidarity with the government and people of the sister Republic of Mozambique, in the face of the lamentable human and economic losses caused by Idai,” Bejerano wrote.

In the center of Mozambique, the provinces of Manica and Sofala, where some 4.4 million people live, were the most affected by the cyclone.

In the capital Maputo, some 25 million people experienced the onslaught of Idai, whose consequences have been described by the United Nations as a “Level 3” humanitarian emergency, a category which only Syria and Yemen had achieved so far.

Díaz-Canel: The Association of Caribbean States must continue to be the mainstay of Greater Caribbean unity

Source: Granma
April 1 2019

Photo: Estudios Revolución

Speech by Miguel M. Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, President of the Councils of State and Ministers, at the VIII Meeting of the Association of Caribbean States, in Managua, Nicaragua, March 29, 2019, Year 61 of the Revolution

(Council of State transcript / GI translation)

Compañero Comandante Daniel Ortega Saavedra, President of the sister Republic of Nicaragua and of the VIII Meeting of the Association of Caribbean States;

Compañera Rosario Murillo, Vice President of the Republic of Nicaragua;

Distinguished heads of state and government and heads of delegations;

Her Excellency Ambassador June Soomer, general secretary of the Association;

Dear delegates and guests:

Our national poet, Nicolás Guillén, a singular voice among the great voices of this region, dedicated a short poem to the sea that joins us, with which I would like to greet you. It is entitled “The Caribbean” and goes:

In the aquarium of the Great Zoo,

swims the Caribbean.

This enigmatic marine animal

has a crystal crest,

a blue back, a green tail,

a belly of compact coral,

gray hurricane fins.

In the aquarium, this inscription:

“Be careful: it bites.”

This verse of Guillen’s speaks of the crystal crest that makes our Caribbean fragile. And also of the fierce beast that lives here. Fragility and ferocity distinguish us. Fragility and ferocity unite us. And unity, we know well, makes us strong.

Born of this strength, sustained only by unity, is the very timely Managua Declaration adopted by this meeting, with the title: “Joining forces in the Caribbean to confront climate change,” an issue that has generated growing concern over the last few decades.

As the Comandante en Jefe of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, warned almost 30 years ago, during the Earth Summit held in Río de Janeiro, in 1992, “An important biological species is in danger of extinction as a result of the rapid and progressive elimination of its natural living conditions: man.”

The Caribbean knows this well since it often suffers the impact. Surely for this reason, since its Second Summit in Santo Domingo, in 1999, the Association of Caribbean States has included among its lines of work agreement and cooperation on climate change and disaster risk reduction.

The causes of climate change have been identified by the scientific community and recognized by practically all governments.

But neither efforts made or international commitments in environmental matters are sufficient to stop the alarming increase in global temperature and stabilize it in the area of 1.5ºC, as developing countries demand.

More developed nations, who are mainly responsible for today’s unsustainable situation, must honor the commitment to provide at least 100 billion USD a year to support the work of developing countries.

The global commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions must prevail based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities, within a framework of international cooperation that ensures the resources and necessary transfer of technologies to developing countries.

Required is the modification of patterns of production and consumption that have been imposed on us, and the promotion of a fair, democratic, and equitable international economic order, to confront climate change and achieve sustainable development.

Mr. President:

Each of us understands what is being talked about. The intensity and persistence of natural phenomena of various kinds in the Greater Caribbean constantly punish us with the adverse effects of climate change, particularly developing small island states.

Living with hurricanes has conditioned our lives; modifying our geographies and affecting migration. And it has also educated us in the need to devote more study to these phenomena that plague us and work to reverse the damage they cause. The Cuban Revolution was obliged to learn this lesson very early on, the hard way, during Hurricane Flora in 1963, which left the former province of Oriente under water and took the lives of more than a thousand people.

More recent history has shown that, in the worst moments, working together has saved us. We firmly believe that only our unity and mutual cooperation will allow us to face the dangers and effects of meteorological events and assume the subsequent recovery.

Solidarity must be a fundamental principle for the members of the Association of Caribbean States

Along this very line of thought, today, I would like to reiterate the unwavering support of Cuba, under all circumstances, to the right of small island states and developing nations to receive special and differential treatment in access to trade and investment.

We also support the just and necessary demand to receive cooperation according to a nation’s real situation and needs, and not on the basis of per capita income statistics that classify them as middle income countries and exclude them from access to financial resources, indispensable for development.

We welcome the election of Barbados as President of the Board of Directors of the Association’s Council of Ministers. We express our fraternal congratulations for this and for the country’s willingness to contribute during this period.

Dear delegates:

The President of the United States, the Secretary of State, and the National Security Advisor declare that the Monroe Doctrine is as relevant today as the day it was written, and that it is the country’s formal policy, as in the time of expansion and intervention of the United States in our region, of military aggressions and impositions.

These statements and consequent actions challenge our Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, signed by heads of state and government, in January 2014, in Havana, on the occasion of the Second CELAC Summit.

We declared then our permanent commitment to the peaceful settlement of disputes in order to banish forever the use of force, and threats to use force, in the region; to strictly comply with the obligation not to intervene, directly or indirectly, in the internal affairs of any other state; to foster relations of friendship and cooperation among ourselves and with other nations, regardless of differences in political, economic, and social systems or levels of development; to practice tolerance and coexist in peace as good neighbors; to the intention of Latin American and the Caribbean states to fully respect the inalienable right of all to choose their own political, economic, social, and cultural system, as an essential condition for ensuring peaceful coexistence among nations; to the promotion in the region of a culture of peace based, among others, on the principles of the United Nations Declaration on the Culture of Peace.

The Proclamation also urges all member states of the international community to fully respect these purposes and principles in their relations with CELAC member states.

In this context, our nations must continue working together. It is our duty to protect peace, amongst us all, and preserve what has been achieved, confident that the current situation of confrontation and threats will be overcome.

Cuba, in particular, has been subject to an irrational and perverse tightening of the blockade by the United States, whose administration has unleashed, at the same time, a campaign of distortions, lies, and pretexts to sustain a policy of persecution and harassment that the international community openly rejects and condemns.

I would like to express our profound gratitude to all the countries of the region for their opposition to this irrational, illegal, and cruel policy against our people.

Beyond political or ideological differences, I call on all Caribbean governments to defend peace and oppose military aggression and the escalation of coercive economic measures against Venezuela that seriously damage its citizens and put the stability of the entire region at risk.

We also reiterate our solidarity and support for the government of Reconciliation and National Unity of the Republic of Nicaragua in the face of destabilization attempts, and we celebrate the negotiation process to ensure peace and preserve the social and economic gains achieved in this sister nation.

Faithful to our vision of defending unity within diversity, as on innumerable occasions the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, Army General Raul Castro Ruz, has asserted in forums like this one, we call on you to continue working together, concentrating on all that unites us, incomparably superior to the little that separates us, and to prioritize the fulfillment of agreements reached by the XXIII Council of Ministers regarding the strengthening and revitalization of the Association.

The Association of Caribbean States must continue to be the mainstay of Greater Caribbean unity, which is the only alternative given the enormous challenges we face.

Member states of this organization share the responsibility to avoid damaging the consensus that we have built together over the years, and to continue fostering solidarity, as an indispensable premise to develop actions on all the issues that are part of the organization’s mandate.

Cuba will continue working in favor of this unity and for the consolidation of our Association, and hope that this important meeting will contribute decisively to the effort.

Thank you very much!

My country never learned the lessons of the American War in Viet Nam

Venezuela:  Peace is Possible

Source:  Popular Resistance

RESIST!

“I dream, Peace is Possible
through a nightmare of wars,
No matter how brief the Dream”

~ by Daniel Shea © 3/26/19
    Viet Nam Veteran

daniel shea 2c.jpgI arrived in Caracas Venezuela on March 10th 2019 with Margaret Flowers & Kevin Zeese after the three of us had to scramble to find alternatives flights to Venezuela via COPA Airlines, Panama to Caracas.

The reason we sought alternative flights was because American Airlines cancelled our flights from Miami to Caracas fearing reported power outages.

The electricity blackout was real but flights were still operational during daytime hours as we were soon to find out.

We were determined to join our place as delegates on the U.S. Peace Council and to witness for ourselves the extent of U.S. Corporate Media reports of massive civil unrest, of a starving population resorting to eating garbage and government violence to subdue protests.

We were on a mission, to listen, to observe, and to attempt to assess the root causes of opposition grievances and whether there might be avenues for talks to address their concerns and find compromises and produce a peace to the advantage of all concerned.

Our main mission was to express our Solidarity with COSI – Venezuela, the Committee of International Solidarity and Struggle for Peace.

I, a Viet Nam Marine Corp Veteran of 1968, and I, as a former Board of Directors of Veterans For Peace International and the current President of  Veterans For Peace Chapter 72 of Portland Oregon have lived the hell of war, and wish never to have anyone live through that experience.

Unfortunately, my country never learned the lessons of the American War in Viet Nam, that it was criminal to send our armed forces to invade another country.

Viet Nam held no vital interest except the desire of imperialists to dominate Asia as a colonial power.  Viet Nam was no eminent threat to our nation.

We left defeated, as war criminals who killed, estimates ranging from 4 to 6 million Vietnamese, mostly innocent civilian, women and children.

We left another war legacy, the legacy of spraying 20 million gallons of Agent Orange Dioxin over Viet Nam a deadly toxic chemical weapon that continues to take lives and causes many debilitating birth anomalies and diseases including cancers affecting both Vietnamese and U.S. Veterans and their families.

We have 58,320 U.S. Soldiers names, including eight women carved in black granite in the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC as a cold reminder of the consequences of War.

Thus, every U.S. War, whether a so-called humanitarian military intervention or regime change assualt on another nation, it is like a bullet striking my heart, opening old wounds, that trigger my PTSD causing depression, anger, and even suicidal urges to end the nightmare and shame of my country’s bullying violence and terrorism that threaten the nation’s of the world with our way or the highway.

I have chosen to walk a path of Peace, to rejected violence and war, thus raise my voice as a Veteran For Peace, challenge those who beat the drums of war, oppose dishonest diplomacy at the point of an arsenal of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction.

I guess it is no surprise that the U.S. Peace Council would invite two Veterans For Peace members Gerry Condon a former GI Resister and current President of VFP International  and myself to join their delegation.

It didn’t take long before the delegation were invited to meetings with various government ministries, popular people’s projects or cultural programs, but most obvious was that the so-called crisis and massive unrest was just not happening.

That is to say, that in Caracas these popular myths of violent unrest in the U. S. Media were not true.

Our observation was the unrest was a lie manufactured by the U.S. State Department and the Trump Goons, VP Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Advisor John Bolton and Special Envoy to Venezuela Elliott Abrams the infamous 1980s criminal conspirator in the Iran Contra Scandal and lying to Congress.

One has to put much into perspective, there was an electricity blackout when I arrived on the 4th day of the outage and lasted an additional two days.

Was it a crisis, of course it was but it didn’t cause unrest, it brought people together, just like in the USA when a national disaster strikes, people go out of their way to help each other, the same in Venezuela.

I was humbled by the tenacity of the Venezuelans to persevere under this difficult hardship, the government trying to ease their burden declared taking the days off during the blackout, making them Blackout Holidays and you saw families in the streets, going to the parks, lovers holding hands, taking walks and meeting friends but no unrest.

Why the lies, why these threats of regime change intervention?

What are the Venezuelan Opposition Parties grievances, would they be willing to sit down for peace talks to find comprises.

Sorry to say, we were not able to get a meeting with opposition leaders to discuss the possibility.

What did seem apparent, was that the United States had their hands so far up the self declared president of Venezuela, Juan  Guaido’s ass, he nor the opposition parties couldn’t venture far from the uncompromising position the United States was dictating, Maduro must go “Or Else”.

The “Or Else” is the real crisis, was the dark cloud hanging over all of Venezuela, the threat of U.S. Military Intervention.

Donald Trump doesn’t give a shit about democracy or the suffering of Venezuelans, or he would lift the Sanctions at the root of much of the economic crisis, that and the drop in Oil Prices in the global market.

The real interest of the United States in Venezuela is it’s Oil and they have made that pretty clear in their own public statements.

““It will make a big difference to the United States economically if we could have American oil companies invest in and produce the oil capabilities in Venezuela,” ~ Bolton told Fox News in an interview.

I will be giving a report back on Venezuela Saturday March 30th 2019

Eye Witness Report Back from Venezuela
Dan Shea of Veterans For Peace &
U.S. Peace Council Delegate
3:00 PM at Sunnyside Community House
3520 SE Yamhill St, Portland, OR 97214

Please join me, both in Solidarity with the Peace Loving People of Venezuela and in Solidarity with the March 30th Mobilization taking place in Washinton, DC as officials of NATO come to celebrate 70 years of war making!

We Say No to NATO, War and Racism!

!!!!!!!HANDS OFF VENEZUELA!!!!!!!

https://www.facebook.com/events/1338452059613197/?ti=cl