Fidel Castro dies: The problem is not the rider but the horse

THE ARTICLE

“….Fidel is certainly taking advantage of the discontent with the USA, presenting this country as the great empire, due to the contradictions he had with this nation, but at the same time he denounced American imperialism, he praised soviet social-imperialism; now he supports the Bolivarian imperialism of sergeant Chavez. Please, tell me then if there is a bad imperialism and a good one; would it be something like a terrorist being dedicated to the suppression of terrorism?”

“…In Cuba there exists wage-labor and the exploitation of man by man. Instead of there being a classical capitalist class there is a bureaucracy that administers the state against the majority. What has happened was just a juridical change in property, changing it from particular to bureaucratic; the title of the property has passed from the particulars to the State, but it still is private property since the great majority is deprived of every medium of existence, and to survive has to accept working everyday in the conditions imparted by the Boss.  The only difference is that, while in other countries the boss is Mr. Someone from Company Something, in Cuba the boss is Mr. State.

Fidel Castro – and now Chavez, Morales etc. – reproduce the great Stalinist lie: making people believe that nationalizations were a step to socialism – trying to persuade that socialism in one country is a step towards socialism or a variant of socialism, while in reality, it is nothing more than a facet of capitalism: state-capitalism.”

Contradictions of Cuba’s Foreign Policy

THE ARTICLE

“…A careful examination of Cuban foreign policy reveals that while it is true that Cuba has followed a consistent policy of opposition to U.S.-sponsored imperialism, it has not followed that policy towards other imperialist aggressors. In fact, the Cuban government has taken the side of oppressor states on various occasions.”

“…But to fully comprehend Cuban policy in Latin America, one must understand that its support of the anti-imperialist movements has always been subordinated to the interests of the Cuban state as defined by its leaders.”

“…Based on Jorge I. Dominguez’ description of the ways in which the Cuban state has adjusted its foreign policy to advance its own goals, I would point out, in the first place, that in its state-to-state relations, the Cuban government has subordinated its support for opposition movements in any given country to the benefits it could obtain from its relations with the government of that country.”

“…Cuba has never supported a revolutionary movement against any government that has had good relations with Havana and rejected U.S. policy towards the island, independently of the ideological coloration of those governments. The most paradigmatic cases are the amicable relations that Cuba maintained with the Mexico of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and with Franco’s Spain.”

“…In the last analysis, Cuban support for liberation movements has been based on the interests of the Cuban state as defined by its leaders, and not on a commitment to revolutionary doctrine.”

Noam Chomsky on Cuba

Cuba has become a symbol of courageous resistance to attack. Since 1959 Cuba has been under attack from the hemispheric superpower. It has been invaded, subjected to more terror than maybe the rest of the world combined–certainly any other country that I can think of–and it’s under an economic stranglehold that has been ruled completely illegal by every relevant international body, It has been at the receiving end of terrorism, repression and denunciation, but it survives.

If you look back at the declassified record and the problems that Cuba was posing and therefore had to be overthrown, one intelligence analyst said that “the very existence of the Castro regime is successful defiance of US policies that go back a hundred and fifty years”. He’s not talking about the Russians. He is talking about the Monroe Doctrine, which says we are the masters of the hemisphere. It goes on to say that this really dangerous as it offers a model that others might want to follow. That’s what is called “communist aggression”. You have a model that somebody wants to follow. So you have to destroy the virus.

Kissinger, for example, during the other 9/11–the one that happened in 1973–was concerned that Allende, with his democratic victory and social programs would spread contagion not only in Latin America, but even in Italy where the United States at the very same time was carrying out large scale subversive operations to try to undermine Italian democracy and even supported fascist parties in Italy.

Yes, Cuba is the symbol of successful defiance that accounts for the venomous hostility. The very existence of the regime, independent of what it does, by not subordinating itself to power is just an unacceptable defiance for the rest of the world. It’s a symbol of what can be done without using harsh conditions. It’s once again a case of those under the most severe conditions are doing things that others can’t do.

So, for example, let’s take Cuba’s role in the liberation of Africa. It’s an astonishing achievement that has almost been totally suppressed. Now you can read about it in scholarship, but the contribution that Cuba made to the self-liberation of Africa is fantastic. And that was against the entire concentrated power of the world. All the imperialist powers were trying to block it. It finally worked and Cuba’s contribution was unique. That’s another reason why Cuba is hated. Just the plain fact that black soldiers from Cuba were able to beat back a South African invasion of Angola sent shock waves throughout the continent. The black movements were inspired by it. The white South Africans were psychologically crushed by the fact that South African forces could be defeated by a black army. The United States were infuriated. If you look at the next couple of years, the terrorist attacks on Cuba got much worse.

But yes, it’s a symbol of successful defiance. One can have arguments about what society is like and what it does, but that’s for Cubans to decide. But for the world its symbolic significance is not slight.

Cuban Anarchism

“The regime was conducting this economic campaign with rigor, and had gone after all of the big businesses, ranches, sugar mills, tobacco fields, etc. In other words, it was confiscating all of the national wealth that until this time had been in the hands of the big bourgeoisie, national capitalism, and U.S./Cuban banking. The anarchists didn’t criticize these “nationalization” measures. What they opposed was state ownership/dictatorship over all of Cuba’s wealth.”
-Frank Fernandez