Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


Havana Domestic Radio and Television Services in Spanish 0102 GMT 2 May

(Live May Day speech by Prime Minister Fidel Castro at the Jose Marti
Square of the Revolution in Havana)

(Text) Invited guests, workers: While we celebrate this new commemoration
of international workers day in our fatherland, the free territory of
America (applause), in the fraternal soil of Santa Domingo (shouting,
applause, chanting), there is being written--at the same time as one of the
most heroic and beautiful pages of the Dominican people--one of the most
barbaric, criminal, and shameful actions of this century.

We all know the events taking place in Santo Domingo. It is not necessary
to recount them. In addition, we must know how to draw the necessary
conclusions from them. Few things have unmasked the cynicism and
criminality of Yankee imperialism more. (shouting) On very few occasions
can that which the people say be said with more hate and more indignation:
"Out with Yankee imperialism!" (applause) The shameless manner of acting,
the contempt for international opinion, for international laws, for
agreements, not only for the laws that are of obligatory compliance for all
countries, but even for those commitments contracted by the U.S. Government
itself with its allies. And even more than with its allies, with its own
accomplices in crime, with the very same servile and submissive oligarchies
that with Yankee imperialism signed the Bogota, Rio de Janeiro, and the
Pan-American agreements, and who knows how many other agreements, all of
which they have torn to shreds without any consideration for commitments
contracted with those governments who have accompanied them in their
reactionary and imperialist policy.

The perfidy of U.S. policy has become more obvious than ever because there
are times that they try to cover, to disguise their actions as much as
possible. But in this case, in this case they truly have not, or they have
not been able to, do absolutely anything to disguise their actions. And
when the world was profoundly concerned over its aggressive actions there
in southeast Asia--with its barbaric and criminal attacks on the people of
North Vietnam (applause), with its mercenary and criminal war against the
people of South Vietnam, with its attempt to internationalize the
aggression there through the participation of South Koreans, Australians,
and other troops in Asia that comply with its aggressive and criminal
actions--there comes the problem of Santa Domingo.

While in southeast Asia they were proclaiming that they were perpetrating
all those crimes in order to defend the sovereignty of South Vietnam--that
fictitious and artificial republic they created--they landed their Marine
infantry in the territory *f a sovereign and free state; they made shreds
of the sovereignty of that state, and rights of that country. And what was
the pretext this time? Well, nothing less than the pretext of defending
lives and ranches of North American citizens. Some Latin American
governments which, as a matter of fact have been very tepid--too tepid and
too weak--in their protests, with one or two exceptions, have spoken of the
humanitarian motives.

What humanitarian motives? For those allegedly humanitarian motives, barely
a few months ago and in complicity with their Belgian allies, they dropped
the parachutists into the Congo. On this occasion they landed their Marines
or Dominican territory.

But let us analyze the pretext. In the first place, no U.S. citizen had
lost his life in the Dominican civil conflict, in which, nevertheless,
hundreds of Dominicans had lost their lives. Moreover, what right can any
country have--only the right of its cannon, the right of its ships and
planes of war, the right of its military troops--to land on the territory
of another nation under the pretext of defending the lives and properties
of their fellow countrymen. According to that view, neither sovereignty nor
independence exists for any weak country; nowhere in the world, in no
country of the world does the right of sovereignty exist for any small
country. This is because other nations could also land under the same
circumstances that the Yankee imperialists have landed there. For example,
the English could land to defend the lives and properties of their
countrymen; the French could land to defend the lives and properties of
their countrymen; the Spanish could land in order to defend the lives and
properties of their citizens; the Italians could land to defend the lives
and properties of their citizens; the Japanese could land to defend the
lives and properties of their citizens--in short, any powerful country, any
large country could assume the right to land on the territory of any small
country where the citizens of that country may live or where the citizens
of that country might have property.

With that philosophy, with that concept of right, with that view, what
security, what guarantees could exist for any small country? What legality,
what order, and what peace could survive in the world? With the simple
argument in the 20th century, in the second half of the 20th century, with
that very weak and assailable pretext, which is so unjustifiable from all
moral, legal, and humane points of view, they land their military forces in
an independent nation of the American continent. But that unjustifiable and
inadmissible pretext was nothing more than a pretext was its falsity and
the lie of the pretext. The real reason behind the landing for which they
selected such an assailable, unacceptable, and weak pretext, was to save
the reactionary military men, to save the North American gorillas, to save
the agents of Yankee imperialism at a time when the Dominican people were
going to ask them for an accounting once and for all. (applause)

And what did they go to fight? Was it perhaps a socialist revolution? No.
Far from that. Was it perhaps a revolution that we could classify as one of
national liberation? No. They went to crush nothing less than a
constitutionalist movement--a movement that demanded a return to the
presidency of the country of a president overthrown almost two years ago, a
president elected in accordance to the bourgeois constitution of that
country in one of those elections that the imperialists defend within that
system they defend, the so-called, and I quote, "representative democracy."

It was a movement made up of discontented officers of the Dominican
army--it is said that they were young officers and noncommissioned
officers--and the Dominican people; something similar to what could have
happened in our country on 10 March (year not specified--ed.). If the
people could have obtained arms, something similar to what has happened in
other countries of Latin America.

Was it a socialist revolution? No. Was it a communist revolution? No. It
was a constitutionalist movement. All of it within the philosophy and
within the concept that the Yankee imperialists say they defend. That is
why actions carried out by the U.S. Government clash not only with the most
basic norms of law but also clash with their own philosophy, against their
own ideas that the imperialists say they defend, simply in order to defend
the most reactionary elements, the most rightist elements, the purely
gorilla military men, the purely Trujillista elements of Santo Domingo.

The constitutionalist movement proclaimed the return of he who had been
elected President constitutionally, Mr. Juan Bosch. Is Mr. Juan Bosch
perhaps a communist or has he ever been one? Never! Mr. Juan Bosch does not
have to make it clear that he is not a communist, because nobody has ever
called Juan Bosch a communist. Obviously he makes these clarifications to
the imperialists. Good enough, he can do as he will, but we know that Juan
Bosch has never been, and possibly he will never be a communist. We say
"possibly," because who knows if after all they have done to him some day
he may begin to think in a different manner than he does today. (applause)

What officer is leading? An officer whose name I have heard from the first
time, Colonel Camano. Another officer is named as the chief of the
constitutionalists, Miguel Angel Ramirez. Miguel Angel Ramirez has never
been a communist. Miguel Angel Ramirez even participated in Costa Rica with
Figueres in that armed revolt that carried Figueres to the government. And
this same Miguel Angel Ramirez participated in that struggle together with
Figueres, and who can say that Mr. Jose Figueres is communist. However, it
was logical for the imperialists to try by all means to paint the
constitutional movement red. For this, of course, they could not have the
slightest basis or the slightest pretext.

However, as soon as the events in San Domingo took place, when it was
realized that the gorillas under the command of the colonel, or general, or
this figurehead called Elias Wessin was being defeated by the
constitutionalists who, united with the people, were beating the Dominican
gorillas, the Yankee news agencies, the voice of the United States, began
in its customary style with its long-known practice of repeating and
spreading rumors that tended to present the constitutionalist revolutionary
movement as a communist movement, as a communist and leftist movement, to
present the situation in the United States (Castro corrects himself--ed.),
in Santo Domingo as a situation of chaos, of disorder.

They began to speak of barbarous acts, they began to speak of attacks on
embassies. But it is curious that during one day they repeated continuously
that several embassies had been attacked and they mentioned the Ecuadoran
Embassy. However, the Ecuadoran Embassy itself denied this report and said
that at no time was its embassy attacked by the revolutionaries--the
countries have definitely denied this.

What really happened? It seems that the constitutionalists armed the
people. They gave weapons to the people and this considerably strengthened
their cause. The gorillas, having taken refuge in the San Isidro air base
and having some 30 tanks, on 28 April launched an attack against the
constitutionalists. It seems that in the first moments the attack led by
tanks progressed. It is said that they crossed one of the bridges that
separated the base from the city. At this time the gorillas were shouting
victory, they sent out the news. And while they machinegunned the people,
machinegunned the city of Santo Domingo and machinegunned the radio
station, which was in the hands of the constitutionalists, they proclaimed
their victory. They believed that nothing could halt their tank attack.

But what happened to the tanks? The news that we have been receiving
indicates that when the tanks appeared the gorilla infantry advanced some
300 meters with the tanks and then the people and the military men in the
city who were defending the constitution and Juan Bosch opened fire on
tanks and on the Wessin infantry and everything indicates that the advances
was stopped. It was not only stopped, but the columns of the gorillas were
put to fight by the tenacious resistance of the Dominican people.

Up to this time the marine infantry had not landed. Up to this time only
some 40 marines had been placed by the coast to evacuate some U.S.
citizens. But when the resistance of the people rejected and practically
destroyed the attacking column, the imperialists realized that their cause,
that is the cause of the gorillas, was lost. This night they ordered the
mass landing of Yankee marines--the night of 28 April. As these facts show,
truly degrading things have happened for the Latin American governments.
Truly infamous things have occurred for this agency of colonies called the

Mr. Johnson said on the night of the 28th that he had issued orders for the
infantry to land to protect North American citizens and that the OAS had
been informed, but the truth is that not a single word had been spoken in
the OAS, that nobody had the slightest inkling in the OAS. It is a lie! It
was one more lie, because at the moment that the order was given to land in
Santo Domingo nobody knew one word of it in the OAS, and according to what
the North American agencies themselves published, the OAS delegates learned
that the Yankee marine infantry had been landed in Santo Domingo when
Johnson spoke on radio and television. A worse slap in the face cannot be
conceived. A worse kick in the pants cannot be conceived. A greater
insolence cannot be conceived, a greater contempt for those same
governments and for those same delegates who on more than one occasion have
been accomplices in their acts of arbitrariness and their crimes.

They learned of it over the radio and television, but there are some things
to be added. A Yankee general who commands the marine infantry and who was
in Saigon declared, a few hours before the announcemeny by Johnson, that a
marine infantry battalion had landed in Santo Domingo. This means that they
had time to tell the OAS, because a Yankee general in Saigon several hours
before spoke of the landing of a battalion, but when the general spoke of
the landing of a battalion, but when the general spoke in Saigon he
apparently mistook the hour. In Washington, not a press chief said that it
was not so, that only 40 had landed, but since evidently something had gone
wrong, an indiscretion had been committed, they hastened, they hurried, and
one or two hours later Johnson himself confirmed what a Yankee general had
said in Saigon, not that a single battalion but several battalions of
Marine infantry had landed in Santo Domingo.

This was on 28 April, but what happened on the 29th? Apparently they
expected that the mere landing of some battalions would frighten the
Dominican people. It appears that they believe that the simple landing
would paralyze the Dominican people. But what happened? the unforeseen, the
incredible for the imperialists, the surprising--the people kept on
fighting and corralling the gorillas and without stopping for a single
moment they continued their advance. And it appears that they were already
endangering the base of the reactionary military men in San Isidro itself.
That was on the 29th. (applause)

What happened to them? On the night of the 29th, scared, frightened by the
reaction of the people, they landed on the base of San Isidro itself with
two battalions of the 82nd Airborne Division with all their military
equipment. This means that in spite of the first landing, the cause of the
gorillas was lost. The base of San Isidro could not hold out, and on the
29th they landed two battalions of the 82nd Airborne Division with field
equipment and tanks on the base of San Isidro itself.

What happened on the 30th? What happened? The OAS had met the day before.
An elementary sense of shame, and extraordinary compromising position
before their own people caused the representatives of Latin American
governments to swallow all this with very ill grace. Then the U.S.
Government proposed the creation of a neutral zone. But such a neutral
zone! An area of 26 kilometers in the city of Santo Domingo, 26 square
kilometers, that is almost the entire city. However, the OAS delegates had
hardly finished adopting the agreement when the U.S. troops on their own
account and without consulting anybody established that so-called safety
zone. Obviously what they wanted was a pretext to occupy the greater party
of the city of Santo Domingo.

However, what happened on the 30th? First the marines landed, later the
battalions of the airborne division landed. However, the people continued
to fight in the city and the fortress of Ozama, one of the main bulwarks of
the gorillas in the very center of Santo Domingo, fell on 30 April.

That was why, although they already had 4,500 men, the imperialists ordered
new landings of troops in San Domingo. There is one thing that cannot be
disguised, there is something that is being revealed by their own news
agencies, and it is that yesterday the Yankee forces, accompanied by
Wessin's troops, attacked the city of Santo Domingo over Duarte Bridge. But
the resistance of the Dominican people, their tenacity and their
patriotism, was making things more and more difficult for the Yankee
imperialists. And all their efforts had been aimed at trying to somehow
legalize their action. Today they had the OAS meet, and what did they
propose? They proposed that their intervention be internationalized, the
intervention be legalized--that is, so that it would not be an unilateral
U.S. intervention, and that the governments, the representatives of the
government should agree to internationalize the intervention and,
therefore, the Yankee troops would no longer be there as troops of the U.S.
Government, but as troops of the OAS. Thus, what the U.S. Government is
attempting at this moment by all means is to make the other Latin American
governments share responsibility for their criminal plans, to stain with
the blood of that crime the other Latin American governments, to sanctify,
legalize their criminal action. Today they were applying pressure on the
OAS to have the agreement to internationalize the action adopted so that
the intervention would be collective and it would no longer appear to be a
unilateral U.S. intervention.

Meanwhile, they made efforts to achieve a truce because they could not
crush the people, and when, according to reports, there had already been
some truce talks, the U.S. Government then began to say that naturally the
only authority they recognized was the authorities of the San Isidro
base--that is, the authority of General Wessin. Very well, when they
intervened they had said that there was no authority in Santo Domingo. That
is to say even during the truces, they were trying to create the conditions
in order to impose the gorillas. It is possible that they will try to
disarm the people; it is possible that they will try to get the people to
turn in their weapons during the truce.

But what does PRESNA LATINA report to us today about the situation? Well,
according to reports, the Constitutionalist leaders have established as a
condition for a truce the withdrawal of the U.S. forces from Dominican
territory, (applause and chanting). That point of view enhances the
prestige of the constitutionalist leaders. That action raises their
prestige in the eyes of the entire world. But it must be said that
yesterday and today, when Yankee troops with tanks, together with Wessin's
forces, crossed Duarte Bridge, they encountered fierce resistance and heavy
fire from the constitutionalist soldiers and fighters, so much so that,
according to reports, three Yankee marines and two paratroopers have died
in Santo Domingo (applause) and more than 15 have been wounded. So the
Dominicans, the Dominican people have proved that Sandino has already
proved (applause), what the heroic Vietnamese people have already
proved--that the Marines are made of flesh and bones (applause) and that
bullets pierce the flesh of Yankee Marines (long applause), and that they
die like miserable dogs and traitors when they are shot at while they
perpetrate their crimes in any place in the world. (applause)

The Dominican people and fighters have the honorably glory of having proven
this truth once again, of having proved that the mercenary soldiers of
imperialism are of flesh and bones, and if they come to kill they well
deserve to die. [applause] In the face of the present situation,
imperialism has landed new troops in Santo Domingo, but the Dominican
people already have unmasked their plans. The Dominican people have already
forced them to remove the mask. The Dominican people have already forced
them to reveal their true intentions--their role as an enemy of the people,
their role of defenders and allies of the reactionaries, because they went
there to defend this same Wessin whose warplanes machinegunned and bombed
the city, whose warplanes left hundreds of innocent victims, including
women and children, in the Dominican civilian population, whose warplanes
filled the hospitals with wounded and dead.

When the people are prepared to ask for a rendering of accounts, this same
empire, these same Yankee soldiers who during a previous intervention left
Trujillo there and set up the Trujillo government; these same soldiers that
on the fall of Trujillo with their warships stopped the revolution of the
Dominican people; these same Marines who are going there to defend the
genocides, those who bombed the cities, those criminals who kill Dominican
citizens, peasants workers, and students cannot confuse or deceive anyone
with their lies or slanders.

Mr. Johnson has said with characteristic cynicism that elements trained
abroad were trying to control the situation--yes, the elements trained by
imperialism at Ft. Bragg, the elements trained by imperialism in Panama.
The gorillas and the Yankee advisers are those who are trying to control
the situation there, to crush the Dominican revolution. They are the only
foreigners acting there. They are the only foreign agents who act there.
Now they are dedicated to investigating whether among the thousands of
fighters of the people there are some who are communists, and they are
starting to say that there are communists among the constitutionalist. What
would be strange would be to say that there were communists among the
gorillas, among the defenders of imperialism, among the defenders of
Wessin. (applause)

We do not know how many communists there are in Santo Domingo. It is
possible that there are a few communists, but without any doubt any
communist in any struggle such as this would not put himself on the side of
the imperialists, of the gorillas. He (the communist--ed.) struggles
because this is his revolutionary duty in line with the constitution, in
line with the party which defends the constitution, although this party
states it is not communist, although this party swears that it wants
nothing to do with the communists. (applause)

And now they are sniffing around to see where the known communists in Santo
Domingo are. This is the most ridiculous and most absurd of pretexts. We do
not know if there were communists in Ethiopia when Mussolini attacked
Ethiopia, but it is certain that they did not fight on the side of
Mussolini. We do not know in each of these cases of aggression that
communists were there, but it is the duty of every communist to struggle
together with popular movements although it may be a minority, although
there may be only 10. If the country if fighting against its traditional
enemies, they have a duty to fight together with the people. (applause)

What does this action by the Yankee imperialists show? It shows that
imperialism is afraid. It shows that imperialism is nervous. In Venezuela,
there was also revolution. The Communist Party participated in this
revolution. When the defeat of Perez Jiminez took place, it was a much more
organized, numerous, and experienced Communist Party than Communist Party
of Santo Domingo which participated actively in this struggle. Perhaps the
anti-imperialist feeling was much stronger than the anti-imperialist
feeling that may exist in Santo Domingo, although this is pure conjecture.

However, imperialism did not intervene (in Venezuela--ed.) Imperialism
searched for other means, other instruments. It divided the people. It
chose one of the political parties and its chief, the celebrated Romulo
Betancourt as an instrument. At this time he certainly does not open his
mouth nor say a single word to condemn the U.S. intervention, the brutal
U.S. intervention in Santo Domingo. They divided the people. They stirred
up anticommunism and at least temporarily stopped the revolution in

The fact is that the imperialists acted hastily. The fact is that in the
face of a noncommunist civil-military uprising on a constitutionalist
nature which had Juan Bosch as a leader, who has sworn a thousand times and
truly that he is not a communist or has any communism--the imperialist have
not tried to do what they did in Venezuela. That they have not followed the
tactics of Venezuela but have embarked upon military occupation shows that
they are nervous. It shows that they have lost control. It shows that they
have lost their serene thinking. It shows that they have lost faith in
their traditional tactics, they have entered criminally into an adventure
in which they have much more to lose than to win because, in the first
place, it brings discredit to all those bourgeois governments that have
been trying to find a figleaf to cover themselves from their complicity
with the imperialists.

These bourgeois governments that believe in the Good Neighbor policy, that
believe in the Alliance for Progress, that believe that the Big Stick
policy was a thing of the past, that believed that the invasions of the
Marines had been left very far back in history, that truly believed in this
wolf disguised as Little Red Riding Hood, have had the opportunity to
receive a great lesson, a great deception, and before their people they
must find themselves in a very difficult situation, because it is no longer
a problem of communism or anticommunism or socialism, or of bourgeois
democratic revolution.

No, what is being discussed here is the independence and the sovereignty of
the peoples of this continent. To accept quietly, to accept calmly the
Yankee intervention in Santo Domingo is to renounce the independence of the
countries of Latin America, to recognize the right of the United States to
send its Marines whenever it wants to to any country of Latin America.

This is the problem which all the governments of Latin America have today
before their own people: to accept or not to accept the United States'
right of intervention, to accept or not to accept the renunciation of their
sovereignty, because there are Yankee citizens in all the Latin American
countries except here where there are only a few and these are friends of
Cuba and those who are not, let them beware. (applause) Because there are
still a few thereabouts, there is one or another disguised gringo

However, in the other countries of Latin America, in all of them, there are
Yankee haciendas. To accept the right of the United States to intervene in
Santo Domingo to protect lives and haciendas belonging to Yankee citizens
is to accept the right of the United States to intervene in any country of
Latin America because there are Yankee citizens and haciendas.

That is the tremendous dilemma. To consecrate that crime, to
internationalize intervention is even worse. Several governments in a more
or less Versailles-like manner have protested against the intervention, but
we must acknowledge that only one government, only one government, has
demanded the immediate withdrawal of the Yankee troops from Santo Domingo.
That one is not a socialist government. It is a government that has been
neither our friend nor our enemy, but is very far from Marxism-Leninism.
However, it is fair to acknowledge that it has been the government that has
the clearest proposal, and that is the Chilean Government. (applause) The
Chilean Government has proposed the withdrawal of the Yankee troops from
the United States (Castro corrects himself--Ed.) from Santo Domingo. And
this is the only correct stand; no other stand is correct. No other formula
is correct, because to consecrate it, to agree to it, to sanctify it, is a
crime that the people will never forgive any government.

Imperialism must be forced to withdraw its U.S. Marines. Imperialism must
be forced to cease its armed intervention, its participation in the civil
war, its warlike actions against the Dominican people and patriots. And
this action must not only be undertaken by the countries of Latin
America--it must be undertaken by the entire world. (applause) In Santo
Domingo, the countries of Latin America are harvesting the bitter fruit of
the stupid criminal, and irresponsible policy carried out against our
country. They are harvesting the fruits of their complicity with
imperialism against Cuba. They are harvesting the fruits of their Costa
Rica, Punta Del Este, and Washington agreements. They are harvesting the
fruits of their support of the Yankee piracy against Cuba, their
conspiratory tolerance for the aggressions against our country, the attacks
such as that of Playa Giron, the economic blockade, the pirate attacks, the
break of relations with our country.

Today the American continent can see that Cuba by itself has defended, as
no one else, the right of nonintervention (applause), that Cuba, as no one
else, and not by virtue of a concession by imperialists but by virtue of
the integrity, dignity, and revolutionary spirit of our people, has curbed
the Yankee imperialists and has defended (applause) the sovereign rights of
the people of America. Cuba is by itself against imperialism, against
cowardly governments, against the accomplices, against the yellow unions,
the same ones that in complicity with the State Department promote
blockades and sabotage against the ships that trade with Cuba. Today before
the peoples of America, they will appear for what they are: traitors,
betrayers, miserable ones sold out to Yankee imperialism, enemies of the
people of America, enemies of the sovereignty of the peoples of America.

Cuba, only Cuba has resisted. She has kept her independent and sovereign
flag on high. Only Cuba, defending her rights, has defended the rights of
the other countries. Today, Americans can know who really intervenes in the
internal affairs of the other countries, who wounds the sovereignty of the
other countries. The cynical words of imperialism will not confuse anyone.
Their own press and their own legislators have themselves said that the
principal purpose was to prevent the triumph of a revolution like Cuba's in
Santo Domingo. In the first place, that is a lie. In the first place, it
was not a communist revolution, but even if it were a revolution like
Cuba's, a communist revolution, what right have the imperialists to take
from the peoples the right to make the revolutions they feel necessary?

That is the sovereign power of any people. It is an historic right of any
people to have, within their borders, to carry out and undertake the type
of society they deem advisable, which the people may want, which the people
may wish to adopt in their own way, legal methods, if they wish, or
revolutionary methods like the methods we adopted. No country or any group
of countries has the right to prevent any people from carrying out the type
of revolution they wish. If they want to make bourgeois democratic
revolutions, let them make bourgeois democratic revolutions; and if they
want to make Christian Democratic reforms, let them make Christian
Democratic reforms. Let each do within his borders what he deems best for
his happiness and destiny.

The revolution, the revolutionary struggle in Santo Domingo is not
socialist, it is not Marxist-Leninist, but even if it were a socialist or
communist revolution, Yankee imperialism does not have the right to land
its Marines there. (applause) And even if they are not communist, we salute
the heroic and brave Dominican fighters, just as we would have saluted the
soldiers of Bolivar or Sucre or Juarez, even though they were not
communists. (applause)

We salute with admiration those cadets of Chapultepec who, during the U.S.
invasion of Mexico, in which half of her territory was taken away, refused
to surrender and, wrapped in the Mexican flag, sacrificed themselves,
preferring death to surrender. Those cadets were not communists. We admire
in history those French citizens who assaulted and made shreds of the
Bastille and, along with the Bastille, the feudal privileges it
represented--even if they were not communists. We admire our heroic and
glorious Mambises--even though they were not communists. (applause) We
admire all the combatants, those who fell fighting against Machado, those
who fell fighting against Batista.

To become a communist, it is necessary to acquire profound awareness,
profound philosophical, historical, and social conviction, a profound
understanding of the problems of society and history. And one can only
become a scientific communist in this way. But everywhere peoples are
fighting, more or less consciously, understanding with greater or lesser
clarity the causes of their miseries, the causes of their poverty, their
hunger. Whenever the peoples are fighting against their oppressor, in any
era or part of history, they will always deserve the admiration of all
people. Hence our admiration for the heroic Dominican fighters, our
profound respect for those who fell in defense of their country, defending
their cause, fighting against the gorillas, fighting against the Yankee
interventionalists; our respect and admiration and our conviction that the
imperialist intervention is a harebrained adventure doomed to failure,
doomed to deepen the contradictions of imperialism, doomed to submerge it
in scorn.

They accuse the revolutionary movement of being leftist. What will make the
revolutionary movement leftist is precisely the Yankee intervention. What
will make the Dominican people leftist is the cowardly Yankee invasion.
What will make the Dominican people leftist is the complicity of Yankee
imperialism with their scourges, with the thugs who beat and murder the
sons of the people, with the reactionaries, with the criminals, with those
who strafe and bomb without consideration for the civilian populations,
with those who kill and wound hundreds and thousands of innocent people.

That will leave indelible marks, that will leave ineradicable marks. It is
probable that the imperialists, trying to erase the stain of blood and the
hatred, will appear with their food for peace, with their medicines, but
nothing, absolutely nothing will erase the hatred, the repulsion, and
indignation of the Dominican people. And nothing will stain the struggle
because those heroic patriots who faced the tanks and destroyed them, who
took the Ozama fortress by assault in the midst of the intervention, will
not cease to struggle in one way or another as they struggled today, or as
the Vietnamese struggle, or as Sandino has struggled or as the Venezuelans
are struggling, or as the Colombians are struggling. They will continue
their struggle, because nothing and no one will be able to crush the will
and heroism of the peoples. The mobilization of world opinion is necessary.
The Cuban Government denounced, before the United Nations, the criminal
Yankee invasion of Santo Domingo. The Soviet Union requested a meeting of
the Security Council (applause) to debate the Yankee intervention in the
United States (again Castro corrects himself--ed.) in Santo Domingo, and
the Security Council will meet on Monday to debate that problem. We are
certain that the cause of the Dominican people will not only have the
support of the socialist camp, it will also have the support of all the
nonaligned countries and the support of the majority of the countries of
the world because no country will be able to remain indifferent to those
flagrant, shameful, and criminal deeds.

It is necessary that world opinion be mobilized. It is necessary to demand
the withdrawal of the imperialist troops from the sovereign and independent
state of Santo Domingo. The imperialists are being very aggressive. I was
telling you that they are being moved by despair and fear, but we know that
the imperialists are blackmailers by nature. We know them well, too well.
Everything is step by step. First, in Vietnam, the alleged aggression of
torpedo boats, an attack in reprisal; then, systematic attacks without
reprisal; then, the sending of troops to the south; then the participation
of the air force in Vietnam. Here in Santo Domingo; first, a few Marines
and some ships to protect lives and properties: then, the infantry; then
the airborne division, then the neutralized zone, then the maintenance of
order, and so forth, step by step in each of its adventures, in each of its

It is logical for this aggressive attitude of the imperialists to concern
the peoples, all the peoples. Within a few months there have been the
intervention in the Congo, the aggressions against Vietnam, the invasion of
Santo Domingo--all this in less than a year. This is an irresponsible,
adventurous, and dangerous attitude motivated by fear of revolutions.
Frightened by the inevitable changes that take place in the world, they
endeavor to hold back the march of history in Asia, Africa, in Latin
America. It is necessary to counteract this imperialist aggressiveness. The
problems of peace concern all of us. Whoever did not understand the
importance of peace would have to be senseless and irresponsible. All of us
understand it. But the defense of peace cannot be a passive defense.
Preaching in favor of peace cannot be a saintly preaching--peace at any
price. No. Already since the time of the October crisis we have established
that watchword of peace with dignity. (applause)

The concern of the people over peace does not mean nor could it ever mean,
in any event, the imperialists' right to slay the people with impunity, the
imperialists' right to commit aggression against the fight for peace and
responsibility for peace among the other nations. We sincerely believe that
this path does not really lead to peace because we are confronted with a
mentality inclined to blackmail--opportunistic and calculating. This is the
Yankee mentality, the mentality of the Yankee rules. In the first place,
this man Johnson is a farce personified. In his campaign against Goldwater,
imperialism's most aggressive advocate, he posed as a partisan of peace, in
favor of peaceful solutions, a foe of belligerency in order to capitalize
on the concerns of the U.S. population, their uneasiness. The people voted
more against Goldwater than for Johnson.

However, facts prove what we said at the time of the elections: It was all
the same to us for them to elect John or his sister. Johnson has betrayed
U.S. public opinion. Many European newspapers hailed Johnson's triumph.
However, with his irresponsible, adventurous, and nervous policies, Johnson
treads over extremely dangerous paths. In Vietnam, in Santo Domingo, and
who knows what other places are next. Once elected president, he followed
policies of the Pentagon gorillas, of the most reactionary circles in the
United States, which are eminently policies of blackmail. The Yankee
mentality operates on the basis of nuclear balance. If nuclear balance
exists, no nuclear war will ever be unleashed. Hence, they have a wide
field for their evil deeds in the form of limited wars, subversion,
interventions, aggressions, and air attacks--this philosophy is embraced
within their idea of nuclear balance. In the same measure in which nuclear
weapons become more powerful, they will be able to operate within this
conviction and perpetrate among nations all sorts of evil deeds.

We believe that it is necessary to bring about a change in that mentality
of the imperialists. We believe that we must convince the imperialists that
they are really playing with fire (applause). Judging by the facts, the
danger of war will increase more and more as long as this imperialistic
mentality remains unchanged, as long as the imperialists are not persuaded,
that this path is a dangerous road and that their policies can never be
implemented. Only when the imperialists become convinced of this fact will
tension really begin to diminish. Only when the imperialists become
convinced of this will the situation begin to change. Undoubtedly we, all
of the peoples, our people, all of the peoples of the world, all of the
people within the socialist camp, find ourselves compelled to face this
reality and confront these risks, the risks imposed upon us by history and
the era in which we live.

However, it becomes necessary at some point to cut off the hands of the
imperialists! (applause) In Vietnam or anywhere else! They are carrying out
in Vietnam all the policies which we predicted at the university steps:
they have created conditions to make the Vietnamese war a world war and to
crush the liberation movement. Their attacks on the north are designed to
instill fear, to intimidate, in order to attack this or that country. Their
plan is to create conditions to make that war a world war, to participate
directly with their planes, their soldiers--New Zealand, Canadian
soldiers--excuse me, not Canadians, I hope they do not do as the
Australians did--Australians, South Koreans--to bomb with hundreds of
planes, to launch their toxic gasses, their fire bombs, and to crush the
revolutionary movement of the south. Very well, they try to create
conditions in the north to that end.

In the first place air strikes against the north must (?be stopped). Those
planes must be destroyed. North Vietnam may be turned into a graveyard for
Yankee planes (applause), by every means, by all antiaircraft and air
means, with the assistance of all and the participation of the socialist
camp. This is not the moment to go into these problems again. However we
believe that with the cooperation of everyone, North Vietnam must be turned
into a graveyard for Yankee planes. But this is not enough. They must be
warned that the internationalization of the war in South Vietnam amounts to
the internationalization of the war in southeast Asia (applause). The
presence of Yankee troops and Korean troops--excuse me, you Koreans, the
real Koreans--the presence of South Korean and Australian troops will give
the socialist camp the right to send their volunteers to fight (at this
Castro strikes the podium several times--ed.) also in South Vietnam

In short, we believe that the imperialists' hands must be cut off
somewhere. The imperialists' backbone must be broken somewhere. The
imperialists must know that we are prepared to face the risks, and I am
certain, since we know them well for the blackmailers that they are, that
they will then begin to think. In the meantime, they attack without
thinking, they carry out bombing strikes without thinking, they kill and
murder without thinking.

No one wants nor should want war. The peoples want peace, to live in peace,
to work in peace, to grow and develop in peace. The peoples desire to forge
their happiness. However, this happiness, this right, must be won
intelligently. The circumstances prevailing in the world are difficult and
complex, because of the existence of such as Yankee imperialism, with this
mentality of the imperialists--acquired from FBI novels, from the Tom Mix
cowboy and Tarzan movies, from all that mess, all that superficiality--the
gross ignorance of a people with such a highly developed technology, a
people with as great a lack in refinement as is their technology, and above
all with as great a lack in potential refinement as their technology is
great. A people who have political refinement could not accept calmly the
argument they are advancing that intervention is carried out against a
sovereign nation to protect some 2,000 or 3,000 Yankees who are spending
their vacations in Santo Domingo or transacting business there.
Two-thousand or three-thousand Yankees--trash in the main, exploiters,
traffickers in prostitution and pleasure--are not worth any more than the
rights of a sovereign nation and people, which are the rights of the
millions of citizens of that country and the rights of the millions of
citizens of that country and the rights of all nations, which cannot remain
indifferent in the face of that type of violence.

For that reason, I say that the circumstances are difficult and complex. We
have a fight with a difficult enemy but we must recognize that difficult
enemy. We must know how to deal with him. That difficult enemy's hands must
be cut off somewhere. He must be shown that he is playing with fire. In
this world we are a part, a small part; our resources are limited. We just
present our thinking, our viewpoint. However, we believe that the
imperialists with their acts will bear out what we are saying. In the face
of their aggressive and interventionist policy there is a strategy, there
is the revolutionary strategy of the peoples, of the revolutionary
movements, of the communist parties of the entire world (applause). The
gringos' interventionist strategy must be met with the revolutionary
offensive on all fronts, the push of the revolution of all fronts

In fact, we love peace but we shall not pray for peace; we shall not pray
for peace nor make beautiful statements for peace. Could they accuse us of
being warmongers? No one could accuse us of that because to be a warmonger
is one thing and not being willing to permit the imperialists to blackmail
us is another (applause). To be a warmonger is one thing and to establish a
scale of values of human conscience is another.

If peace is important in scale of values established in the human
conscience, there are values which are above the value of peace (applause)
because we all want to enjoy peace. We do not understand that strange
concept of peace--war for one and peace for others. We cannot understand
that here, while they drop live phosphorus and napalm bombs over the
Vietnamese people. We do not understand that concept of peace. We desire
that peace be for all peoples. We want that peace to be enjoyed with rights
and freedom. We must fight that dangerous enemy. We must face that enemy
intelligently and determinedly because that enemy is a tiger. If you turn
you back he will attack you but if you face him he will not attack. He has
peculiar characteristics. The Yankee monopolists, the Yankee millionaires
love life and do not want to die scorched. It is possible that the peoples
suffering exploitation and oppression are more willing to die than the
Yankee millionaires, the Yankee monopolists. They love their skin and do
not want to die scorched. As long as they believe that their skin is not
endangered they will do whatever they please. When they realize that they
could die scorched despite all their power, then they will begin thinking

What conclusions must be drawn from the Santo Domingo affair? That we must
prepare ourselves. We should apply the proverb, but in a different form:
"When you see your neighbor's house on fire soak your weapons in oil
(applause)." We must oil our weapons and we must really prepare ourselves
well in case these stupid people--if you will this stupid Johnson--makes a
mistake. He will not again be able to say, as he did the first day in Santo
Domingo, that the Marines had landed without incident. Their dead will be
counted here by the thousands, scores of thousands, and hundreds of
thousands, and if necessary, by the millions (applause). The conclusion we
must draw is to prepare ourselves well, to arm ourselves even better, to
strengthen our defense by all means so that this blackmailing enemy may
know what to expect.

When they step on our soil, possibly this war will not end here in this
manner and possibly as long as one of us is alive there will not be a
single gringo alive here in this country. (applause) Not that the people
want to die; no one wants to die. To the contrary, everyone here is looking
forward to their future. However, we want to enjoy that future calmly.
Where does that calmness stem from? We fight for that future without
anxiety or fear. The fact that we do not feel anxiety or fear is the
essence or our calmness and tranquility. No one wants to die but everyone
is ready to die (audience shouts and applause). No one wants to die but
when our enemies force us to fight they will find out what fighting really
is (applause). When they begin to kill citizens of this country, our
enemies will find out what bullets and weapons are. In case of aggression
we will not only fight with courage but also with intelligence--with
courage and intelligence. The imperialists know that we are protecting our
weapons more and more--because we know they are treacherous and sly--so
that they will not be able to destroy our weapons by surprise. They will
have to destroy them with a man firing every weapon, tank, cannon

No one will be able to say that this nation is belligerent or warmongering.
We are a gay and (?peaceful) people. They should not meddle with us because
of this. They should respect us the way we are, or perhaps a way they
cannot even imagine. The Yankee have reaped enough hatred, repudiation and
scorn in this country. They have reaped more than enough of this for what
they have done to us and other peoples. Our hatred has not increased only
with the aggressions against Cuba but with aggressions against Vietnam, the
Congo, Santo Domingo, and other countries. Our hatred towards the
imperialist enemy has increased. We must strengthen our defenses.

Without these events, this First of May would have been devoted to other
matters, issues--we would have concentrated our attention on the
extraordinary enthusiasm of the people for production and work, the
harvest, the raising of our people's revolutionary awareness, the economic
victories of the revolution. For example, for today we had a goal of 5.1
million tons and 1 May at 0700 hours our country had produced 5,159,266.4
tons of cane (applause).

That was really a high goal, really difficult to attain. It was surpassed
by almost 60,000 tons, thanks to the efforts and enthusiasm of the people.
During Giron week, 103,000 tons more were produced than last year, and that
fact contributed decisively to attaining and going beyond a goal. But even
since then, it must be said that with less than 130 mills, which are all
that are still grinding, production has been above 40,000 tons daily for
these past few days.

That is the explanation for this production figure. It is a truly
impressive triumph, which our enemies will be unable to explain, or will
have difficulty in explaining. They said we might produce 5 million; we are
not going to produce just 5 million--by 30 May we may have 5.8 million
tons; and by 10 June we will have 6 million tons (applause).

Right now we have 1 million--I am going to use other figures--last year on
1 May we had 3,602,000 tons, and this year we have 5.15 million tons, or
1,557,151.4 tons more than on the same date last year. We will reach 6
million tons by 10 June at the latest. And for the imperialists, (applause)
it will be six megatons, because with their scheme of things, their
dogmatic mentality, their contempt for the people, their mosquito brains
shaped by FBI novels and Hollywood movies, how can they understand what
communism is, (?which can) raise output from 3.8 million in 1963 to 6

How, they will say, if we are forcing them to maintain an enormous army,
enormous armed forces--how, if there use to be 400,000 unemployed--how, if
today there are three times more workers in public works--how, if there are
tens of thousands of workers studying--how can they produce 6 million tons?
How? Since there are no more Yankee administrators or big landowners?

They thought they had wiped out our production capacity with their
blockade. How then? How? Well, they will see now. And I think not even they
will doubt it, and one of their chief and handiest arguments will be
destroyed. What will they say now? Because this has been produced through
work, hard work. Here with us are some cane workers. This is Comrade
Reynaldo Castro, whom you know. (applause) They are of the few canecutters
who are not in the fields (few words indistinct) we asked him to come.
Comrade Estaban Cabrera, national vanguard (applause), who has cut more
than 100,000 arrobas, and Comrade Jose Mariano Mora (applause), who has cut
more than 140,000 arrobas in this harvest.

All the people have cut cane now, and everybody can understand what it is
to cut more than 140,000 arrobas. And this comrade even has some trouble
with one eye, and not much vision in the other. We had to insist that he
come so an oculist could check him and that he not go back until it is
guaranteed that he is in no danger (applause), because his health is of
more interest to us than all the cane he could cut. (applause)

The workers have commemorated 1 May by cutting cane. It should be pointed
out that 40,000 workers of the capital were unable to parade here because
they are cutting cane in the fields. (applause) To the workers who were
unable to parade here, to all volunteer workers, whose participation has
been decisive is being able to get the harvest done in at least one
province, which has much land and cane and a small population who by their
efforts and their high productivity have made it possible for us to be able
to attain these goals, to all permanent cutters, to all workers in the
mills, to all who in factories and fields have commemorated this
revolutionary 1 May, our greetings and our appreciation. (applause) It is
they who give us the assurance that we will attain 6 million tons.

Our appreciation to the comrades in the unions for the efforts they made in
mobilizing the workers. Our appreciation to the comrades of the
Revolutionary Armed Forces (applause) soldiers and officers, who regularly
are giving part of their vacation, have cut millions and millions of
arrobas of cane. Our congratulations to the comrades of the party
(applause), on whose shoulders rested the organizations of the huge effort
made by the people. Our congratulations to the comrades in administration
for their effort, their ever more organized and ever more technical work.
There are workers who have continued to cut for months and months to make
this historic victory possible. They have made an extraordinary
contribution in sacrifices during these years.

Next year we must go beyond this figure. We are in a year the first half of
which had an extensively prolonged dry period; this means that this month,
with the first rains, we must make a double effort, cutting the cane that
remains and planting the new cane, and doing the spring planting, so we can
reach every goal, which we will reach under any circumstances. (applause)

The nation went into the fields en masse. An intensive effort is being
made. There is planting even at night. Mass mobilization--that is how we
are winning the economic battle. Our workers' awareness has increased
impressively. Today it is possible to say a truly revolutionary awareness
exists in our workers. (applause) In the beginning things were felt
emotionally, a leaning toward things, a longing for things; today there is
the conviction of the need to strive for things; today there is the
conviction that we must make the effort, and we are making it
enthusiastically, with conviction, with faith in the future.

For the imperialists, 6 million tons is a blow; for us it is proof on what
we can do, and that we can do what we want to do. Next year we must surpass
this figure. Now, an increase in cane and in mills means that next year we
must work for no less than 6.5 million tons, and in 1967 for 7.5 million.
(applause) For 1967 we still must issue a challenge. We hope that by 1968
there will be many machines, many machines here, and efforts will be less

The cane, then, must be cultivated carefully. Perhaps in the matter of cane
the hardest thing is not the cutting but the tending. And if we want to
have much and good cane it must be well cultivated and tended. Also it is
necessary to plant much cane. But, we will not plant just cane. We are
planting much pasturage and many fruit trees and many starchy vegetables.
And so for us 6 million tons means that what we set out to do, we

This was also demonstrated in the matter of eggs. I beg your pardon for
mentioning this here, for I believe some are already bored. But the thing
is, a goal of 60 million was set, and the hens overfulfilled the quota.
(applause) In March they laid 92 million, the result of technical methods,
organization, genetic centers. What is impossible to the people? Nothing.
And what we set out to do, we will do.

We are making progress. At first we made much progress in education,
health, and many things of that nature, but now we are making progress in
the field of economy, and we are moving forward, at supersonic speed.
(applause) We will push agriculture; that will mean excellent nutritional
conditions for the people, and plenty of shoes. Together with agriculture
we will develop industry, according to priorities and needs established by
our situation. And we will go on forging an assured future, of that no one
has any doubts now.

Our goal in sugar is 10 million tons, and some people tremble on hearing us
speak of 10 million, because they are beginning to be convinced that when
we say 10 it means 10. (applause) The price is low; prices are very low,
2.40-odd centravos--extremely low. This implies small revenues. It means
doing without some things. It means that some things which we could import
cannot be imported right now. But that does not frighten us.

There is talk that the United Nations is going to call a meeting in London
to conclude a sugar agreement. We will think it over carefully. We will see
what we want to do, because over there strikes abound, the bourgeois
economy is bankrupt with low sugar prices, while our economy is strong, our
cutters are making money, and our champions are getting prizes. (applause)

If it is necessary to tolerate a low price for a year, two years, three
years, we will stand it. Low sugar prices do not frighten us. We are not
working for today but for the future. The years pass, and they go by fast.
(applause) Hence, if prices are low it does not matter to us. We are not
going to stop. Let the bourgeois worry; they are being ruined.

We are not going to lay down our cane-cutting machete--and this country's
machete is something respectable. And we are not going to lay it down until
we reach 10 million tons. When we reach 10, then we will see, because we
are not developing our sugar alone; we are developing all our agriculture;
we are developing our livestock industry intensively. (applause) We are
developing every branch of farm production, and five years from now we will
see how they are getting along and how we are getting along. Therefore,
when they talk to us of agreements, we will see what we think at that time.

We might say right here that we do not fear low prices. We will continue
forward at full speed. We will reach 10 in '70. Make no mistake. We have
already reached 6 million even when those factors which I listed still
exist--such as a large number of workers who are still working in public
works, the small farmers who were previously compelled by hunger to work in
the sugarcane fields and today, when unemployment has disappeared, when we
are forced to employ much manpower in the country's defense, remain tilling
their own land.

(?We have produced 6 million tons of sugar due) in large measure to
organization, and above all, to mechanization. The loading machines are now
contributing decisively to conversation of manpower. The combines which cut
the cane are being used by the hundreds this year. We must say that the
successes attained by the people in this harvest have been made possible
not only by the enthusiasm, not only by the organization, but also by the

It is necessary to point out the effort which the Soviet people have
exerted to (applause) supply us with thousands of loading machines,
thousands of carts, thousands of trucks, and hundreds of combines. It is
only fair that on a day like today, when we observe the achievement of our
economic victories, we should remember to express our gratitude to the
people who have contributed considerably to those victories with their
technical aid and with their machinery. (applause)

We will continue to face difficulties, mechanization will continue to be a
necessity because we will continue to face the same situation of employing
many resources for defense. We will continue to remain in the same
situation of having no unemployed. We will continue to face a need greater
each time to employ machinery--machinery to sow, to harvest, to transport,
to modernize our sugar mills.

The committee which visited the Soviet Union has returned duly impressed by
the prospects existing in the Soviet Union of finding machinery and tools
which we need for the development of our industry. Henceforth, sugarcane
planting and the increase in industrial capacity will progress in parallel.

On this May Day, prospects for the future are clearer and more brilliant
than ever. The revolutionary spirit is deeper than ever. Enthusiasm for
work is more intense than ever. The people's confidence in their future is
firmer than ever. This could be seen even before May Day--in the most vivid
mobilization of the people during the Giron victory week (applause), in the
optimum of the masses, the zealousness of the masses in everything and for
everything, in work, in study, in revolutionary spirit, in solidarity
toward the other people, in the people's spirit of internationalism.
(applause) We have become, through years of revolution, a firm people who
have resisted and will continue to resist (applause), a people who have
conquered and will continue to conquer! Fatherland or death, we will win!