Reflections by Comrade Fidel
CHÁVEZ, EVO AND OBAMA
I take a break from the tasks that are occupying all of my time these days to dedicate a few words to the unique opportunity presented by the political science of the sixtieth session of the United Nations General Assembly.
The yearly event demands singular effort from those taking on the greatest of political responsibilities in many countries. For them, it constitutes a tough test; for the fans of that art, and there are many since it vitally affects everybody, it is difficult to remove oneself from the temptation of observing the interminable but educational show.
In the first place, there are infinite thorny subjects
and conflicts of interests. For a great
number of the participants it is necessary to take positions on events that
constitute flagrant violations of principles.
For example, what position to take on the NATO genocide in
Was it not precisely the government of the State
hosting the UN that ordered the butchery in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the
mercenary attack on the Bay of Pigs in Cuba, the invasion of Santo Domingo, the
“Dirty War” in Nicaragua, the occupation of Grenada and Panama by US military
forces and the massacre of Panamanians in El Chorrillo? Who promoted the military coups and genocides
These events have to be remembered and repeated whenever an occurrence having the importance and prominence of the meeting taking place at the United Nations where the political integrity and ethics of governments are being put to the test.
Many of these represent small and poor countries needing support and international cooperation, technology, markets and loans that the developed capitalist powers have handled at their whim.
Despite the unabashed monopoly of the mass media and
the fascist methods of the
Quite a few
Telesur broadcast the three statements. Thanks to that, from the evening of Tuesday the 20th, we were able to learn of President Chavez’ message that was thoroughly read out by Walter Martínez on his program, Dossier. Obama gave his speech on Wednesday morning as the Head of State of the UN host country, and Evo gave his speech early that same afternoon. For the sake of brevity, I shall take essential paragraphs of both texts.
Chávez was unable to personally attend the UN Summit, after 12 years of struggle, without one single day’s rest that put his life at risk and affected his health and who today is struggling in self-sacrifice for his full recovery. Nevertheless it was difficult for his courageous message to not deal with the most crucial topic at the historic meeting. I transcribe it, almost in its entirety:
“I address these words to the UN General Assembly […] to ratify, on this day and in this setting, Venezuela’s full support of the recognition of the Palestinian State: of Palestine’s right to become a free, sovereign and independent state. This represents an act of historic justice towards a people who carry with them, from time immemorial, all the pain and suffering of the world.
“The great French philosopher, Gilles Deleuze, […] wrote with the full weight of the truth: The Palestinian cause is first and foremost the set of injustices that these people have suffered and continue to suffer. And I dare add that the Palestinian cause also represents a constant and unwavering will to resist, already written in the historic memory of the human condition […] Mahmoud Darwish, the infinite voice of the longed-for Palestine, with heartfelt conscience speaks about this love: “We don’t need memories/ because we carry within us Mount Carmelo/ and in our eyelids is the herb of Galilee./ Don’t say: If only we could flow to my country like a river!/ Don’t say that!/ Because we are in the flesh of our country/ and our country is in our flesh.’
“Against those who falsely assert that what has happened to the Palestinian people is not genocide, Deleuze himself states with unfaltering lucidity: From beginning to end, it involved acting as if the Palestinian people not only must not exist, but had never existed. It represents the very essence of genocide: to decree that a people do not exist; to deny them the right to existence.
resolution in the
“It is upsetting and painful that the same people
who suffered one of the worst examples of genocide in history have become the
executioners of the Palestinian people: it is upsetting and painful that the
heritage of the Holocaust be the Nakba. And it is truly disturbing that Zionism
continues to use the charge of anti-Semitism as blackmail against those who
oppose their violations and crimes.
“…It is one thing to denounce anti-Semitism, and an entirely different thing to passively accept that Zionistic barbarism enforces an apartheid regime against the Palestinian people. From an ethical standpoint those who denounce the first, must condemn the second.”
“…Zionism, as a world vision, is absolutely racist. Irrefutable proof of this can be seen in these words written with terrifying cynicism by Golda Meir: How are we to return the occupied territories? There is nobody to return them to. There is no such thing as a Palestinian people. It is not as people think, that there existed a people called Palestinians, who considered themselves as Palestinians, and that we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn't exist.’”
“Read and reread the document historically known
as the Balfour Declaration of 1917: the British Government assumed the legal
authority to promise a national home in
“By the end of World War II, the Palestinian
people’s tragedy worsened, with their expulsion from their territory and, at
the same time, from history. In 1947, the despicable and illegal UN resolution
181 recommends dividing
“…contrary to what Israel and the United States
are trying to make the world believe through transnational media outlets, what
happened and continues to happen in
“What was and continues to be at the heart of the conflict?: debate and
discussion has prioritized
“It's unbelievable that a country (Israel) that owes its existence to a general assembly resolution could be so disdainful of the resolutions that emanate from the UN, said Father Miguel D’Escoto when pleading for the end of the massacre against the people of Gaza in late 2008 and early 2009.
“It is impossible to ignore the crisis in the United Nations. In 2005, before this very same General Assembly, we argued that the United Nations model had become exhausted. The fact that the debate on the Palestinian issue has been delayed and is being openly sabotaged reconfirms this.
“For several days,
“I would like to conclude with the voice of Mahmoud Darwish in his memorable poem On This Earth: We have on this earth what makes life worth living: On this earth, the lady of earth, Mother of all beginnings/ Mother of all ends. She was called… Palestine./ Her name later became… Palestine./ My Lady, because you are my Lady, I deserve life.’”
“It will continue to be called
“Hugo Chávez Frías
“President of the
When the meeting convened the next morning his words were already in the hearts and minds of all the persons meeting there.
The Bolivarian leader was never an enemy of the Jewish people. A man with special sensitivity, he deeply detested the brutal crime committed by the Nazis on children, women and men, young and old in the concentration camps where gypsies were also victims of atrocious crimes and extermination attempts, something nobody of course remembers and is never mentioned. Likewise, hundreds of thousands of Russians perished in those extermination camps, considered to be an inferior race by Nazi racial concepts.
When Chávez returned to his country from
“Yesterday we were listening to a number of speeches, also the day before yesterday, over there at the UN, lovely speeches like the one made by President Dilma Rousseff; a highly ethical speech like the one made by President Evo Morales; a speech we might catalogue as a monument to cynicism, President Obama’s speech, is a monument to cynicism because his own face was betraying him, his own face was a poem; a man calling for peace, imagine that, Obama calling for peace, with what kind of morals? A historical monument to cynicism, that’s what President Obama’s speech was.
“Lovely speeches, guiding speeches, that’s what we were listening to: the speech by President Lugo, that of the Argentine president, setting courageous positions before the world.”
When the New York meeting convened on the morning of Wednesday, September 21st, the President of the United States, --on the tail of the words spoken by the President of Brazil which opened up discussions and after the de rigueur introduction – took to the podium and began his speech.
“Over nearly seven decades, ―he began ―, even as the United Nations helped avert a third world war, we still live in a world scarred by conflict and plagued by poverty. Even as we proclaim our love for peace and our hatred of war, there are still convulsions in our world that endanger us all.”
We don’t know when, according to Obama, the UN prevented World War III.
took office at a time of two wars for the
What country is Obama really talking about?
we end the war in
“When I took
office, roughly 180,000 Americans were serving in
Who was Bin Laden’s ally, who really trained and armed him to fight the
“This has been a difficult decade. […] But today, we stand at a crossroads of history with the chance to move decisively in the direction of peace. To do so, we must return to the wisdom of those who created this institution. The United Nations’ Founding Charter calls upon us, “to unite our strength to maintain international peace and security.”
Who has military bases everywhere throughout the world, who is the greatest exporter of weapons, who possesses hundreds of spy satellites, who invests billions of dollars every year on military expenses?
“This year has been a time of extraordinary transformation. More nations have stepped forward to maintain international peace and security. And more individuals are claiming their universal right to live in freedom and dignity.”
Then he cites the cases of
Neither did Obama state that peace in
A little later on he mentions
Even more mind-boggling, Obama would like to ignore that the
year ago ― Obama states―,
“Day after day, in the face of bullets and bombs, the Libyan people refused to give back that freedom. And when they were threatened by the kind of mass atrocity that often went unchallenged in the last century, the United Nations lived up to its charter. The Security Council authorized all necessary measures to prevent a massacre. The Arab League called for this effort; Arab nations joined a NATO-led coalition that halted Qaddafi’s forces in their tracks”
the leaders of a new
“This is how the international community is supposed to work -- nations standing together for the sake of peace and security, and individuals claiming their rights.”
“Now, all of us have a responsibility to support the new Libya -- the new Libyan government as they confront the challenge of turning this moment of promise into a just and lasting peace for all Libyans.”
“The Qaddafi regime is over. Gbagbo, Ben Ali, Mubarak are no longer in power. Osama bin Laden is gone, and the idea that change could only come through violence has been buried with him.”
Observe the poetic form with which Obama deals with the Bin Laden affair, whatever had been responsible for this former ally, executing him by shooting him in his face in front of his wife and children and throwing his body into the sea from an aircraft carrier, ignoring the religious customs and traditions of more than a billion religious persons and the basic legal principles established by all penal systems. Such methods do not lead, nor will they ever lead, to peace.
is happening in our world, —he carries on, regarding
“The promise written down on paper -- “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” -- is closer at hand The measure of our success must be whether people can live in sustained freedom, dignity, and security. And the United Nations and its member states must do their part to support those basic aspirations. And we have more work to do.”
Right away he starts in on another Muslim country where, as it is
well-known, his intelligence services along with those of
He follows up with a threat on
The Syrian people have shown dignity and courage in their pursuit of justice --
protesting peacefully, standing silently in the streets, dying for the same
values that this institution is supposed to stand for. And the question for us
is clear: Will we stand with the Syrian people, or with their oppressors? Already, the
Could it be that some country has been left out of the bloody threats
made by this illustrious defender of security and international peace? Who granted such
prerogatives to the
the region, we will have to respond to the calls for change. In
He doesn’t mention one single word about the fact that that’s where one
of the largest military bases in the region is and that the Yankee transnationals
control and dispose of at will the greatest oil and gas reserves of
believe that each nation must chart its own course to fulfill the aspirations
of its people, and
“We have banned those who abuse human rights from traveling to our country. And we’ve sanctioned those who trample on human rights abroad. And we will always serve as a voice for those who've been silenced.”
After this long-winded speech, the distinguished Nobel Prize laureate
embarks on the thorny issue of his alliance with
know, particularly this week, that for many in this hall, there's one issue
that stands as a test for these principles and a test for American foreign
policy, and that is the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians. One
year ago, I stood at this podium and I called for an independent
But what I also
said is that a genuine peace can only be realized between the Israelis and the
Palestinians themselves. One year later, despite extensive efforts by
Peace is hard work. Peace will not come through statements and resolutions at the United Nations -- if it were that easy, it would have been accomplished by now
Ultimately, it is the Israelis and the Palestinians
who must live side by side. Ultimately, it is the Israelis and the Palestinians
-- not us –- who must reach agreement on the issues that divide them: on
borders and on security, on refugees and
Ultimately, peace depends upon compromise among people who must live together long after our speeches are over, long after our votes have been tallied.
Next, he goes on to verbosely explain and justify the unexplainable and unjustifiable.
“…There’s no question that the Palestinians have seen that vision delayed
for too long. It is precisely because we believe so strongly in the aspirations
of the Palestinian people that
Jewish people have forged a successful state in their historic homeland.
“…each side has legitimate aspirations -- and that’s part of what makes peace so hard. And the deadlock will only be broken when each side learns to stand in the other’s shoes; each side can see the world through the other’s eyes. That’s what we should be encouraging. That’s what we should be promoting.”
Meanwhile, the Palestinians remain exiled from their own homeland, their
homes are destroyed by monstrous mechanical machinery and an odious wall that
is much higher than the Berlin Wall was, separating Palestinian from
Palestinian. The best Obama might have
acknowledged is that the very Israeli citizens are by now tired of the waste of
resources invested in the military sphere that deprives them of peace and
access to the elementary means for living.
Just like the Palestinians, they are suffering from the consequences of
these policies imposed by the
“even as we confront these challenges of conflict and revolution, we must also recognize -- we must also remind ourselves […]. True peace depends on creating the opportunity that makes life worth living. And to do that, we must confront the common enemies of humanity: nuclear weapons and poverty, ignorance and disease.”
Who can understand this gibberish spoken by the President of the
He follows up with his unintelligible philosophy:
lift the specter of mass destruction, we must come together to pursue the peace
and security of a world without nuclear weapons. Over the last two years, we've
begun to walk down that path. Since our Nuclear Security Summit in
Could there be any terrorism greater than the aggressive and bellicose policy of a country whose arsenal of nuclear weapons could destroy life on this planet several times over?
Back to the same old refrain! But this time
To be continued tomorrow.
Fidel Castro Ruz