Page 1 of 5 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 71

Thread: Castro's resignation and Cuba's future

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,505

    Default Castro's resignation and Cuba's future

    In case some people haven't seen it, Castro resigns as Cuban president (see also here)

    I feel that this is a very sad day, and I am finding the responses of the US, UK and EU sickening

  2. #2

    Default

    Eh? Surely this is a good thing and a reason to be optimistic. The response of the US, EU and UK has been entirely correct, as far as I can see. Perhaps now Cuba can move away from being an isolated dictatorship.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    5,524

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by elgato View Post
    I feel that this is a very sad day, and I am finding the responses of the US, UK and EU sickening
    Why? The US embargo is indefensible and a few aspects of communist rule commendable(literacy rates, healthcare, at least commensurate to GDP), but that shouldn't cloud the obvious fact that Fidel is a tyrant.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,505

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by vimothy View Post
    Eh? Surely this is a good thing and a reason to be optimistic. The response of the US, EU and UK has been entirely correct, as far as I can see. Perhaps now Cuba can move away from being an isolated dictatorship.
    It depends where you stand doesn't it! You assume a number of things

    I find the complete lack of recognition for any of his achievements in any of the Western statements (as quoted in any case) shameful, and I find their arrogance and imperialist tone sickening

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    8,314

    Default

    "Perhaps now Cuba can move away from being an isolated dictatorship."
    Well, if the US stops isolating it. Come on, you can't think that disliking the leader of a country means that you can victimise its people - by that rationale you could invade Iraq because of Saddam Hussein no matter what the cost to the....oh.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,505

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by crackerjack View Post
    Why? The US embargo is indefensible and a few aspects of communist rule commendable(literacy rates, healthcare, at least commensurate to GDP), but that shouldn't cloud the obvious fact that Fidel is a tyrant.
    I guess I have heard little to persuade me of his tyrannical nature, not to say that such facts do not exist, nor that I do not want to hear them. Although regardless, I don't see why that 'fact' should be the only relevant factor in how I feel about this, why any other consideration is 'clouding' the 'real' issue
    Last edited by elgato; 19-02-2008 at 03:09 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    5,524

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by elgato View Post
    I guess I have heard little to persuade me of his tyrannical nature.
    Welll the fact that he is retiring after 49 unbroken years in power is a clue.

    Or you could ask Amnesty.

    Prisoners of conscience
    At the end of the year, 69 prisoners of conscience continued to be held for their non-violent political views or activities. Twelve others continued to serve their sentences outside prison because of health concerns. No releases of prisoners of conscience were reported during the year.

    • Orlando Zapata Tamayo was sentenced to three years in 2003 on charges of showing "contempt to the figure of Fidel Castro", "public disorder" and "resistance". In November 2005 he was reportedly sentenced to an additional 15 years for "contempt" and "resistance" in prison. In May 2006, he was again tried on the same charges and sentenced to an additional seven-year term. He was serving a prison sentence of 25 years and six months.

    Detention without charge or trial
    Scores of people continued to be held without charge on suspicion of counter-revolutionary activities or on unclear charges. Their legal status remained unclear at the end of the year.

    • Prisoner of conscience Oscar Mariano González Pérez, an independent journalist who was arrested in July 2005 as he was about to take part in a demonstration in front of the French embassy, remained in detention without charge or trial.

    Freedom of expression and association
    Severe restrictions on freedom of expression and association persisted. All print and broadcast media remained under state control. There was a rise in the harassment and intimidation of independent journalists and librarians. People suspected of links with dissident groups or involved in promoting human rights were arrested and detained. There was an increase in arrests on charges of "pre-criminal dangerousness". Access to the Internet remained severely limited outside governmental offices and educational institutions. Journalist Guillermo Fariñas staged a seven-month hunger strike to obtain access to the Internet, without success.

    • Armando Betancourt Reina, a freelance journalist, was arrested on 23 May as he took notes and photographs of evictions from a house in the city of Camagüey. He was charged with public disorder. Armando Betancourt was reportedly held incommunicado for a week at the police station before being transferred to Cerámica Roja prison in Camagüey on 6 June. He was awaiting trial at the end of the year.

    Harassment and intimidation of dissidents and activists
    There was an increase in the public harassment and intimidation of human rights activists and political dissidents by quasi-official groups in so-called acts of repudiation.

    • Juan Carlos González Leiva, President of the Cuban Foundation for Human Rights, was reportedly the target of several "acts of repudiation" - involving government supporters reportedly acting with the collusion of the authorities - at his home in the city of Ciego de Avila. He and his family were repeatedly threatened by demonstrators. Juan Carlos González Leiva, who is blind, was arrested in March 2002 for "disrespect", "public disorder", "resistance" and "disobedience" and spent two years in prison without trial. In April 2004 he was sentenced to four years' imprisonment, to be served at his home.

    AI country reports/visits
    Reports
    • Cuba: Fundamental freedoms still under attack (AI Index: AMR 25/001/2006)

    • Cuba: Fear for safety/Fear of torture/intimidation/harassment - Miguel Valdés Tamayo and Juan Carlos González Leiva (AI Index: AMR 25/002/2006)

    Visits
    AI last visited Cuba in 1988 and has not been allowed into the country since.

  8. #8

    Default

    Actually, I'm all for the US trading like fuck with all three states in the "Axis of Evil" -- quickest route to regime change known to man is rising expectations.

    Come on, you can't think that disliking the leader of a country means that you can victimise its people - by that rationale you could invade Iraq because of Saddam Hussein no matter what the cost to the....oh.
    "Victimise its people" -- victimise what people? Ah, you mean this rationale: we don't like Saddam (it's a completely arbitrary dislike, by the way) so we're going to "victimise" Iraqis by overthrowing a tyrant responsible for murdering 2 million of them (a coincidence, admittedly), and establishing democratic rule.

    I find the complete lack of recognition for any of his achievements in any of the Western statements (as quoted in any case) shameful, and I find their arrogance and imperialist tone sickening
    Yeah, well you and the rest of the SWP can keep believing in the "acheivements" of Castro (though you don't mention any), pity that they come at the expense of freedom and dignity for Cuba.

    And you don't mention those images we see of Cubans escaping on little wooden rafts to Florida -- can't think why. Probably ingrates unable to comprehend Castro's many "achievements"!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,505

    Default

    Thanks for the information, that is indeed reasonable and substantial evidence. Although how many notable political leaders, including those of countries representing as if whiter than white, would escape such a definition?

    And

    Quote Originally Posted by elgato View Post
    regardless, I don't see why that 'fact' should be the only relevant factor in how I feel about this, why any other consideration is 'clouding' the 'real' issue

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    8,314

    Default

    "Actually, I'm all for the US trading like fuck with all three states in the "Axis of Evil" -- quickest route to regime change known to man is rising expectations."
    Well (joking about Iraq aside) I think we're roughly in agreement here, whatever you think of Castro the US embargo is vindictive and has not achieved its aims.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    16,534

    Default

    Vimothy, you have to admit that Cuba's poverty is due in no small part to the US's embargo. And the US trades with countries with human rights records way worse than Cuba's, doesn't it?
    Doin' the Lambeth Warp New: DISSENSUS - THE NOVEL - PM me your email address and I'll add you

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    8,659

    Default

    Not that Castro is Stalin or anything, but reading through the Amnesty charge sheet does give the impression that's Fidel's diehard defenders are the types that would've continued to defend Soviet Communism through the 'bad times'.

    'Orlando Zapata Tamayo was sentenced to three years in 2003 on charges of showing "contempt to the figure of Fidel Castro", "public disorder" and "resistance". '

    Replace Castro's name in this sentence with Niyazov, Kim Jong-Il or similar, and no-one would be defending him...

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,505

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by vimothy View Post
    Yeah, well you and the rest of the SWP can keep believing in the "acheivements" of Castro (though you don't mention any)
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Gibson, chair of the all-party parliamentary group on Cuba
    The UN recently announced that Cuba is the only country in Latin America that has no malnutrition. The World Health Organisation reports that the Cuban doctor-patient ratio is 1:170, better than the US average of 1:188. In addition, WHO has commended Cuba for outstanding literacy levels and rates of infant mortality and life expectancy that outstrip Washington DC - despite 45 years of an illegal economic blockade imposed by successive US administrations. Cuba's international activities also deserve recognition. It is operating humanitarian missions in 68 countries and, in 2005 alone, 1,800 doctors from 47 developing countries graduated in Cuba under a free scholarship scheme.
    Quote Originally Posted by vimothy View Post
    pity that they come at the expense of freedom and dignity for Cuba.
    You mean like the freedom and dignity of the ghettos and trailer parks of the USA? The freedom and dignity afforded by privatised healthcare?

    I am not suggesting that this matter is uncomplicated, nor that Castro or Cuba were some kind of shining example as the answer to humanity's woes. However, as I have said, I find the arrogance, hypocrisy and single-mindedness of the response today extremely unpleasant, and am saddened by the thought of the USA 'helping' Cuba towards 'all that is good'
    Last edited by elgato; 19-02-2008 at 03:35 PM.

  14. #14

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Tea View Post
    Vimothy, you have to admit that Cuba's poverty is due in no small part to the US's embargo. And the US trades with countries with human rights records way worse than Cuba's, doesn't it?
    One has to wonder why Cuba, a socialist republic, would want to trade with the capitalist wolf-at-the-door US, and what possible need Cuba might have for goods produced in the US given the "achievements" of Castro.

    Cuba can actually purchase food and medicine from the US, and can easily buy what it wants with the product of its well functioning economy from someone else. Except, it doesn't appear to have much to trade. (It's some sort of coincidence that this thing happens to communists, yeah, so it must be US trade embargoes that stop communism from working properly). Hmm...

    One also might wonder just what exactly the Cubans would want to trade with the US. Perhaps they might like to buy consumer goods for their comrades in Cuban slums. Perhaps they might prefer to cream off profits for the elites. Perhaps they might like to spend their tribute on arms, repression and pointless international causes to gain influence in the region. Who knows?

    The real reason that Cubans are poor is that the regime prefers corruption to redistribution (Castro is a billionaire in a country where the average monthly wage is about $10) and an economic system that has been descredited for nearly one hundred years.

    "Oh, but the health care's very good."

    Is it really? Are we really talking about Cuban health care?

    The end of Soviet subsidies forced Cuba to face the real costs of its health care system. Unwilling to adopt the economic changes necessary to reform its dysfunctional economy, the Castro government quickly faced a large budget deficit. In response, the Cuban Government made a deliberate decision to continue to spend money to maintain its military and internal security apparatus at the expense of other priorities--including health care.

    According to the Pan American Health Organization, the Cuban Government currently devotes a smaller percentage of its budget for health care than such regional countries as Jamaica, Costa Rica, and the Dominican Republic.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    8,314

    Default

    "One has to wonder why Cuba, a socialist republic, would want to trade with the capitalist wolf-at-the-door US, and what possible need Cuba might have for goods produced in the US given the "achievements" of Castro."
    Well, my point is that Castro is wrong, should the US punish the Cubans? However bad Castro's economics may or may not be the US embargo makes the situation worse, that shouldn't be controversial should it?

    "Cuba can actually purchase food and medicine from the US, and can easily buy what it wants with the product of its well functioning economy from someone else."
    Except the US also punishes anyone who deals with Cuba.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •