No War On Cuba!
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MAY 13, 2003
No War On Cuba (NWC) Warns
Bush Regime Against Modeling Cuba on Iraq
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Warning the Bush regime that its recent aggressive policy actions toward Cuba are unacceptable and will be vigorously challenged, the “No War on Cuba (NWC) Movement” will gather at 9 a.m. on Saturday May 17, 2003, outside the Cuban Interests Section (2630 16th Street), to express united support for Cuban sovereignty and peace.
Recent provocations by the U.S. Government toward Cuba have escalated the nearly 50 year campaign of American state-sponsored terrorism against the Cuban people, and appear designed to fuel a crisis that would provide cover for U.S. military action against Cuba. NWC absolutely opposes terrorism, by its own government or any other, and demands that the U.S. Government cease its hostilities toward Cuba and recognize Cuba’s right to peaceful self-determination.
The Bush regime’s war on Iraq took only 13 years to fully prosecute, from UN sanctions and US blockade in 1990, stretching to occupation in 2003. The war on Cuba has gone on considerably longer, yet there is no reason to believe the desired conclusion is any different. Beginning in 1959 with its overt aerial bombings of sugar mills and strafing of civilians, continuing with the Bay of Pigs invasion and concentrating finally on a more covert war characterized by crippling economic sanctions, anti-Cuban propaganda, and support and protection of anti-Cuban terrorists training in the Everglades, the U.S. Government has spent hundreds of millions of dollars over the past 44 years to destabilize and ultimately, overthrow the sovereign government chosen by Cuba’s citizens.
Recent, additional U.S. Government provocations include:
Unilateral violation of the 1995 Immigration Accords between the United States and Cuba, wherein the United States agreed to process 20,000 U.S. visas annually for Cuban citizens. In the current year only 700 visas have been granted, less than a tenth of the agreed upon figure. State Department claims that new post 9-11 INS reviews have caused such a dramatic slowdown and that the remaining 19,300 visas will be issued before the end of the year are simply not credible. This policy not only rewards Cubans who risk their lives on rafts in the Florida straits, since it is practically the only way to win a visa, it rewards those who engage in terrorism through hijacking. Since November 2002, 12 hijackers have reached Florida. Only one was denied bond, primarily because he had no family in the state.
False accusations of Cuban biological weapons manufacturing. Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter revealed in his 2002 visit to Cuba that his briefings with both the State Department and U.S. Intelligence admitted no support for this allegation, yet it is stated as one of the reasons Cuba has been placed on a list of countries “supporting terrorism”.
Restrictions on educational exchanges – “The Bush administration is ending the educational licenses because it believes too many people have been using them mainly to have fun.” – (NY Times, 5/4/03)
Threatened curtailment of remittances – The anachronistic Cuban American National Foundation has been openly lobbying the White House and the State Department to tighten the blockade that has already punished Cuban citizens for more than 40 years, and has suggested that some further limit on money sent by private citizens to Cubans be introduced It expects the Bush administration to grant its requests on May 20, 2003.
In addition to its own continually escalating campaign against Cuba’s citizens, the US Government has reached beyond its own borders to force other countries to punish Cuba too. The Helms Burton law and the Torricelli Act punish foreign companies who do business with Cuba, and drive other countries into the business of starving and maiming Cuban citizens by increasing Cuba’s costs to import food and medicine.
American citizens who defy their government’s laws by visiting Cuba without a license can expect to be intimidated, harassed, and ultimately, threatened with substantial fines, for exercising their constitutional freedom to travel. Those who go to the trouble of applying for a license are routinely turned down.
NWC seeks an end to these destructive policies of interference, war and occupation, and supports the constructive policy of peaceful co-existence with Cuba.
(Posted 5/28/03 - Updated 9/18/2004)