Lester D. Mallory, vice secretary of state, wrote in a secret State Department memo in 1960: "The only foreseeable way to detract from [the Cuban government's] domestic support is through disenchantment and dissatisfaction arising from economic malaise and material difficulties… all possible means must be used quickly to weaken the economic life of Cuba… a course of action that, being as skillful and discreet as possible, achieves the greatest progress in depriving Cuba of money and supplies, to reduce its financial resources and real wages, to cause hunger, despair and the overthrow of the Government."

Cuba – An answer to the haters by Carlos Lazo

Translated by Walter Lippmann for CubaNews

A lady tells me that solidarity among Cubans on the Island is a “lie”, because in Cuba “nobody has a piece of bread to share”. Another “Cuban” who lives abroad, expressed that the thousands of men and women who donated their blood yesterday in Cuba are “hungry rams”.

I tell you something, my dear haters. I know that in Cuba there are a million needs. But what you say implies the false idea that my people are a country of beggars, without a bite to eat. You say that Cubans are an amorphous mass of “starving and hungry” people, without a piece of bread to give, without a plate of rice and beans to share. What a crude and mean-spirited statement! How much venom spilled on those who struggle, work and dream in that blockaded island! How painful to read so much hatred! How much infamy, now, when what is needed is solidarity, love and empathy! When warm corpses still lie under the rubble!

There is little in Cuba, it is true. I have seen it with my own eyes. But that has not been the only thing I have seen. These noble people, these good people, have reenacted the multiplication of the loaves and fishes. So, shortages and all, they have created five vaccines against the pandemic. Those scientists, who were our little friends as children, are the glory of Cuba and the glory of the world. Thus, with a thousand needs, with a blockade that has tightened in the midst of the pandemic, those you call “wretched” and “rams”, those who have “not even enough to share a crust”, those “beggars”, have traveled the world giving away health and cultivating love in a thousand corners of the planet. In that country, which you call “starving beggars”, there is no child malnutrition. In that nation of “paupers,” all children go to school.

Where did you bury your heart, dear hater? It is one thing to have a soul of stone and another to, in the midst of disaster, denigrate those who suffer, rejoice in pain and misfortune and, on top of that, defame your own people. Yesterday, the neighbors did take food to the rescuers, there are the photos and the testimonies. The self-employed, the owners of cafes, or the housewives, have gone to the scene of the disaster and have shared the “loaves and fishes”. The Cuban, anyone! extended his hand to those who sweat and struggle, to those who work side by side to look for survivors and to give Christian burial to the fallen. Those “rams”, “beggars” and “cowards” have mobilized to rescue, to save and to give life with full hands. Not only in Havana: In all of Cuba!

What’s more, thousands of those “cowards” have gone to donate their blood, listen well, their blood! their noble and courageous blood. Because Cubans are like that, they always give what little or how much they have. These people, “incapable”, “ram” and “indigent”, these people, have a lineage of titans and giants. And they know it. And the decent Cubans who live far away know it too. We know it because we come from there, because we have the same genes, because we are like them.

Wash your mouths when you are going to talk about the Cuban people, for fuck’s sake!

Haters! Caines! If you are not capable of being moved by love and dedication; if you are not moved by the sacrifice of your own people: Shut up! Shut up! Shut your mouths and be quiet!

Carlos Lazo

May 7, 2022

By US-Cuba Normalization Committee

Organizing Committee, International and Nationwide Conference for the Normalization of US-Cuba Relations.