OPEN FORUM OF THE REVOLUTION AGAINST THE NEW FELONY OT THE us GOVERNMENT, HELD ON NOVEMBER 18, 2002, "YEAR OF THE HEROES IMPRISONED BY THE US EMPIRE"
Solanch Sanz Suárez, Fourth Grade Pioneer of the Paquito González Cueto Elementary School, Palma Soriano, Santiago de Cuba
People of Cuba:
With great sorrow we have learned that once again, inspired by the unjust Cuban Immigrant Adjustment Act, that was again defended by the President of the United States a few days ago, a small group of Cuban citizens, taking a four-year-old girl with them, embarked upon a dangerous venture by hijacking a plane used in Cuban agriculture. This is a law that has caused the death of many Cubans; a law that allows the hijacking of airplanes and boats; a terrorist, murderous law that has filled with sadness many of our schools, because one of its pioneers will no longer be among us; a law that has deprived many Cuban families of the love of their dear ones.
The Cuban Immigrant Adjustment Act has encouraged many parents to drag their children to considerable danger at sea where many of them have lost their lives. These were children who lived happily here, who played with their friends in their neighborhoods, who attended their schools, where they had the right to a comprehensive education, with the most modern educational programs, such as the computing program enjoyed by no other children in the world, and with no more than 20 students per classroom. This educational program includes the reconstruction of their schools, where they felt respected and loved, where they had the right to belong to the José Martí Pioneers’ Organization, which prepares us to be better Cubans, better followers of Martí, which teaches us to love and know nature.
Can there be worse terrorism than provoking an act such as this? Certainly not! You, Mr. President, and your government, who call yourselves standard-bearers of the fight against terrorism, know it very well and, nevertheless, you continue encouraging laws such as this one. But I am even more surprised when you do not allow Haitian immigrants who reach your shores to enter your country, because you say that that way you keep others from dying at sea seeking refuge in the United States. Then, I ask myself: isn’t it the same sea where Cubans are dying? Why, then, do you incite Cubans to do it? Or is it that you just want Cuban children to die? Is it that you need more Cuban than Haitian votes in Miami? What makes you act so differently in your policy?
Answer these questions for yourself, Mr. President.
If you want to allow Cubans to enter your country, why, then, are there cases such as that of one of the persons in the aircraft, who had been denied visa twice and now, after traveling illegally, has been accepted into your country?
You should know, Mr. President of the United States, that we Cuban pioneers do not want laws such as this one that kills our classmates. We want the migratory agreements to be observed so no more Cubans die. We want you to respect the resolutions of the United Nations, where only hours ago 173 countries voted in favor of lifting the blockade imposed against our country.
We pioneers, as part of this patriotic people, also demand that you stop, once and for all, the irrational policy toward Cubans that puts them in danger of losing their lives moved by the contemptible interests of people who in the "unstable and brutal North" dream of making us surrender or seeing our hopes shattered.
For the freedom that we are defending today and for the love of the life we are constructing:
Pioneers for Communism, we will be like Che!
María Isabel Torres Alonso, Director, School of Fine Arts, San Antonio de los Baños
Cubans, we are in combat!
Our homeland looks at us with pride!
We are in combat, for all the glory we have lived through; the glory of holding on to life with our own hands. We are in combat for the legacy passed on to us by those who forged and are still forging the Cuban Nation, its independence, its freedom, its stature!
When ours are the dreams that are raised with joy, filling up every little piece of silence in every morning of schools, scarves and anthems which make us grow as we learn;
When, while steeped in those ideas, we all go in search of that sustainable future;
When my stoical people hopes for new goals, for a better quality of life, with the austerity that characterizes us and makes us feel stronger;
When solidarity, confidence, and the commitment to attain victory have become an everlasting motto in Pinar del Río and in the whole Island after and even before the lashing of the hurricanes;
When Cuba moves forward upright, optimistic, inspiring, amidst the withered faces of other peoples, whose misery, their exploitation, their acculturation, their lack of identity makes you feel outraged;
When, for the 11th time, 173 votes condemn the empire, which is still determined to maintain its blockade against us;
When, after growing bigger, we continue to move ahead, the empire tosses and turns in its macabre show where we are portrayed as terrorists.
And it so happens that yesterday, our health labs, which have worked to promote health, were producing offensive biological and chemical weapons.
And today, our diplomats are spies.
Today Cuba is seen as a threat to the anti-terror crusade designed and advised by the "Emperor", while American troops laid waste to Afghanistan and prop-up Sharon through that bloody orgy that is exterminating the Palestinian people.
Yesterday, today, and all along these 43 years, the same stubborn policy of the empire against our country; the double standards of a government that took office thanks to the support of the ultra-right wing and the Cuban-American mob.
During four decades, the Cuban Adjustment Act and the siren songs which have been advertised with irrational fanfare, have encouraged thousands of Cubans to migrate illegally, thus taking a heavy toll on their lives.
The Cuban Adjustment Act is a reflection of the double standards of the anti-terrorist policy ordered from Washington;
Unscrupulous persons who violate the Cuban law through acts of air piracy are welcomed opened-arms.
The Cuban Adjustment Act encourages violence and death;
It tries to subvert order through the state-sponsored terrorism policy applied by the United States against my country.
It favors the Cuban-American mob, whose savings, worth millions, and Congressional seats have been obtained at the expense of the Cuban issue;
I accuse the government of the United States of causing the death of our compatriots and the separation of Cuban families!
I accuse the government of the United States of inciting and perpetrating air piracy acts!
On behalf of the Cuban people, I call for a cease of the hostile policy of Washington against my country!
We say to the Empire and its bootlickers that the Cuban people are here, demanding the elimination of the murderous Cuban Adjustment Act.
Raising our voices to claim for that machete charge to kill the rogues.
Asking the mambi bugle player to call for a cutthroat charge after an order of the Generalissimo. And then we will see that Maceo will be ready once again to put up with any new bullet to defend his homeland.
To the top of our voices, we call for a machete charge to kill the rogues, and we will see how Marti is back again in Tampa from Dos Rios, and from Tampa he will go to Uruguay, Paraguay, Colombia, Venezuela, where he will embrace Bolivar with his impassioned discourse, claiming for our America, the America of all Americans.
Let us charge against those who are lobbying to neoliberalize us, to globalize us, to impose free trade on us, on behalf of our unconsulted peoples.
Let us charge against those who suppress truth in an attempt to put behind bars its light that illuminates and kills.
Let us charge, Cubans, for we will not allow Cuba to be touched in the least, just as we will not in the least give in to Imperialism.
We are on the right path, Camilo!
Ever Onward to Victory!
Homeland or Death, Cubans!
We shall Overcome!
Dr. Alberto Naranjo Bohera, Director, Maternity Home of Old Havana
Commander in Chief,
Dear people of Cuba,
The history of our country, full of heroic episodes performed by our people all along these 44 years of courageous battle against the most powerful empire on Earth, which hates us and despise us, is a monument to the truth and the dignity that have always characterized the Cuban people and its government, in the face of so many lies and maneuvers, so much immorality and impudence on the part of the Miami mob and its godfathers in Washington.
The American government, that has been so deceitful to the world, has never been able to mislead us with its double standards and despise against all peoples. Today, through a hypocritical speech, it is waging a war against the kind of terrorism that may damage or interfere with its oil interests. It is not fighting against the terrorism perpetrated by murderers such as Orlando Bosh, Posada Carriles, Basulto, Otto Reich, and others of its same sort against our noble people since the first day of the victorious and enlightening January of 1959.
Cuba, our beautiful and beloved Island, which has been able to put up resistance thanks to the strong will of its people and the genius of that person who has dedicated his entire life to struggle for the happiness of his country, has always followed a clean and honest policy in compliance with the migration accords that were signed with the United States. We have never violated anything that was agreed upon, we have never persecuted or mistreated anyone. We have never put any obstacles to the re-incorporation of any person to his or her previous job. This is the truth, and the truth makes us strong and invincible.
Deception, the sinister patrimony of the present US administration, is the last resort left for Mr. Bush to try to justify the murderous Cuban Adjustment Act, a miscreation that lacks any ethical or humanitarian rationale. It is, in fact, a real shame and a major source of concern for the American people to realize that their president, who was imposed by the followers of Batista in Florida, is an inveterate irresponsible and a liar who allows for the violation of the famous "Anti-terrorist Shield" designed to protect his people, only on the basis of his electoral compromise with the mobsters who outshine Ariel Sharon.
Let no one be mistaken about it. The day when we resign to our freedom, our dignity, our independence, our honor of steadfast revolutionaries, all Cuban illegal immigrants would be as much despised, mistreated, beaten, humiliated and finally sent back as today are the Haitians, Mexicans, and other citizens from the poor countries of our hemisphere. Then there would be no more Cuban Adjustment Act.
The imperial government that tosses and turns with the counterrevolutionary mob is not in the least human in its own treatment to other peoples. Those who during 44 years have tried to make a whole people to surrender out of hunger, diseases and pain, something that they also do in other parts of the world, can not be described any better but as savage murderers. Should there be an atom of justice in this world, they should be tried for having committed crimes against humankind, as the most notorious terrorists ever to be known by history.
Sooner than later, peoples will rise, as Cuba did, against so much dishonor and injustice in the planet. The empire will be shaken and it will become unsustainable. The truth will still be our combat flag.
The genocidal policy against Cuba, which is based on mean political and imperial interests, is the best example of the inhumane and vicious essence of imperialism, and the feverish mind, full of hatred and contempt against human beings of its rulers.
Our country, which has so many times been attacked and a victim of the terrorism that all these sinister characters are said to fight, has not but struggled for the happiness of its people, its health, its culture, and has shed much light and created much hope for all peoples of the world at this sad and dark moment facing humankind.
What other country in the world can love and care more for its children?
Cuba, a paradigm of solidarity with all peoples of the world, will never cease to send health and happiness to all the poor people in this planet, and will never give up in its struggle against illnesses and pain . The UN vote against the blockade is an expression of gratitude and recognition from all peoples to Cuba’s everlasting example. We have wanted to cast our fate with all the poor people on earth, for a more just world, and with that infinite confidence in victory, we shall overcome.
We will never resign to our freedom, our independence and our sovereignty. The ideas and the principles with which socialism has pervaded the hearts of all of us, free men and women, will be the most valuable treasure to be guarded by millions of proud Cubans, ready to make the ultimate sacrifice for our homeland and Fidel.
Cuba will continue to be free for ever, and its truth will rise to the very top of the altar, to the glittering image of the heroes of our homeland, to fall with an added strength upon the gross lies of the deceitful mobsters of Washington.
Glory for ever to the values and principles which have made Cuba a monument to truth and justice!
Long-live Free Cuba!
Iroel Sanchez Espinosa, President of the Cuban Book Institute
Commander in Chief,
Nothing that happens in the United States should be of any surprise to us. We know them only too well, since the prophetic vision of Martí, which was confirmed, beyond any doubt, by decades of interference and dependence, up until the heavy toll on the lives of the victims of sabotages, pirate attacks, and biological aggressions after 1959.
But all of a sudden, the perpetrators of such feats have become the leaders of a world war against terrorism, with the criminal and enthusiastic collaboration of their long-standing ally Osama Bin Laden, which is a great paradox in a country where many terrorists are walking in freedom by virtue of a state policy that is tolerant and rewarding to them.
It rewards terrorists with the freedom of complicity enjoyed in Miami by people like Orlando Bosh, Basulto, and their cronies from the Foundation.
It rewards terrorists by incarcerating five Cubans who were protecting us from the extremist groups who have not ceased to perpetrate actions against Cuba.
It rewards terrorists by leaving air piracy acts to remain unpunished.
To President Bush, air pirates are those persecuted who flee from communism; however, those who flee from the capitalist dependence that leaves no possible way out, should be rejected and even murdered. Those who hope to live the American dream, dazzled by the hundreds of thousands of hours of idealized images exported to the world by the commercial propaganda of the developed capitalism, are relentlessly sent back to the nightmare of the Third World.
The Champion of anti-terrorism stated this very clearly: with Cuba we follow a different policy, and that is why the perpetrators of the crime off Barbados, the kidnappers of boats and the hijackers of planes live a happy life and are acclaimed in Miami. There they welcome any occasional pirate as a hero. For the victims of consumerism and drugs, overcrowded schools, and street violence, they spare policy brutality and imprisonment. For the poor black and Hispanic majority that is filling up their prisons, there is no such Adjustment Act, but the racial and classist adjustment of the law, which results in the biggest penal population in the world.
And as for the dissidence, just silence. That is the fate that the empire reserves for intelligence and thoughts. The appeal made by some of its most enlightened intellectuals against war was published by the US press on a paid page of a single newspaper four months later. Nobody ever since has spoken about that manifest. Not a single TV channel has made any comment about it, and there is not one foreign correspondent in North America to investigate why has this happened in the country that champions freedom of the press.
Not a single Western embassy has been courting them. They have not received any funds from the Agency for International Development or the National Foundation for Democracy: the nice and contemporary facade of the CIA. They only do as their conscience dictate, they do not take orders from any diplomat of a foreign power who pays to place its own ideas into the mercenary mouths of its local puppets.
American officials know only too well how can this be done. They did it in Eastern Europe and they are trying to transfer that same experience to this Caribbean Island, but all to no avail. Their diplomatic paradigm is Otto Reich –a terrorist who was involved in the recent coup détat in Venezuela and the dirty war in Nicaragua- who recently expelled four Cuban diplomats, as a token of the electoral campaign in Florida.
In his demagogic speech, Bush and his Reich spoke about freedom for Cuba:
And to them we say, as we did in 1868 and 1895, and during Girón and the October Crisis.
Long Live Free Cuba!
Homeland or Death,
We shall overcome!
Grettel Rafuls Trujillo, 9th grade Pioneer, Junior High School "Ruben Martinez Villena", Havana
It is impossible to forget the way in which, from this same battleground, one year ago, on November 27, 2001, Cuban children and adolescents drew the attention of the world; the moment when, with all the strength in our hearts and our voices, we echoed the pain of a group of Cuban families after the loss of thirteen children, whose death resulted from the irresponsible attitude of the adults who had forced them to leave illegally from our country, as well as from the genocidal policy applied by the imperial government against Cuba, the best example of which being the implementation of the murderous Cuban Adjustment Act.
We claim for justice out of great anger, because deep in our hearts we feel the pain of knowing that we had been deprived from priceless treasures.
As a Cuban youngster living in the present times, entertaining the same dreams, aspirations, worries, and desire to live life to the full as any other youngster my age in this world, but with a much more accurate vision of today’s humankind thanks to the education provided to me by the Revolution, and of the ethical concepts and principles that are taught under a socialist society, I support the considerations and opinions of all the pioneers from my generation.
Do we, Cuban pioneers, who enjoy the benefits of an unusual revival of creation in the fields of education, culture, and the arts, have any need to become depositaries of the apparent charities of the government of the United States, as different from the rest of Latin Americans?
The answer is quite evident, for there is an abysmal difference between the potential to excel for a Cuban child from the moment it is born and that of any child anywhere in this planet.
We are speaking about a new Cuba, but not the one suggested by the fantastic virtual reality of Bush. We are speaking about a new Cuba that has reaffirmed its socialist vocation, that is aware of the need to implement renovating projects to revitalize, legitimize, and pervade human beings with a thirst for knowledge; a new Cuba that is trying through every possible means to organize its economy in such a way so there could be no hurricane that could wipe out the smiles, hopes and satisfactions from the face of any dwarf prince for having a school equipped with the technical means that would make it easier and further enrich the educational process. All those children who die in the quest for a promised paradise are forced to resign from this wonderful homeland.
It is this bitter sentence that is saddening to all of us, who do enjoy from the magic of the country that is being rediscovered by all of our people.
Is there any right to clip the wings of those who are so eager to do new things, given the innocence and the happiness of their age?
Culture is the only weapon that will never become obsolete, no matter how much updated the war industry may be. That was the educational message that was conveyed to all youths who neither worked nor studied. We have reached the point of creating a job that seemed unthinkable some years ago: that of studying.
The revolution that is going on in all our junior high schools, the new strategies designed by the country to provide youth with good clean entertainment, the giant challenge to take the universities to all the municipalities, the refurbishing of all schools in the capital, which will be extended to all the schools in the country, the fact that today we can all have TV sets, VCRs, and personal computers in all our classrooms, are undeniable evidence of how much is being done in Cuba to improve the educational level of the people, which means that the quality of their lives will improve too.
If we value what we have, if we are aware of the way in which we should defend all that we have achieved, is because we have enough reason for judgment to conclude that we are privileged precisely for having been born in Cuba.
It breaks our heart to see that most of the world’s children and youth resort to alcoholism, pornography, the consumerism that alienates their minds, and drug-addiction as a form of entertainment, fostered by the capitalist system. However, Cuban pioneers are addicts to love, reading, friendship, joy, and the pleasure of being happy.
I urge the mobsters and traitors based in Miami to review their concepts of terrorism and freedom. For, either theirs do not agree with ours or they see no convenience in such agreement.
And to those criminals who, by mere chance, were born here, those who have shamefully resigned to the traditions of struggle of our people by adopting the obnoxious attitude of the Cuban American National Foundation, those who accuse us of violating human rights, those for whom there is no other law but money, we will say, as expressed by our Apostle, that traitors are the ones who take for themselves all the honors, in front of those who are the embodiment of homeland.
Pioneers for Communism!
We will be like Che!
Elizabeth Mirabal Llorens, Student, 11th grade, "Vladimr Ilich Lenin" School
People of Cuba;
The battle that we are all waging is enhanced day after day. The strong belief that we are invincible is confirmed simply because Cuba feels an ambassador of the undeniable truth. The voice and the arm of the homeland will not give in, they will not put the sword down, for plunging it into the mud of capitulation would be worse than surrendering; it would cast an all out shame over the people who has struggle for so long against ignorance and injustice. Our people can dare to say that the shadow cast by the eagle should not cover the world.
History teaches us, provides us with reason for judgment, compiles facts, and links its own origins to the present to envisage the future. History has taught us that the birds of pray have not lost sight of their target. The wounds are still open, and the dagger still keeps its poison. It all depends on the terminology that is used. What was in the past the "ripe fruit" policy has now become the Cuban Adjustment Act.
The facts that have moved us all, evidence, beyond any doubt, that those evil purposes remain unchanged, add up to a new violation of the laws of our own country as well as of several international conventions. It has been one of the most serious and criminal violations ever perpetrated and promoted by a government that has dared to call himself an advocator of human rights and a major opponent against terrorism, a scourge that is distorting the skin of the planet.
The kind of piracy that outshines Jacques de Sores, the hijacking of a Cuban airliner, whose final destination was Miami, add up to a long list of misdeeds. Fortunately, this time no one died, but all these Cubans could have been those who continue to die in the Florida Straits. And this is no lie.
Our people have known of many other examples of this. This hijacking will give the lie to anyone who may think otherwise. The US government has given itself a lie by welcoming those who risk their own lives driven by the popularity of a murderous law and attracted by the dazzling prosperity that colossal and luxurious nation has been boasting of since the time of the American International Conference in 1889, in the presence of the delegates that came from the lands of Juárez, Sucre, Hidalgo, Morelos, Bolívar, the kind of prosperity that was envisaged by Martí, when he refused to consign the Quetzal and the beloved Inca ruins to oblivion.
The Cuban-American mob, which enjoys the full support for things that could seem unconceivable to humankind, shows complacence. The only interest they pursue, that of enhancing their ego by perpetrating a politically degrading incident, has been satisfied under the diabolic and subtle guise of death. Those who deport other immigrants claiming their own protection turn a blind eye to the protection of their own people.
There are many daily flights carrying many American passengers heading for Cuba. They could very well be victims of a terrible and unfortunate accident. Cuba has punished those who in the past used to hijack planes from the United States to Cuba.
Isn’t the US government moved by this constructive and just attitude adopted by our government?
In what remote place has the government of the United States lost the dignity of the forefathers of that country, namely Lincoln, the pious eyes lumberjack, and Martin Luther King?
How can they speak against terrorism at prestigious international fora when they have been, are, and will continue to be the nurturing ground of its ingeniousness?
We should recall the words expressed by one of our most enlightened politicians when he said that to refuse to solve a problem that could become the source of future evils is like harvesting havoc for future generations. He said that we should live our times, struggle, speak the truth with courage, and dismantle the impudent complacence.
Today we appeal to the inflamed discourse, the words that provide contribution and clarification, explanation and strength, to that very carefully selected language that results from the power of knowledge, culture, the greater awareness of our people that was forged during the battle at the Sierra Maestra mountains and then in the valleys, to condemn all the lies with that same language that we learned to speak when the beast of hatred showed its paws in Barbados.
They who deprived a promising group of offspring from their own lives are still to be punished, and even a special date has been designated to commend them for their misdeeds. The only days of special significance to us are these, when we remember the tragedy of so many Cubans who have been victims of terrorism, the same common, ordinary terrorism that threatens us all.
This is the stand of all Cuban students, who are the main pillars of Freedom, its most faithful army, for they know that stars do not disappear even if they are eclipsed by the Sun. This is the stand of all workers, children, farmers, intellectuals and scientists. There is only one flag and only one combat front. Our unifying, demolishing, infinite claim is hereby reiterated against the Cuban Adjustment Act, against the blockade, for the freedom of our Five Heroes imprisoned by the Empire, for the solidarity with all peoples, living up to the oath that we made in Baraguá, to convey culture to every single citizen.
Cuba is standing on its feet. Cuba has conquered its independence and could not be placed in shackles again. Cubans have been taught the principles of decorum and we have all chosen the same star. The star of Marti, the one that illuminates and kills, the rebel star on Che´s beret, the lonely star of our national flag, the star that crowns Cuba. And that star irradiates its light to show us the way, the only possible way, the one that leads Ever Onward to Victory!
Claudia Felipe Torres, National Chairwoman of the Medium-Level Education Students Federation
"The platform of truth will always remain when all other platforms fall," said our José Martí. "The truth has a simple language, it has a secret force that convinces, enthralls and conquers."
Our homeland beckons us to raise the truth, unique and unquestionable, to the place it deserves. Being the obstinate bearers of truth for decades has not been easy, no matter how altruistic the task of brandishing it.
We are summoned by the evident crisis of truth provoked by the North that scorns us; so much have they ill-treated, dirtied, hackneyed and hidden it. All spaces are valid for their characteristic trade of deceit. The big multinationals of misinformation, the paradigmatic free American press, is undoubtedly free to lie.
The bearers of truth are banished as befits the imperial tradition, four of them, worthy sons of this land, were recently forced to leave the domains of the greenback monarch in the name of the old, recurrent politics of l’etat se moi.
However, the truth, tarnished, twisted, incarcerated, banished, negotiates the obstacles bathed in light.
The truth beckons us in this space where sea and sky come together in their tropical splendor. But we are not beckoned by the festivity of their beauty. How often they have been dressed in mourning!
How many lives have been lost in the Florida straits in the name of the besmirched truth! The sky has also presented itself without its heavenly regalia to bring us fear in murderous bombs and pirates worthy of the outrages of their ancestors. The American people know very well that the skies can dress up as death.
But the Cuban exception is a story-telling resource. The irrationality and double standards assumed by the American government in the last few days requires the preparation of a linguistic and legal dictionary that could well be entitled Dictionary of the Royal Academy of Cynicism.
It turns out that in the case of Cuba, the diversion of aircraft is worthy of applause and crime is an honorable act, the mobsters are patriots and scientists are designers of death, murderers are honest citizens and genuine leaders are tyrants; The people’s security is a concept in accordance with mean interests and human traffic has been given carte blanche. In short, truth is unnecessary and lies are indispensable.
The rest, not included in their dictionary of exceptions, the collateral effects of brutal neoliberalism, are the thousands of immigrants hunted like rats. They are not an effective instrument of propaganda: those who run up against the official border hordes are the fugitives of a system idealized and imposed by the United States.
Another exception, the defenders of truth, those who fight against the only possible terrorism, the heroes, are criminals in their dictionary. Five of them, behind bars, evoke what is most pure and clean in human essence, alien to the stink of the vengeful and resentful Miami gutter. Antonio universalizes our truth in his verses:
Know ye that so rejoice in your last ignominy
That in my boldness terror has no room
That in my honor injustice does not work
That in my virtue greed makes no dent
That in my truth dignity coexists
That in my love happiness always reigns.
The truth, yearned for during millennia, object of speculations and theories, denied and accepted, is as simple as the smile of a child or the infinite faith of a people. In defending truth there is no place for exhaustion; it is grateful and offers itself to everyone and convinces them without tricks or ornaments. No trench is small in the defense of truth. Sincere words, hands ready to grasp the earth, a rifle, a pen turn out to save it. Obstacles are futile and ephemeral. They have come in succession for more than forty years in our road to absolute freedom. As José Martí affirmed: "Poison oak grows in the field of an industrious man and the snake hisses from its hidden laird, but the Sun continues to shine in the realms of heavens and the truth continues unscathed its march over the earth."
Listen, mobsters, pirates, those who trade with lives, cynical rulers, we are an exception, we are the honorable exception of your constellation of dishonor, and our truth is multiplied into peoples who refuse to join your team of submissive nations. Your political tricks will have to face the courage of this people of giants.
Our sky will continue to be a luminous refuge of dreams and lofty clouds to be reached with our more than strong wings, and we warn the skeptics: This people will only die forging the impossible and realizing utopias. On the road to victory we may be offered the warm bed of the indolent. As the poet said, the road may be filled with chairs inviting us to rest.
Once the truth awakens, it will never sleep. And our truth has awakened and knows no other road than the road to victory.
Long live the Revolution
Freedom for our heroes
Long live our undefeated Commander-in-Chief
Homeland or Death, We shall overcome!
Miguel Manuel Fraga González, Deputy Chairman of the Federation of University Students, Faculty of Law, University of Havana
I come to this platform today with the immense pride of being Cuban, which means being part of this heroic people admired and respected throughout the world.
The Northern Empire, vain and arrogant, thinks that the world belongs to them. They impose their will and the rest of the planet must obey or face the consequences. Peace reigns where they decide it should, justice for them is the one they apply, democracy, the one they certify and control, the only terrorism they acknowledge as such is the terrorism that harms them. It would seem as if the United States of America only recognizes three categories of countries:
Cuba has occupied this latter category from Eisenhower to W. Bush, for not obeying their orders, for wanting to be truly free and independent. That is why we have been treated as enemies, although we have never been and will never be enemies of the American people. By means of a hostile, aggressive policy ten US administrations have tried to vanquish our people and destroy the Revolution. None of them have understood that the Revolution is the people itself, which transform society with its sacrifice and efforts day by day building a better future.
Our people have been ready to pay the high price of freedom, even with its blood! And it continues to fight today when the world is facing the threats of war.
Since September 11 of last year, Mr. W. Bush prides himself in leading a sacred war against terrorism. And I mean sacred, because that little gentleman W. Bush affirmed that in this war God was not neutral. It turns out that now the power of the United States does not only decide things on Earth but also in Heaven. It would be good to ask Bush senior if Allah or Buddha has been consulted. And I would ask Bush senior, not Bush junior, for fear that the latter might not know what deities I am talking about.
Mr. Bush, we know you owe that tragic September 11 a popularity you never had at the polls, because you are a president de facto not de jure; in other words, imposed.
Don’t be ignorant, Mr. Bush: Do you want culprits of terrorism? There you have all the administrations that were in power before you. There you have your own father, who gave his permission so that confessed; murderous, cowardly terrorists like Orlando Bosh can walk freely through the streets of Miami. This forceful and virile people shall never forget the Barbados crime! A crime which was masterminded by Orlando Bosh and Posada Carriles.
Do you want any more terrorists? There you have the anti-Cuban Miami mob with its cowardly, murderous and treacherous commandos Alfa 66, F 4 and Omega 7. Why don’t you arrest them and have them tried?
Put your lies aside and do true justice. Do not leave unpunished the murders and crimes of which my people and your people have been victims, including the recent hijacking of a Cuban aircraft. Regarding its perpetrator, we are only claiming for one thing: justice.
Mr. W. Bush, once I told you that you should change the initial of your middle name (in Spanish the double-u is dobleve, which can be taken to mean sees double or sees twofold) if you were not able to see the true power of the Cuban people. Today I’ll tell you more: Do you want to be able to use that initial proudly? Then, have courage and a sense of shame, let truth and peace reign rather than violence and war.
As history not only acquits the innocent but condemns the guilty, some day history will condemn them.
In our struggle, we will never forget those who have died! Eternal glory for them!
Our struggle is one of ideas and we are invincible in this struggle, for we have the courage, the dignity and other necessary virtues.
We are not afraid, because nobody here in Cuba surrenders and we have not lost hope!
The din of war shall be silenced by the voices of peoples that are claiming for peace!
Some day, sooner than later, that better world good people dream of will be a fact.
Until then, we will fight here as Che taught us to do:
Ever onward to victory!
Long live the heroic people of Cuba!
Long live Fidel!
Hassan Perez Casabona, Chairman of the University Student Federation
Men and women of a free, independent, sovereign homeland who have come here as the expression of a Revolution of the humble, by the humble and for the humble;
A people rich in history who for more than 134 years have been performing heroic deeds drenched with our blood and energies;
A people of titans;
Workers who are the masters of their factories;
Students for whom the revolution has conceived new educational and social programs, the Presidente Allende School, the Lenin School, a school for social workers and nurses, the universities of today and tomorrow, of the student movement,of more than 80 years, together, in a free homeland, always accompanied by our invincible Commander in Chief, a people of farmers, intellectuals, scientists, of those who are willing to offer our hearts for Cuba and for the world, of those who have made this tribune a place of combat that transcends barriers. We have come here to inaugurate the School for Latin American students or to protest against the murderous Cuban Adjustment Act on September 25th, 2000, or on May day to demand that the people of Porto Rico be independent and the withdrawal of the US Navy from Vieques on May 26th, 2001. Here we have also come to present the new members of the Young Communist Union with their membership card and here our young pioneers secondary and university students receive a book when they graduate, as a symbol of ideas and arguments.
Today, once again, the street and avenues are flooded with a massive demonstration of more than 150 000 persons. It is not possible to see where the last of our compatriots stands in this square vibrant with energy, passion and above all, with ideas, impetus and revolutionary fervor.
We will address three issues and as on previous occasions will expose each of the lies.
They accuse us of producing biological weapons which is a calumny, an infamy and an outrage against our people and our scientists who produce vaccines for our children to save their lives, to immunize them, to protect them so that Cuba can continue to be a beacon of hope. What we produce is dignity, the idea that another America is possible, that is what we produce in our laboratories, in our schools. We produce sports trainers who come here with Italian, Venezuelan and Brazilian teams to the International Baseball Championships. What we produce here is the morale of the peoples at each and every one of these institutions. No one believes these fallacies. The accusations against our people have been disproved on multiple occasions. It is time that they stop playing with a nation that has dedicated what no one else has done, namely, to save human lives, to save the lives of human beings in any latitude, without any prior conditions or barriers and by overcoming all sorts or hurdles.
They have expelled four diplomats from our Interest Section in Washington and from or Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York, accusing them of espionage, diplomats whose main purpose was the promotion of relations between the noble people of the United States, a people who is also cultured and 80% of the public opinion of that country supported the return of Elian Gonzalez, a people whom they want to deceive, whom they manipulate because they know that the blockade cannot last forever, because it is an act of genocide, a terrorist act.
Our four compatriots: Oscar, Machin, Francisco and Carlos are from the same lineage of Emperatori, a moral Quixote, this is the lineage of our true diplomats who contributed to the sounding success with 173 votes in favor of the lifting of the blockade at the United Nations and those who represent us at the Human Rights Commission. The only thing they promote is peace, solidarity, brotherhood and equality.. They only express the values of a Revolution, of a people with cultural, political knowledge as you very well know.
They will not be able to prevent our message from reaching out to the very hearts of US society. They cannot silence our voices. Everyday more youth, honest citizens, farmers, intellectuals, scientists, scholars, religious community leaders are able to witness the undeniable advances of the Revolution, of the Cuban people, of its programs and are truly impressed when they see what a poor, third world country can do for its fellow human beings.
They have released the hijacker of an aircraft and his accomplices, which sets a nefarious precedent by stimulating terrorist acts against our country and air-piracy which was invented against Cuba. Cuba has placed all its resources and determination in the struggle against terrorist actions.
Our people has all the information. It is familiar with the double standards of the White House when it comes to fighting terrorism. The President goes to Miami and embraces the most infamous Mafiosi and terrorists of the continent, at a fund gathering dinner that costs $ 25 000 a plate for the electoral campaign of his brother, as was already expressed here.
Our people is familiar with the criminal Cuban Adjustment Act which has caused the lives of many of our citizens. Our people knows that terrorism against Cuba was not invented on September 11, 2001.
We have lost 3 478 lives and 2 099 of our brothers and sisters have been maimed. The recent events have set a precedent which must be stopped in order to avoid more problems for the international community.
They speak of combating terrorism and every day we receive new proof of actions undertaken to subvert the internal order of our country in order to destroy the Revolution which is invincible,in order to destroy a people of heroes and we must be better prepared every day so that the international community will know that there is a policy for Cuba and another for the rest of the world.
We have seen the images of what happens to the Haitians. We know what happens to Mexican migrant workers who die trying to cross the boundaries of that country. Every year more Mexicans die in this endeavor than those who tried to cross the Berlin Wall in 40 years.
Our people have the necessary arguments. There is talk about the FTAA, which is none other than a mechanism of imperial domination. Yet they do not speak of regional integration but of the free flow of capital, goods and services. However, they do not speak of a free flow of persons.
This extraordinary demonstration once again unmasks the policy of the United States, and demands an end to the machinations, to the criminal Cuban Adjustment Act and to the blockade, for the same reasons that gave rise to the battle for the return of Elian Gonzalez, which have not ceased. That is why we swore the Baragua Oath which we carry out in our factories, schools and under the leadership of our invincible Commander in Chief.
The moral example of Cuba grows, from Doha to Dar es Salaam, from Damascus to Windhoek, from Bridgetown to Kuala Lumpur, from Monterey to Athens, from Bavaro to Malabo, whose Prime Minister graduated from a Cuban university, from Madrid to Guadalajara, from Los Angeles to Bolivia. The whole world supports the cause of the humble, of decency, sovereignty, independence and decorum of our people.
Down with the criminal Cuban Adjustment Act!
Long live the Commanders of the Revolution!
Long live our five heroes: Gerado, Fernando, Antonio, Ramon and Rene!
Long live Raul!
Long live our invincible Commander in Chief!
Long live of invincible Commander in Chief!
Socialism or Death,
Homeland or Death,
We shall overcome!
Ernesto Chico Véliz, Researcher of the Molecular Engineering Center
The US Immigration and Naturalization Service have once again let people who stole a Cuban plane go free... as they have done at other times with hijackers and murderers.
But these gentlemen of the INS can sleep calmly when they turn into a legal resident any criminal that comes from Cuba in a hijacked aircraft. They are protected by a law, a law that clearly discriminates against the millions of illegal Mexican immigrants, the more than 300,000 Salvadorans, the 160,000 Guatemalans and even the 100,000 Canadians that currently live in hiding within the United States, without any right or hope of ever obtaining citizenship.
Concerning this, the US President has said that all illegal immigrants are turned back, except Cubans. And to justify this obvious discrimination, he says that it is because Cubans are persecuted.
Who can believe this, Mr. President?
You know very well that the true persecuted are the masses of illegal Latin American immigrants, who cross the Rio Grande risking death in the desert, persecuted by your border guards, famous for their racist violence or by white ranchers, who seem to long for the massacres of Indians carried out by their ancestors while they were conquering the West.
No, Mr. President: a few days ago, the world was able to see on television that the truly persecuted are the illegal Haitian immigrants, who desperately ran toward the Miami shores, while your immigration officers hunted them down like animals in an operation reminiscent of a Hollywood movie.
You know very well, Mr. President, that those who are truly persecuted are the millions of poor people in the world - persecuted by hunger, by AIDS, by unemployment - who daily try to slip in illegally to enjoy the so-much publicized American dream, putting their lives at risk.
To justify the President’s statement, which nobody believes, a State Department official said that the president had made a mistake concerning the persecution to Cubans.
But our people knows that Mr. Bush’s mistake is not a naïve one, but a malicious lie Because lies is what you hear from the White House microphones whenever they talk about Cuba. But it can’t be otherwise when they put a mobster like Otto Reich in charge of their foreign policy for this hemisphere, a lunatic who can’t stop hollering that biological weapons are being made in Cuba, while covering his ears not to hear the opinions of American scientists who have visited our institutes and know the truth about science in Cuba.
But, Mr. President, why? Why is there a law that discriminates against the more than 5 million illegal immigrants that live in your country, while favoring a few privileged ones, even if the latter are terrorists, aircraft hijackers or murderers?
If there is "probable cause for persecution" in Cuba, as your lying official states, why doesn’t this office behind me issue legal visas to the alleged persecuted, … thus avoiding the death at sea of children and innocent people?
Explain to me, Mr. President, how an airplane departing from Cuba can go through 500 million dollars worth of satellites, radars, anti-aircraft bases and all sorts of artifacts paid for by US taxpayers for their air security, and land unpunished in US territory endangering the lives of American citizens.
You know the truth, Mr. Bush, but you cannot say it to the White House microphones. But we can say it!! The truth is that there is a mob that needs that law, that Miami mob that is to blame for the election fraud in Florida that put you in the White House. And let us say it loud and clear: you are indebted to that mob.
The truth is, Mr. President, that the aircraft stolen from Cuba can irresponsibly cross the US airspace because you sold the security of the United States to that same mob, on this occasion in exchange for your brother’s reelection as governor of Florida.
That is another truth that is not convenient for you to say in the White House. It is not a matter of mistake on your part, you simply do not want to say the truth and this people knows it.
A word of advice, Mr. President: Ask for the help of your Immigration Service, of all your border guards and of that nest of spies in that building behind me, make sure by all means that the visas of those Cuban-born mobsters do not expire. Make no mistake about this, Mr. President: that mob, that makes dollars from the death of Cubans at sea, will never be allowed back in Cuba!!
And more than 100,000 Cubans have gathered here today to shout it.
Homeland or death,
We shall overcome!
Gonzalo González Ochoa, Corvette Captain, Revolutionary Armed Forces
We are gathered here to once again denounce the irresponsible policy of the United States which moves some Cuban citizens to become involved in venturesome, criminal events and acts of piracy for the sole purpose of leaving this beautiful island to seek refuge in the supposed country of opportunities.
The hijacking of an aircraft can only be perpetrated by unscrupulous people, violators of the most elementary safety rules of air traffic, who endanger the lives of people including that of an innocent child that was dragged to such a perilous venture.
Fortunately we did not have to mourn any human losses. But that is no reason for not repudiating this vandalistic act, because throughout these years many families have cried and suffered the loss of a dear one risked in an illegal departure. Such was the case of the death of two young students whose innocence and ingenuousness and the bad advice they received made them think that the landing gear of an airplane was the safest way to leave the country, or the pain caused by murderous hands that cut short the lives of praiseworthy men who preferred to die rather than betray their homeland. I bring to mind the names of combatants such as Gabriel Lamoth Caballero, a 19-year-old youth who was murdered when the transport boat Baraguá was hijacked, also the youths Yuri, Orosman, Rafael and Rolando Pérez Quintosa victims of the events in the Tarará nautical base and Lieutenant Roberto Aguilar Reyes whose murderer walks freely though the streets of Miami.
The United States Government is to blame for these crimes,. Because it maintains in effect and systematically enforces the Cuban Adjustment Act, which, with its excessive privileged treatment for propaganda purposes encourages illegal emigration and human trafficking from Cuba.
The worst of it is that many of those men and women who try to leave illegally have applied for visas at the US Interest Section and have generally been denied permission to enter the United States, for not being highly qualified professionals, or for having criminal records or for not having a political reason to emigrate or simply for their social or racial background. But, on the other hand, if those same citizens use whatever means they can to reach American soil, they are automatically received without any demands or requirements, in fact violating all international migratory agreements.
There will always be people everywhere that will risk their lives to immigrate illegally, but what cannot be justified is encouraging them to do it, because that constitutes a horrendous crime.
Cubans: the US Government should not think that we are so naïve as to think that the supposed privileges that they give illegal immigrants coming from Cuba is for the purpose of reuniting families or improving their economic situation. We know that behind all this hides the confrontation with the Cuban Revolution, that behind all this hides the limitless, irrational hatred toward the most just and human social system, which is socialism. It is clear for us that the revolutionary process of this island is an obstacles for the expansionist, hegemonic intentions of the unstable and brutal North. But we will yield to nothing and to no one, because we will defend with unity, dignity, honor and courage what we have achieved until now.
We do not want an adjustment act for Cuba, as we do not want it for the other countries. What we are demanding is that the differences between the north and the south, between the rich and the poor be eliminated, what we are demanding is a world of justice.
The president of the United States should know that Cuba will not tire of unmasking the real intentions of the White House. The world is beginning to react, and the overwhelming international rejection to the blockade against our country is proof of this.
No matter how many criminal laws you enforce against us, the love for our homeland will be greater and greater also our fighting spirit and our desire to triumph.
For us Cubans, the road we have t follow is clear: we shall continue to fight against the murderous laws and against terrorism, and we shall continue to march
Ever onward to victory!
Down with the Cuban Adjustment Act!
Lazaro Barredo Medina, Reporter of the "Trabajadores" Newspaper
How can the Bush Administration continue to speak about air security to the US public opinion after it has such a dangerous precedent by leaving unpunished the people who hijacked an aircraft in an act piracy under the protection of the murderous Cuban Adjustment Act that only servers to promote disorder, violence and the risking of lives and in no way benefits the US society, as its government will never be able to restore discipline on its coasts as long as that Act is in force?
For how long will they be able to fool the people of the United States about an alleged war against terrorism while they consent to terrorism against Cuba and, worse still, they quite naturally admit that they will continue to engage in it in the future?
The Bush Administration is shamelessly compromising the legitimate best interest of the US people to please the Miami terrorist mob. It is that mob that intends to keep dictating the US administration political decisions on Cuba; a mob that resorts to blackmail, insults and threats against the Us politicians who speak in favor of changing the failed policy on Cuba; a mob that impudently burns the US flag and remains unpunished; it is mob that promotes violence from Southern Florida and is responsible for over 250 terrorist actions in the United States itself.
All that has been done against Cuba exposes that Administration’s hypocrisy in its much-extolled war against terrorism and can turn into a very dangerous, aggressive spiral in the framework of the strategies of intervention or preemptive war, or of "constructive destruction" as they have called their actions against more than 60 countries.
Their obsession with Cuba, their interference against Cuba and the whole policy to destroy the Revolution are not new.
However, the situation with the Bushes is much more complex. It is so not only because Bush owes the US Presidency to the Miami mob. When W. Bush said to the Miami terrorist mob in front of TV cameras that he would never forget what he owed them he was voicing a vow of loyalty from all the Bush family.
That servers to explain the notorious and obvious double standard of that Administration: the Bushes have always been the godfathers of the Miami terrorist mob.
Almost since 1959 George Bush, Sr., was involved in the attempts to overthrow the Revolution and personally put together one of the groups for the mercenary brigade that invaded Playa Girón. At that time he grew close to notorious terrorists like Luis Posada Carriles and Jorge Mas Canosa, whose records of activities are well-known; he became a very close friend of Félix Rodríguez Mendigutía, a.k.a. "El Gato" (the Cat), who publicly brags about Bush’s mansion being readily open for him, who was involved in the Iran-Contras scandal and who has repeatedly been accused of involvement in attempts against the life of comrade Fidel.
George Bush, Jr., has put in key positions of the US relations with the Western hemisphere and of other significant government agencies dealing with the policy on Cuba more than 25 representatives of the Miami mob, who are using their government authority to try to subvert and destabilize the Cuban government. Such is the case of Otto Reich who has been questioned and repudiated as Undersecretary of State; of Oscar Franco –a former assistant to Ileana Ros-Lethinen –appointed in Miami Director for Latin America in the United States Agency for International Development, who is bent on spending the US taxpayers’ money to fabricate a counterrevolution in Cuba; and of Colonel Emilio González at the National Security Council. With President Bush’s connivance these mob representatives have settled inside the US government and will go all the way to prevent any improvement of relations, thus going contrary to the demands of many sectors of the US society.
In 1976, when George Bush, Sr., was the head of the Central Intelligence Agency, a CIA agent – Orlando Bosh -founded and Comandos de las Organizaciones Revolucionarias Unidas (United Revolutionary Organizations’ Commandoes)(CORU). FBI and CIA documents have revealed that the CORU was involved in tens of bomb explosions, including the heinous bombing of a Cubana Airlines plane off coasts of Barbados that killed 73 innocent people.
When in 2001 the brothers George and Jeb Bush were actively seeking in Miami money and support for the presidential campaign among the worst of terrorist in this hemisphere, some of those who granted them money published a so-called Declaration of Principles in the libel run by the mob whereby they asserted their right to continue to resort to violence and terrorism against Cuba by "every means of struggle".
In August 1989, President George Bush, Sr., traveled to Miami support the "big bad she-wolf" as she ran for Congress. It was quite interesting, as Mrs. Ileana Ros made the release of Orlando Bosh one of her electoral promises at a time when the Department of Justice and the FBI had labeled Orlando Bosh as "the No. 1 terrorist" . Parenthetically, the head of her election campaign was none other than Jeb Bush.
Ever more curious was the speech by President Bush, Sr., in support of Mrs. Ros-Lethinen. Before the most notable representatives of the anti-Cuban mob, he – most amazingly – denounced terrorism and assured that those who engaged in and up terrorism would be pursued anywhere in the world.
He was meeting with terrorists to denounce terrorism. On top of it all, a few months later –as prove that the whole thing was brewed in that meeting –and at the request of Ileana Ros, of his son Jeb Bush, of Mas Canosa, of senator Connie Mack, and of Monsignor Agustín Román, that same President who promised to pursue terrorists and those who shelter them anywhere in the world released Orlando Bosh, who the FBI and Justice Department had labeled "the No. 1 terrorist", and let him walk free on the streets of Miami to openly plot his criminal designs.
And what a coincidence! Eleven years later President George Bush, Jr., has repeatedly uttered almost his father’s exact words before the Miami terrorists. Many times he has said that those who shelter terrorists are themselves as terrorist; and he said so again a few days ago in New Jersey during the election campaign.
More coincidentally still, W. Bush issued an executive order a few months ago to free two notorious Miami terrorism, namely José Dionisio Súarez Esquivel, a. K. a. "Cepillo" (the Brush), and Virgilio Pablo Paz Romero. They were both the perpetrators of a brutal terrorist attack in the very capital of the Unite States; they were prosecuted and convicted by a US court under charges of terrorism after they murdered former Chilean foreign minister Orlando Letelier and Ronnie Moffitt, a US citizen.
It is worthwhile to recall two further examples of the Bushes’ fidelity.
President George Bush, Sr., traveled to Miami on May 20, 1992 to meet with the cream of the terrorism mob in an electoral meeting. On that occasion –as the TV recordings of the time show – he even assured that he would be "the first US President to visit a free Cuba".
Ten years later, on May 20, 2002, President George Bush, Jr., also flew to meet with the terrorist of Miami to promise them that he will keep a hard-line policy against our country. He did so in such terms that the mob leaders euphorically stated that had they written President Bush’s speech they would have said exactly the same.
The sheltering of terrorist in Miami, the impunity granted to kidnappers and air pirates, the encouragement to illegal migration, radio and television warfare, slanders, deceit and lies at the core of every pretex-be it electronic warfare, the purchase of weapons from China, the production of biological weapons, anything will find room in those feverish minds that try every means possible to degrade us in the eyes of the US people; and the Bush family has shown to be at the center of that perfidious design.
The Miami mob and the extreme right in the United States are also desperately and strongly working to device plots and measures against our Homeland, to fabricate an internal counterrevolution, and to that end they allocate millions of dollars to promote subversion and destabilization in our country.
They feel impotent before our resistance, our moral example, for we are giving the world increasing proofs thas it is possible to enjoy truly democratic governance and a fair, equitable social development in a world marked by uncertainty, chaos and a galloping, unavoidable disaster. We are giving increasing proofs that it is possible to have politically ingenuity and make headway although the most powerful government on Earth is set to do away with our freedom and our independence.
And for that we will never be forgiven by the Bushes and their acolytes.
They will never forgive us our morals and our dignity.
They will never forgive us for living up to our ethic and our principles.
They will never forgive us our pride in meeting here as this crowd for more than 100 000 Cubans to cry
Long live Socialism!
Long live the Revolution!
Long live Fidel!
Homeland or death,
We shall overcome!
Rogelio POLANCO, EDITOR OF THE JUVENTUD REBELDE NEWSPAPER
The end justifies the jeans –that is the Machiavellian maxim the US government uses against Cuba. It does not matter how irrational, illegal and immoral the behavior chosen by US rulers is, as long as it serves as a political loot in their obsessive subversive efforts against the Cuban Revolution.
The serious arbitrariness we are denouncing today shows us a colossal irony: the US authorities, whose nation is still shocked by the criminal hijacking of several commercial airliners that were turned into deadly missiles is now, dangerously and surprisingly, encouraging other people with no scruples whatsoever to highjack planes themselves, with the aim of putting up a repudiable propaganda show whose main beneficiaries are, again, Miami and the anti-Cuban terrorist Mafia.
The nation that is spending billions to militarize its borders more and more, which is closing its air space to the first intruder, which is ready to down flying aircraft in a matter of minutes when the slightest incident occurs, that very nation is opening its sky and airports to petty hijackers only because the plane treacherously hijacked from its route is Cuban.
How can this cynical exception be justified before the US public opinion, which is subjected to the panic of systematic alarms of alleged terrorist attacks?
How can this great inconsistency be justified before the millions of passengers of that country who have to put up with long waits in airports and thorough security check-ups scanning even pebbles in a shoe?
To the US authorities, there are good and bad terrorists, and now they are trying to present good hijackers to us. According to their perfidious interpretation, the hijackers of a Cuban plane do not steal but run away; they do not take an aircraft off its course but escape; they are terrorists but defectors; they do not act against US national security but are dissidents.
In the course of history, such a strange and immoral way of judging good and evil and of applying international law has backlashes many times against their own country. US complicity with airplane hijackings was one of those diabolical creatures against Cuba and that, like a political Frankenstein, turned against its dark creators.
The hijackings of 51 Cuban aircraft which, almost without any exception, were taken off from their course to the United States between 1959 and 2001 have brought death or injuries for quite a number of pilots, guards and other persons, as well as the destruction of or damages upon several aircraft, many of which were never returned to our country.
Such impunity was the main reason for the long series of planes that were hijacked and taken from the United States to Cuba and whose numbers were a striking 71 between 1968 and 1984. The historic fact cannot be refuted: only the exemplary and effective agreement proposed by our country and the measures taken against hijackers made it possible to do away with such a cruel practice.
What would happen under the present circumstances if that criminal scourge begins again? Where is the responsibility of the authorities of the country having the biggest commercial fleet in the world, the thickest air traffic and the largest airport system on earth? How can the safety of air space and of international corridors over Cuba be preserved if piracy is encouraged? What would the United States tell world public opinion if a fatal incident takes place? What is the right of the United States to turn into a meaningless document the Convention for repressing the illicit takeover of aircraft signed in 1970, of which the US is a party and that typifies clearly the hijacking of aircraft as a terrorist crime?
The US people should know what the harsh truth is: the government of the United States will be held accountable for an absence of air safety over the Florida Straits if it does not abide by international laws, and the more so if it does not revoke the Cuban Adjustment Act, the infamous letters of marque for kidnapping and killing.
The United States wants to prevent the exposing before the eyes of the world of this untenable contradictory standard by which air space terrorists are exonerated and rewarded in the context of its alleged world anti-terrorist crusade. That is why we are here, to strongly expose injustice and deceit.
Once again, the hegemonic power which does not accept the independence and sovereignty of its small neighbor is using aircraft in a criminal way to implement its stubborn and badly-reputed policy toward Cuba. In the past, it was from planes that our cities and airports were bombed, counterrevolutionary armed bands were given supplies, our cane fields were burned, our airspace was violated, electronic espionage was carried out, bioterrorist actions were done and the innocent sons and daughters of these people were assassinated.
They could not achieve their goals then, as they will not be capable of subduing our unshakable will to overcome now.
Arleen Rodríguez Derivet, journalist
…DYING FROM THEIR OWN POISON
As the distinguished American lawyer Leonard Weinglass remarked, some things only happen in Miami. Over 200 Haitians who fetched up on the shores of Key Biscayne in southern Florida on 31 October and jumped overboard from their grounded boat in a desperate attempt to land, got a rough reception from the men of the Miami-Dade immigration authorities who captured them.
Exhausted by a long and tortuous journey - during which several had drunk their urine to survive the hunger and thirst - these emigrants from the Western hemisphere's poorest country shocked American public opinion. TV news reports showed men, women (some pregnant) and children of various ages leap from the deck and frantically swim or run to the nearby expressway, only to be captured and subdued like the slaves arriving in the America of the colonial era.
The hapless travellers had been told about a law of automatic asylum based on the degree of wetness of the migrant's feet. Someone may have taken the trouble to explain to them, as the handcuffs went on and physical abuse accompanied their subjection, that the "dry feet, wet feet" criterion offers no comfort to those fleeing starvation and still believe in the American dream. It's a mantrap, designed exclusively to catch Cubans.
"Starvation's no reason to give asylum to anyone" an official said, with the traditional austerity applied to matters of Haitian immigration by a country supposedly a nation of immigrants. His words also chimed in with the policy of the State Department, whose Office of Western Hemisphere Affairs ignores Haiti - except for blocking investment, as an "instructive" means of forcing US-style democracy on the country. The official's comment angered the Haitian community, which has never been taken seriously by the city fathers and local politicians.
However, the incident coincided with state elections, and a more concerned tone regarding this local drama was detectable in the opportunistic speeches of the vote-seekers. Traditionally more sensible, the INS corrected that uncouth earlier pronouncement, saying that "all illegal immigrants must be sent back immediately, for humanitarian reasons". And for the first time the US authorities explicitly acknowledged something that Cuba has affirmed time and again: accepting illegal immigration encourages criminal people-smuggling and risky attempts in precarious craft, which every year turns the Caribbean into an anonymous cemetery for hundreds of migrants.
However, the Immigration and Naturalization Service itself, constrained by the silliest law ever devised, promptly contradicted its words by its actions. Just a couple of weeks after the Haitians' landfall and detention, a small group of illegals from Cuba was received in the same Miami-Dade county, where the event was made into a propaganda showpiece with the promise of instant asylum. This despite their having arrived by virtue of crimes as serious as stealing and diverting a Cuban civil aircraft, and preventing its interception by carrying women and a little girl, in the commission of an act of piracy clearly outlawed by all the pertinent international laws.
But the truth of the INS's own statement highlighted the criminal basis of this Adjustment Act, which grants Cuban's the undignified privilege of entering the United States by the back door. By illegal means, obliging them to commit crime. By a back door that has been closed and double-locked to other immigrants since the 11th September attacks on New York and Washington.
The most elementary logic raises the question: if the policy is to send back Haitians and other migrants (Mexicans, Guatemalans or any other inhabitant of the black, Indian, poor, despairing South), in the name of what philosophy are Cuban illegals accepted and constantly encouraged to endanger their lives? Is it that the lives of Cubans are of no account in the eyes of the US authorities, or that Cubans are not human beings? So what are they?
It's obvious that the Cuban would-be immigrants are valued merely as pawns in a game of political pressure, hostages under a crazy policy that encourages illegal, dangerous migration attempts; a policy whose aim is to protect the interests of a clique of mafiosi who have spent the last 40-odd years fostering the perverse illusion that they will become the new US-puppet rulers of Cuba following the downfall of the revolutionary regime. A mafia that ruthlessly manipulates the family feelings of the émigrés, feeding on the incurable homesickness of those who left their homeland in search of something they still haven't found. A mafia that is being utterly defeated by history and the onslaught of nothing but truths, that doesn't realize that it's fate will be to die of its own poison.
Cuba's memory is long enough to recall that before 1959, its sons who emigrated illegally to the United States were accorded the treatment now reserved for the rest of those from Latin America: sent straight back and deprived of eligibility to apply legally, for ten years.
Cuba adopted a system of social justice and equality that calls for a massive, united effort to overcome the obstacles placed in its path by the enemies of this individual, different choice. And it hopes to teach its people that lasting happiness is to be found in recognizing human virtues, culture, self-knowledge and knowledge of the world, because it depends not on what one has but on what one is.
The great majority of people understand and share in the sacrifices and benefits of working united towards the glorious dream of a society that rewards talent, generosity, commitment: the principal humanist virtues placed at risk of disappearing by capitalist egoism.
We know that some will not learn this lesson until they have accumulated riches of all kinds and then find they are still deeply unhappy. Others will work themselves into the ground in the vain attempt to integrate into a system that excludes them from its majority groups, and will end their days wondering what happened to the marvels they were promised. And they will all try to forget those who died trying to get there, and never even got to live the frustration of their dreams.
These notwithstanding, Cuba will not abandon the stony path to human civilization in which people are acknowledged for what they are rather than what they own, and will tirelessly seek to make Truth the only guide in the destiny chosen by its citizens.
Far from preventing us, this obliges us to condemn the shameful, deadly tricks played on Cubans by the United States, in the name of a law that, absurdly, encourages illegality.
Absurdly enough to declare total war on terrorism while passing life sentences on five Cuban heroes whose only crime was to prevent terrorist action by the Miami anti-Cuban mafia, and in the same Miami give a hero's welcome as political prisoners to common hijackers of airplanes.
The harrowing plight of the Haitian immigrants including 10 children - still detained and under armed guard - is unchanged, while the Cuban air-pirates walk freely in the streets of Miami. But the inflexibility of the authorities in dealing with the demands of a Haitian community approaching the size of that of the Cubans has unleashed an unprecedented debate in the city handed over to the Cuban mafia pending the snatching back of Cuba's hard-won freedom.
This time, there have been no shrieks from Ileana Ros or the Díaz-Balarts; the local authorities appear confused, are unclear in their responses to the demands for an explanation, while Internet searches for news of Haitians in the mafia gutter press turn up nothing but cultural references. The leader's of the growing Caribbean community there, submerged for years under the monopoly on politicking exercised by the Cubans, are beginning to make themselves heard, given the scandalous double standard of a US immigration policy that contemptuously rejects starving Haitians and welcomes Cuban hijackers with open arms.
The Truth is going about its cleansing business and, although still tenuously in control of Miami, the mafia is watching with desperation as its tools of deceit begin to loose their effectiveness. In the words of Abraham Lincoln, "You can't fool all of the people all of the time"
The Cuban Adjustment Act may end up permanently burying, politically, the very people who have fed it with corpses over the last 36 years.
Ever onward to victory.
Randy Alonso, Member of the Young Communist League National Committee
Dear Commander in Chief,
Compatriots from the capital and from all Cuba
In this globalized and globalizing world we live in, country borders are more and more open to trade and financial flows, while they are quickly closing to the circulation of human beings who come from the countries of the South, laid in ruins by the wild capitalism, which look in the developed North the successful consumption society that is sold to them by the propaganda.
At a time when the United States are quick to call upon all the nations of our region to join a Free Trade Agreement which will wipe out all national barriers in the economic as well as in the political arenas, they also increase the patrolling of the land and sea borders, put up an ominous wall along the territorial border with its closest neighbor, and impose a visa requirement on the citizens of countries which so far have not needed it.
Numerous Latin Americans and Caribbeans –who are inhabitants of a subcontinent where there are 221 million poor, where famine kills a significant number of children every year- have risked and are still risking their lives in the hope to be able to make it to the American territory, only to face the harsh reality of being rejected, persecuted and humiliated by the authorities of the powerful neighbor.
More than 400 Mexicans die every year trying to cross the patrolled American border and around one million are arrested in the attempt; thousands of Haitians are sent back to their impoverished country after having risked their lives at sea on board of fragile and makeshift crafts; tens of thousands of Central Americans live under the fear of loosing their temporary residence in the United States and being sent back to their home countries, where neoliberalism, drought, and the low prices of coffee, create havoc.
Very often, those who manage to make it to the United States look at the way in which their "American dream" is turned into precarious jobs and very hard living conditions, in a country where 33 million citizens, much of them immigrants, live under the poverty line –according to official statistics- and more than 40 million do not have medical insurance; a country whose authorities have intensified the repression against immigrants after September 11, by incarcerating, without any reasonable cause, hundreds of persons only by reason of their ethnic origin, and creating an ambiance of xenophobia which has multiplied the attacks against the Arabs and the Muslims.
In the midst of such harsh actions against immigrants, the government of the United States maintains a shameful and cynical exception: the Cuban Adjustment Act that encourages and support illegal immigration from Cuba and pursues the obvious and mean objective of using this as a political weapon against the Revolution and our people.
The most recent welcome by the United States of the kidnapper of a Cuban aircraft and his accomplices in such a despicable act, is a new and shameless episode in this absurd policy that can turn common thieves and unscrupulous persons into political exiles, by the grace of a murderous law which has cast a pall over more than one Cuban family, and the complicity of a government that seeks a compensation to the terrorist mob of Miami for the colossal electoral fraud whereby they took Mr. W. Bush to the White House.
What has happened is a logical consequence of the unprecedented and deceitful statements recently made by the US President, in an attempting to justify the encouragement of illegal migration from Cuba, which is a clear evidence of the nonsense, indecency, and irrationality of the policy of his administration against our country.
What moral does the American government has, to speak about a world crusade against terrorism and the defense of national security, when it encourages the kidnapping of planes and the air piracy, finances and sponsors the mobsters who, from Miami, perpetrate and carry out vile acts of terrorism against Cuba and provides a safe haven for one of the perpetrators of the abominable Crime off Barbados?
How could they explain to the Americans, to the relatives of the victims of the horrifying events of September 11, to the parents of the American soldiers who died in Afghanistan, that while they proclaim "an everlasting war against terrorism", they provide shelter and a safe haven for the perpetrators of an act of terrorism, as it is defined by the US and Cuban laws, as well as by the international conventions on air safety?
And to top all of this shamelessness, the US State Department publishes every year a list of countries that do not fight the increasing traffic in persons in the world. The 2002 version included 23 nations, but not the United States, from where a significant number of speedboats depart for Cuba to transport human beings to that territory at a cost that ranges between 8 000 to 10 000 dollars. The perpetrators of these felonies are well known, but they are not bothered by the authorities.
While the perpetrators of acts of terrorism and kidnapping are unconditionally released, and criminals such as Leonel Macías, the murderer of Officer Roberto Aguilar Reyes, live in Florida without being bothered by the authorities, five courageous Cuban youths, fighters against terrorism, have been convicted out of ignominy, revenge, and hatred, to serve long terms of imprisonment in solitary confinement in the United States.
The hypocritical and immoral acts that we condemn today result from the desperation and blind hatred of our adversaries. In the face of the increasing international isolation of the anti-Cuban policy of the Bush administration, the international overwhelming rejection recently expressed against the genocidal blockade against our people, and the evident opposition of the majority of the US public opinion against its irresponsible and mean policy, the government of the United States and its protégés of the anti-Cuban mob are clinged to the murderous Cuban Adjustment Act and the terrorist acts as if they were the last trump card to destroy the Revolution that for more than four decades has put its strength to the test during the most incredible and criminal aggressions, and has forged a people with a solid political awareness and ever growing culture.
Each new vile act of the American government against our country in its old attempt to become the world’s hegemonic power, renews our strength for this battle. Martí taught us that…in due time, the peoples get ready through the power of their instinct to wage big battles."
Nothing will stop us or make us move back in our struggle. Our moral, our principles, our ideas, and the beautiful work that we have built, are formidable weapons to do away with all the felonies, the gross lies, and the cynical policies of our adversaries. Let us keep up with our struggle, let us be ready and proud, because only those who struggle are to attain the ultimate victory.
Long live the Revolution!
Long live Socialism!
Long live Fidel and Raúl!
Homeland or death,
We shall overcome!