Washington's strategy to undermine Cuba
Protect terrorists, preach human rights
By Gloria La Riva
While the Bush administration is attempting to obtain the
release of four anti-Cuba terrorists from a Panamanian jail, it
is at the same time trying to force through a resolution
against Cuba in the upcoming UN Human Rights Commission.
Since the 1959 revolution, over 3,400 Cubans have been
killed by U.S.-supported terrorism, by invasion, blockade,
bombings and assassination. Cuba is the victim of human rights
violations, not the perpetrator. It is the U.S. government that
belongs in the dock for its countless anti-human crimes around
But shame never stopped Washington from hypocritically
accusing its victims of its own genocidal crimes.
With intense threats and bribes to Latin American and other
countries in recent days, the Bush administration is once again
trying to bully the world to falsely accuse Cuba of human
On March 18, the annual meeting of the Human Rights
Commission begins in Geneva, Switzerland. It will take up a
number of resolutions. But as with many U.S.-controlled
international forums, the human rights commission is largely a
political weapon in the hands of U.S. imperialism and its
This is especially true since the collapse of the socialist
camp in Europe and the replacement of many socialist
governments with regimes subservient to U.S. policy.
Perpetrator accuses victim
Last year, after open pressure on many delegations in the
human rights commission, the United States forced a narrow
22-20 vote against Cuba. With the balloting of the member
states in the open, many were strong-armed to come out against
Cuba or face retaliation.
Weeks after that sordid anti-Cuba vote, however, in a secret
ballot of the same commission, the U.S. government was kicked
off the 2002 commission.
What clearly angered some countries is that the U.S. is the
creator and backer of regimes that violate human rights all
over the world. Argentina, Guatemala, El Salvador and Chile,
all with genocidal histories against their own people, had
chimed in with the U.S. anti-Cuba resolutions in 2000 and
The U.S. was shocked at being ejected. In typical
sour-grapes fashion, Bush said being on the commission wasn't
Yet this year, behind the scenes, the U.S. government is
working overtime to line up votes against Cuba, turning the
economic screws on Latin America.
Taking advantage of the deep economic crisis gripping the
continent, the U.S. is sending envoys with a clear message:
help us gang up on Cuba and political or economic favors may be
forthcoming. George W. Bush himself is traveling to Mexico in
mid-March, then El Salvador and Peru on March 23-24.
According to a statement by the Cuban Ministry of Foreign
Affairs, a message was secretly distributed in early March by
the U.S. government to Latin American governments urging them
to sponsor an anti-Cuba resolution at the next HRC meeting.
The only country to sponsor the anti-Cuba resolution three
years in a row is the Czech Republic. Formed after the breakup
of socialist Czechoslovakia, this country has been an unabashed
stooge of the U.S. against Cuba, sending agents into the island
at various times to deliver money and support to tiny
counter-revolutionary organizations. The U.S. desperately wants
to keep up its credibility.
The Cuban Foreign Affairs statement said in part, "There are
new maneuvers underway against Cuba within the Human Rights
Commission that will begin its sessions next March 18.
"On this occasion, the enormous exhaustion and international
discredit that the Czech government has gone through, as
designated author of the resolution against Cuba over the last
three years, has led the United States to try and find new
"sponsors" for its anti-Cuban plan, focusing its pressures this
time on several Latin American governments."
Interestingly, several Czech government officials are
currently visiting Mexico, Peru and Chile for the U.S. So far,
however, governments like Mexico, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador
and Chile are refusing to go along.
Maneuvers to free terrorists
In the meantime, the U.S. government is carrying out dirty
maneuvers inside Panama to orchestrate the release of four
avowed terrorists who plotted to assassinate Cuban President
Fidel Castro in November 2000 as he and a Cuban delegation were
set to attend the Ibero-American Summit on Children.
Luís Posada Carriles, Guillermo Novo Sampoli, Pedro
Crispin Remón, and Gaspar Jiménez Escobedo were
arrested in Panama City on Nov. 18, 2000--the day of Castro's
arrival in Panama--with several boxes of C-4 explosives and
other weapons. Their presence and plot were uncovered by Cuba's
intelligence service, which has been a bulwark in defense of
the revolution over the last 40 years.
Despite being caught with weapons, the four terrorists, all
trained and financed by the CIA for years, may be released by
Panama for "lack of sufficient evidence."
Posada Carriles is one of two terrorists responsible for
murdering 73 Cubans, Guyanese and North Korean civilians in the
bombing of a Cubana airplane in October 1976. He broke out of
jail in Venezuela for that crime by giving a $26,000 bribe to
the guards. The funds had been brought to Venezuela by Gaspar
Jiménez, who is now in jail with Posada for trying to
assassinate President Castro.
After 15 months of investigation of this latest crime, it
seems that Panamanian prosecutor Dimas Guevara doesn't think
several boxes of the powerful C-4 explosive are enough to
warrant murderous intent. According to Granma International
newspaper, Guevara concluded, "Among the charges established
was the possession of a dangerous high explosive that would be
used for a specific purpose, but the detonating fuse wasn't
found. That's why we couldn't charge them with attempted
Imagine the uproar in the media if people the U.S. has
branded terrorists were to be let go on such a flimsy
Despite Cuba's and Venezuela's requests for extradition of
the four to face charges in those countries, Panama has
refused. Now, the Salvadoran government, acting on behalf of
the U.S., has requested extradition of the four to El Salvador.
There they would only face "document falsification" charges and
conceivably be freed for "time served."
Part of the U.S.'s greatest hypocrisy is that five Cubans
who sacrificed their well-being to protect their people by
monitoring terrorists inside the U.S. now find themselves with
long-term prison sentences in U.S. dungeons.
Gerardo Hernández, Antonio Guerrero, Ramón
Labañino, Fernando González, and René
González, five Cubans who are heroes in their country,
were all cruelly separated from each other this month upon
their transfer to permanent prisons across the U.S. Yet avowed
mass killers like Posada Carriles could go free once more with
the help of the Bush administration.
In the midst of the brutal Afghanistan bombing and the
widening imperialist war, it is clear that Cuba is not free
from U.S. assault or harassment, either. Cuba's struggle for
justice is one more reason to march on April 20, along with all
the just causes for liberation.
Reprinted from the March 21, 2002, issue of
Workers World newspaper
This article is copyright under a Creative
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