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Havana in Spanish to the Americas 0451 GMT 16 January 1963--E

(Live speech by Fidel Castro at the closing of the Congress of Women of
the Americas)

(Text) Women of America, fraternal delegates--be patient--fraternal
delegates--can you hear?--of the countries of Europe, Asia, and Africa who
are visiting us. In the first place, I want to make clear--as I have
already told some of the lady comrades of the congress--that if this
function began a little late, it was not my fault. (Laughter) Because this
year is the year of organization (laughter), I was in the theater at 2057
(laughter), and we intend during this year of organization to be punctual.
What happened was that the comrades, the comrades of the congress talked a
lot. I think they were speaking till eight or nine more or less, until
eight and then some (laughter), and that is why this function began a
little late. I only want to make it clear that it was not my fault.

It has been a very great honor for us, for our country, that Cuba is the
site of this congress. We understand that it has been a very positive
event, a serious event. We have tried to keep ourselves informed, to read
the material of the various reports presented to the congress, and our
impression is really that all of them have great value because of their
seriousness, the correct focusing of the problems, the enormous amount of
data they contribute about the realities of our continent.

Naturally, the topics of the congress were restricted to those sections
that relate to the interests of women, but what, really, does not interest
woman in modern society? What does not interest the Latin American woman,
the American woman regarding our social problems? When discussions are held
about the rights of women, of their aspirations, we see that there cannot
be rights of women in our America or rights of children, mothers, or wives
if there is no revolution. (Applause) The fact is that in the world in
which the American woman lives, the woman must necessarily be
revolutionary. (Applause) Why must she be revolutionary? Because woman, who
constitutes an essential part of every people, is, in the first place,
exploited as a worker and discriminated against as a woman.

And who are the revolutionaries in the society of man? Who were they
throughout history? In simple terms, the exploited and the discriminated.
Because woman is not only exploited as a worker when she works for an
exploiting monopoly, for a society of exploiting classes, but even as a
worker she is the most exploited worker, with the lowest salaries, the
worst conditions, with a series of contradictions among her social
functions--her condition as a woman and the exploitation to which she is

Thus, logically, women are revolutionary, and on a continent like this,
they must be revolutionary. That is why in our country women are
revolutionary. (Applause) In our country many women were exploited. They
were exploited as workers who worked to enrich a class, and were also
discriminated against as workers. Many women did not even have access to
work, to the opportunity to work.

In Comrade Vilma's report, there appears a report on the activities of the
Cuban woman within the revolution and the benefits the Cuban woman has
received through the revolution. The report was long, but even so it is
possible that the report has some omissions, because the revolution has
done even more for woman. It does not believe it has done it all, not in
the least, but it intends to continue to work for the woman. And, in our
country, the woman, like the Negro, is no longer discriminated against.

In reality, the revolution has meant much to the Cuban woman. Within the
revolution, the revolutionary leadership makes efforts to make available
more and more opportunities to the woman. As an example we can cite the
fact that when the medium and large shoe, clothing, and hardware sales
instructed to select women as administrators of those firms. (Applause)
Some 4,000 administrators--(Castro now corrects himself--Ed.) that is,
administrators for some 4,000 centers--90 percent or more are presently
administered by women.

There is another statistic, for example, that did not appear in the report
of the comrade president of the federation--and it is very
illustrative--about the increase of the participation of the woman in
activities that were practically closed to her: It is the fact that, for
example, in some professions, such as the medical profession, the number of
women who entered that university school was, possibly, less than 10
percent. At this time, in the institute of basic medical sciences, that is
to say the first year of medical schools, about 50 percent are women.

Those facts of evidence of how, in four years of revolution, the woman has
been incorporated into social life, the life of her country, the life of
the circle in which she lives and develops. For example, women also paraded
along with our soldiers on 2 January in contingents of women's military
battalions. In our army thee are a series of functions in which women work
and perform services. The bourgeois concept of womanhood is disappearing in
our country. The concepts of stigma, concepts of discrimination, have
really been disappearing in our country, and the masses of women have
realized this.

Prejudice is being replaced by a new concept in which the qualities of the
woman are valued for a series of social activities, in some of which they
demonstrate exceptional virtues. A broad field of action has been opened to
them. If you compare the report of the Cuban delegation with the reports of
the delegations of Latin America, you will be able to see the great
differences. The problems here now are, for example, how to free the woman
from domestic slavery, how to create conditions that would permit her to
participate as much as possible in production, from which the woman and the
revolution both profit.

Within a society like the capitalist society--one of unemployment, millions
of men without work--it is logical that women are many times relegated to
restricted economic activities. Within a society like ours, in which,
because of the complete development of all the resources of the nation and
our planned economy, more and more labor is needed for production, it is
logical that the revolution concern itself with creating those conditions.
And so today the revolution is concerned with the establishment of the
largest possible number of children's centers, student dining halls, and
with the creation of those circumstances that will enable the women not to
be a slave of the kitchen; and with the establishment of laundries.

It is clear that the increase of certain of those institutions, such as
children's centers, is restricted by the resources we may have under
certain circumstances. This year emphasis is being placed on the
establishment of workers' dining halls in the principal factories of the
country, and next year the accent will be placed on the establishment of
students' dining halls. The development of those institutions will enable
the woman to participate more in work, production, and the life of her
country--not only economic activities, but political and social activities
as well. (Applause)

Today those are our concerns, because the women in our country are able to
be concerned with these solutions. The Cuban delegation has also spoken of
the gigantic effort made by the revolution on the education front. There is
hardly any need to speak; it is sufficient to see it. This movement can be
seen. It is a movement that is forging a great future for this country; it
is a movement that demonstrates the objectives of the revolution projected,
above all, toward the future. It has permitted the duplication of the
number of children in the schools, the duplication of the number of
students in secondary and superior schools, the eradication of illiteracy,
and it can enable this country to march forward in forging a magnificent
youth destined to inherit the conditions the revolution is creating for
that youth.

Our problem now is not how to win the right to do that, but how to do it as
perfectly as possible. There is a difference between the situation of the
women of America represented in this congress and the representation of the
Cuban women: Cuban women have the opportunity to do all that, and the
American women need that opportunity. Our problems are different in the
sense that it now is how we will do it and how best we can do it. For us it
is no longer a matter of the chance to have, let us say, nearly 100,000
youths studying under state scholarships, but rather how to organize them,
now to see to it that the schools where they study are more efficient, how
to train cadres of teachers, and how to do that task well.

That does not mean that we do not have much work. On the contrary, there is
more and more work all the time in the revolution. But the revolution is
creating resources and more resources along the march. An example of how
those resources are created is that fact that it recently was necessary to
receive in our capital nearly 10,000 young peasant girls from Oriente
Province. (Applause) Whom to give that task to? The federation of women had
been in charge of that work, but the federation of women had the work of
attending to all the boarding houses of the scholarship students. It did
not have enough cadres, but there was a teachers' school that was organized
by a group of brigadist girls who participated in 1961 in the great
literacy campaign, a school of 1,100 young girls who were studying to be
teachers. It is a good school.

The comrade who is in charge of that school, and who is a great pedagogue
because she knows how to each, Comrade Elena Gil, had begun with a group of
300 revolutionary instructors--that is, 300 female teachers formed from
groups of youths who volunteered to teach in the mountains. She began by
training 300 revolutionary instructors for the night schools for girls who
work in domestic service. This was the first school. First there were 300.
With those 300 girls, the night schools were organized.

Then there were another 300, and their number reached 600. With the help of
these girls, the Macarense pedagogic institute was organized. that trained
1,100 of whom 300 were selected for special courses, with those 300 the
rest of the girls, the schools for the 10,000 peasant girls who arrived
were organized. (Applause)

We already had cadres--girls from the literacy campaign, girls who had
already studied one year, girls who already have discipline, a sense of
responsibility. It is really impressive to cross one of these avenues where
millionaries once lived and find groups of girls in uniforms, peasant girls
going from one place to another-possibly to eat or to class. With them, in
her scholarship student uniform, a girl who was in some cases younger than
the peasant girls themselves, but they were (as heard) the leaders. They
were in charge of the group: they were in charge of the house in which they
live and were, in addition, their teachers. They work and study.

Consider how those girls are being trained, already receiving that
responsibility, already getting serious tasks, fulfilling them. They have a
system, and they combine study with work. This indicates that the number of
persons trained will be greater all the time. Now we must organize another
teachers' school. The revolution changed the method of selecting teachers,
because teachers used to be selected exclusively from persons from the
city. The revolution changed that procedure. It established a system of
selection and opportunity for all girls and boys who want to become
teachers, and the system begins in the mountains. (Applause)

That is why we now have 5,000 youths in the mountains who are entering
their first year of studies for the teaching profession. Later they will go
to school for two more years. Then they will go to a higher institute where
they will stay for another two years. Many of those female teachers will be
of peasant extraction, girls familiar with the mountains, with the rural

At the same time, we are organizing pre-university courses for peasant
girls who are in the fourth and fifth grades and want to begin studying to
be teachers. From those same 10,000 peasant girls we will select those with
the greatest vocational (aptitudes--Ed.) and prepare them to enter those
schools. Within a period of time we will have our higher institute for
teachers with 6,000 students, whom we can mobilize so that they in turn can
teach, combining studies, with work. This is being carried out with the
great effort of a certain number of persons who work on that front.

Are there many persons who are perfectly competent for that task? No,
unfortunately, there are not many. But when there is a competent person in
charge of any of those activities, he creates what we can call a school;
that is, a system of work. We do not have many Elesas now, but in the
future we will have hundreds of Elesas, because they will be the girls she
trained. Every day there will be more schools, superior schools, and we
need many cadres in education to organize and take charge of those schools.
Thus advances the revolution with its youth. It can do it. We have won the
opportunity to begin to do all that.

The comrades of Latin America present a realistic picture of the situation
of the continent. It is really frightening. We believe that all those
reports should be published in a pamphlet to be distributed here and
outside (applause) in Latin America. Those figures are really
depressing--the statistics about the number of children without schools or
teachers; undernourished; the shameful figures of the percentage of
children who reach the sixth grade, the percentage of those who can
undertake secondary studies, and the percentage of those who can undertake
university studies; the figures on infant mortality, the consequence of the
unhealthy conditions in which they live, the undernourishment, the lack of
medical programs.

Today, this is not our situation. Today, we can say that not a single child
is crippled by poliomyelitis; we can say that tens of thousands of children
are saved as a result of medial assistance. More and more national public
health programs continue to develop. The number of beds in our hospitals
has practically tripled. The resources assigned to public health have been
qunitupled. Today those are not our problems, but they are the problem of
an entire continent.

Our problem is how to create everything we need to satisfy so many needs,
to overcome the poverty which imperialist exploitation left us. That is our
problem. Our job is big, hard, difficult. And it is not easy to have to
carry out that task with the threatening claws of imperialism hanging over
us, with the ceaseless hostility of he most powerful and aggressive
imperialist nation of the world. How to carry out that work is our problem.
How to defend the revolution and the sovereignty of this country while at
the same time advancing, that is our problem.

But that, American women, is not your problem. Your problem, and that off
the peoples your represent, is how to win the opportunity to do this, which
we are doing. (Applause) We are certain we will advance--in some years
more, in some years less.

We are certain that we will overcome our difficulties at times with more
sacrifices than at others. We are certain that imperialism will not be able
to defeat us (applause), because there will never be any conquered in this
country. (Applause) There may be fallen, dead, but no defeated. (Chanting,

If the Yankee imperialists one day, using all their might and resources,
were to decide to destroy this country, the most they could ever say would
be "we have destroyed it," not "we have defeated it." (Applause) And we
know that that danger hangs over us, but we also know that there remains an
entire continent and an entire world. We are not just Cubans; we are Latin
Americans. (Applause, cheering) We are even more because we are not only
Latin Americans, we are human being who live on the planet Earth.

The important thing is the victory of mankind. We know that in resisting
the imperialists, being firm against the Yankee imperialists, we are
defending the rights of mankind. That is how we Cubans think.

I repeat, the problem for us today is to work and fight. Your problem is to
fight in order to work later. The figures are there, those cold, terrible
figures which, when UNESCO or FAO or any other U.N. organization complies
statistics, say so many millions of so much and so many millions of so much
more, so many millions of deaths from hunger or curable disease, or so many
millions of children without schools, or so many millions without homes, or
so many millions undernourished; life expectancy is so much, which is half
of the average life span in the highly industrialized and exploiting

The figures are there, including the figures of the dead, which are higher
than those of any revolution. The number of deaths per year in Latin
America, those who die of hunger and illness without assistance, is greater
than those who would die in the liberation of the peoples of Latin America.
(Applause) Here, the struggle cost 20,000 lives, but many times 20,000
lives have already been saved. We can wait, and the figures will continue
to pile up, as will the millions of unfortunates, exploited, dying. The
figures are there, the results of the feudal, imperialist exploitation.

The problem of the figures must not be restricted to writing them down in a
graph or a pamphlet. We must think about how to change that situation.
(Applause) There are persons who are experts on figures, but what is needed
are experts on changing the situation, experts on leading peoples on
revolutions. That is the art of the revolutionaries, the art that must be
learned and developed. How to bring the masses to the struggle?

It is the masses who make history, but for them to make history, the masses
must be taken to the battle. That is the duty of the leaders and the
revolutionary organizations: to make the masses march, to launch the masses
into battle. (Applause) That is what they did in Algeria. (Applause) And
that is what the patriots are doing in South Vietnam. (Applause) They have
sent the masses into battle with correct methods, correct tactics, and they
have brought the greatest amount of the masses into the battle.

That is what we did. The four, five, six, or seven of us who one day were
separated did not conquer power. It was the movement of the masses that the
struggle against the tyranny unleashed, which culminated in the victory of
the people.

With regard to this there is something we want to clear up, because there
have been some harebrained theoreticians who have declared that in Cuba
there was a peaceful change from capitalism to socialism. That is like
denying that thousands and thousands of militants feel in this country. It
is like denying that an army from the bosom of the people in this country
defeated a modern army, armed and instructed by Yankee imperialism.

That is like denying that explosive, incendiary bombs have fallen on our
peasants, cities, and towns, bearing the legend: Made in USA. That is like
denying the formidable struggle of our people. It is like denying Playa
Giron and those who fell there. It was not a peaceful transition; it was a
combat transition, without which there would not have been any transition
in our country. Without that heroic battle, that armed battle of the Cuban
people we would perhaps still have Senor Batista here, made in USA.

Those are the historic truths. And we believe that we at least have the
right to speak about our historic truths without some long-distance
theoreticians telling us what happened here without having ever come here.
One does not have to whisper about these things, nor must one say them in
low tones. They must be said in a loud voice so that they will be heard,
really heard. (Applause)

And let the peoples hear them, because those false interpretations of
history tend to create that conformism that also suits imperialism; it
tends to create that resignation and reformism and that policy of waiting
for the Greek calends to make revolutions. Those false interpretations of
history do not conform with the situation of the majority of the Latin
American countries, where objective conditions exist--and the imperialists
have clearly seen that objective conditions do exist--but where subjective
conditions are missing. Those subjective conditions must be created, and
they are created by historic truth, not by falsification of history.

Those subjective conditions are not created by saying that there was a
peaceful transition in Cuba. (One of the delegates shouts something about
cowards--Ed.) It is not a matter of cowards, but of confused, of mistaken
views. We do not deny the possibility of peaceful transition, but we are
still awaiting the first case. But we do not deny it, because we are not
dogmatists, and we understand the ceaseless change of historic conditions
and circumstances.

We do not deny it but we do say that there was no peaceful transition; and
we do protect against an attempt to use the case of Cuba to confuse the
revolutionaries of other countries where the objective conditions for the
revolution exist and where they can do the same thing Cuba did. It is
logical that imperialist theoreticians try to prevent revolutions, the
imperialists slander the Cuban revolution, sow lies, say the worst horrors,
create fear of revolutions among the people. But let no one from a
revolutionary position attempt to create conformism or fear of revolutions.
That is absurd. Let the imperialists theoreticians preach conformism. Let
the revolutionary theoreticians preach revolution without fear. (Applause)

That is what we think. That was what we said in the declaration of Havana,
which, in some fraternal countries, received from some revolutionary
organizations the honors of a desk drawer when it should have received the
just publicity it deserved. It would be like locking up everything you have
discussed here. Of course, if we do not want the masses to learn about it,
we must put it in a drawer. But if we tell the masses what the situation
is, they must also be told what the road is. We must bring them to the
struggle, because that road is much easier in many Latin American countries
than it was in Cuba.

I want to make it clear, so that the theoreticians will not get angry, that
we are not making an irresponsible generalization. I want to make it clear
that we know that each country has its specific conditions, and that is why
we do not generalize. But we say the majority. We know there are
exceptions. We know there are countries in which those objective conditions
do not exist. But they exist in the majority of the Latin American
countries. That is our opinion. To say it here is a duty, because we hope
that in 40 years we will not meet as today--the granddaughters of our
federated women with your granddaughters--to discuss the same problems.

Our country is facing difficult circumstances, great risks. There is no
reason to stick our heads into a hole like the ostrich. Things must be seen
realistically. Our country is experiencing a period of risks, of great

On one side we have Yankee imperialism, imperialism's most aggressive and
most powerful nation, which has set as its basic aim the destruction of
this revolution, and on the other, we have circumstances that are adverse
to the world revolutionary movement.

First, I want to say that for us the crisis of the Caribbean is not
resolved. (Applause) I want to say that in our opinion, in the opinion of
the revolutionary leadership of our country, a war was avoided but peace
was not won. That is not the same thing. Do all the circumstances that
forced us to take the measures we took, the steps we took, not still exist?
Does the declared policy of hostility and aggression against our country of
the Yankee imperialists not still persist? We do not believe in the words
of Kennedy; but, moreover, Kennedy has not given any word. And if he gave
it, he has already retracted it. That is why we said that for us there was
no satisfactory guarantee without the five points we proposed as a result
of that crisis. (Applause)

We must be very clear on these controversial and subtle questions. We must
be clear on them. If it is said that we are here, that is, that we have not
been destroyed because of the solidarity of the socialist camp, it is the
truth. But if it said that we are here because of Kennedy's word, that is
not the truth. We have resisted for four years thanks to that solidarity.

Very well, what is peace to us? What peace is there for us? Since Kennedy
spoke in the Orange Bowl, the agents of imperialism have committed four
murders. They killed a peasant scholarship student on vacation in Trinidad.
They killed, by burning him alive, a worker in Las Villas Province, a
worker who worked in the reforestation service. They murdered an 11-year
old in San Antonio de Las Vegas. They murdered two CDR comrades in the
province of Matanzas.

Yankee agents with Yankee weapons, following Yankee orders! The policy of
subversion declared by the imperialists. What did we say? How could there
be a solution if the imperialists assumed the right of trying to strangle
our country with hunger, of trying to isolate our country and pressure all
shipping lines and airlines in order to deprive us of essential raw
materials and create hunger in this country. (How could there be a
solution--Ed.) if the imperialists assumed the right to maintain that
blockade policy against us and to create every imaginable obstacle outside
international law, outside the principles that regulate the United Nations;
if the imperialists assumed the right to subvert social order, introduce
weapons, saboteurs, train them, organize mercenaries; if the imperialists
assumed the right to violate our sea and air space; if the imperialists
assumed the right to organize pirate bands; if the imperialists assumed the
right to retain a piece of our territory, which points at the heart of our
country? what right can the imperialists have to demand the withdrawal of
friendly weapons while they maintain enemy weapons on Cuban territory?

What right have the imperialists to do that? In three statements, in the
one Mr. Kennedy made after the crisis, (as heard) he used threatening
language, maintaining his policy of using economic, political, and other
kinds of pressure and guaranteeing that he would not invade if we did not
promote subversion. But for Kennedy, this is subversion. You can't win!
(Estamos fritos.) That is a congress of women, who speak of hunger, the
frightening poverty of Latin America; that is subversion. When he spoke to
the mercenaries at the Orange Bowl, he said that he would deliver the
mercenary flag in Havana.

Recently, Mr. Rusk, the Yankee secretary of state, said that the United
States was not committed to refrain from invading Cuba and that if it had
committed itself, it had done so with regard to the immediate situation,
independent of its commitments with the other Latin American countries.
That is what they have said. Where is the commitment not to invade Cuba? It
is insolent for the Yankee secretary of state to say that they have not
committed themselves not to invade Cuba, as if international law, the U.N.
Charter, and all the norms that regulate relations between nations did not
commit them to not invade our country since, of course, they have no right
o invade Cuba. By speaking in that way, instead of promising not to invade,
they shirk the obligation they have under international law not to invade
Cuba. Moreover, they show that the Yankee leaders have the souls of
gangsters and pirates. (Applause)

I believe that many arguments are not necessary. The words and the deeds
are there. That is why we say that a war has been avoided, good; but peace
has not been won. This is bad. That is the situation.

The imperialists are somewhat optimistic. This is reflected in their words.
I do not think that optimism has any reason to exist other than the
underestimation of the realities of the world and the underestimation of
the strength of the peoples. It is clear that they do not want a finger
moved in Latin America. They do not want the peoples to fight. For
instance, the example of the heroic Venezuelan people (applause) is, for
them, a horrible nightmare. They want to be calmly permitted to establish
the bases of a long-lasting empire based on even more inhuman exploitation.

All those programs are always based on an alleged austerity which means
more privation for the workers, more sacrifice for the masses.

Let no one doubt it--the Alliance for Progress will not prosper because it
is simply a policy of domination, exploitation, and retreat. The partners
of that alliance are puppets like Stroessner, Guido, Romulo Betancourt, the
Somozas, the Peruvian gorilla junta. Those are the progressivists. The
alliance is with those progressivists--the most reactionary, backward, and
prehistoric people in Latin America. It (the Alliance for Progress--Ed.)
will not advance. It is doomed to failure. It is a desperate imperialist
attempt to deceive and confuse.

In one of those speeches, Mr. Kennedy said that we will compare Cuba with
the Alliance for Progress. If we make this comparison, Mr. Kennedy is lost,
because here, despite all the imperialist propaganda, there is the reality
that every child is guaranteed a quart of milk daily. We have had to ration
because employment increased extraordinarily.

Some half million people began to work, to have an income. The peasants no
longer had to pay rent. Rents were reduced 50 percent. All education became
free. Hospital service was qunitupled. The people had incomparably more

It was logical that under these circumstances we should have had to take
measures which would guarantee all families the articles they needed at a
just price, because there still remained here a sufficient number of
wealthy people to establish all kinds of speculation, if there were any
question of prices, as is the situation in the capitalist countries where
they set prices. A liter of mill goes up to two pesos and there is enough
for those who have the two pesos. A pound of rice goes up to three pesos
and then it suffices for those who have five pesos. There is no rationing;
there is something much worse: he who has gets everything and he who has
less gets nothing.

But they try to cause confusion with all these things. Let it be admitted
that our country faces a difficult situation, resulting from the
circumstances that it is, first of all, the basic, immediate target of
Yankee imperialism, and secondly, because of the divisions, or
disagreement, or however one may wish to call them, more or less
optimistically, within the socialist camp.

We have stated our position. We are not going to throw fuel on the fire of
these disagreements. I believe that anyone who throws fuel on the fire of
these disagreements is harming the interests of the world revolutionary
movement. (Mild applause) Against imperialism this reality is bitter,
harsh. We have stated our position, what--as we understand it--is our duty.
It is not to throw fuel on the fire of this disagreement, within its
principles, unity within its principles (Castro repeats himself--Ed.), and
to fight for this with Marxist-Leninist methods. (Louder applause)

Marxism-Leninism is sufficiently rich in ideological resources and in
experience to find adequate ways to overcome this difficultly, to overcome
this obstacle. It is a matter of resolving to do so, and I believe we must
fight for this. We must fight for this unity, and this we propose to do,
with our own criterion: Chauvinism, no, rather Marxism-Leninism.

Because imperialism, imperialism, exists and is there, dangerous and
aggressive. The underdeveloped world exists and is there. The liberating
movement of the peoples subject to colonialism and imperialism is there,
fighting, in Angola, in Vietnam, in Latin America, in every part of the
world, and this fight demands the united efforts of the socialist camp.

It is deplorable, most deplorable, that these differences should have
arisen, and we must fight against them, because the first thing is to
unite, and what Marx said was: "Proletariats of all nations, unite!" (Much
applause) Marx and Engels fought tirelessly, indefatigably for this unity
throughout their lives, and this is what we say, our political leadership,
our party, and our people, "Proletarians of all nations, let us unite!" Let
us be united against our class enemies, against the imperialist enemies,
against the aggressors, against the warmongers.

This is the position of our party and our people. This is the judgment of
our national directorate and our people, who have gone forward united in
difficult times, in difficult circumstance,s because our people endured
difficult tests in recent days, tests of courage in the face of Kennedy's
threat, in the face of his threat to turn us into an atomic target, with
the certainty that the nerves of this people were less affected than the
nerves of the generals of the Yankee Pentagon.

There were some isolated voices of criticism. As was logical, there were
some who, confused in good faith or confused in bad faith, criticized the
national directorate of the Integrated Revolutionary Organizations on the
matter of Cuba's attitude, immediately after the crisis, on the matter of
inspection and the pirate flights. For them, apparently, we should allow
ourselves to be inspected (shouts of 'no'--Ed.), as if to hallow the right
of the imperialists to say what arms we may or may not have and to bring
this country back to the times of the Platt Amendment, when the U.S.
Government decided for us.

To accept inspection would have been to accept, to agree to having to give
an account to the Yankee imperialists of what arms we might have or not
have within our territory. (Castro's voice now rising in indignation) This
implied for us a matter of principle. It would amount to a renunciation of
our sovereignty. It would amount to consenting to having our country made
inferior among all the other states of the world; we did not consent to
this, nor shall we consent to this. (Applause) Those who think that this is
acceptable would also consider acceptable a landing without the firing of a
shot (thunderous applause), because this is what this would lead to.

It was not by this road that the revolution rose to power. It was not in
this way that the revolution was defended at Playa Giron. It was by taking
other ways, of firmness and determination to fight against the

Apparently these individuals thought that we should allow ourselves to be
blown up, that we should allow Yankee planes to dive down over our
antiaircraft batteries without giving orders to fire. This can never be
expected of us either because the enemy always must expect, every time he
attacks us, that there will be a fight and no backing down. (Loud prolonged

There will be some who may say, who may try to insinuate that we were
against a policy of peace. The answer is the same; we want peace with
right, with sovereignty, and with dignity. (Applause) We want peace without
giving up being revolutionaries, without giving up the revolution.

When we fought the invaders at Playa Giron, when we fought those who bombed
us, who attacked us, no one will doubt that we were defending peace. When
this people organized and decided to fight to the last man or woman against
the imperialists if they attacked us, no one can deny that we are defending
peace, because to resist aggressors is to fight for peace; to surrender to
the aggressors is the way to war or the enslavement of peoples. By
defending our sovereignty and our rights, we are defending peace.

When we speak to the Latin Americans and tell them that the objective
conditions exist for revolution, we are defending peace, because the weaker
imperialism is, the less dangerous it will be. The weaker imperialism is,
the less aggressive it will be, and the liberation, the liberation movement
of the peoples, weakens the imperialists and makes them less aggressive,
less dangerous. The fight of the peoples for their sovereignty and their
independence is the fight for peace.

We indeed consider peace the fundamental objective of humanity. Let us
fight for it, following the paths of national sovereignty, of liberation
from the exploiters and the imperialists. By fighting against imperialist
exploitation we are fighting for peace.

We are enemies of war; it is the imperialists who impose wars on humanity,
and the stronger they feel, the more dangerous they will be. Therefore each
nation which fights for its sovereignty and its independence is defending
peace. this is what we believe, we closely united Cuban revolutionaries.

Those who believe that they are going to fish in troubled waters are
mistaken. Those who believe that in the face of this desire for unity, of
the firmness and dignity of our people, they can opportunistically try to
create confusion, to cast doubt on the rectitude of the Cuban revolutionary
directorate, they are lamentably mistaken. It would show that they do not
know this people, that they do not know the virtues of our people. Those
who, taking advantage of the difficult circumstances which our country has
had to face and must continue to face, foment division are committing a
deplorable offense of treason against the revolution, and the masses will
oppose them. They will oppose the intriguers, the divisionists, and they
will follow the line of our party and the line outlined for them by the
revolutionary directorate, because they will say: "This is our line; this
is the line of our leaders, and we have faith in it." (Applause)

This will be conduct of our people, the conduct of our revolutionary
militants, who do not become discouraged, who do not fear to fight, who do
not fear difficult circumstances, whatever they may be. Here there will be
no division. Here there will be unity because we need it, because we have
the imperialist enemy in front of us who wants to destroy us, and we need
unity to resist. We need unity to win. We need unity more than ever to go
forward, and with out unity, our firmness, and our line we shall continue
to go forward facing the difficulties, facing the inconveniences, whatever
they may be.

We shall exercise our right to think for ourselves, and we shall be
consistent with our revolutionary belief, and this belief has one motto
above all: To resist the imperialist enemy, to fight the imperialist enemy,
to go forward, without a single backward step in the history of our
country, without any vacillation in the revolutionary ranks (applause), to
continue forward against the imperialists. These are and will always be our
enemies. They are and will continue to be the enemies of America.

We shall continue to go forward on the road of the revolution, on the road
of socialism, on the road of Marxism-Leninism. Homeland or death! We shall
win! (Applause)