By Bruno Rodriguez
April 15, 2018
The Vice President of the United States of America seems ill-informed, ignores reality, and hides the truth. I want to ask Mr. Pence directly if the Monroe Doctrine guides his government or not, in its policy toward Latin America.
I want to respond with words from Bolívar: “The United States seems destined by Providence to plague America with miseries in the name of freedom.”
I want to quote Jose Marti too, “All I did up to now, and all I will do, is to prevent the United States from spreading through the Antilles and falling with force on the lands of America”. It is not democratic to attack Venezuela and mention President Nicolás Maduro Moros, when he has been excluded and is not here to answer.
I reject the insulting references to Cuba and Venezuela and the humiliating attitude for Latin America and the Caribbean that he has assumed.
The moral vacuum of the government of the United States cannot be, it is not a reference point for those of us in Latin America and the Caribbean.
In the last 100 years they bear the responsibility for the most brutal abuses against human rights and human dignity. All the despotic governments in the region, all without exception, have been imposed or have received support from the government of the United States, including the most cruel military dictatorships.
Shameful acts like Operation Condor or the bloody coup d’état in Chile are hanging over the conscience of the United States governments. Mr. Pence’s country has been the first and the only one to use nuclear weapons against innocent civilians. It is responsible for criminal wars and hundreds and hundreds of thousands of deaths, massacres of civilians, including children, women and the elderly, which they call collateral damage.
It is responsible for acts of torture, disappearances, extrajudicial executions and kidnappings.
The government of the United States is the author of massive, flagrant and systematic violations of the human rights of its own African-American citizens, of Hispanics, of migrants and other minorities. It is a shame for all of humanity that in this country of extreme wealth there are millions of poor people.
They have a differentiated racial pattern in their prisons and in the application of the death penalty; where most judicial errors associated with the execution of people occur; it is where students are killed by guns, whose lives were sacrificed to the imperative of political lobbying, particularly from Florida.
The government of the United States has received tens of millions of dollars from the arms lobby, and one Miami senator has received no less than 3 million dollars for selling his support to them.
Miami is where the political mafias are, where confessed international terrorists take refuge and it is also the place of the famous electoral fraud of the year 2000.
Mr. Pence did not say, when he talked about corruption, that his country is the center of the laundering of financial assets of drug trafficking and the smuggling of arms to the south that destabilizes entire countries.
The electoral system that has elected him and the legislature, in which he has served for a long time, is corrupt by nature, because it is sustained in an unusually legal way in corporate financial contributions and the so-called Political Action Committees.
It is the government that imposes the fiercest protectionism, while not taking into account that it will ruin industry, agriculture and employment throughout our region.
It is where the political lobby has imposed the idea that climate change is an anti-American invention.
It is the political and electoral system where there has been scandalous traffic with private data of tens of millions of its citizens.
If Mr. Pence’s government were interested in the well-being, human rights and self-determination of Cubans, it could lift the blockade, it could collaborate with us through international cooperation, instead of sabotaging it, and it could allocate funds to Cuban medical collaboration programs and literacy programs in the world.
He has referred to Cuba in an insulting manner. I respond with the text of the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, signed in Havana by the Heads of States from Latin America and the Caribbean in 2014, whose principals include the inalienable right of people and States to choose freely their own political, economic, social and cultural system.
I also want to respond with a paragraph from the historical document that was signed by both his holiness Pope Francis and his holiness Patriarch Kirill at Jose Marti International Airport in Havana. It states, “Our fraternal meeting has taken place in Cuba, at the crossroads of North and South, East and West. It is from this island, the symbol of the hopes of the “New World” and the dramatic events of the history of the twentieth century..”
We are a few hours away from the 57th anniversary of the bombings by US planes at airports in Cuba, in which Cubans died in defense of our independence and sovereignty, and where at their farewell the socialist character of the Cuban Revolution was proclaimed, and it is surprising that after for so many decades, Vice President Pence has come here to use the same language that led governments of that time to carry out that terrible event.
The events that have taken place in recent years show that coexistence between the United States and Cuba is possible, productive and can be civilized.
For that, he should not expect, nor his delegation that just walked out of this meeting, for Cuba to give up one millimeter of its principles, nor cease in its efforts to build socialism.
Thank you very much,
Bruno Rodriguez is the Foreign Minister of Cuba.