Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Official U.S. Visitors to Cuba

Update for April 23, 2009, further down !

Yesterday, Barbara Lee, U.S. Congresswoman of California and her delegation visited Cuba's leader Fidel Castro and his brother Raoul.

They are representing a group of progressive Democratic Congressmen and women of Afro-American origin, often related with Cuban affairs. Their meetings have become known as the "Caucus of Black Congressmen" (CBC / Spanish: Caucus Negro Congresional). Even though its not for the first time that coloured members of the U.S. Congress held talks with Cuban officials, such events have always been extremely rare and restricted to a few members of Congress.

The CBC, founded in January 1969 by the first 12 coloured Congressmen elected, actually has reached a number of 42 members.

Once again, we become witness of Fidel Castro's steadily advancing physical decay that doesn't hinder him to write articles for the Cuban media. In a message of greeting he expresses his wish to enable an objective judgement about the sensitive relations between Cuba and the U.S. under the rule of Barack Obama by giving as much information as possible intended to state the public opinion in his country.

Recent statements by Fidel and Raoul Castro:
"We don't fear talks with the U.S." (Fidel)
"Many of our people never experienced anything else than living under the embargo that is meanwhile lasting fifty years. They will therefore be able to live under the embargo for another fifty years." (Raoul)

One member of the Caucus delegation said that despite Obama's victory the Northamerican society will continue to be a racist society. And Obama should be seen as the only opportunity for his nation to make progress and step over the rubble accumulated by earlier administrations.

April 13, 2009 :

Once again, the Latin-American alliance is showing its face when Evo Morales, President of Bolivia, is consulting his friend Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela, during his hunger strike and which is intended to help change the actual system of legislative powers in Bolivia. At the same time, Fidel Castro, still far from being dead, has published an article in support of Evo Morales' policy.

April 20, 2009 :

While the Conference on the Americas is ending on Trinidad and Tobago, U.S. President Barack Obama calls for a new era of partnership. It seems that background talks have taken place as Venezuela declares it "will restore an envoy to the U.S.".

April 23, 2009 :

On April 23, Daniel Ortéga, President of Nicaragua, made his appearance in the regular transmission of "Mesa Redonda" (round table) on Cuba satellite TV. His subject was the Conference on the Americas and Obama's new policy of change.
Ortéga stated that the final document, released by the conference, didn't express at all what his country as well as his allies really expected. Instead, it was nothing more than a mere sign of "business as usual". Even the economic blockade of Cuba, openly rejected by an overwhelming majority of the United Nations General Assembly, didn't appear as an essential subject on the agenda. Such, Obama's "policy of change" should be questioned.

Another brandnew article by Fidel Castro (above) on Obama and the economic blockade of Cuba.

Comment by Blueprint editor:

After his inauguration in January 2009, U.S. President Obama was forced to deal with all kinds of urgent affairs. The speed of pushing forward his political ideas has even become a subject of public discussion, when recent opinion polls proved that many U.S. citizens feared his style of handling things could mean "doing too much and doing it too fast". No wonder that Vice-President Biden answered a question about the abolishment of economic sanctions
on Cuba with the words: "Cuba isn't on the agenda yet".

Only shortly after Obama's order to close all CIA run detainee camps, including that of Guantánamo Bay, and his decision to open CIA memos (April 22) on how political detainees were treated in those camps, it should make no sense for Cuba's leadership to insist on its maximum demand of giving back Guantánamo Bay to the people of Cuba and lifting the blockade. Both things might follow sooner or later. But to increase the actual pressure on Obama who is now struggling against the reactionary hardliners of his own country on all levels of daily politics, will almost certainly reach the contrary of its goal. Cuba and its allies could easily become known as the "notorious moaners" of their region. Wolfgang Wiesner, April 23, 2009.