From the belly of the imperialist beast, the members of Partido Mundo Obrero/Workers World Party send a strong shout-out of solidarity with the Borincano people, who are facing the devastating consequences of the powerful Hurricane Maria.
This hurricane is the most powerful and dangerous to strike Puerto Rico since Hurricane San Felipe in 1928. An Atlantic storm rated Category 5 on the Saffir-Simpson scale, that one caused 300 deaths.
Maria arrives at the archipelago during the worst political and social moments in the history of that nation.
With great pain we have witnessed scenes of floods and catastrophes that occurred within a few days after Hurricane Irma hit the island. Entire neighborhoods have been under water and dangerous electrical cables have fallen, endangering the life of anyone who touches the electrified waters. Buildings have broken windows and doors, their roofs are blown off, and there is massive destruction that has not yet been registered given the lack of communications.
The deprivation of electrical service, with its consequent impact on all areas that depend on electricity, such as running water and refrigeration of food as well as the environment, is so important in a subtropical land where temperatures have exceeded 90 degrees Fahrenheit in the last few days.
We embrace and sympathize with every Puerto Rican, within or beyond the island’s borders, who make up that nation and are separated only by the cruelty of the Empire’s colonizing process. We share the anguish of those families who try to find out about the situation of their loved ones in the archipelago but live in torment waiting for news because of the lack of communication.
Increasing this misforture is the process of privatizing some sectors, such as communications, which are so essential at the moment. Privatization never benefits the people; on the contrary. An example is the telephone network, now in the hands of a company called Claro, which can’t run without electric service, leaving the people incommunicado. This contrasts with the state-run Telefónica de Puerto Rico, which had emergency generators during Hurricane Hugo in 1989 and demonstrated that communications could be maintained without the main electrical grid.
From here in the U.S., we will help all we can to alleviate the enormous burden imposed by nature and by the hands of criminals on Wall Street and in the governments — both of Puerto Rico, which is in collusion with the criminal Board of Fiscal Control illegally imposed by the U.S. Congress, as well as by the current fascist-like resident in the White House.
Our strongest supportive embrace for the Puerto Rican people.
From the cruel and murderous empire,
Berta Joubert-Ceci and Teresa Gutiérrez
For the National Committee of Workers World Party/Partido Mundo Obrero