Committee of Progressive Pakistani-Canadians Condolences on the Death of Fidel Print

November 27, 2016

The Committee of Progressive Pakistani Canadians grieves with the Cuban people and the rest of the world on the death of Fidel. The revolution he led has resulted in Cuba refusing to compromise its sovereignty to the United States, which is just next-door. Despite starting from a backward economy, attempts to foment internal dissent, invasion, assassination plots, and an illegal blockade which makes every economic and even cultural activity more difficult, the brave people of this island have achieved significant achievements in literacy and education, healthcare and housing, nutrition and the arts. This is in sharp contrast to Pakistan's subservience to the United States and the huge problems of mass poverty, illiteracy, low education and medical standards, unemployment and state and fundamentalist violence its people face.

After 9/11 the United States threatened to bomb Pakistan “back to the stone age” to get its compliance, although Pakistan had been compliant since its early day, but Cuba which has actually been bombed by US-based terrorists and fought-back a US-orchestrated invasion, which included combat by the CIA and Air National Guard, has inspired the world by not yielding its independence one inch and showing how poor countries can develop with dignity in the face of imperialism's bullying. Led by the government of the Communist Party, the Cuban people were helped greatly by the internationalist assistance of the former Soviet Union and other socialist countries of Eastern Europe to combat the U.S. embargo and backwardness on its path to independent development.

In 2005 an earthquake devastated parts of Kashmir and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province, exposing the chronic lack of development by the government. Cuba quickly sent 2,400 physicians and setup 32 field hospitals for which they had to provide even plumbing and electricity because of the Pakistani government's neglect of its own citizens. Many Pakistanis were seeing a physician for the first time in their lives. Almost 6,000 surgeries were performed in at least 44 different locations and at least 30 patients were flown to Cuba for further care. Cuba asked for nothing in return. This is in sharp contrast to the United States, which had billions of dollars of resources next door in Afghanistan for its illegal war, but sent only a few helicopters and soldiers to help. Cuba's aid to Pakistan has continued with the education for 1,000 Pakistani medical students absolutely free of cost.

As Pakistani-Canadians we hope that Pakistan will become truly independent, adopt a just social system and a government which serves the interests of the people rather than the rich. We also hope that the same will be true of Canada and urge its government to resist US interference in Cuba which seems bound to increase under Trump.

Fidel Zindabad! Presente Fidel!

Committee of Progressive Pakistani-Canadians

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