[act-ma] 7/24 What's Really Going on in Cuba!

Charlie Welch cwelch at tecschange.org
Sun Jul 18 13:39:19 PDT 2021

 *What's Really Going on in Cuba!*
Park St Station Boston    Facebook

We will be demanding an to "END the EMBARGO" and attempting to explain the
reality outlined in the article below. We also demand "NO US Intervention
in Haiti" (more to come)

Critical Thinking: Cuba Resists

By Frei Betto, Resumen Latinoamericano, 13 de julio de 2021.

Carlos Alberto Libânio Christo OP, better known as Frei Betto is a
Brazilian writer, political activist, philosopher, liberation theologian,
and Dominican friar.
Few are unaware of my solidarity with the Cuban Revolution. For 40 years I
have visited the island frequently, due to work commitments and invitations
to events. For a long period I mediated the resumption of the dialogue
between the Catholic bishops and the Cuban government, as described in my
books "Fidel ea religio" (Fontanar / Companhia das Letras) and "Paraíso
perdido - Viajes al mundo socialista" (Rocco). Currently hired by FAO, I
advise the Cuban government in the implementation of the Plan of Education
in Food Sovereignty and Nutrition.

I know in detail the Cuban daily life, including the difficulties faced by
the population, the questioning of the Revolution, the criticism of the
country's intellectuals and artists. I visited prisons, talked to opponents
of the Revolution, lived with Cuban priests and lay people opposed to
When they tell me, Brazilian, that there is no democracy in Cuba, I descend
from the abstraction of words to reality. How many photos or news have been
seen or are seen about Cubans in poverty, beggars scattered on the
sidewalks, children abandoned in the streets, families under overpasses?
Something like the cracolândia, the militias, the long lines of sick people
waiting for years to be treated in a hospital?
I warn my friends: if you are rich in Brazil and live in Cuba, you will
know hell. You will not be able to change cars every year, buy designer
clothes, travel frequently for vacations abroad. And, above all, you will
not be able to exploit other people's work, keep your employees in the
dark, "proud" of Maria, your cook for 20 years, and whom you deny access to
your own house, schooling and health insurance. .
If you are middle class, prepare to experience purgatory. Although Cuba is
no longer a nationalized society, bureaucracy persists, you have to be
patient in the queues at the markets, many products available this month
may not be available next month due to inconsistencies in imports.

However, if you are salaried, poor, homeless or landless, prepare to
discover paradise. The Revolution will guarantee your three basic human
rights: food, health and education, as well as housing and work. You may
have an appetite for not eating what you like, but you will never go
hungry. Your family will have education and medical care, including complex
surgeries, totally free, as a duty of the State and a citizen's right.
There is nothing more prostituted than language. The celebrated democracy
born in Greece has its merits, but it is worth remembering that, at that
time, Athens had 20,000 inhabitants who lived off the labor of 400,000
slaves ... What would one of these thousands of serfs answer if asked about
the virtues of democracy?
I do not want the future of Cuba nor the present of Brazil, Guatemala,
Honduras or even Puerto Rico, a colony of the United States, which is
denied independence. Nor do I want Cuba to invade the United States and
occupy a coastal area of California, as is the case with Guantanamo,
transformed into a center for torture and illegal imprisonment of alleged
Democracy, in my concept, means the "Our Father" - the authority
legitimized by the popular will - and "our bread" - the sharing of the
fruits of nature and human labor. Electoral rotation does not ensure or
assure democracy. Brazil and India, considered democracies, are obvious
examples of misery, poverty, exclusion, oppression and suffering.

Only those who know the reality of Cuba before 1959 know why Fidel had so
much popular support to lead the Revolution to victory. The country was
known as the "Caribbean brothel". The mafia dominated banking and tourism
(there are several movies about this). The main neighborhood of Havana,
today Vedado, has this name because blacks were not allowed to circulate
there ...
The United States never resigned itself to having lost Cuba subject to its
ambitions. That is why, just after the victory of the guerrillas of the
Sierra Maestra, they tried to invade the island with mercenary troops. They
were defeated in April 1961. The following year, President Kennedy decreed
the blockade of Cuba, which continues to this day.
Cuba is an island with few resources. It is obliged to import more than 60%
of the country's basic products. With the tightening of the blockade pushed
by Trump (243 new measures and, so far, not removed by Biden), and the
pandemic, which focused on one of the country's main sources of resources,
tourism, the internal situation worsened. Cubans had to tighten their
belts. Then, those dissatisfied with the Revolution, who gravitate in the
orbit of the "American dream", drove the protests of Sunday, July 11 - with
the "solidarity" help of the CIA, whose head has just toured the continent,
worried about the outcome of the elections in Peru and Chile.

Who can best explain the current situation in Cuba is its president,
Díaz-Canel: "The financial, economic, commercial and energy persecution has
begun. They (the White House) want an internal social upheaval in Cuba in
order to call for "humanitarian missions" that will translate into
invasions and military interference".
"We have been honest, we have been transparent, we have been clear and, at
all times, we have explained to our people the complexities of today. I
remember more than a year and a half ago, when the second half of 2019
began, we had to explain that we were in a difficult situation. The United
States began to intensify a series of restrictive measures, tightening of
the blockade, financial persecutions against the energy sector, with the
aim of suffocating our economy. This would provoke the desired massive
social outburst, in order to call for a "humanitarian" intervention, which
would end in military interventions."
"This situation continued, then came the 243 measures (of Trump, to tighten
the blockade) that we all know and, finally, it was decided to include Cuba
in the list of countries sponsoring terrorism. All these restrictions led
the country to immediately cut back on various sources of foreign exchange
income, such as tourism, Cuban-American travel to our country and
remittances. A plan was formed to discredit the Cuban medical brigades and
Cuban solidarity collaborations, which received a large part of foreign
currency for this collaboration ".

"This whole situation has generated a situation of shortage in the country,
mainly of food, medicines, raw materials and inputs so that we can develop
our economic and productive processes that, at the same time, contribute to
exports. Two important elements are eliminated: the capacity to export and
the capacity to invest resources ".
"We also have fuel and spare parts limitations, and all this has caused a
level of dissatisfaction, added to the accumulated problems that we have
been able to solve and that came from the Special Period (1990-1995, when
the Soviet Union collapsed). (The Cuban economy was severely affected by
the collapse of the Soviet Union). Together with a fierce media campaign to
discredit, as part of the unconventional war, which tries to fracture the
unity between the party, the state and the people; and pretends to qualify
the government as insufficient and incapable of providing welfare to the
Cuban people".
"The example of the Cuban Revolution bothered the United States a lot for
60 years. They applied an unjust, criminal and cruel blockade, now
intensified in the pandemic. Blockades and restrictive actions that they
have never carried out against any other country, nor against those they
consider their main enemies. Therefore, it has been a perverse policy
against a small island that only aspires to defend its independence, its
sovereignty and build its society with self-determination, according to
principles that more than 86% of the population has supported ".

"In the midst of these conditions a pandemic emerged, a pandemic that
affected not only Cuba but the whole world, including the United States. It
affected the rich countries, and it must be said that in the face of this
pandemic neither the United States nor these rich countries had all the
capacity to cope with its effects. The poor were harmed, because there are
no public policies aimed at the people, and there are indicators of the
fight against the pandemic with worse results than those of Cuba in many
cases. Infection and mortality rates per million population are notably
higher in the U.S. than in Cuba (the U.S. recorded 1,724 deaths per
million, while Cuba has 47 deaths per million). While the U.S. was
entrenched in vaccine nationalism, the Henry Reeve Brigade of Cuban doctors
continued their work among the world's poorest people (so, of course,
deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize)."
"Without the possibility of successfully invading Cuba, the United States
persists with a rigid blockade. After the fall of the USSR, which provided
the island with the means to circumvent the blockade, the United States
tried to increase its control over the Caribbean country. Beginning in
1992, the UN General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to put an end to this
blockade. The Cuban government reported that between April 2019 and March
2020 Cuba lost $5 billion in potential trade due to the blockade; over the
last six decades, it has lost the equivalent of $144 billion.(NOT ADJUSTED
FOR INFLATION, TW) Now, the U.S. government has intensified sanctions
against shipping companies that bring oil to the island ".

It is this weakness that opens a flank to the demonstrations of discontent,
without the government having placed tanks and troops in the streets. The
resilience of the Cuban people, nurtured by examples such as Martí, Che
Guevara and Fidel, has proved invincible. And to them, all of us who
struggle for a more just world owe solidarity.

*Co-sponsored by the Boston Area July 26 Coalition <https://www.july26.org>
and the International Action Center
<https://www.facebook.com/groups/57558105284/about> other Co-sponsors
welcome *

Watch "CIA Considered Bombing Miami To Blame Cuba!" on YouTube


If you are looking for more information check out these websites and get on
their email lists.

Telesur English is a general source of news


National Network on Cuba


IFCO/Pastors for Peace


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