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Monthly Review Volume 63, Number 7 (December 2011)

December 2011 (Volume 63, Number 7)

» Notes from the Editors

The last month (late September to late October 2011) was to all appearances a historical turning point. The Arab Spring gave way to the New York/World Fall as protesters occupied Wall Street (basing themselves in Zuccotti Park), and the movement of the 99% spread across the entire globe.… MR authors and friends have participated in the Occupy movement from the start, sometimes playing prominent roles. We have heard from friends directly involved in Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Boston, Occupy Chicago, Occupy Eugene, Occupy Oakland, and from people associated with Occupy movements throughout the world.… | more |

Genocidal Cynicism (Part 2)

TO give some idea of the potential of the USSR in its efforts to maintain parity with the United States in this sphere, suffice it to note that when its disintegration came about in 1991, there were 81 nuclear warheads in Byelorussia, 1,400 in Kazakhstan, and approximately 5,000 in Ukraine, which were passed on to the Russian Federation, the only state capable of sustaining their immense cost in order to maintain its independence.

By virtue of the START and SORT treaties related to the reduction of offensive weapons between the two major nuclear powers, the number of those warheads was reduced to several thousand.

In 2010 a new treaty of this type was signed between the two powers.

Since then the greatest efforts have been dedicated to improving the direction, reach, precision of nuclear missiles and their deception of the enemy defense. Vast sums are invested in the military sphere.

Very few people in the world, except for a handful of thinkers and scientists, have realized and are warning that the explosion of 100 strategic nuclear weapons would be enough to end human existence on the planet. The vast majority would have an end as inexorable as it would be horrific, as a consequence of the nuclear winter which would be generated.

The number of countries which possess nuclear weapons at this moment has risen to eight. Five of them are members of the Security Council: the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France and China. India and Pakistan acquired the nature of countries possessing nuclear weapons in 1974 and 1998, respectively. The seven countries mentioned acknowledge that nature.

On the other hand, Israel has never acknowledged its nature as a nuclear country. Nevertheless, it is calculated that it possesses 200 to 500 weapons of this type, without that being acknowledged at a time when the world is concerned about the extremely grave problems that would be provoked by the outbreak of a war in the region where a large part of the energy which moves the planet’s industry and agriculture is produced.

It is thanks to the possession of weapons of mass destruction that Israel has been able to fulfill its role as the instrument of imperialism and colonialism in that region of the Middle East.

It is not about the legitimate right of the Israeli people to live and work in peace and freedom; it is precisely about the right of the other peoples in the region to freedom and peace.

While Israel was rapidly creating a nuclear arsenal, it attacked and destroyed, in 1981, the Iraqi nuclear reactor in Osirak. It did exactly the same to the Syrian reactor in Dayr az-Zawr in 2007, an action of which world opinion was strangely not informed. The United Nations and the IAEA were fully aware of what had occurred. Such actions had the support of the United States and the Atlantic Alliance.

There is nothing at all strange about Israel’s highest authorities now announcing their intention to do the same to Iran. This country, immensely rich in oil and gas, had been the victim of the conspiracies of Britain and the United States, whose oil companies were plundering its resources. Its armed forces were equipped with the most modern armaments from the United States’ military industry.

Shah Reza Pahlevi also aspired to acquiring nuclear weapons. Nobody attacked his research centers. The Israeli war was against the Muslim Arabs. It was not against those of Iran, because they had become a NATO bulwark pointing at the heart of the USSR.

Under the leadership of Ayatollah Khomeini, the masses of that nation, profoundly religious and defying the power of those weapons, removed the Shah from the throne and disarmed one of the best equipped armies in the world without firing a shot.

Given its fighting capacity, number of inhabitants and the country’s extension, an aggression against Iran would bear no resemblance to Israel’s military adventures in Iraq and Syria. A bloody war would invariably be unleashed. There should be absolutely no doubt about that.

Israel has a large number of nuclear weapons with the capacity to reach any point in Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania. I ask myself: Does the IAEA have the moral right to sanction and asphyxiate a country if it attempts to do in its own defense what Israel did in the heart of the Middle East?

What I really think is that no country in the world should possess nuclear weapons, and that this energy should be placed at the service of the human species. Without that spirit of cooperation, humanity is inexorably advancing toward its own destruction. Among Israeli citizens themselves, doubtless a hardworking and intelligent people, many will not be in agreement with this crazy and absurd politics which is also taking them to total disaster.

What is being said today in the world about the economic situation?

The international news agencies report that U.S. President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart, Hu Jintao, presented divergent commercial agendas […] highlighting the growing tensions between the two largest economies in the world.

Obama used an address – Reuters affirms – to threaten punitive economic steps against China unless it started ‘playing by the rules…’

These rules are evidently the interests of the United States.

Obama faces a tough 2012 re-election battle, in which Republican opponents accuse him of not being tough enough on China,” the agency states.

News published on Thursday and Friday reflected the realities which we are experiencing much better.

AP, the best informed U.S. news agency communicated, “Iran’s supreme leader warned Israel and the U.S. that Tehran’s response will be tough should its arch-enemies choose a military strike against Iran…”

The German news agency reported that China had stated that, as always, it believed that dialogue and cooperation were the only form of active rapprochement to solve the problem.

Russia was equally opposed to the punitive measures against Iran.

Germany rejected the military option but was in favor of strong sanctions against Iran.

The United Kingdom and France advocated strong and energetic sanctions.

The Russian Federation assured that it would do everything possible to avert a military operation against Iran and criticized the IAEA report.

‘A military operation against Iran could lead to very grave consequences and Russia will have to invest all its efforts in appeasing spirits,'” stated Konstantin Kosachov, head of the Duma’s Foreign Committee,” and, according to EFE, “He criticized ‘affirmations by the United States, France and Israel as to the possible use of force and the fact that the launch of a military operation against Iran is constantly closer.’

Edward Spannaus, editor of the U.S. EIR magazine, stated that an attack on Iran would end in World War III.

After traveling to Israel a few days ago, the United States Defense Secretary himself acknowledged that he could not obtain a commitment from the Israeli government to consult with the United States prior to an attack on Iran. Things have reached this extreme.

The U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs crudely revealed the empire’s dark intentions:

Israel and the U.S. will embark on ‘the largest and most significant joint exercise in the allies’ history,’ said Andrew Shapiro, U.S. assistant secretary for political-military affairs, on Saturday.

…in the […] Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Shapiro spoke about the 5,000 US and Israeli forces who will participate in the exercise to simulate Israel’s ballistic missile defense system.

‘Israeli technology is proving critical to improving our Homeland Security and protecting our troops,’ he added…

Shapiro emphasized the Obama administration’s support for Israel, despite comments by a senior U.S. official on Friday, who expressed concern that Israel would not warn the U.S. before taking military action against Iran’s nuclear facilities.

‘Our security relationship with Israel is broader, deeper and more intense than ever before.’

‘We support Israel because it is in our national interests to do so […] It is the very strength of Israel’s military which deters potential aggressors and helps foster peace and stability.’

Today, November 13, Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the UN, told the BBC network that the possibility of a military intervention in Iran was not only not off the table, but is a real option which is growing on account of Iran’s behavior.

She insisted that the U.S. administration is reaching the conclusion that it will become necessary to end the current Iranian regime in order to avoid it creating a nuclear arsenal. “I am convinced that regime change is going to be our only option here,” Rice acknowledged.

Not one more word is necessary.

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Fidel Castro Ruz

November 13, 2011

8:17 p.m.

NATO’s Genocidal Role (Part 5)

On March 9th this year, under the title of “NATO, War, Lies and Business”, I published a new Reflection about the role of that warlike organization.

I am selecting some fundamental paragraphs from that Reflection:

“As some may be aware, in September of 1969, Muammar al-Gaddafi, an Arab Bedouin soldier of a peculiar character and inspired by the ideas of the Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser, promoted in the heart of the armed forces a movement overthrowing King Idris I of Libya, a country almost completely covered by desert and having very little population, located in northern Africa between Tunisia and Egypt.”

“Born to a tribal Bedouin family of nomadic desert shepherds in the region of Tripoli, Gaddafi was profoundly anti-colonialist. ”

“…Even Gaddafi’s adversaries assure us that he stood out for his intelligence as a student; he was expelled from high-school for his anti-monarchic activities. He managed to enrol in another high-school and later graduated in law at the University of Benghazi at the age of 21.  Then he enrolled in the Benghazi Military College where he created what was called the Secret Unionist Movement of Free Officers, concluding his education later on in a British military academy.”

“He had begun his political life with events that were without question, revolutionary.

“In March of 1970, after massive nationalist demonstrations, he managed to have British soldiers evacuated from the country and in June, the United States vacated the great air base near Tripoli, handing it over to military instructors from Egypt, a Libyan ally.

“In 1970, several western oil companies and banking companies having the participation of foreign capital were affected by the Revolution. At the end of 1971, the famous British Petroleum had the same fate. In the agricultural sector, all Italian properties were confiscated, and the colonists and their descendents were expelled from Libya.”

“The Libyan leader got involved in extremist theories that were opposed both to communism and capitalism. It was a stage when Gaddafi dedicated himself to theorizing, something that doesn’t have any place in this analysis, other than to point out that the first article of the Constitutional Proclamation of 1969 established the “Socialist” nature of the Great Socialist People’s Libya Arab Jamahiriya.

“What I wish to emphasize is that the United States and its allies were never interested in human rights.

“The hornet’s nest taking place in the Security Council, at the meeting of the Human Rights Council at the Geneva headquarters and in the UN General Assembly in New York was pure theatre.”

“The empire now wants […] to intervene militarily in Libya and strike a blow at the revolutionary wave unleashed in the Arab world. Up to now, not one word was said; they kept their mouths shut and carried on with business.”

“With the latent Libyan rebellion being promoted by Yankee intelligence, or by Gaddafi’s own errors, it is important that the people don’t let themselves be deceived, since very soon world opinion shall have enough elements to know what to expect.”

“Like many Third World countries, Libya is a member of NAM, the Group of 77 and other international organizations, through which relations are established separately from its economic and social system.

“As an outline: the Revolution in Cuba, inspired by Marxist-Leninist principles and those of Marti, had triumphed in 1959, 90 miles away from the United States which imposed on us the Platt Amendment and owned the economy of our country.

“Almost immediately, the empire promoted the dirty war against our people, counter-revolutionary gangs, the criminal economic blockade, the mercenary invasion of the Bay of Pigs, watched over by an aircraft carrier and their Marines ready to land if the mercenaries were to gain determinate objectives.”

“All the Latin American countries, with the exception of Mexico, took part in the criminal blockade which is still in place today, with our country never surrendering.”

“In January of 1986, using the idea that Libya was behind the so-called revolutionary terrorism, Reagan ordered economic and commercial relations with that country to be broken.

“In March, a force of aircraft carriers in the Gulf of Sidra, inside what is considered to be Libyan national waters, launched attacks that caused the destruction of several naval units armed with missile launchers and coastal radar systems that that country had acquired in the USSR.

“On April 5th, a Berlin disco that US soldiers went to was the victim of plastic explosives; three persons died, two of them American soldiers, and many were wounded.

“Reagan accused Gaddafi and ordered the Air Force to retaliate. Three squadrons took off from the Sixth Fleet aircraft carriers and bases in the United Kingdom, attacking seven military targets in Tripoli and Benghazi with missiles and bombs. Around 40 people died, 15 of them civilians.  Warned of the bombers’ advance, Gaddafi assembled his family and was abandoning his residence located at the Bab Al Aziziya military complex to the south of the capital. The evacuation was in progress when a missile made a direct hit on his residence; his daughter Hanna died and two other children were wounded. The occurrence was broadly condemned: the UN General Assembly passed a resolution condemning violation of the UN Charter and International law.  So did NAM, the Arab League and the OAU, in energetic terms.

“On December 21, 1988, a Pan Am Boeing 747 flying from London to New York disintegrated in mid-air after a bomb exploded …”

“According to the Yankees, investigations implicated two Libyan intelligence agents.”

“A sinister legend was fabricated against him with the participation of Reagan and Bush Sr.”

“The Security Council had imposed sanctions on Libya that were starting to be overcome when Gaddafi accepted to put the two people accused for the plane downed over Scotland on trial, with certain conditions.

“Libyan delegations began to be invited to inter-European meetings.  In July of 1999, London initiated the re-establishing of full diplomatic relations with Libya, after some additional concessions.”

“On December 2nd, Prime Minister Massimo D’Alema of Italy made the first visit of a European head of government to Libya.

“With the USSR and the European Socialist bloc gone, Gaddafi decided to accept the demands of the United States and NATO.”

“At the beginning of 2002, the State Department informed that diplomatic talks were going on between the US and Libya.”

“As 2003 began, because of the economic agreement on the compensations reached between Libya and the suing countries, the United Kingdom and France, the UN Security Council lifted the 1992 sanctions against Libya.

“Before 2003 drew to a close, Bush and Tony Blair informed about an agreement with Libya, a country that had handed over to United Kingdom and Washington intelligence experts documentation on the non-conventional weapons programs such as ballistic missiles with a range of more than 300 kilometres. Officials from both countries had already visited various installations.  It was the result of many months of talks between Tripoli and Washington as Bush himself revealed.

“Gaddafi fulfilled his promises of disarmament.  In a few months Libya handed over five units of Scud-C missiles with a range of 800 kilometres and the hundreds of Scud-Bs whose range surpassed the 300 kilometres for short-range defensive missiles.

“From October of 2002, the marathon of visits to Tripoli began: Berlusconi in October of 2002; José María Aznar in September of 2003; Berlusconi again in February, August and October of 2004; Blair in March of 2004; Germany’s Schröeder in October of that year; Jacques Chirac in November of 2004.”

“Gaddafi triumphantly toured Europe. He was received in Brussels in April of 2004 by Romano Prodi, president of the European Commission; in August of that year the Libyan leader invited Bush to visit his country; Exxon Mobil, Chevron Texaco and Conoco Philips finalized the re-establishing of extracting crude by means of joint ventures.

“In May of 2006, the United States announced the withdrawal of Libya from the list of terrorist countries and the establishment of full diplomatic relations.

“In 2006 and 2007, France and the US signed agreements for nuclear cooperation for peaceful purposes; in May of 2007, Blair once again visited Gaddafi at Sidra.  BP signed an “enormously important” agreement according to statements, in order to explore for gas fields.

“In December of 2007, Gaddafi made two visits to France and signed contracts for military and civilian equipment for the total of 10 billion Euros; and a visit to Spain where he met with President José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero. Million-dollar contracts were signed with important NATO countries.

“What is it that has now caused the precipitated withdrawal from the embassies of the United States and the other NATO members?

“It’s all extremely odd.

“George W. Bush, father of the stupid anti-terrorism war, stated on September 20 of 2001 to the West point cadets that:

“Our security will require […]  transforming the military you will lead, a military that must be ready to strike at a moment of notice in any dark corner of the world.  And our security will require all Americans to be forward-looking and resolute, to be ready for preemptive action when necessary to defend our liberty […].”

“We must uncover terror cells in 60 or more countries[…] Along with our friends and allies, we must oppose proliferation and confront regimes that sponsor terror, as each case requires.”

Today I add that Afghanistan, a traditionally rebellious country, was invaded; the nationalist tribes, former allies of the United States in its struggle against the USSR, were bombed and massacred.  The Dirty War spread throughout the world.  Iraq was invaded under excuses that turned out to be false, its abundant oil resources were handed over to the hands of Yankee companies, millions of persons lost their jobs and were forced to move both inside the country and abroad, their museums were sacked and innumerable citizens lost their lives or were massacred by the invaders.

Returning to the Reflection, I pointed out:

“An AFP dispatch from Kabul, dated today on March 9th, reveals that: “Last year was the most deadly for civilians in nine years of war between the Taliban and international forces in Afghanistan, with almost 2,800 dead, 15% more than in 2009, a UN report indicated on Wednesday, underlining the human cost of the conflict for the population.”

“With exactly 2,777 the number of civilian deaths in 2010 increased 15% as compared to 2009, indicates the annual joint report by the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan…”

“President Barack Obama stated on the 3rd of March his “profound condolences” to the Afghan people for the nine dead children; US General David Petraeus, commander in chief of the ISAF and Secretary of the Defence Robert Gates made similar statements.”

“…the UNAMA report emphasizes that the number of civilian dead in 2010 is four times greater than the number of international forces soldiers killed in combat in that same year.

Referring to Libya, I indicated:

“For 10 days, in Geneva and in the UN more than 150 speeches were made about violations on human rights that were repeated millions of times by TV, radio, Internet and the printed press.

“Cuban Minister of Foreign Affairs Bruno Rodríguez, in his speech on March 1st before the Foreign Ministers meeting in Geneva, stated:

“Human conscience rejects the deaths of innocent people in any circumstance and in any place.  Cuba fully shares world concern for the losses in civilian lives in Libya and wishes that their people attain a peaceful and sovereign solution to the civil war happening over there, without any foreign interference, and ensuring the integrity of that nation.”

“If essential human rights are a right of life, is the Council ready to suspend the membership of states that unleash war?”

“Will it suspend states that finance and supply military aid used by the receiving state in massive, flagrant and systematic violations on human rights and in attacks on civilian populations, such as what is happening in Palestine?”

“Will it apply that measure against powerful countries that carry out extra-judicial executions on the territory of other states, using high technology such as smart bombs and unmanned planes?

“What would happen with states that accept on their territory illegal secret prisons, facilitate secret flights carrying kidnapped persons or participate in acts of torture?”

“We are against the internal war in Libya, in favour of immediate peace and full respect for life and the rights of all citizens, with no foreign intervention that would only serve to prolong the conflict and NATO interests.”

Yesterday, on October 31st, an event was produced that, among others, bears witness to the total lack of ethics in Yankee policy.

UNESCO had just adopted a courageous decision: to grant the heroic people of Palestine the right to participate as an active member of UNESCO; 107 states voted in favour, 14 were opposed and 52 abstained from voting.  We all know the reason perfectly well.

The United States representative to that institution, following instructions from the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, immediately stated that as of that moment, their country would be suspending all economic aid to the organization that was destined by the UN for education, science and culture.

The dramatic tone with which the lady announced the decision was totally unnecessary. Nobody was surprised by the expected and cynical decision.

Moreover, as if it were not enough, all we need to do is read the AFP cable dated in Washington this afternoon at 16:05:

“‘After the G20 Summit (…) the president (Obama) and President Sarkozy will take part in a ceremony in Cannes to celebrate the US-France alliance’, the office of the US president indicated, adding that the leaders would also be meeting with ‘US and French soldiers who had participated together in the operation’ in Libya.”

I shall continue shortly.

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Fidel Castro Ruz

November 1, 2011

4:32 p.m.

The Political Economy of the Egyptian Uprising

Not long after Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman announced that Hosni Mubarak would resign his post as President, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton flew to Egypt to congratulate the Egyptian people on a job well done. The revolutionaries had accomplished their goal, she said. Everyone could go home and feel proud of their historic achievement and leave the cleaning up to the responsible adults—the United States and the closely allied Egyptian military, which has ruled Egypt since 1952. To prove that there were no hard feelings against the Egyptians for overthrowing one of the closest and most important U.S. allies in the Arab world, the IMF, World Bank, the G8, and the United States itself—the very entities responsible for supporting Mubarak’s thirty-year rule and imposing draconian neoliberal programs on Egypt—have extended as much as $15 billion in aid and credit to Egypt and Tunisia to assist in their transitions to democracy. This generosity begs the question: why are Western governments, and the international financial institutions (IFIs) that are closely linked to them, falling over one another to show their generosity to the revolutionaries and to display their support for progress in the Middle East?… | more |

The Will of Steel (part 1)


(Part One)

Two days ago on Friday October 14th, Granma and Juventud Rebelde, the Communist Party and Youth League newspapers, published a brave and energetic message from Rene Gonzalez, Hero of the Republic, to the people of Cuba, after the odious and unfair 13-year punishment had finished, separately, like the other four heroes who are serving longer sentences in prisons that are hundreds of miles away from each other. Not for one instant did the unshakeable steadfastness of each one of them falter, even when they were repeatedly thrown into punishment cells, veritable sepulchres, without any space to move, just as “Yankee justice” decreed, with no crime or any kind of evidence. If there was anything in which such “justice” didn’t make a mistake, it was in the selection of the type of men it was punishing. Rene was additionally prohibited from returning to his Homeland to be with his family and his people for three years. He will have to remain in the territory of the country that had imposed such unfair punishment on him.

For everyone, and especially for those of us who have lived through critical years in the history of our Homeland, Rene’s words profoundly sized it up.

“The fact that I am now out of prison – he stated – only means that one avenue of abuse to which I was subjected has been closed, […] we still have four brothers whom we have to rescue and whom we need with us with their families, to be among you giving the best of themselves…”

“For me, this is only a trench, a new place in which I am going to continue fighting for justice so that the Five of us can return together to you.”

“…to all the people who have accompanied us over the years, who have been thousands, and through whom we have been able, little by little, to break through this information blockade, to break through the wall of silence that the corporate media have built around the case, I extend to you, on behalf of the Five, my most profound gratitude, my commitment to continue representing you as you deserve, which is definitely what we Five are doing, because we are not only Five, we are a whole people who have resisted for 50 years, and it is thanks to that that we are still resisting, […] and will never fail you and will always rise to the heights that you deserve.”  Rene’s sincere, steadfast and energetic words, the unmistakable tone of voice of a fighter who has withstood 13 infinite years of brutal and unfair punishment without faltering for one second, are really impressive.

Imperial tyranny will not be able to sustain its gross lies about the injustice committed against the Five Cuban Anti-terrorist Heroes. It doesn’t matter how treacherously the information media in its control does its best to present them as agents and spies that placed United States security at risk. The President of the National Assembly and the prestigious lawyer Jose Pertierra have been in charge of pulverizing the gross Yankee lies about the heroic Cuban anti-terrorists.

The memory of the victorious battle our people waged for the return of the boy Elian Gonzalez to his family and homeland crossed my mind. In the face of the monstrous behaviour of the Cuban counter-revolutionary mafia of Miami and its contempt of the country’s authorities, the very president of the United States at that time, Bill Clinton, was forced to send security forces in order to impose American law and order on the fascist groups who were being contemptuous and setting symbols and flags of that country on fire, headed by the “ferocious she-wolf” Ileana Ros, among others, who today is nothing less than the Chairperson of the Foreign Relations Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives and dictates rules on that country’s foreign policy.

Rene Gonzalez’ message to the people of Cuba, at his own initiative and bravely taking on any risk, reinforces our profound conviction that the  position of the U.S. government in terms of the Five Cuban heroes is by now unsustainable, just as its justification of the criminal economic blockade against our homeland and the punitive measures it applies on foreign enterprises that do business with our country.

Such a policy, brutal and unusual, has been transformed by the powerful empire into an international norm, despite the practically unanimous opinion of all the members of the United Nations, with the exception of the U.S. and Israel.

Facts irrefutably show that in the globalized world of today, under the aegis of the Yankee empire, no security guarantee exists for any other country. In the UN one can repeat time and time again the unanimous rejection of the economic blockade on Cuba, or any other measure such as the right of the Palestinian people to their constitution as a state, but unless such a right, or any other, fits in with the empire’s interests, it has  no validity whatsoever.

Without it being a deliberate purpose of the Revolution, our country has become an example of what a small state can achieve if it steadfastly sustains a policy of principles even when scientific and technological advances, its patents and the distribution of the planet’s wealth is in the hands of the most developed and richest nations, that in times past were the colonial powers, disseminators of looting and poverty in our countries.

In its long struggle against the empire, our country’s combatants have been at the point of being the target for nuclear weapons at the service of that power: the first time in October of 1962; and the second time in mid-1988. On neither of these two occasions did our Homeland succumb to Yankee blackmail: in 1962, it permitted no inspection of any sort on its territory, and in 1988, after the battle of Cuito Cuanavale and the advance of 50,000 Cuban and Angolan soldiers over the South African forces equipped by the West and provided with nuclear missiles, they decided to negotiate the independence of Namibia and the end of Apartheid.

The peoples of the Third World recognize and are thankful for the unselfish solidarity of Cuba in areas that are so important such as health and education.

Who can believe the strange lie about Cuba supporting terrorism?

Such a dull and stupid fib on the part of the powerful country which, only 90 miles away from its shores, not only applied against it a criminal blockade but also perpetrated the most grotesque acts of terrorism. The fires set in educational, recreational and business centres; the live phosphorus in the sugar cane plantations; the use of explosives in factories; the pirate attacks against port facilities and fishing and cargo vessels; the organizing of counter-revolutionary gangs; infiltrations by agents and providing weapons to mercenary gangs began in 1959, after the First Agrarian Reform Law, leaving a trail of death and destruction in our Homeland. The bombing of our air force bases and the landing of mercenary troops at the Bay of Pigs, escorted by American aircraft carriers and warships cost innumerable victims when our revolutionary process was barely starting. Can the United States deny these facts? Assassination plans on the leaders of the Revolution organized by U.S. intelligence services were innumerable; in fact their gross actions didn’t limit themselves to that. Viruses and bacteria were introduced into our country to sabotage the production of plants and animals; even worse, diseases that didn’t even exist in this hemisphere were introduced into Cuba against the population. Haemorrhagic dengue affected hundreds of thousands of persons and around 150 of them, mainly children, died.  That disease still creates havoc in this hemisphere.

The tale of what the United States has committed against our people would be endless.

To be continued tomorrow.

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Fidel Castro Ruz

October 16, 2011

9:05 p.m.

An Arab Springtime?

The year 2011 began with a series of shattering, wrathful explosions from the Arab peoples. Is this springtime the inception of a second “awakening of the Arab world?” Or will these revolts bog down and finally prove abortive—as was the case with the first episode of that awakening, which was evoked in my book L’éveil du Sud (The Awakening of the South)? If the first hypothesis is confirmed, the forward movement of the Arab world will necessarily become part of the movement to go beyond imperialist capitalism on the world scale. Failure would keep the Arab world in its current status as a submissive periphery, prohibiting its elevation to the rank of an active participant in shaping the world.… | more |

Quid Pro Quo?

The Question of India’s Subordination to the ‘American Narrative’

In April 2011, the Wall Street Journal‘s South Asia columnist Sadanand Dhume published a piece entitled “It’s Time to Re-Align India.” Meeting in Hainan, China, the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) called for a multipolar world (i.e. one no longer dominated by the Atlantic powers, led by the United States) and for a less militaristic approach to common problems—with special reference to the imbroglio in Libya, fast becoming the twenty-first century’s Yugoslavia. Focusing on India, Dhume wrote in response: “Like a monster in a B-grade horror film, India’s love affair with non-alignment refuses to die…. The end of the Cold War should have ended this approach to foreign policy. Unfortunately, it hasn’t.”… | more |

The Assassination of Osama Bin Laden

Those persons who deal with these issues know that on September 11 of 2001 our people expressed its solidarity to the US people and offered the modest cooperation that in the area of health we could have offered to the victims of the brutal attack against the Twin Towers in New York.… We also immediately opened our country’s airports to the American airplanes that were unable to land anywhere, given the chaos that came about soon after the strike.… Although we resolutely supported the armed struggle against Batista’s tyranny, we were, on principle, opposed to any terrorist action that could cause the death of innocent people. Such behavior, which has been maintained for more than half a century, gives us the right to express our views about such a sensitive matter.… | more |

NATO’s Inevitable War (Part I)

In contrast with what is happening in Egypt and Tunisia, Libya occupies the first spot on the Human Development Index for Africa and it has the highest life expectancy on the continent. Education and health receive special attention from the State. The cultural level of its population is without a doubt the highest. Its problems are of a different sort. The population wasn’t lacking food and essential social services. The country needed an abundant foreign labour force to carry out ambitious plans for production and social development. (more…)

The Cynical Dance Macabre

The policy of plunder imposed by the United States and their NATO allies in the Middle East has gone into a crisis. It has inevitably unraveled with the high cost of grain, the effects of which can be felt more forcefully in the Arab countries where, in spite of their huge resources of oil, the shortage of water, areas covered by desert and the generalized poverty of the people contrast with the enormous resources coming from the oil possessed by the privileged sectors. (more…)

The Revolutionary Rebellion in Egypt

I said several days ago that the die was cast for Mubarak and that not even Obama could save him.

The world knows what is taking place in the Middle East. The news is circulating at incredible speed. Politicians barely have time to read the cables coming in by the hour. Everyone is aware of the importance of what is occurring there. (more…)

Mubarak’s Fate is Sealed

Mubarak’s fate is sealed, not even the support of the United States will be able to save his government. The people of Egypt are an intelligent people with a glorious history who left their mark on civilization. “From the top of these pyramids, 40 centuries of history are looking down upon us,” Bonaparte once said in a moment of exaltation when the revolution brought him to this extraordinary crossroads of civilizations. (more…)