Leave Cuba in peace

By Aldo Madruga

The following article is excerpted from "Granma International," May 3, 2003.

A call to intensify solidarity with Cuba at a time when a real threat of aggression by the world superpower is hanging over the island was signed by representatives from more than 120 trade union organizations from 47 countries participating in an International Solidarity Encounter at Havana’s International Conference Center, presided over by President Fidel Castro.

The document also calls for increased efforts for the release of the five Cuban patriots unjustly imprisoned in U.S. jails, which means diffusing the real reasons behind their heavy sentences in very hard conditions in all parts of the world.

Pedro Ross, general secretary of the Central Organization of Cuban Trade Unions (CTC), welcomed the delegates and expressed gratitude for the solidarity of those who, together with the Cuban people, are raising their voices for a just and dignified peace, against warfare, genocide and the real threat of a fascist global dictatorship, and who oppose the evident intentions of the United States to become the force of "world law and order" and initiate further "liberating crusades" like the one it has just executed against the suffering Iraqi people.

He called on those present as part of the international labor movement, and intellectuals, campesinos and students from all over the world, and the U.S. people in particular, to develop a giant and powerful common front against those current U.S. government aspirations.

Basing his argument on official U.S. State Department documents like Project Cuba and the Helms-Burton Act, Ricardo Alarcón de Quesada, president of the National Assembly of People’s Power, demonstrated how the empire’s obsession to erase the Cuban Revolution from the face of the earth dates back to the very moment of the triumph of the Revolution in 1959, when nothing more than the Agrarian Reform Act had been drawn up, and how, on the outside, its strategy has changed very little since then, and not at all in its essence of hatred.

He stressed that at this time the U.S. government sees itself as the master of the world, with the greatest arsenal of military machinery that the empire has ever owned, as well as the owner of the planet’s major mass media, and is even too brazen to deny that it is employing terrorism against Cuba and will continue to do so.

Honest and impassioned speeches from trade unionists and representatives of solidarity groups from all over the world all expressed the determination to close ranks alongside the Cubans and oppose by all possible means the reach of the destabilizing trap being internationally orchestrated against Cuba and whose objective is to facilitate a military aggression to do away with the system of social justice defended for more than 40 years.

Representatives from trade unions and other organizations in the United States, Ecuador, Mexico, Canada, Zambia, Norway, Trinidad and Tobago, the United Kingdom, Colombia, Spain, France, Austria, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Belgium and Switzerland spoke out at the meeting. "Leave Cuba in peace" was a phrase repeated in most of their messages.