Raul Addresses ALBA Summit: “We Have Only One Alternative: Unite, Fight and Overcome”

Posted on April 20, 2010

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Raul said that the Cuban Revolution in its 50 years has been, or will be destroyed with the blockade, subversion and lies. Photo: Raúl Abreu

  

Two Centuries of Common History Have Taught Us We Have Only One Alternative: Unite, Fight, and Overcome
Address pronounced by Cuban President Raúl Castro Ruz at the Ninth ALBA-TCP Summit in Caracas, Venezuela, April 19, 2010, 52nd year of the Revolution

By: Juventud Rebelde

Email: digital@juventudrebelde.cu
2010-04-20 | 15:00:00 EST
Raul said that the Cuban Revolution in its 50 years has been, or will be destroyed with the blockade, subversion and lies.Raul said that the Cuban Revolution in its 50 years has been, or will be destroyed with the blockade, subversion and lies. Photo: Raúl AbreuZoom
Dear and esteemed compañero Hugo Chávez Frías, president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela;
Dear and esteemed heads of state and government who are present here;
Delegates and invited guests;
Venezuelans;
It is very moving for us to be in Venezuelan today, April 19, commemorating the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the independence struggle, which represented the battles for independence in the Spanish colonies in the Americas.
It was the embryo of a first integration process in Latin America, as Bolívar understood the destiny of the peoples of our region very early on. Everything that we do now for the integration of Latin America and the Caribbean began precisely here, on a day like today, two centuries ago.
In the name of the Cuban people and compañero Fidel, I am taking advantage of the opportunity to transmit to all Venezuelan men and women our sincere congratulations on this memorable date and eternal gratitude to the memory of their principal hero, the liberator Simón Bolívar, of whom Martí said “…in calm one cannot speak of the one who never lived in it: of Bolívar one can speak with a mountain as a platform, or between lightning bolts and rays, or with a handful of free peoples in his fist and the tyranny beheaded at his feet…!”
Today we are also celebrating the summit meeting of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our Americas (ALBA) – an integrationist organization of a new kind, a faithful continuation of the legacy of our national heroes – which we are undertaking at this time and, in the last few days, other compañeros have been working on the documents that have been presented to us. The ALBA is continuing to make a sustained advance in order to settle the social debt with our peoples.
The declaration of territories free from illiteracy by several of its member states; the training of human resources, especially in the areas of health care and education; the clinical genetic psychosocial research and treatment of people with disabilities, a work of enormous humane impact, are some of the processes that stand out in our alliance.
Advances in commercial and financial integration, as well as efforts in pursuit of energy, food, technological, and other kinds of economic sovereignty are also outstanding contributions from our organization.
The 19th of April – as I was telling you a few seconds ago – also coincides with the 49th anniversary of the victory of the Cuban people over the mercenary invasion at Playa Girón [Bay of Pigs], the first defeat of imperialism in this hemisphere. In the course of barely 72 hours, under the direct leadership of Commander in Chief Fidel Castro Ruz (Applause), our combatants in the Armed Forces and Militia, via energetic counterattacks and uninterrupted actions, forced the surrender of the invading contingent, selected and trained by the United States Central Intelligence Agency and backed up by the U.S. naval fleet which escorted it to the Cuban coast, and had to resign itself to witnessing the resounding defeat of that adventure.
Just a few days ago, our press, recalling the anniversary, reminded us of the huge media campaign that accompanied the military aggression; first they tried to make it seem that the bombings of air force bases on April 15, 1961 by aircraft painted with Cuban insignia was carried out by our pilots, allegedly in disagreement with the direction of the Revolution. On April 17, when the invasion began, the U.S. news agencies disseminated all kinds of lies. They affirmed, for example, that Cuba’s second city, Santiago de Cuba, was already in the hands of the invaders, that our militia had dispersed, that Fidel had fled and that I had been arrested, reaching the absurdity of informing the world that they had taken the port of the city of Bayamo, which, for a fact, does not have a coast and is situated in the center of the former Oriente province, the widest in the country. That campaign reminds us the current one and the continuous campaigns that are being waged against many of the countries present here.
In its 50 years, the Cuban Revolution has not been nor will be destroyed by the blockade, by subversion, or by lies. Cuba, like Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Ecuador, to one degree or another, are the preferred target of ferocious and slanderous media campaigns, organized and financed by the centers of hegemonic power in the United States, national oligarchies, and, in some cases, the European Union.
We have already seen, less than one year ago, how a coup d’état was executed in Honduras – a country then a member of ALBA – with the complicity and support of imperialism and its media instruments. Our peoples should learn the lessons that can be derived from these events and should never let themselves be confused by the siren songs to which they are daily subjected, or ever give in to coercion and pressure.
The experience of the long and painful road that has been traveled in the common history of two centuries has taught us that we only have one alternative: to unite, fight, and overcome (Applause).
I add my voice to the words, also spoken by Evo, of congratulations to the Venezuelan people, to all of the representatives who marched in that magnificent parade today which filled us with emotion from beginning to end (Applause and exclamations) and to see a pure people, now armed, in addition to their glorious Armed Forces, which can be seen advancing before our eyes; to see students present in the parade and on the platforms; campesinos, workers, the multiple cultural demonstrations – many or the majority of which unknown to me at least – and which demonstrated the richness of this nation, just like the other sister nations on this continent. Even though I saw all of this in person, I would like to see it again on video – as they say, DVD – so as to enjoy it more, because television cameras capture – as Chávez told me – much better angles, which escaped those of us present here.
To conclude, I wish to add myself to a “Viva the Venezuelan Armed Forces and the armed people!” (Exclamations of: “Viva!”)
Viva the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the emancipation struggles of our America! (Exclamations of: “Viva!”)
Viva the glorious Venezuelan women who we saw march today with elegance, poise, and beauty! (Exclamations of: “Viva!”)
Viva the Bolivarian Revolution! (Exclamations of: “Viva!”)
Viva Chávez! (Exclamations of: “Viva!”)
Thank you very much.