Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC

-DATE-
19630428
-YEAR-
1963
-DOCUMENT_TYPE-
SPEECH
-AUTHOR-
F. CASTRO
-HEADLINE-
SPEECH AT RED SQUARE
-PLACE-
RUSSIA
-SOURCE-
MOSCOW DOMESTIC SVC
-REPORT_NBR-
FBIS
-REPORT_DATE-
19630429
-TEXT-
Castro Speech at Red Square

Moscow Domestic Service in Russian 1550 GMT 28 April 1963--L

(Speech by Fidel Castro on arrival in Moscow, from Russian translation.
Variations from Castro's words in Spanish on the domestic broadcast are
inserted)

(Text) Dear Comrade Nikita Sergeyevich Krushchev, comrades from the CPSU
Central Committee, comrades from the Council of Ministers, members of the
diplomatic corps, Soviet citizens: This is the first time that I have had
the good fortune to address such an audience, whose language I do not know.
(Applause) (In Spanish--Ed: . . . that it is my task to address an audience
whose language . . . . ) I see a large group of Cuban students here.
(Cheers) It seems that they are the first to understand me. (Laughter) We
should coordinate the situation a little for our comrades may confuse the
issue if they are the first to applaud, the first to laugh, and in general
the first to react. (Laughter, applause) I think we shall solve the problem
easily as our interpreter is not bad. (Laughter)

For us, this journey, this visit to the Soviet Union, is not only an
exciting factor in itself, but presents for us great economic, political,
and historic significance. Of course, we have come to your country with a
certain bias in your favor. We have come here with a great desire to look
at your life and to learn from you. Perhaps our enemies believe that our
points of view are not objective, but they are mistaken. More than 24 hours
have passed since we stepped onto the territory of the USSR. We have
already established the first contacts with the Soviet people.

The impressions of which I speak are not for our enemies. If our enemies
wish to delude themselves, that is their business. I am speaking to the
Soviet people, and I am speaking to my own people. It is quite logical that
we Cubans and Soviet people understand one another. Soviet people
understand us because our revolution, our efforts, our dangers, and our
difficulties remind them of their own revolution. We Cubans understand
Soviet people because we an appreciate their successes, their victories,
and their understanding achievements better than anyone, because we know
how many enemies, how many difficulties and obstacles a genuine revolution
encounters on its way.

We know the achievements of the Soviet Union. They were possibly only
thanks to the unshakable faith, stubbornness, and persistence of the people
of this great country. What we see and what impresses us most profoundly
reminds us above all, that all this has been done not by rich people, not
by the "powers that be," not by the privileged classes, not by the
bourgeois intelligentsia. (Phrase "not by the powers that be" omitted in
Spanish--Ed.) All this has been done by the hands of simple workers and
peasants, the exploited classes (applause) who had no experience of
governing the country, who did not graduate from universities, and
nevertheless created w completely new country, created a completely new
society, and transformed browbeaten people into the Soviet workers and
peasants led by their vanguard, the Communist Party. (Applause)

We know the achievements of the Soviet Union. They were possible only
thanks to the unshakable faith, stubbornness, and persistence of the people
of this great country. What we see and what impresses us most profoundly
reminds us above all, that all this has been done not by rich people, not
by the "powers that be," not by the privileged classes, not by the
bourgeois intelligentsia. (Phrase "not by the powers that be" omitted in
Spanish--Ed.) All this has been done by the hands of simple workers and
peasants, the exploited classes (applause) who had no experience of
governing the country, who did not graduate from universities, and
nevertheless created a completely new country, created a completely new
society, and transformed browbeaten people into the Soviet workers and
peasants led by their vanguard, the Communist Party. (Applause)

They created the reality which is the Soviet Union today; a country where
every year the largest number of engineers and other technical workers in
the world complete courses at higher educational institutions; where the
development of science is on a great upsurge; where rich experience has
been accumulated in the administration, planning, and development of the
economy. It is quite natural that we revolutionaries clearly see this and
are delighted with it. But this is not the only merit. The proletariat of
former Russia opened up before the world quite new prospects. It changed
the whole course of the development of history and made possible things
which formerly would have been unthinkable. It is not just a matter of real
life, and in this sense we are living example of this reality. (Applause)

Many Soviet people ask: How was it possible to accomplish the Cuban
revolution? How was it possible to accomplish such a radical change in such
a small, economically underdeveloped country, in a country which was under
the American Yoke? (in Spanish--Ed. . . under the heel of American
imperialism?) It is quite possible that many Soviet people admire Cuba for
this very reason. And perhaps because of this we meet on all side with warm
sympathy and cordiality toward our country. (Applause)

However, we ourselves shall never forget one circumstance--the Cuban
revolution became possibly only because the Russian revolution of 1917 had
been accomplished long before. (Applause). Without the existence of the
Soviet Union, Cuba's socialist revolution would have been impossible.
However, this does not at all mean that the Cuban revolution was
accomplished by the Soviet union. Among so many lies and slanders, the
enemies of the Soviet Union have not gone as far as to say that. This means
that without the existence of the Soviet Union, the imperialists would have
strangled any national-liberation revolution in Latin America. And as they
go as far as to crush even bourgeois revolutions, if these revolutions
affect their imperialist interests, they would strangle socialist
revolutions in Latin America with much greater rediness and hatred. Had the
Soviet Union not existed, the imperialists would not even have had to
resort to weapons. They would have strangled such a revolution with hunger.
They would have liquidated it by only an economic blockade. But because the
Soviet Union exists, it proved impossible to liquidate our revolution.

When the imperialists, in a flagrant and unprecedented manner (in
Spanish--Ed: arbitrarily), limited the quota of sugar purchased from us,
this itself would have been enough to end the revolution, causing famine
and ruin in the country. Then the Soviet Union came to our aid by buying
our sugar. When the imperialists cut off the supply of oil, this would have
been enough to inflict a mortal blow to the national economy of the
country. Then the Soviet Union sent us oil. When the economic measures did
not produce the necessary effect, work began on plans for intervention. Now
a single capitalist country wished to sell us arms. Right then the
countries of the socialist camp, headed by the Soviet Union, decided to
help us help us acquire the arms we needed. Thanks to this aid, and with
these arms, we succeeded in defeating the interventionists at Playa Giron.
(Applause)

If there were no Soviet union, the imperialists would not have hesitated to
carry out a direct military attack on our country. This might of the Soviet
Union and of the whole socialist camp stopped imperialist aggression
against our country. It is quite natural that we nourish feelings of
profound and eternal gratitude to the Soviet Union. (Applause)

This teaches us two main things: that any people, no matter how small, no
matter how distant, can wage the struggle for a better life, sure of the
fact that the imperialists are unable to suppress it unpunished. At the
same time this teaches us that the merits of the Soviet people are vast,
the merits of the Soviet workers and their brilliant leader, Lenin, are
vast, (applause) and of the party which he founded.

We know that the Soviet people are aware of all the good things which they
have done for mankind. We know that to preserve and to defend your
revolution was not an easy thing. We know what sacrifices you have made, to
how many attacks from the aggressors you have been subjected. We know the
history of your revolution. We know of the world imperialist reactionary
plots. We know of the intervention organized against your country. We know
of the vast sacrifices you made in repulsing fascist aggression. We know of
the spilled blood, of your sacrifices.

Yesterday, when we were in Murmansk, we saw a completely new town,
thousands of new buildings. We were also shown photographs depicting
Murmansk immediately after the war, without a single house untouched by
bombs. We know that the Soviet people have been obliged to rebuild their
lives more than once.

But we understand that the Soviet people do this will full awareness each
time. We have understood it since the first moment on this soil and we
shall never forget the very first impressions which we have retained from
the first day of our stay in the Soviet Union. For the first time we met a
society where there is no exploited class and where there is no class of
exploiters. We are meeting here the builder-people and we understand that
such a people, such a society, is something extraordinary. (applause)

The courage, patriotism, and healthy spirit of the citizens of the country
where socialism has been fully victorious leave not the smallest doubt that
the CPSU Program will be fully carried out, (applause) that the present
generation of the Soviet people will live under communism, (applause) and
that your forward movement cannot be halted by anyone--since they were
unable to halt your forward movement when your workers and peasants
possessed practically nothing, when they lacked the basis of an industrial
society, when they lacked the experience of today. From the bottom of their
hearts the peoples of the entire world, all the peoples of the world, must
regard your success as their own. (applause)

For your revolution was accomplished in the name of the good of all
mankind, and what the imperialists say about this is not important. Their
slanders are not important. (Applause) We know what these slanders are
worth because in relation to us they did not stint slander, but that is not
important. All these slanders will crumble on contact with reality. I have
always believed this. We believe this is a thousand times more since I
became acquainted with the soviet people. (applause)

Mankind will proceed along its victorious path. Mankind has every reason to
be optimistic, to believe in the strength of those progressive forces which
will overcome the forces of reaction, to believe that the forces of peace
will emerge victorious over all those reactionary forces which want war.
(Applause)

The successes of the Soviet Union will help others also to progress
victoriously--all peoples which, like our for example, today are forced to
defend themselves from the intrigues and attacks of the imperialists. We
have always been great admirers of Lenin. (Applause) But after we see what
his people have accomplished, after we become acquainted with the Soviet
Union, the image of Lenin grows to gigantic dimensions in our eyes and
becomes for us still more immortal. Soviet people, if you want me in one
word to give you my opinion of your people, I will say to you a word
uttered by one of the members of our delegation when I asked his opinion.
He answered me: This is a people of giants! (Applause)

Today Comrade Khrushchev expressed his confidence in the victory of the
Cuban revolution, and we are sure that this is how it will be. (Applause)
We are sure that our people will not be defeated, for there are two
conditions absolutely indispensable for a victory--there is the
revolutionary and patriotic spirit of our people, and the solidarity of the
socialist camp with the Soviet Union at its head. (Applause) Moreover,
there is the revolutionary solidarity of the working people of the entire
world, there is the solidarity of all the peoples who have themselves
experienced the meaning of imperialism and colonialism.

Soviet people, about communism and socialism we can also say with the words
used in our motherland: "We shall win!" (Applause) The future of mankind is
the future of socialism and communism. (Applause)

Allow me to express warm and heartfelt (thanks?) here at Red Square, which
is steeped in history and about which Comrade Khrushchev spoke here, and in
the name of (words indistinct) for the opportunity to meet you here and to
express to your our boundless gratitude for the honor that you grant us on
this historic square where the new history of the world began to be
written. Allow me, as the most just expression of my feelings, to express
our deepest gratitude to the great man, Lenin. (Applause)

(The preceding paragraph was given in Spanish as follows--Ed: For this
reason, let me say with greater fervor than ever that it is a doubly great
honor, for which we are most grateful, to meet in this Red Square which, as
Comrade Khrushchev said, is so steeped in history. Here in Red Square,
where the first pages of the new world history were written, let me, as a
most homage, express my deepest gratitude to that great man, Lenin
(applause), by shouting: "Long Live Lenin.")

Long live proletarian internationalism! (Applause) Long live friendship
between the Soviet and the Cuban people! (Applause) Long live the Soviet
Union? (Applause) Fatherland or death! We shall win! (Applause)
-END-


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