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[ex-ussr-left] Новости от Партии Рабочий Мир - выступление Фиделя Кастро на 1мая 2003г.
Fwd From: Walter Lippmann <email@example.com>
Subject: Fidel Castro - May Day speech 2003
Speech given by Dr. Fidel Castro Ruz,
President of the Republic of Cuba,
at the May Day rally held in Revolution Square.
Havana, May 1, 2003
Dear fellow Cubans:
Our heroic people have struggled for 44 years from this
small Caribbean island just a few miles away from the most
formidable imperial power ever known by mankind. In so
doing, they have written an unprecedented chapter in
history. Never has the world witnessed such an unequal
Some may have believed that the rise of the empire to the
status of the sole superpower, with a military and
technological might with no balancing pole anywhere in the
world, would frighten or dishearten the Cuban people. Yet,
today they have no choice but to watch in amazement the
enhanced courage of this valiant people. On a day like
today, this glorious international workers' day, which
commemorates the death of the five martyrs of Chicago, I
declare, on behalf of the one million Cubans gathered
that we will face up to any threats, we will not yield to
any pressures, and that we are prepared to defend our
homeland and our Revolution with ideas and with weapons to
our last drop of blood.
What is Cuba's sin? What honest person has any reason to
With their own blood and the weapons seized from the
the Cuban people overthrew a cruel tyranny with 80,000 men
under arms, imposed by the U.S. government.
Cuba was the first territory free from imperialist
domination in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the
country in the hemisphere, throughout post-colonial
where the torturers, murderers and war criminals that took
the lives of tens of thousands of people were exemplarily
All of the country's land was recovered and turned over to
the peasants and agricultural workers. The natural
resources, industries and basic services were placed in
hands of their only true owner: the Cuban nation.
In less than 72 hours, fighting ceaselessly, day and
Cuba crushed the Bay of Pigs mercenary invasion organized
a U.S. administration, thereby preventing a direct
intervention by this country and a war of incalculable
consequences. The Revolution already had the Rebel Army,
over 400,000 weapons and hundreds of thousands of militia
In 1962, Cuba confronted with honor, and without a single
concession, the risk of being attacked with dozens of
It defeated the dirty war that spread throughout the
country, at a cost in human lives even greater than that
the war of liberation.
It stoically endured thousands of acts of sabotage and
terrorist attacks organized by the U.S. government.
It thwarted hundreds of assassination plots against the
leaders of the Revolution.
While under a rigorous blockade and economic warfare that
have lasted for almost half a century, Cuba was able to
eradicate in just one year the illiteracy that has still
been overcome in the course of more than four decades by
rest of the countries of Latin America, or the United
It has brought free education to 100% of the country's
It has the highest school retention rate -over 99% between
kindergarten and ninth grade- of all of the nations in the
Its elementary school students rank first worldwide in the
knowledge of their mother language and mathematics.
The country also ranks first worldwide with the highest
number of teachers per capita and the lowest number of
students per classroom.
All children with physical or mental challenges are
in special schools.
Computer education and the use of audiovisual methods now
extend to all of the country's children, adolescents and
youth, in both the cities and the countryside.
For the first time in the world, all young people between
the ages of 17 and 30, who were previously neither in
nor employed, have been given the opportunity to resume
their studies while receiving an allowance.
All citizens have the possibility of undertaking studies
that will take them from kindergarten to a doctoral degree
without spending a penny.
Today, the country has 30 university graduates,
intellectuals and professional artists for every one there
was before the Revolution.
The average Cuban citizen today has at the very least a
ninth-grade level of education.
Not even functional illiteracy exists in Cuba.
There are schools for the training of artists and art
instructors throughout all of the country's provinces,
over 20,000 young people are currently studying and
developing their talent and vocation. Tens of thousands
are doing the same at vocational schools, and many of
then go on to undertake professional studies.
University campuses are progressively spreading to all of
the country's municipalities. Never in any other part of
world has such a colossal educational and cultural
revolution taken place as this that will turn Cuba, by
into the country with the highest degree of knowledge and
culture in the world, faithful to MartA-'s profound
conviction that "no freedom is possible without culture."
Infant mortality has been reduced from 60 per 1000 live
births to a rate that fluctuates between 6 and 6.5, which
the lowest in the hemisphere, from the United States to
Life expectancy has increased by 15 years.
Infectious and contagious diseases like polio, malaria,
neonatal tetanus, diphtheria, measles, rubella, mumps,
whooping cough and dengue have been eradicated; others
tetanus, meningococcal meningitis, hepatitis B, leprosy,
hemophilus meningitis and tuberculosis are fully
Tday, in our country, people die of the same causes as in
the most highly developed countries: cardiovascular
diseases, cancer, accidents, and others, but with a much
A profound revolution is underway to bring medical
closer to the population, in order to facilitate access to
health care centers, save lives and alleviate suffering.
In-depth research is being carried out to break the chain,
mitigate or reduce to a minimum the problems that result
from genetic, prenatal or childbirth-related causes.
Cuba is today the country with the highest number of
per capita in the world, with almost twice as many as
that follow closer.
Our scientific centers are working relentlessly to find
preventive or therapeutic solutions for the most serious
Cubans will have the best healthcare system in the world,
and will continue to receive all services absolutely free
Social security covers 100% of the country's citizens.
In Cuba, 85% of the people own their homes and they pay no
property taxes on them whatsoever. The remaining 15% pay a
wholly symbolic rent, which is only 10% of their salary.
Illegal drug use involves a negligible percentage of the
population, and is being resolutely combated.
Lottery and other forms of gambling have been banned since
the first years of the Revolution to ensure that no one
their hopes of progress on luck.
There is no commercial advertising on Cuban television and
radio or in our printed publications. Instead, these
public service announcements concerning health, education,
culture, physical education, sports, recreation,
environmental protection, and the fight against drugs,
accidents and other social problems. Our media educate,
do not poison or alienate. They do not worship or exalt
values of decadent consumer societies.
There is no cult of personality around any living
revolutionary, in the form of statues, official
or the names of streets or institutions. The leaders of
country are human beings, not gods.
In our country there are no paramilitary forces or death
squads, nor has violence ever been used against the
there are no extrajudicial executions or torture. The
have always massively supported the activities of the
Revolution. This rally today is proof of that.
Light years separate our society from what has prevailed
until today in the rest of the world. We cultivate
brotherhood and solidarity among individuals and peoples
both in the country and abroad.
The new generations and the entire people are being
about the need to protect the environment. The media are
used to build environmental awareness.
Our country steadfastly defends its cultural identity,
assimilating the best of other cultures while resolutely
combating everything that distorts, alienates and
The development of wholesome, non-professional sports has
raised our people to the highest ranks worldwide in medals
Scientific research, at the service of our people and all
humanity, has increased several-hundredfold. As a result
these efforts, important medications are saving lives in
Cuba and other countries.
Cuba has never undertaken research or development of a
single biological weapon, because this would be in total
contradiction with the principles and philosophy
the education of our scientific personnel, past and
In no other people has the spirit of international
solidarity become so deeply rooted.
Our country supported the Algerian patriots in their
struggle against French colonialism, at the cost of
political and economic relations with such an important
European country as France.
We sent weapons and troops to defend Algeria from Moroccan
expansionism, when the king of this country sought to take
control of the iron mines of Gara Djebilet, near the city
Tindouf, in southwest Algeria.
At the request of the Arab nation of Syria, a full tank
brigade stood guard between 1973 and 1975 alongside the
Golan Heights, when this territory was unjustly seized
The leader of the Republic of Congo when it first achieved
independence, Patrice Lumumba, who was harassed from
received our political support. When he was assassinated
the colonial powers in January of 1961, we lent assistance
to his followers.
Four years later, in 1965, Cuban blood was shed in the
western region of Lake Tanganyika, where Che Guevara and
more than 100 Cuban instructors supported the Congolese
rebels who were fighting against white mercenaries in the
service of the man supported by the West, that is, Mobutu
whose 40 billion dollars, the same that he stole, nobody
knows what European banks they are kept in, or in whose
The blood of Cuban instructors was shed while training and
supporting the combatants of the African Party for the
Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde, who fought under
command of Amilcar Cabral for the liberation of these
The same was true during the ten years that Cuba supported
Agostinho Neto's MPLA in the struggle for the independence
of Angola. After independence was achieved, and over the
course of 15 years, hundreds of thousands of Cuban
volunteers participated in defending Angola from the
of racist South African troops that in complicity with the
United States, and using dirty war tactics, planted
of mines, wiped out entire villages, and murdered more
half a million Angolan men, women and children.
In Cuito Cuanavale and on the Namibian border, to the
southwest of Angola, Angolan and Namibian forces together
with 40,000 Cuban troops dealt the final blow to the South
African troops. This resulted in the immediate liberation
Namibia and speeded up the end of apartheid by perhaps 20
25 years. At the time, the South Africans had seven
warheads that Israel had supplied to them or helped them
produce, with the full knowledge and complicity of the
Throughout the course of almost 15 years, Cuba had a place
of honor in its solidarity with the heroic people of Viet
Nam, caught up in a barbaric and brutal war with the
States. That war killed four million Vietnamese, in
to all those left wounded and mutilated, not to mention
fact that the country was inundated with chemical
that continue to cause incalculable damage. The pretext:
Viet Nam, a poor and underdeveloped country located 20,000
kilometers away, constituted a threat to the national
security of the United States.
Cuban blood was shed together with that of citizens of
numerous Latin American countries, and together with the
Cuban and Latin American blood of Che Guevara, murdered on
instructions from U.S. agents in Bolivia, when he was
wounded and being held prisoner after his weapon had been
rendered useless by a shot received in battle.
The blood of Cuban construction workers, that were nearing
completion of an international airport vital for the
of a tiny island fully dependent on tourism, was shed
fighting in defense of Grenada, invaded by the United
under cynical pretexts.
Cuban blood was shed in Nicaragua, when instructors from
Armed Forces were training the brave Nicaraguan soldiers
confronting the dirty war organized and armed by the
States against the Sandinista revolution.
And there are even more examples.
Over 2000 heroic Cuban internationalist combatants gave
their lives fulfilling the sacred duty of supporting the
liberation struggles for the independence of other sister
nations. However, there is not one single Cuban property
any of those countries. No other country in our era has
exhibited such sincere and selfless solidarity.
Cuba has always preached by example. It has never given
It has never sold out the cause of another people. It has
never made concessions. It has never betrayed its
principles. There must be some reason why, just 48 hours
ago, it was reelected by acclamation in the United Nations
Economic and Social Council to another three years in the
Commission on Human Rights, of which it has now been a
member for 15 straight years.
More than half a million Cubans have carried out
internationalist missions as combatants, as teachers, as
technicians or as doctors and health care workers. Tens of
thousands of the latter have provided their services and
saved millions of lives over the course of more than 40
years. There are currently 3000 specialists in
General Medicine and other healthcare personnel working in
the most isolated regions of 18 Third World countries.
Through preventive and therapeutic methods they save
hundreds of thousands of lives every year, and maintain or
restore the health of millions of people, without charging
penny for their services.
Without the Cuban doctors offered to the United Nations in
the event that the necessary funds are obtained -without
which entire nations and even whole regions of sub-Saharan
Africa face the risk of perishing- the crucial programs
urgently needed to fight AIDS would be impossible to carry
The developed capitalist world has created abundant
financial capital, but it has not in any way created the
human capital that the Third World desperately needs.
Cuba has developed techniques to teach reading and writing
by radio, with accompanying texts now available in five
languages -Haitian Creole, Portuguese, French, English and
Spanish- that are already being used in numerous
It is nearing completion of a similar program in Spanish,
exceptionally high quality, to teach literacy by
These are programs that were developed in Cuba and are
genuinely Cuban. We are not interested in patents and
exclusive copyrights. We are willing to offer them to all
the countries of the Third World, where most of the
illiterates are concentrated, without charging a penny. In
five years, the 800 million illiterate people in the world
could be reduced by 80%, at a minimal cost.
After the demise of the USSR and the socialist bloc,
would have bet a dime on the survival of the Cuban
Revolution. The United States tightened the blockade. The
Torricelli and Helms-Burton Acts were adopted, the latter
extraterritorial in nature. We abruptly lost our main
markets and supplies sources. The population's average
calorie and protein consumption was reduced by almost
But our country withstood the pressures and even advanced
considerably in the social field.
Today, it has largely recovered with regard to nutritional
requirements and is rapidly progressing in other fields.
Even in these conditions, the work undertaken and the
consciousness built throughout the years succeeded in
working miracles. Why have we endured? Because the
Revolution has always had, as it still does and always
to an ever-greater degree, the support of the people, an
intelligent people, increasingly united, educated and
Cuba was the first country to extend its solidarity to the
people of the United States on September 11, 2001. It was
also the first to warn of the neo-fascist nature of the
policy that the extreme right in the United States, which
fraudulently came to power in November of 2000, was
to impose on the rest of the world. This policy did not
emerge as a response to the atrocious terrorist attack
perpetrated against the people of the United States by
members of a fanatical organization that had served other
U.S. administrations in the past. It was coldly and
carefully conceived and developed, which explains the
country's military build-up and enormous spending on
at a time when the Cold War was already over, and long
before September 11, 2001. The fateful events of that day
served as an ideal pretext for the implementation of such
On September 20 of that year, President Bush openly
expressed this before a Congress shaken by the tragic
of nine days earlier. Using bizarre terminology, he spoke
"infinite justice" as the goal of a war that would
apparently be infinite as well.
"Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy
campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen."
"We will use every necessary weapon of war."
"Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to
Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists."
"I've called the Armed Forces to alert, and there is a
reason. The hour is coming when America will act."
"This is civilization's fight."
"...the great achievement of our time, and the great hope
every time --now depends on us."
"The course of this conflict is not known, yet its outcome
is certain ... and we know that God is not neutral."
Did a statesman or an unbridled fanatic speak these words?
Two days later, on September 22, Cuba denounced this
as the blueprint for the idea of a global military
dictatorship imposed through brute force, without
international laws or institutions of any kind.
"The United Nations Organization, simply ignored in the
present crisis, would fail to have any authority or
prerogative whatsoever. There would be only one boss, only
one judge, and only one law."
Several months later, on the 200th anniversary of West
Military Academy, at the graduation exercise for 958
on June 3, 2002, President Bush further elaborated on this
line of thinking in a fiery harangue to the young soldiers
graduating that day, in which he put forward his
"Our security will require transforming the military you
will lead -- a military that must be ready to strike at a
moment's notice in any dark corner of the world. And our
security will require all Americans to be forward-looking
and resolute, to be ready for preemptive action when
necessary to defend our liberty and to defend our lives."
"We must uncover terror cells in 60 or more countries..."
"...we will send you, our soldiers, where you're needed."
"We will not leave the safety of America and the peace of
the planet at the mercy of a few mad terrorists and
We will lift this dark threat from our country and from
"Some worry that it is somehow undiplomatic or impolite to
speak the language of right and wrong. I disagree. ... We
are in a conflict between good and evil, and America will
call evil by its name. By confronting evil and lawless
regimes, we do not create a problem, we reveal a problem.
And we will lead the world in opposing it."
In the speech I delivered at a rally held in General
Maceo Square in Santiago de Cuba, on June 8, 2002, before
half a million people of Santiago, I said:
"As you can see, he doesn't mention once in his speech (at
West Point) the United Nations Organization. Nor is there
phrase about every people's right to safety and peace, or
about the need for a world ruled by principles and norms."
"Hardly two thirds of a century has passed since humanity
went through the bitter experience of Nazism. Fear was
Hitler's inseparable ally against his adversaries...
his fearful military force [led to] the outbreak of a war
that would inflame the whole world. The lack of vision and
the cowardice of the statesmen in the strongest European
powers of the time opened the way to a great tragedy.
"I don't think that a fascist regime can be established in
the United States. Serious mistakes have been made and
injustices committed in the framework of its political
system --many of them still persist-- but the American
people still have a number of institutions and traditions,
as well as educational, cultural and ethical values that
would hardly allow that to happen. The risk exists in the
international arena. The power and prerogatives of that
country's president are so extensive, and the economic,
technological and military power network in that nation is
so pervasive that due to circumstances that fully escape
will of the American people, the world is coming under the
rule of Nazi concepts and methods."
"The miserable insects that live in 60 or more countries
the world chosen by him and his closest assistants --and
the case of Cuba by his Miami friends-- are completely
irrelevant. They are the 'dark corners of the world' that
may become the targets of their unannounced and
attacks. Not only is Cuba one of those countries, but it
also been included among those that sponsor terror."
I mentioned the idea of a world tyranny for the first time
exactly one year, three months and 19 days before the
In the days prior to the beginning of the war, President
Bush repeated once again that the United States would use,
if necessary, any means within its arsenal, in other
nuclear weapons, chemical weapons and biological weapons.
The attack on and occupation of Afghanistan had already
Today the so-called "dissidents", actually mercenaries on
the payroll of the Bush's Hitler-like government, are
betraying not only their homeland, but all of humanity as
In the face of the sinister plans against our country on
part of the neo-fascist extreme right and its allies in
Miami terrorist mob that ensured its victory through
electoral fraud, I wonder how many of those individuals
supposedly leftist and humanistic stances who have
our people over the legal measures we were forced to adopt
as a legitimate defense against the aggressive plans of
superpower, located just a few miles off our coasts and
a military base on our own territory, have been able to
these words. We wonder how many have recognized, denounced
and condemned the policy announced in the speeches by Mr.
Bush that I have quoted, which reveal a sinister
Nazi-fascist international policy on the part of the
of the country with the most powerful military force ever
imagined, whose weapons could destroy the defenseless
humanity ten times over.
The entire world has been mobilized by the terrifying
of cities destroyed and burned by brutal bombing, images
maimed children and the shattered corpses of innocent
Leaving aside the blatantly opportunistic, demagogic and
petty political groups we know all too well, I am now
to refer fundamentally to those who were friends of Cuba
respected fighters in the struggle. We would not want
who have, in our opinion, attacked Cuba unjustly, due to
disinformation or a lack of careful and profound analysis,
to have to suffer the infinite sorrow they will feel if
day our cities are destroyed and our children and mothers,
women and men, young and old, are torn apart by the bombs
Nazi-fascism, and they realize that their declarations
shamelessly manipulated by the aggressors to justify a
military attack on Cuba.
Solely the numbers of children murdered and mutilated
be the measure of the human damage but also the millions
children and mothers, women and men, young and old, who
remain traumatized for the rest of their lives.
We fully respect the opinions of those who oppose capital
punishment for religious, philosophical and humanitarian
reasons. We Cuban revolutionaries also abhor capital
punishment, for much more profound reasons than those
addressed by the social sciences with regard to crime,
currently under study in our country. The day will come
we can accede to the wishes for the abolition of such
penalty so nobly expressed here by Reverend Lucius Walker
his brilliant speech. The special concern over this issue
easily understood when you know that the majority of the
people executed in the United States are African American
and Hispanic, and not infrequently they are innocent,
especially in Texas, the champion of death sentences,
President Bush was formerly the governor, and not a single
life has ever been pardoned.
The Cuban Revolution was placed in the dilemma of either
protecting the lives of millions of Cubans by using the
legally established death penalty to punish the three main
hijackers of a passenger ferry or sitting back and doing
nothing. The U.S. government, which incites common
to assault boats or airplanes with passengers on board,
encourages these people gravely endangering the lives of
innocents and creating the ideal conditions for an attack
Cuba. A wave of hijackings had been unleashed and was
already in full development; it had to be stopped.
We cannot ever hesitate when it is a question of
the lives of the sons and daughters of a people determined
to fight until the end, arresting the mercenaries who
the aggressors and applying the most severe sanctions
against terrorists who hijack passenger boats or planes or
commit similarly serious acts, who will be punished by the
courts in accordance with the laws in force.
Not even Jesus Christ, who drove the traders out of the
temple with a whip, would fail to opt for the defense of
I feel sincere and profound respect for His Holiness Pope
John Paul II. I understand and admire his noble struggle
life and peace. Nobody opposed the war in Iraq as much and
as tenaciously as he did. I am absolutely certain that he
would have never counseled the Shiites and Sunni Muslims
let them be killed without defending themselves. He would
not counsel the Cubans to do such a thing, either. He
perfectly well that this is not a problem between Cubans.
This is a problem between the people of Cuba and the
government of the United States.
The policy of the U.S. government is so brazenly
that on April 25, Mr. Kevin Whitaker, chief of the Cuban
Bureau at the State Department, informed the head of our
Interests Section in Washington that the National Security
Council's Department of Homeland Security considered the
continued hijackings from Cuba a serious threat to the
national security of the United States, and requested that
the Cuban government adopt all of the necessary measures
prevent such acts.
He said this as if they were not the ones who provoke and
encourage these hijackings, and as if we were not the ones
who adopt drastic measures to prevent them, in order to
protect the lives and safety of passengers, and being
aware for some time now of the criminal plans of the
extreme right against Cuba. When news of this contact on
25 was leaked, it stirred up the Miami terrorist mob. They
still do not understand that their direct or indirect
threats against Cuba do not frighten anyone in this
The hypocrisy of Western politicians and a large group of
mediocre leaders is so huge that it would not fit in the
Atlantic Ocean. Any measure that Cuba adopts for the
purposes of its legitimate defense is reported among the
stories in almost all of the media. On the other hand,
we pointed out that during the term in office of a Spanish
head of government, dozens of ETA members were executed
without trial, without anyone protesting or denouncing it
before the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, or
that another Spanish head of government, at a difficult
moment in the war in Kosovo, advised the U.S. president to
step up the war, increase the bombing and attack civilian
targets, thus causing the deaths of hundreds of innocent
people and tremendous suffering for millions of people,
headlines merely stated, "Castro attacks Felipe and
Not a word was said about the real content.
In Miami and Washington they are now discussing where, how
and when Cuba will be attacked or the problem of the
Revolution will be solved.
For the moment, there is talk of economic measures that
further intensify the brutal blockade, but they still do
know which to choose, who they will resign themselves to
alienating, and how effective these measures may be. There
are very few left for them to choose from. They have
used up almost all of them.
A shameless scoundrel with the poorly chosen first name
Lincoln, and the last name DA-az-Balart, an intimate
and advisor of President Bush, has made this enigmatic
statement to a Miami TV station: "I can't go into details,
but we're trying to break this vicious cycle."
What methods are they considering to deal with this
cycle? Physically eliminating me with the sophisticated
modern means they have developed, as Mr. Bush promised
in Texas before the elections? Or attacking Cuba the way
they attacked Iraq?
If it were the former, it does not worry me in the least.
The ideas for which I have fought all my life will not
and they will live on for a long time.
If the solution were to attack Cuba like Iraq, I would
suffer greatly because of the cost in lives and the
destruction it would bring on Cuba. But, it might turn out
to be the last of this Administration's fascist attacks,
because the struggle would last a very long time.
The aggressors would not merely be facing an army, but
rather thousands of armies that would constantly reproduce
themselves and make the enemy pay such a high cost in
casualties that it would far exceed the cost in lives of
sons and daughters that the American people would be
to pay for the adventures and ideas of President Bush.
Today, he enjoys majority support, but it is dropping, and
tomorrow it could be reduced to zero.
The American people, the millions of highly cultivated
individuals who reason and think, their basic ethical
principles, the tens of millions of computers with which
communicate, hundreds of times more than at the end of the
Viet Nam war, will show that you cannot fool all of the
people, and perhaps not even part of the people, all of
time. One day they will put a straightjacket on those who
need it before they manage to annihilate life on the
On behalf of the one million people gathered here this May
Day, I want to convey a message to the world and the
We do not want the blood of Cubans and Americans to be
in a war. We do not want a countless number of lives of
people who could be friends to be lost in an armed
But never has a people had such sacred things to defend,
such profound convictions to fight for, to such a degree
that they would rather be obliterated from the face of the
Earth than abandon the noble and generous work for which
many generations of Cubans have paid the high cost of the
lives of many of their finest sons and daughters.
We are sustained by the deepest conviction that ideas are
worth more than weapons, no matter how sophisticated and
powerful those weapons may be.
Let us say like Che Guevara when he bid us farewell:
Ever onward to victory!
Workers & oppressed peoples of the world unite!
Visit Workers World Party at http://www.workers.org/
You've heard what's been said about us.
Now hear what we really have to say.
Visit redguard's blog at http://redguard.blogspot.com/
Workers & oppressed peoples of the world unite!
Visit Workers World at http://www.workers.org/
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