In Terms of Human Rights, Nobody Teaches Anything to Cuba

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It's Me D
In Terms of Human Rights, Nobody Teaches Anything to Cuba

I just read the following interview and although its hardly breaking news I thought I'd post it up and at the same time try launching a new thread for the first time on the new babble.

In Terms of Human Rights, Nobody Teaches Anything to Cuba - PRAVDA.RU

PRAVDA wrote:

PRAVDA.Ru: On the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the adoption and proclamation of the Universal Declaration of Human rights by the UNO (on 10th December 1948), it is necessary to remember that Cuba was invited to join the UN Council of Human Rights by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 9th May 2006, against the will of Washington. For some reason it was…

Jorge Castro Benitez: Yes, and precisely this question of human rights has been systematically manipulated by the United States of America against Cuba. In the course fifty years, the governments of the USA have been launching diplomatic, military and commercial attacks against Cuba, a constant aggression that has not been seen in any other part of the world. They manipulate the sources of information in such a way that information agencies rarely say the whole truth about Cuba.

For example, the great social failings that existed before in Cuba demanded on the part of the Revolution a very strong answer on behalf of human rights and the elimination of attacks on the human condition. The Cuban Revolution removed racial discrimination that was strongly taking root in Cuban society. The Cuban Revolution removed nepotism, removed discrimination against women, removed political corruption, removed illiteracy, removed the lack of health care and the lack of access to public utilities and removed chronic unemployment in Cuba. Well, so now they are going to point the finger at Cuba and talk about human rights?

PRAVDA.Ru: Who, in the international community, remembers being told of these great victories of the Cuban Revolution? Little or nothing is said in the western press on the political system in Cuba for example.

J. Castro Benitez: Neither do they say anything on the financial and logistical support to organizations and terrorist attacks perpetrated by the USA on Cuba over the years, the hundreds of attempts made on Fidel’s life, the use of mercenaries to destroy the social and civil life in Cuba, to spread disorder, the inhuman and illegal blockade and the use of the diplomatic machine in Washington to influence partners in the international community against Cuba, entirely because of the first military defeat suffered by the United States of America in the Bay of the Pigs in 1961.

Cont...

Now I've heard President Elect Obama say a few things about positive as opposed to (the classically American) negative rights, and I know that he's supposedly big on addressing racism, etc. but does anyone think that Cuba will finally be getting the respect it deserves under the new US administration?

Doug

Probably not. Florida wasn't as close as it seemed it might be, but it was still close enough that the Obama administration isn't going to want to ignore the Cuban community there.

Fidel

Doug wrote:
Probably not. Florida wasn't as close as it seemed it might be, but it was still close enough that the Obama administration isn't going to want to ignore the Cuban community there.

How can he ignore them? Cuba is the only country in the world with representation in American government.

Slumberjack

It's Me D wrote:

PRAVDA wrote:
Jorge Castro Benitez:......The Cuban Revolution removed nepotism....

Laughing

Fidel

Ya, and our largest trade pardners want another U.S.-backed mafia regime in Havana to restore transparent and accountable government.

old_bolshie

Visiting Cuba is certainly surreal, I mean I've seen poverty aplenty in my life but the fortitude of Cubans in the face of such bruising crippling oppression is something else.

 On some level it's just a nation of zombies I guess you have to be to survive living on a prison island like that.

 I reserve my strongest scorn to those who would travel there for the express purpose of using the poor for prostituton-of course that doesn't apply to just Cuba.

Fidel

7 nights at Tropicoco nr Havana starting at $535 (CAD) all inclusive

[url=[/url]">http://www.sunwing.ca/Cuba-Travel/Santiago-De-Cuba-Vacation-Packages.asp...

Fly direct from Sault Ste Marie Ontario to Havana with SunWing

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

old_bolshie wrote:

On some level it's just a nation of zombies I guess you have to be to survive living on a prison island like that.

I'm still waiting for you to make a post on babble that is even remotely progressive in content. I'm rapidly coming to the conclusion that you are just a right-wing troll attempting to "pass" with a left-sounding screen name.

What you are reading now is an annoying and obtrusive tag line. Why not Email Michelle to demand that signature/tag lines be abolished forthwith? I'm sure she would appreciate your support for this initiative.

Manitoba Girl

The right not to be executed is the highest human right there can ever be, and Cuba and the USA both have the death penalty. Therefore there's not really much difference between the two when it comes to fundamental (basic) human rights.

Fidel

Manitoba Girl wrote:
The right not to be executed is the highest human right there can ever be, and Cuba and the USA both have the death penalty. Therefore there's not really much difference between the two when it comes to fundamental (basic) human rights.

Except that Cuba is a long way from becoming a conveyer belt of death  that is Florida or Texas or Alabama etc.

Cubans regret having the death penalty and executing a handful of people, but it has worked to curb the number of plane hijackings originating in Cuba and bound for the U.S. The Americanos were welcoming violent terrorists from Cuba with an open arms policy.

In the U.S., they execute mentally handicapped people.

Crime statistics say one in seven Americans on death row will be innocent. 

And they withold the right to vote from incarcerated citizens who've committed non-violent crimes and even petty crimes. Over six million Americans are embroiled in the legal system in one way or another and cannot vote. Voting is considered a basic human right in over 80 nations. 

 

Manitoba Girl

Fidel wrote:

Cubans regret having the death penalty

Not so much as the people being executed, me thinks.

Ta.

 

Ghislaine

Fidel wrote:

7 nights at Tropicoco nr Havana starting at $535 (CAD) all inclusive

[url=[/url]">http://www.sunwing.ca/Cuba-Travel/Santiago-De-Cuba-Vacation-Packages.asp...

Fly direct from Sault Ste Marie Ontario to Havana with SunWing

 There is something about staying a four star resort, while surrounded by people who cannot and will not be able to afford it that does not sit right with me... Why not encourage people to go on a volunteer mission or at least on a trip that does not involve carbon-spewing jumbo jets. I think the US should stop badgering Cuba, but Cuba needs to find a way to survive that is not dependent on the unsustainability of constant flights and excessive tourism. Canadians also need to begin to understand that a week south has environmental consequences. 

Anyways, are ads allowed to be posted on babble in threads?

It's Me D

Manitoba Girl wrote:
The right not to be executed is the highest human right there can ever be, and Cuba and the USA both have the death penalty. Therefore there's not really much difference between the two when it comes to fundamental (basic) human rights.

I'm not getting into your comparison of Cuba and the USA, I just quoted the whole statement to respond to your claim that "the right not to be executed is the highest human right." I totally disagree with you on that; the length of life is not nearly so important as its quality. I can't actually think of any right that I'd place lower in importance than the right to not be executed.

Sure you can respond with something like "you wouldn't say that if you were one of those about to be executed" but frankly you have no way to know that.

There have been many principled stands which placed a lesser value of the length of life than its contents, even the New Hampshire state motto comes to mind. A long life bereft of human rights is much worse than a rich life cut short by execution.

lagatta

I certainly stand up for Cuba against US and other imperialisms, but the death penalty is inexcusable. Shame on you Fidel for making excuses for it.

Many strong leftwing defenders of Cuba sharply criticised it for those state murders. In particular the trade-union movement in Italy, and ALL left parties, from the moderate to far left, including all former factions of the CP. Opposition to the death penalty is a major movement in Italy, among "l'area comunista" and "l'area cattolica" alike.

Ghislaine, Cuba is one of the closest destinations with dependable warm weather. I certainly hope that technology can make travel there more sustainable, but I'm not prepared to scuttle all air travel. Ideally, one would take a high-speed train down through the US and then a boat over, but some of us can't even enter the US, which still has an "enemies" list. Yes, tourism isn't a good basis for an economy, but on this point I'll really get on board with the Cuba cheering section (though I'm opposed to uncritical support of any country). The problem there is the US embargo.

Cuba has made great strides in terms of social rights and economic equality, in fighting racism and even sexism to some extent. But it does still have shortcomings in terms of speech and press freedom, and "socialism form below" aka workers' democracy.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Raul Castro has [url=http://blogs.amnestyusa.org/death-penalty/archive/2008/04/30/cuba-ceases... all death sentences[/url], except for three terrorists.

Quote:
"This decision [to commute] was not undertaken because of pressure, but as a sovereign act in line with the humanitarian and ethical conduct that has characterized the Cuban revolution from the start," said Raul Castro. He also noted that party leader Fidel Castro supports -when favorable conditions exist- the elimination of the death penalty for any type of crime and opposes the extrajudicial methods that some well-known countries shamelessly practice. He clarified that this agreement by the Council of State does not mean the elimination of capital punishment in the Cuban Penal Code, noting that under current circumstances the country [should not] dismantle itself before an empire that has not ceased to harass and attack the island.

Just 3 people have been executed since 2000, all of them involved in a failed 2003 boat hijacking. Now 3 men remained in death row: Salvadoran nationals Raúl Ernesto Cruz and Otto René Rodríguez, who were sentenced to death in 1999, and Cuban citizen Humberto Eladio Real. The two Salvadoran citizens were convicted of carrying out a string of terrorist bombings in tourism establishments in Havana in the summer of 1997, one of which resulted in the death of an Italian businessman. While the Cuban citizen, Real, was arrested in 1994 after illegally landing in Cuba and murdering a man in order to steal his car. He was sentenced for crimes against the security of the state, homicide and the illegal use of firearms.

Cuba's penal code establishes the death penalty for crimes against the country's external security, including acts aimed at undermining its independence or territorial integrity, the promotion of armed actions against Cuba, aiding the enemy, and espionage. Capital punishment was also reserved in Cuba for the most serious cases of homicide, rape, sexual abuse of minors involving violence, robbery involving violence and intimidation, and crimes in which corruption serves as an aggravating factor. But the death penalty cannot be applied in the case of people under 20 or women who were pregnant at the time the crime was committed or when the sentence was handed down. In practice, no woman has been executed since the 1959 revolution.

Comparisons with the USA are absurd. 

What you are reading now is an annoying and obtrusive tag line. Why not Email Michelle to demand that signature/tag lines be abolished forthwith? I'm sure she would appreciate your support for this initiative.

Jingles

Quote:
 On some level it's just a nation of zombies I guess you have to be to survive living on a prison island like that.

Who won the "So You Think You Can Dance" show? I've been so busy watching various sporting contests that I missed that vitally important event. 

 

 

kropotkin1951

I think the death penalty is inexcusable full stop. Canada had a long history where it had a death penalty that was never enforced. That is totally different than a country like the Excited States where there seems to be a pathological belief in the idea that the death penalty deters violent crime. I wish Canada didn't lock up sick grandmothers for protesting so I have little to say about Cuba.

I know many people who have travelled throughout Cuba on their own and they had mostly good experiences. 

Hoodeet

How can he ignore them? Cuba is the only country in the world with representation in American government.

 


Hoodeet (JW)

Don't forget Israel. 

Fidel

Manitoba Girl wrote:
Fidel wrote:

Cubans regret having the death penalty

Not so much as the people being executed, me thinks.

Ta.

I think if you can avoid hijacking passenger planes from Cuba to Miami or even New York for example,  you should be a-okay.

 

lagatta

That isn't the point. I don't think anyone on this board is contesting the gravity of the crimes. Or comparing Cuba to the United States. The point is, civilised countries have eliminated the death penalty. Cuba, which has made great social progress in other fields, should join their ranks.

Except for promotion of armed actions, the rest of this could be used against peaceful dissidents: "including acts aimed at undermining its independence or territorial integrity, the promotion of armed actions against Cuba, aiding the enemy, and espionage". Scary.

Personally, I think eliminating the death penalty would do far more to "disarm" US propaganda than maintaining it could. Just as Cuban health care, medical missions and doctor training do. Cuba couldn't possibly win a fighting war against the US on its own; it depends on many forms of support and resistance throughout the world.

Fidel

lagatta wrote:
Personally, I think eliminating the death penalty would do far more to "disarm" US propaganda than maintaining it could. Just as Cuban health care, medical missions and doctor training do. Cuba couldn't possibly win a fighting war against the US on its own; it depends on many forms of support and resistance throughout the world.

I think announcing a reversal of the law could spark violent hijackings, the way it was before.  There needs to be a clear commitment from the Americans for a clear policy to punish violent hijackers and would-be terrorists flying hijacked planes from Cuba to the U.S. Someone in Homeland Security isnt doing their job for whatever reasons politically expedient or otherwise.   

Viva La Revolución

lagatta

I think the Cuban Revolution was a great moment in the history of the Americas, and a wonderful blow against the empire, that has an ongoing impact to this day. (Though I disagree with the idea that the Cuban Revolution is still ongoing; I think that denatures the definition of a revolution and is a bit of a mystification).

I can't understand your support for the death penalty, which really seems counter to our principles as socialists.

Sure, if there is a war, nobody is challenging a country's right to defend itself against armed invasion. But the Cuban bureacracy is extending this right to self-defence to absurd lengths.

It's Me D

I must be carefully stepping into the middle here I think but lagatta can you clarify this comment for me:

lagatta wrote:
I can't understand your support for the death penalty, which really seems counter to our principles as socialists.

(emphasis mine) 

I don't doubt that it runs counter to the principles of most "progressives"  (especially here in Canada) but how does it run counter to the principles of socialism specifically?

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

lagatta wrote:
But the Cuban bureacracy is extending this right to self-defence to absurd lengths.

You have no right to lecture the Cubans on how much self-defence is acceptable to you.

The first duty of socialists is to defend the revolution against subversion and terrorism promoted by the imperialist forces that seek to destabilize Cuba and deliver it back in to the hands of capitalism. It's up to the Cubans themselves to decide the lengths to which they must go in their self-defence.

It may seem "absurd" to you but in fact the Cubans have shown remarkable restraint in the face of very serious threats and provocations. Three executions in eight years is a pretty damn good record compared with the rest of Latin America and the USA and Canada, where far more people than that are executed every year by police tasers alone. It's even a damn good record compared with other revolutionary states.

As René Magritte would say, "This is not a tag line". Only he'd say it in French. You may find it rather annoying to have to discipline yourself to ignore parts of certain other people's posts - but not everyone's. Wouldn't it be better to abolish them?

Michelle

Fidel wrote:

How can he ignore them? Cuba is the only country in the world with representation in American government.

I think you forgot about Israel. :D

old_bolshie

Quote:
What you are reading now is an annoying and obtrusive tag line. Why not Email Michelle to demand that signature/tag lines be abolished forthwith? I'm sure she would appreciate your support for this initiative.

WTH are you talking about?

It's Me D

Michelle I'm afraid Hoodeet scooped you by a few hours:

hoodeet wrote:
Hoodeet (JW)

Don't forget Israel. 

Tongue out

 

PS: Spector your tag line is really getting noticed! 

Manitoba Girl

M. Spector wrote:

Three executions in eight years is a pretty damn good record

It doesn't matter if it was only one death in 100 years; the Cuban state murders its own people. You should accept the fact, and quit making excuses for them just because they're communists.

kropotkin1951

Manitoba Girl wrote:
M. Spector wrote:

Three executions in eight years is a pretty damn good record

It doesn't matter if it was only one death in 100 years; the Cuban state murders its own people. You should accept the fact, and quit making excuses for them just because they're communists.

 Do you also hold canada in low regard when it comes to its human rights record.  Do you approve of a grandmother dying in jail because she was peacefully protesting. How about being murdered in an airport for not speaking english in an english only area.

Hopefully your self righteousness extends to your own back yard. 

lagatta

M Spector, I've attended countless demonstrations, fund-raisers and other events to defend Cuba against US (and other) imperialism and will continue to do so.

But it is bullshit that socialists elsewhere in the world can't have our say about human-rights violations in a country that has (to some extent at least) freed itself from capitalism. That is "campism". The original Maurice Spector would be outraged.

It is not a matter of "lecturing" anybody. Cripes, we've always spoken out against human-rights violations.

Agent 204 Agent 204's picture

Hoodeet wrote:

How can he ignore them? Cuba is the only country in the world with representation in American government.


Hoodeet (JW)

Don't forget Israel. 

Different situation. In one case it's the government; in the other it's the opposition.