Hands Off Cuba! Rally Print

Monday November 15th at 5:30pm

U.S. Consulate Winnipeg
860 - 201 Portage Ave, Winnipeg, MB, Canada R3B 3K6

Organized by the Young Communist League - Manitoba

A Statement from the YCL - MB

Cuba has a proud history of resistance to foreign occupation and interference. Leaders like Carlos Manuel de Cespedes and Jose Marti strove to achieve the independence and self-determination that the Cuban people deserve, as do all peoples in the world. This tradition and impulse continued in various forms culminating in 1959 with the success of the revolution led by Fidel Castro. Faced with this success for the ordinary people of the island the US Empire, keen to maintain access to Cuba's resources and domination of the western hemisphere (particularly in the context of the Cold War with the USSR) instituted the blockade and embargo.

The goal is simple: Inflict widespread punishment and immiseration in order to overthrow the government of the people. Fortunately, despite the hardships it has imposed, it has not been successful in that goal. The Cuban people maintain the proud tradition of independence. There have been many attempts to restore Cuba's status as a colony to be exploited by the interests of Capital. Let us look at the most recent attempt within the context of the pandemic. The people of Cuba are being denied normal access to materials necessary for their pandemic response and vaccination campaign. Many of the syringes and other goods that are required come from Cuba Solidarity organisations abroad. It is a testament to the ingenuity of Cuba's healthcare system and priorities that they have been able to develop and administer their own domestic vaccine program. Nevertheless, there are severe economic hardships, particularly related to the decline of tourism and supply chain disruptions. With this context in mind, we should examine the events that have taken place this summer. While it is true, there is a certain element of discontent and frustration among people on the island, it simply cannot be said that they wanted to abandon the path of the revolution and overthrow the government, as has been reported. This was amply demonstrated in the events after the initial frenzy of corporate mainstream media stories regarding protests in Cuba. In the days after the initial stories, massive popular demonstrations in defense of the revolution took place. Conveniently, these were not covered nearly to the same extent. It was also found that in the days before these "spontaneous" protests Twitter bots were deploying and amplifying hashtags such as #SOSCuba for example. These types of actions, the coordination of both a social media campaign and mainstream media coverage fits the existing pattern of external forces conspiring to subordinate Cuba to the global capitalist system of exploitation. This is something we can never support. It was clear in the days and weeks afterwards that popular support exists overwhelmingly in favour of the revolution and continuing its progress. The only ones who can determine the future of the Cuban People are the Cuban People themselves. That is why we are having this event. We pay tribute to and admire the struggle of the Cuban people to advance, protect and consolidate their independence and dignity. It is a call, once again, to end the punishment of a blockade that has lasted over 60 years, and to allow the normal engagement of Cuba with the world. Hands Off Cuba!