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Three lies about Cuba debunked

Originally published: Liberation News on March 18, 2024 by Liberation News Staff (more by Liberation News)  | (Posted Mar 27, 2024)

All across the corporate media today, there are stories attacking Cuba and its revolution. After protests took place in the city of Santiago over blackouts and food shortages, the Biden administration is hoping to provoke a crisis inside of the country. But the hardships in Cuba are the making of the U.S. government itself.

This is a tried and true tactic of the empire. In the run up to the infamous 1973 CIA coup in Chile that overthrew elected president Salvador Allende, the Nixon administration’s strategy was to “make the economy scream” to erode support for the government. But Cuba doesn’t need to go back to the days of being a colony of Washington and Wall Street—what Cuba needs is for Biden to end the blockade!

Lie #1: Electricity and food shortages are the result of failure by the government

The truth: For over 60 years, the U.S. government has attempted to strangle the Cuban economy by cutting it off from the rest of the world. Not only are no U.S. companies or individuals permitted to trade with Cuba, the blockade means that almost any entity from any country in the world is barred from doing business in the United States if they trade with Cuba. The blockade causes Cuba $15 million worth of losses every day.

Because Cuba is prevented from importing enough fuel, plants that generate electricity frequently have to shut down. Plus, since Cuba is prohibited from purchasing spare parts, when equipment at these plants break it can be next to impossible to fix. The same goes for modern agricultural machinery. Storms like Hurricane Ian, intensifying because of climate change, often cause major damage to crops—which cannot be replaced with imports due to the blockade.

Lie #2: The Cuban government violently represses its people 

The truth: Beatriz Johnson Urrutia, the leader of the Communist Party in the province of Santiago, personally went to the demonstration to hear the grievances of the protesters. Cuban president Miguel Díaz-Canel reacted to the protests by saying, “Amid a blockade that aims to suffocate us, we will continue… to address the demands of our people, listen, dialogue, and explain the numerous efforts being made to improve the situation.” Leaders of the government have cautioned against letting outside powers take advantage of the situation to provoke violence.

Compare that to the actions of the U.S. government. When millions protested against racism in 2020, did Trump go to the marches to hear people’s concerns? No! He ordered police and soldiers to crush the demonstrations. This is the difference between a capitalist government that serves the elite and a socialist government that serves the people.

Lie #3: Biden cares about “democracy” and “human rights” for the Cuban people

The truth: Biden could end the blockade and let the Cuban people live, but he wants the hardships to continue so the U.S. government can overthrow the revolution. Even short of that, Biden could immediately remove Cuba from the absurd State Sponsors of Terror list and reverse the 243 additional sanctions imposed by Trump. He does not care one bit about the Cuban people or their right to live in dignity.

The Cuban people elect their leaders and participate in decision making. Democracy has nothing to do with it—what matters is whether or not a government is loyal to Washington. Saudi Arabia is a dictatorship ruled by a king, but Biden is good friends with that regime. What motivates Biden is a desire to force Cuba to return to being a de facto colony ruled by U.S. corporations—but the people can stop him!

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