The Brutal and Turbulent North

I was reading abundant materials and books to make good my promise of continuing writing on the Reflection of April 14 about the Battle of Girón when I had a look at the recent news that came yesterday, which were also as abundant as they are everyday. You could pile up mountains of news on any given week ranging from the earthquake in Japan to the electoral victory of Ollanta Humala over Keiko, the daughter of Alberto Fujimori, ex President of Perú.

Perú is a major exporter of silver, copper, zinc, tin and other minerals. It has huge reserves of uranium that powerful transnationals are hoping to exploit. Enriched uranium can be used to produce the most terrible weapons ever known by humankind as well as the fuel of electronuclear power stations which, despite every warning by the ecologists, was being manufactured at an increasing pace in the United States, Europe and Japan.

Of course, it would not be fair to blame Perú for all this. Peruvians did not invent colonialism, capitalism or imperialism. Neither can we blame the people of the United States, who are also victims of the system that has begotten the craziest politicians ever known in the planet.

On April 8 last, the masters of the world published their traditional annual report about “human rights violations”, which led to a thorough analysis on the website ‘Rebelión’ by the Cuban Manuel E. Yepe, based on a response given by the Council of State of China. The document lists several facts that show the disastrous situation of such rights in the United States.

“…the United States is the country that attacks human rights the most both inside its own territory and in the entire world. Is one of the nations that offers less guarantees to the life, property and personal security of its inhabitants.

“Every year one out of every five people is a victim of a crime in the United States. No other nation on Earth has a rate that is higher. According to official figures, persons above the age of 12 have suffered from 4.3 million violent actions.

“Crime has surged in an alarming way in the four most important cities of the country (Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York). Notorious increases as compared to the previous year have also been reported in other big cities (Saint Louis and Detroit).

“The Supreme Court has ruled that the possession of firearms for self-defense purposes is a constitutional right that can not be ignored by state governments. Ninety million persons -out of the 300 million inhabitants in the country- have 200 million firearms.

“A total of 12 000 homicides caused by firearms were recorded in the country, while 47 per cent of robberies were equally perpetrated with the use of firearms.

“Under the “terrorist activities” section of the Patriot Act, torture and extreme violence to obtain confessions from suspicious persons are common practices. Unjust sentences are evidenced in the 266 persons -17 of them are already on death row- who have been acquitted thanks to the DNA tests.

“Washington advocates for freedom in the Internet to turn the network of networks into an important diplomatic tool of pressure and hegemony, but imposes strict restrictions in cyberspace within its own territory and tries to put up a legal siege to deal with the challenges posed by Wikileaks and its leaks.

“With a high unemployment rate, the number of US citizens living in poverty sets new records. One out of every eight citizens resorted to the food stamp program last year.

“The number of families welcomed in homeless shelters increased by 7 per cent. Those families had to stay longer in those shelters. Violent crimes against these homeless families are increasing nonstop.

“Racial discrimination is permeating every aspect of the social life. Minority groups are discriminated against at their work places; they receive a humiliating treatment and are not taken into account for promotions, benefits or any labor selection process. One third of blacks suffered discrimination at their work place although only 16 per cent dared to submit a complaint.

“Unemployment rate among whites is 16.2 per cent, among Hispanics and Asians is 22 per cent and among blacks is 33 per cent. Afro-Americans and Latin account for 41 per cent of the inmate population. The rate of Afro-Americans serving life sentences is 11 times higher that that of whites.

“Ninety per cent of women have suffered some type of sexual discrimination at their work place. Twenty million women are victims of rape. Almost 60 000 female inmates have suffered some kind of sexual assault or violence.

One fifth of female university students are sexually assaulted and 60 per cent of rapes at the university campus occur at the ladies dorms.

“Nine out of every 10 homosexual, bisexual or transsexual students are harassed at schools.

“The report devotes one chapter to remind us of the human rights violations that the US government is responsible for outside its borders. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, led by the United States, have produced sky-rocketing figures of victims among the civil population in these countries.

“The US anti-terrorist actions have included serious scandals of abuses against prisoners, indefinite detentions without any indictment or trial in detention centers like that in Guantánamo and elsewhere in the world, which were created to interrogate the so called “high value detainees”, where the worst tortures are applied.

“The Chinese document also reminds us that the United States has violated the Cuban people’s right to exist and develop in disregard of the world’s opinion, expressed by the United Nations General Assembly during 19 consecutive years regarding the “necessity to put an end to the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba”.

“The United States has failed to ratify several international human rights conventions such as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

“The data contained in the report by the Chinese government show that the nefarious performance of the United States in this field disqualifies it as “judge of human rights in the world”. Its ‘human rights diplomacy’ is sheer double standards hypocrisy to the service of its strategic imperialist interests. The Chinese government advises the government of the United States to take concrete measures to improve its own human rights situation examine and rectify its activities in that field and stop its hegemonic actions whereby it uses human rights to interfere in the internal affairs of other countries.”

In our view, the important thing about this analysis is that such denunciation is contained in a document issued by the Chinese government, a country of 1 341 million inhabitants, whose monetary reserves amount to two trillion dollars. Without China’s commercial cooperation the empire would sink. I though it was important for our people to know the accurate data contained in the document issued by the Chinese Council of State.

Had Cuba said this, it would not be so important. We have been denouncing those hypocrites for more than 50 years.

Martí had said in 1895, 116 years ago: “…the road that is to be closed, and is being closed with our blood, annexing our

American nations to be brutal and turbulent North that despises us…”

“I have lived inside the monster and I know its entrails.”

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Fidel Castro Ruz

April 23, 2011

7:32 p.m.