Elections in the United States are often portrayed as a model of democracy in action. But is this true? This is an important question because this “model” is forcefully being imposed on other countries.
Just as a new car model typically has wheels, engine, doors, etc., the U.S. 2016 election model features the standard appearance of two competing candidates for the Democratic and Republican parties. Other parties are allowed but never make it to the mainstream as potential contenders.
Fidel’s thinking on tactics and goals with regards to Cuba–U.S. relations will be a necessary guide for years to come.
During U.S. President Barack Obama’s historic visit to Cuba on March 20–23, 2016, I was commentating on the event with Cuban colleagues for the Caracas-based teleSUR television network. On the Cuban side, the event was overshadowed by Cuban diplomacy skillfully led, in a complex situation, by President Raul Castro and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. From the Obama administration’s perspective, the trip also consisted of diplomacy. However, it was tainted by a heavy dose of speeches and talks that promoted U.S. Cuba policy, which is very self-serving. The resistance in Cuba by Cubans and some foreigners, including myself, to this U.S. cultural, political and ideological assault seemed to have taken a backseat. However, on March 27, only a few days after Obama’s departure from Cuba, Fidel Castro shared his reflections, ironically titled “Brother Obama.” It hit Cuba and the world like a bomb. We will soon analyze it.
El ICAP y la Editorial Ocean Sur agradecemos su presencia a los integrantes del 23 contingente de la Brigada Latinoamericana y caribeña de Solidaridad, así como a los representantes de la OSPAAAL, el MOVPAZ, el Comité Internacional Paz Justicia y Dignidad a los Pueblos, y las organizaciones sociales de masas cubanas aquí presentes sin cuya labor solidaria coordinada a lo largo de la historia de Cuba no habría sido posible un libro como este.
On the occasion of your 90th birthday the members of the Network of Intellectuals, Artists, and Social Movements in Defense of Humanity want to extend our most sincere congratulations and above all our deepest gratitude for everything you have done for the peoples of Our America and the rest of the world.
"There are men who struggle for a day and they are good. There are men who struggle for a year and they are better. There are men who struggle many years, and they are better still. But there are those who struggle all their lives: These are the indispensable ones." — Bertolt Brecht
"Fidel! Fidel! Que tiene Fidel que los americanos no pueden con él!"
(Fidel! Fidel! What is it that he has, that the U.S. imperialists can't defeat him!) — Cuban Revolutionary chant
On August 13 Fidel Castro, the historic leader of the Cuban Revolution, turns 90. Progressive, anti-war and social justice forces across the world will join in the celebration of the life of one of the world's most influential and significant leaders. It is especially worthwhile and necessary to mark and valorize the life and times of a man whose heart, without missing a beat, has withstood more than 600 assassination attempts by U.S imperialism.
Canadian author Arnold August wrote a thorough comparative investigation of the practice of democracy in the US, Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador in his book, “Cuba And Its Neighbours – Democracy in Motion”. The main message he gives is that people’s participation in politics and society is an essential element of democracy but it is not part of the US-centric understanding of democracy. August writes, “Democracy as practiced in the US is largely non-participatory, static and fixed in time. Cuba, by contrast, is a laboratory where the process of democratization is continually in motion, an ongoing experiment to create new ways for people to participate. ”
When U.S. President Barak Obama promised to start a “new chapter” with Latin America at the April 2009 Summit of the Americas in Trinidad and Tobago, most of us were hoping for a more friendly and respectful U.S. foreign policy that would be a welcome departure from the aggressive and warmongering foreign policy of George W. Bush. The Norwegian Nobel Committee must have been just as hopeful when it awarded Obama with the Peace Prize in October of that same year.
This article analyses the significance of the March 2016 visit to Cuba by President Barack Obama, assesses changes in the bilateral relationship since December 17, 2014 (when Presidents Castro and Obama announced the resumption of diplomatic relations after 53 years of hostility), and considers the challenges ahead.
It is somewhat of a wonder to pinpoint exactly from where and how the idea of a book comes. I believe that ultimately it comes from a place of interest or passion that matures over time, and eventually compels us to want to tell a story or pass on a message we believe is worth sharing. I have always been fascinated by the concept of solidarity so beautifully made universal by the phrase “La solidaridad es la ternura de los pueblos” (Solidarity is the expression of care of the peoples). Beyond a mere feeling, solidarity for me is the real binding fabric between peoples as well as an essential tool for democracy. It is common among activists and particularly within the labour movement to speak of solidarity or to act in solidarity with someone or a cause. When I say, I am in solidarity with you, I mean to say, I am at your side. Not that I blindly accept everything you claim or represent, but that I place myself close to you so that I can better hear your plea, and support you with my respect, my dialogue, my voice and my actions.