Reflections by Comrade Fidel




The final declaration from the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh on Friday, September 25 seems unreal.  Let’s have a look at the main points in its contents:


“We meet in the midst of a critical transition from crisis to recovery to turn the page on an era of irresponsibility and to adopt a set of policies, regulations and reforms to meet the needs of the 21st century global economy.


“We pledge today to sustain our strong policy response until a durable recovery is secured.”


“…we pledge to adopt the policies needed to lay the foundation for strong, sustained and balanced growth in the 21st century.”


“We want growth without cycles of boom and bust and markets that foster responsibility […].”


“…we [will] act together to generate strong, sustainable and balanced global growth. We need a durable recovery that creates the good jobs our people need.”


“We need to […] establish a pattern of growth across countries that is more sustainable and balanced, and reduce development imbalances.”


“We pledge to avoid destabilizing booms and busts in asset and credit prices[…]”


“We will also make decisive progress on structural reforms that foster private demand and strengthen long-run growth potential.”


“Where reckless behavior and a lack of responsibility led to crisis, we will not allow a return to banking as usual.”


“We committed to act together […] [to end] practices that lead to excessive risk-taking.”


“We designated the G-20 to be the premier forum for our international economic cooperation.”


“We are committed to a shift in International Monetary Fund (IMF) quota share to dynamic emerging markets and developing countries of at least 5% ...”


“…sustainable economic development [is essential] in order to … reduce poverty.”


The G-20 is made up of the seven wealthiest and most industrialized countries: the United States, Canada, Germany, Great Britain, France, Italy and Japan, plus Russia; the 11 principal emerging countries: China, India, South Korea, Indonesia, South Africa, Brazil, Argentina, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Mexico and the European Union;  with several of these we have excellent economic and political relations.  For the last three Summits, Spain and Holland take part as guests. 


The idea of capitalist development without crisis is the great dream that the US and its allies are trying to sell to the countries with emerging economies that participate in the G-20. 


Almost all the Third World countries which are not US allies are observing how the United States prints paper money that circulates throughout the planet like convertible currency with no gold backing, buying shares and companies, natural resources, real estate and chattel, and public debt bonds, protecting their products, stripping nations of their best brainpower and granting extra-territoriality for their laws.  This gets added to the overwhelming power of its weaponry and the monopoly on the basic mass media. 


Consumer societies are incompatible with saving the natural and energy resources that development and the preservation of our species require. 


In a brief historical period and thanks to the Revolution, China ceased being a semi-colonial and semi-feudal country, growing at the rhythm of more than 10% for the last 20 years and it has become the main engine of the world economy. There has never been such an enormous multi-national state to achieve such a rate of growth. Today it has the most elevated reserve of convertible currencies and it is the greatest creditor of the United States. The difference is abysmal with respect to the two most developed capitalist countries in the world: the United States and Japan.  Their accumulated debts total 20 trillion dollars. 


The US can no longer be the model for economic development. 


Departing from the fact that in recent years the temperature of the planet has gone up 0.8 degrees Celsius, the same day the Pittsburgh Summit concluded, the principal American news agency printed that the temperature would go up “almost three degrees Celsius between this year and the end of the century, even if every country were to reduce their emissions of greenhouse effect gases as they propose, according to a United Nations report.”  


“A group of scientists reviewed the plans for emissions from 192 countries and calculated what might happen with global warming.  Projections take into account 80% of the cutbacks on pollutants in the United States and Europe for the year 2050, something which is not certain.”


“Carbon dioxide, derived mainly from the use of fossil fuels such as coal and oil, is the principal cause of global warming which traps solar energy in the atmosphere (…) the world temperature has already increased by 0.8 degrees C.”, it reiterates. 


“A large part of the increase is due to developing nations which have not undertaken great measures to reduce their gas emissions, scientists pointed out at a press conference on Thursday.”


 “‘We are headed for a very serious series of changes on our planet’, said Achim Steiner, director of UNEPA, the United Nations Environment Programme.” 


And Robert Corell, an important American specialist on climate, stressed that: 


“…it would be the same for an increase of 2.7 degrees C. in world temperature by the end of the century, said Corell.  European leaders and President Barack Obama of the United States established a goal to limit warming by a couple of degrees.” 


What they haven’t explained is how they are going to reach that goal, nor the GDP contribution to invest in the poor countries and to compensate for the damages caused by the volume of polluting gases that the most industrialized countries have launched into the atmosphere.   World public opinion ought to acquire a solid education on climate change.  Even if there was not the slightest error in the calculations, humanity will be marching on the edge of the abyss. 


When Obama was meeting in Pittsburg with his G-20 guests to talk about the delights of Capua, the Summit Meeting of the UNASUR and Organization of African Unity heads of state was beginning on Margarita Island in Venezuela.   There, more than 60 presidents, prime ministers and senior representatives of the countries of South America and Africa were coming together.  Also present were Lula, Cristina Fernαndez and the president of South Africa, Jacob Zuma, coming from Pittsburgh in order to enjoy a warmer, more fraternal summit meeting where the problems of the Third World were being tackled with great honesty.  President Hugo Rafael Chαvez of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela shone and vibrated at that Summit.  I had the pleasant possibility of listening to the voices of well-known and proven friends. 


Cuba gives thanks for the support and solidarity that emerged from that Summit where nothing was forgotten. 


Come what may, the peoples will become ever more aware of their rights and duties!


What a great battle will be waged in Copenhagen!




Fidel Castro Ruz

September 27, 2009

6:14 p.m.