Category: Cuba
Yankees Hands Off Cuba! U.S. government creates Internet Task Force to promote subversion in Cuba
| January 25, 2018 | 7:56 pm | Cuba | No comments

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Yankees Hands Off Cuba! U.S. government creates Internet Task Force to promote subversion in Cuba
According to Granma international report, the United States government announced yesterday, January 23, the creation of a new Internet Task Force, aimed at subverting Cuba’s internal order.
“The Department of State is convening a Cuba Internet Task Force composed of U.S. government and non-governmental representatives to promote the free and unregulated flow of information in Cuba. The task force will examine the technological challenges and opportunities for expanding internet access and independent media in Cuba,” according to the body’s official website.
In the past phrases like promoting “freedom of speech” and “expanding access to the internet in Cuba” have been used by Washington as a pretext for schemes to destabilize the country using new technologies.
One of the most well-known examples of this was the ZunZuneo plan, exposed in 2014 by Associated Press. Advertised as a messaging platform similar to Twitter and aimed at Cuban youth, the real intention behind ZunZuneo was to promote actions to subvert the country’s internal order.
This new initiative by the U.S. State Department, according to the press release, comes in response to President Trump’s June 16, 2017 National Security Presidential Memorandum “Strengthening the Policy of the United States Toward Cuba.”
Speaking before right wing sectors of the Cuban American community in Miami at that time, Trump announced a change to the United States government’s Cuba policy aimed at tightening the blockade and making travel between the two countries more difficult.
According to the January 23 press release, “The task force will examine the technological challenges and opportunities for expanding internet access and independent media in Cuba.”
Meanwhile, following the sovereign decision taken by the island’s government and to the degree its economic situation allows, Cuba has gradually been expanding access to the internet for its citizens.
According to information provided by expert Rosa Miriam Elizalde, “2017 will be remembered as the boom year for the expansion of internet access in our country – with 40% of Cubans now online, 37% more than in 2010 – and the establishment of internet hot spots in urban areas across the island.”
Official statistics from the Cuban Telecommunication Enterprise (ETECSA), indicate that 600,000 new cell phone lines were activated last year, bringing the total number to 4.5 million.
Around 250,000 connections at 500 public wi-fi hotspots were registered daily across the country, which also saw the highest growth rates in two categories linked to digital connectivity, according to the report Digital in 2017: Global Overview, with over 2.7 million new users, a 365% increased as compared to 2016; and an increase in the use of cell phones to access social networks, with 2.6 million new users, up 385%.
Griselda Aguilera Cabrera: Women in Cuba: Our Achievements and Continuing Struggles
| January 17, 2018 | 8:34 am | Cuba, Education, Women's rights | No comments

59th Anniversary of the Cuban Revolution: Message of the CC of the KKE to the Communist Party of Cuba

Friday, December 29, 2017

59th Anniversary of the Cuban Revolution: Message of the CC of the KKE to the Communist Party of Cuba
On the occasion of the 59th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) send to the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC) the following message:
Athens, 29 December 2017.
Dear comrades,
we are delivering to you our comradely regards for the 59th anniversary of the victory of the Revolution in Cuba which created the first free territory in the american continent, liberated from imperialist repression and capitalist exploitation.
The KKE over time has practically expressed its internationalist solidarity with the Revolution and the people of Cuba. We condemn the measures and the anti-cuban rhetoric of the Trump government and criticize the insidious undermining policy of the EU. We support the struggle of your people for the removal of the criminal blockade of the USA, for the closure of the american base of Guantanamo, for the respect of the cuban people’s sovereign right to determine its own future.
Cuba, with the benefit of socialist construction, the aid of the USSR and the socialist countries and the internationalist solidarity of the world’s people, resisted the attacks of imperialism, having unprecedented achievements by the standards of the region’s countries and beyond.
The victory of the Cuban Revolution consisted a source of inspiration for the oppressed of the whole world. It confirmed the viability of marxism-leninism, of the revolutionary struggle and proletarian internationalism against defeatism and subjection to the negative correlation of force, against parliamentary and reformist illusions which were tormenting the labour movement. It (Cuban Revolution) will always remain in the heart of the working class and the people who are struggling for their liberation from capitalist exploitation and imperialist barbarity.
The Central Committee of the KKE”.
Source: / Translation: In Defense of Communism.
Fidel Castro, ¡presente! Thousands gathered at the University of Havana to honour the Comandante
| November 29, 2017 | 6:36 pm | Cuba, Fidel Castro | No comments

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Fidel Castro, ¡presente! Thousands gathered at the University of Havana to honour the Comandante

Thousands of people gathered at the University of Havana in order to pay their respect to Comadante Fidel Castro, on the one years since his death. Report from Granma International.

Once again the historic guerilla brought together a multitude of grateful youth. Once again he showed us the right way, with his index finger pointing to the future. In a cultural-political act at the University of Havana’s historic Grand Staircase – where he spoke to students on many occasions – the generation in which he placed all his trust, gathered one year after his passing, to show that Fidel has not left, and that today, he is more present than ever. 

Accompanied by José Ramón Machado Ventura, second secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba Central Committee; Party Political Bureau members Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, first vice president of the Councils of State and Ministers of Cuba, and Mercedes López Acea, a Council of State vice president, the hearts of Cuba’s youth throbbed with every song sung that evening, and with the images recalling Fidel’s life-long connection with the new generations. 
“I am Fidel,” “We hear him, we feel him, Fidel is present!” were the phrases chanted by the multitude of youth gathered on the same steps Fidel climbed every morning in his conquest for knowledge, to commemorate the day that the eternal youth began his journey into eternity; same day 60 years before when he and other expeditionaries set sail on the Granma yacht to free Cuba.
Leading that expedition, “the man that taught us to be, the leader par excellence, Marti’s loyalist follower, our comrade in the struggle” as President of the National Organizing Committee of the Federation of Secondary School Students, Niuvys Garcés described him; Fidel, the man who transcended “the borders of his time” to “live forever among is people.” 
“That’s how we feel you Fidel, more present and alive (…) Every day you call on us to attack the Moncada Garrisons, to be the Granma yacht expeditionaries, to ask ourselves what we must improve in order to be outstanding students (…) how to love our history more and defend our homeland under any circumstance.”

During the ceremony, which also saw the participation of Olga Lidia Tapia, a member of the Party Central Committee Secretariat, and Susely Morfa González, first secretary of the Young Communist League (UJC) National Committee, the young student noted that everyday Cubans must think “what would he (Fidel) do if he was here,” and reflect on his concept of the true essence of Revolution.
Because, as Raúl Palmero, President of the Federation of University Students (FEU), “the giant” left us a noble nation and redefined the role of youth; he transformed all of Cuba into a university, and gave us the greatest gift of all: “an independent homeland built with pride and which will never surrender.”

Palmero went on to recall a message sent by the Comandante en Jefe to the FEU on January 26, 2015, in which he “warned that imperialism cannot be trusted,” and in so doing, the historic leader of the Cuban Revolution supplied students with weapons and the truth, “like just another classmate.” 

The poem Canto a Fidel, in addition to songs which have become narratives of the Revolution, such as “La Bayamesa,” “La Era,” “Mi historia crecerá,” “Cualquier lugar es mi tierra,” “14 verbos de junio,” and “Cabalgando con Fidel,” were just some of the musical offerings presented during the ceremony, which also saw performances by Trova singers Raúl Torres, Eduardo Sosa, Annie Garcés and Vicente Feliú; as well as groups like the Jazz Band, Arnaldo Rodríguez y su Talismán, Moncada and La Colmenita; the company Tiempos and actor Alden Knight, among others. 
The ceremony was also attended by the heads of the ministries of Education and Culture, Ena Elsa Velázquez Cobiella and Abel Prieto Jiménez, respectively; senior officials of the UJC, youth movements and other guests.
Velada de tributo a Armando Hart Dávalo
| November 28, 2017 | 8:00 pm | Cuba | No comments

Che Guevara’s Road to Revolution
| November 17, 2017 | 7:42 pm | Che Guevara, Cuba, Karl Marx | No comments

By W. T. Whitney Jr., November 6, 2017,

“Walker, there is no road, we make the road by walking.” To these words of Spanish poet Antonio Machado, which say much about the life of Ernesto “Che” Guevara, we add: “But there is a map.” Che of course used a map provided by Karl Marx.

Che Guevara once suggested that Marx had a “capacity of love [that] reached out to the suffering people of the whole world.” Marx “carried the message to them of serious struggle, of unbreakable optimism [and] has been disfigured by history to the point of his having been cast as an idol of stone. We must rescue him so that his example may shine even more.”

Was Che, who wrote that “the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love,” presuming too much of Marx? Did Che search out Marx’s “capacity for love” among comrades of the international Communist movement? How in fact did Che, an anomalous figure within the Marxist tradition, connect intellectually with Marxist thought?

October 8, 2017 marked the 50th anniversary of Che’s murder in Bolivia, and commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the Russian Revolution followed a month later, on November 7. So the timing may be right to explore Che’s contribution to the theory and practice of revolutionary socialism.

Theoretician Che

In his short essay “Socialism and Man in Cuba” – 23 pages long in a 1993 Cuban edition – Che looks at the process through which individuals become politically aware. (1) He thinks political consciousness develops gradually and with difficulty.

Che proposes “to define the individual actor in this strange and passionate drama of constructing socialism. In line with Marx, he says that, “In capitalist society individuals are controlled by a pitiless law usually beyond their comprehension. The alienated human specimen is tied to society as a whole by an invisible umbilical cord: the law of value.”

Che’s central concern is the problem of human alienation. He or she harbors “the residue of an education systematically oriented to the isolation of the individual… Remnants of the past are carried forth to the present in the individual’s consciousness and it takes continual work to eradicate them.”

Che blames the “persistence of merchandizing relationships, merchandise being the economic cell of the capitalist society.” They affect “the organization of production and therefore consciousness.” And, “to pursue the chimera of realizing socialism with help from the jagged tools of capitalism leads down a blind alley.”

The task is “to choose the correct instrument for mobilizing the masses and this instrument must be moral in character.”  Evoking values, Che departs from Marxist theoreticians, who deal more with material realities than with abstractions.  He adds that, “in moments of great peril it is easy to muster a powerful response with moral incentives. Retaining their effectiveness, however, requires the development of a consciousness in which there is a new scale of values. Society as a whole must be converted into a gigantic school.”

Individuals “try to adjust themselves to a situation that they feel is right and that their own lack of development had prevented them from reaching previously. They educate themselves.” Doing so, “They follow their vanguard [which] has its eyes fixed on the future and its reward, but this is not a vision of reward for the individual. The prize is the new society in which individuals will have different characteristics: the society of communist human beings.” Leaders must not “lose sight of the ultimate and most important revolutionary aspiration: to see human beings liberated from their alienation.”

Che regards Cuba’s Communist Party as “still in diapers” because of “scholasticism that has held back the development of Marxist philosophy.” For people to be “educated for communism,” the Party must be “the living example; its cadres must teach hard work and sacrifice.”

For Che, consciousness is influenced by community and culture, and so what works in Europe may not apply to Latin America. So, “Cuba … occupies the post of advance guard [and shows] the masses of Latin America the road to full freedom.” Che points out that capitalism’s contradictions show up first in “countries [in the global periphery] that were weak limbs on the tree of imperialism.  Liberation from misery and foreign oppression causes capitalism to “explode” in such places, and “conscious action does the rest.”

Ultimately then, Che sees the mental processes of individuals as a venue for revolutionary struggle. People, he says, act according to values and material interests alike. And values are malleable, shaped as they are by the experiences, culture, and history of communities they belong to. Che calls for a narrative of Marxist theory that accepts differences among groups and individuals but, seeking unity, centers on their common values – moral in nature – and interests.


Che also epitomized a mode of revolutionary practice aimed at guaranteeing that changes for the better in the individual’s consciousness might take root.  That he was his own teacher prepared him for a role as teacher and exemplar during a short lifetime of zig-zag wanderings. His own experiences and observations would serve as teaching tools for a curriculum of sorts.  Like a scientist, Che put assumptions to the test of reality. His life became both advertisement and validation of a style of revolutionary practice ideal for expanding political consciousness.

In 1952 prior to finishing medical studies, Che and the young biochemist and leprosy expert Alberto Granados left Argentina for a long trip across South America.  The two motorcycled, walked, and hitchhiked.  They slept in peasants’ huts, shivered at night on mountain sides, and bedded in prisons in little towns.  One cold night in the Chilean desert, they shared a blanket with a copper miner and his wife, both hungry and cold. They were members of the banned Chilean Communist Party, and Che remembered their dedication.

Che and Granados arrived in Lima, Peru. There Che came to know Dr. Hugo Pesce, famous worldwide as a leprologist and in Peru as co-founder with José Carlos Mariátegui of the Peruvian Communist Party. They talked with Pesce night after night. Pesce, says one commentator, was the first physician Che knew “motivated by Marxist ideology” rather than by “winning a piece of heaven” through being a doctor.

Dedicating his 1961 book “Guerrilla Warfare” to Pesce, Che wrote: “To Doctor Hugo Pesce who, without knowing it perhaps, provoked a great change in my attitude towards life and society – with as always the same adventurous spirit, but channelled toward goals more harmonious with the needs of America.” Che visited the scientist the following year and Pesce greeted him with great emotion.”

What Che and Pesce talked about is unknown, but “It’s not difficult to imagine that the young Guevara was … nourished with the writings of José Carlos Mariátegui, writes Argentinian Marxist scholar Néstor Kohan. That exposure bore fruit, at least according to Peruvian scholar Gustavo Pérez Hinojosa who in November 2005 presented a paper titled Latin American Marxism, Mariátegui and Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara” at the Centennial Forum on Josè Carlos Mariátegui.

Mariátegui, as quoted by Pérez Hinojosa, critiques intellectuals who “exaggerate … the determinism of Marx and his school” thereby “declaring them to be a product of the mechanistic mentality of the 19th century, something incompatible with the voluntarist, heroic idea of life embraced in the modern world” – and by Che Guevara.

In the same vein: “The proletarian movement … from the origins of the First International to its present manifestation in the first experiment with state socialism, the USSR, [requires that] each word, each act of Marxism impart the flavor of faith, of voluntarism, of heroic and creative conviction.”

“Marxism fundamentally is a dialectical method … It’s not …a body of principles with rigid consequences, equal for all historical climates and every social latitude … Marxism in each country, in every people, operates on and affects the environment and all aspects of it.” Che and Mariátegui, each in their own era, were foes of Eurocentric modes of political thinking.

Says Mariátegui: “We certainly don’t want socialism in America to be a copy or imitation. … We have to give life to indo-American socialism with our own reality, in our own language.” The pioneering Peruvian Marxist thus joined Cuban national hero José Martí in loyalty to, in Martí’s words, “Our America.”

Pesce had firsthand knowledge of friction between leaders of world communism and Latin American currents of the movement. South American Communists allied to the Third International met for the first time in 1929 in Buenos Aires under clandestine circumstances. Mariátegui would have delivered a report from the Peruvian Socialist Party – really the Communist Party – but was sick. Hugo Pesce and another comrade represented Mariátegui. Later the Third International’s Latin American representative condemned the report which Pesce delivered; supposedly the Peruvians had confused “the national problem with the agrarian problem” and showed signs of a “revolutionary movement of the most diverse, non-proletarian tendencies.”

Che’s boyhood home in Argentina was full of books, political books, even Marx. His parents in the 1930s supported the Spanish Republicans. On the recommendation of fellow medical student Tita Infante, a Communist, Che read Bourgeois Humanism and Proletarian Humanism by Argentinian Marxist Anibal Ponce. One of Che’s boyhood friends was the son of socialist university reformer Deodoro Roco. Che explored that family’s library which contained books on anti-imperialism and cultural diversity.

Che would add to his education in 1954, when he found himself amid the CIA-organized coup that year in Guatemala. Later, he worked intermittently as a doctor in Mexico City where he was joined by his first wife Hilda Gadea, a Peruvian Marxist with a big supply of socialist books.

Che lives

Che inserted ideas about the individual and about consciousness into both revolutionary theory and practice and thus contributed to the socialist movement. He also left his mark on the wider history of our time, especially among young people.

He spoke for and defended the humble and oppressed, while moving around, volunteering, studying, observing, and fighting. His image as a practitioner of revolution was that of a single-minded and optimistic idealist who never slackened or compromised. Che symbolized hope for change and a better world.

Ilka Oliva Corado, who migrated to the United States from Guatemala, writes about migrants’ lives prior to, during, and after their crossings. She talks with “people from countries I didn’t know existed. … They ask about Che as if he were a friend on the block.”  As for herself: “Just  seeing the shoes he was using the day he was captured, one understands the immortal grandeur of a human being who lives on in our epoch now and who left everything to go out in search of freedom for the peoples, and not only in Latin America but in the world.”

But Che, especially Che the Marxist revolutionary, was for real, or so says Oswaldo Martinez, president of the Economic Affairs Commission of Cuba’s National Assembly. Che, he observes, “freed us from the myth, as if from a manual, of socialism being irreversible once it was established.  He offered the supreme lesson that it’s in human consciousness and not in material stimuli that socialism can be made irreversible – as long as we are educated into that consciousness and fed with the values of solidarity.”

End Note: (1) “Socialism and Man in Cuba” first appeared March 12, 1965 in the journal Marcha, published in Montevideo. Its title then was: “From Algeria, for Marcha, the Cuban Revolution Today.”

The Communist Party of Canada’s contribution to the 19th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties

CPC contribution to 19th International Meeting of Communist & Workers’ Parties

October 4, 2017

The Communist Party of Canada’s contribution to the 19th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties

We are honoured to bring greetings to this historic gathering on the centenary of the Great October Socialist Revolution.

Great October is the historic marker between all class divided, exploitative and oppressive societies heretofore; and the end of the exploitation of one human being by another achieved with the victory of Soviet power in Russia.  The epoch of the transition from capitalism to socialism was irrevocably opened for the working class to pass through, according to the objective and subjective conditions in each country. 

As Lenin said, the road to socialism is not straight like the Nevsky Prospect.  The loss of the USSR showed that the transition period is intense – a life and death struggle with imperialism, in which socialist states can be overthrown and great setbacks sustained.  But the political struggle of the working class and its allies for socialism cannot be stopped and will prevail, because the working class is the grave-digger of capitalism, as Marx proved.  This is the irreconcilable contradiction of capitalism that foretells its inevitable passing.

Imperialism has seized the moment to drive the world to the brink of world war and environmental devastation, and to unleash the forces of reaction and fascism aimed to destroy socialism, to overthrow socialist and progressive governments, to eliminate the Communist and Workers’ parties.

US imperialism’s threat to “totally destroy” DPRK, to overthrow governments in Venezuela and Syria, and to effect regime change in Cuba, is an invitation to world war and nuclear catastrophe.  US imperialism is sliding towards fascism.  The growth of fascist movements and parties globally, of austerity, xenophobia, racism and misogyny, is imperialism’s response to the changed balance of forces after 1991.

We live in a very dangerous time, facing the stark choice of socialism or barbarism.   We must soberly assess how to roll-back the threat of fascism, reaction and war, and how to advance the struggle for fundamental social transformation which working people increasingly seek, despite growing anti-communist campaigns.

In Canada, nascent fascist movements are also blooming, given new life by developments in the US and Europe.  These include Soldiers of Odin, PEGIDA, and La Meute.  They prey on the insecurity and fear of working people who are victims of the capitalist crises and who are aware that there is no recovery for them, while the biggest corporations rake in super-profits, lay-off workers, drive down wages and pensions, and demand social spending cuts.  Social democratic governments and parties, including in Canada, continue to offer prescriptions to better manage capitalism.

In Canada, the Trudeau government was elected on a platform promising peace, jobs, democracy, equality, and redress for Indigenous Peoples, most of which they have abandoned.  Trudeau has bowed to US demands to increase support for NATO and NORAD, and will increase military spending by 70%.  Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland (grand-daughter of a Ukrainian fascist collaborator) has stick-handled the government’s pro-US positions, including threats to Venezuela, and permanent stationing of Canadian troops in Latvia and Ukraine.   We vigorously oppose these policies, and campaign for peace and disarmament, withdrawal from NATO and NORAD, and cutting current military spending by 75%.  We are working hard to build the peace movement, and in particular the Canadian Peace Congress, affiliate of the World Peace Council.

The climate change crisis, causing major disasters this year, has forced itself onto the global agenda.  The struggle for climate justice must be a priority for our movement.  Socialism will prevail, provided the globe has not been destroyed by war and environmental devastation.

The NAFTA negotiations are collapsing, killed by US protectionism.  A revived Trans Pacific Trade and Investment Partnership is on the horizon.  We have campaigned hard against these deals and capitalist globalization generally, designed to cement corporate control of the world’s resources and markets, eliminating national sovereignty.

We fight for mutually beneficial, multi-lateral trade that includes long-term credits for developing countries.

We have closely followed developments in Catalonia and Kurdistan.  Like other parties, we condemn the use of force by the Spanish government against the Catalan people and their struggle for national self-determination, a right that Lenin invoked as inviolable for Marxist Leninists.

Canada is a multi-national state, created at the point of a gun, after British colonialism defeated France in North America in 1763 and then subdued the French speaking populations in what is now Quebec.  During capitalism’s rise, colonial governments aimed to exterminate or forcibly assimilate Indigenous Peoples.  This unequal and involuntary union of oppressed and oppressor has been maintained by force and violence of the Canadian state ever since.

While the CPC does not support the option of Quebec secession, because it will weaken the struggle of the working class as a whole against capitalism and for socialism, we unequivocally support the right of Quebec and other nations in Canada to self-determination and to secession if they so choose.  This puts the onus on the English speaking nation to offer a new, equal and voluntary partnership as the basis for unity in Canada, one which recognizes the national rights of all, including the right of each to leave, in a new democratic Constitution.  This is the option we favour and campaign for.

In conclusion comrades, we thank the CPRF for hosting this historic meeting in Leningrad, the cradle of the Great October Socialist Revolution.

We express our confidence in the unity and coordinated action of the Communist and Workers’ parties, in our historic struggle for socialism, peace, and a sustainable global environment.

Long live Marxism-Leninism!

Hasta la Victoria Siempre!

Delivered by CPC leader Elizabeth Rowley on behalf of the Central Executive Committee of the Communist Party of Canada to the 19th Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties held in Leningrad, November 2-3rd, 2017.