Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC

Castro Text

Havana Domestic Television and Radio Services in Spanish 0317 GMT 10
December 1966-F/E

(Speech by Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro at close of fifth FMC)
national plenum in Santa Clara--live)

(Text) Comrades of the FMC: Tonight we came with the best of spirits for an
exchange of views here with the comrade members of the province, but I am
somewhat skeptical because I think there have been some difficulties with
the microphones. At first they said (Castro pauses). Can you hear? (crowd
shouts: yes) One of the problems in these mass meetings, one of the most
serious problems, is when you cannot hear well. Because then those who
cannot hear make things even more difficult for those who can hear. But I
am very glad that it seems that conditions have improved here for this mass

It would really be a pity on an occasion such as this one in which so many
comrades have assembled not to express some ideas which we believe are
connected with all this effort and all this revolutionary program.

When we arrived here tonight I told a comrade that this phenomenon of women
in the revolution (cheers) was a revolution within a revolution. (cheers)
If we were asked that is the most revolutionary thing the revolution is
doing, we would answer that the most revolutionary thing the revolution is
doing is precisely this, that is to say, the revolution is taking place
with the women of our country. (cheers, applause) If we are asked what are
the things that have taught us most in the revolution, we would answer that
one of the most interesting lessons which we revolutionaries are getting
from the revolution is the lesson the women are giving us. (cheers,

You know perfectly well that when we say this we are not just saying this
just to delight the comrades who are present here but that we say this
because we really believe this and feel this. But why, why is this one of
the most interesting lessons? You may ask yourselves, why? And actually,
the most honest reply we could give you, and I will tell you that this
reply, the one who is making this reply is precisely a person who thought
he had no prejudice, the reply really, is that I think that all of us had
many prejudices about women. (light applause)

And if someone had asked me sometime whether I thought I was prejudiced I
would have said absolutely no, because I have felt just the contrary, that
there was really in this society a potential force and an extraordinary
human resource among the women in a revolution.

But what is happening, what has happened to us, or rather that is happening
to us? What is happening to us is that actually this potential force is
superior to what the most optimistic of us would have ever suspected.
(applause) That is why we were saying that unconsciously there was some
prejudice, or there was some underestimation, because reality is showing,
as we have barely begun to move on this path, all the possibilities and the
role that women can play in a revolutionary process where society frees
itself from exploitation, in the first place, from prejudices and from a
number of circumstances where women were doubly exploited, doubly

What has been discovered about women, for example, in work? I have been
discussing this with some comrades and I told Comrade Milian after visiting
the Banao project, for example. (applause) I told him: "Milian, I have the
impression that the women who are working in this project are more
responsible and more disciplined than the men (Cheers applause). I have the
impression that they devote themselves to work with more enthusiasm, that
they devote themselves to work with more passion, with more dedication."
Then Milian--I do not want to place Milian in a bad light here with the
women of Las Villas or anything like that--argued with me that well, really
the case of the boys that worked in the project of Juragua, the young
communists--and I told him that really if in any project where there is a
select group of young communists, and there is discipline and enthusiasm
for the work, it is not such an extraordinary case as it is to find the
same spirit, discipline, and enthusiasm in a project where the women are
working, women who were not chosen, who were not selected from an
organization but rather are women who spontaneously volunteered to do that
work. (applause)

Why is this being discovered? What is being discovered with all this
program, with all this revolutionary program with respect to the Cuban
women? Well, we are discovering a number of things such as those I
enumerated previously. A great sense of responsibility, great seriousness,
great discipline, great sense of responsibility, great seriousness, great
discipline, great enthusiasm. But what are we discovering above all here in
Las Villas Province? Well, in the Banao project, for example, the project
grew, there was a lack of a cadre. Comrade Milian found a party cadre--I
believe it was from the area of Santo Domingo--Comrade Santiago Acosta. He
sent him as the administrator of the Banao project. However, one day it was
necessary for Comrade Santiago Acosta and Comrade Rene Acosta, the latter
is the technician, to make a trip abroad. They were the two comrades most
responsible for the project. It was necessary to assign responsibility for
the project during those days. Then the decision was made to assign Comrade
Osoria who represented the women's federation in the project. (applause)
Then for the first time a project of that nature, of that type, became the
responsibility of a woman.

What were the results? The comrades returned from abroad, the comrade who
had been the administrator and the comrade who had been the technician, and
then--at that time the party was having problems in the Sancti Espiritus
area, that is to say it needed a cadre to bolster the work of the party in
Sancti Espiritus--it was decided to send Comrade Santiago Acosta to Sancti
Espiritus and to leave Comrade Osoria as administrator of the Banao project
(applause) We saw that this was truly an event and some day it will have
historic significance because it was the first time that a woman was
assigned a task of that type and it was assigned not because of political
reasons, not for trying to create an impression, but because it was simply
and objectively shown that she was fully capable of directing that project.

Since that time it appeared to us that it was a very reasonable thing, a
very good thing to have, in a project where thousands of women were going
to work, a women directing the project. (applause) At the same time, when
it was necessary to create the brigades within the project, a number of
comrades who had distinguished themselves for their spirit in work were
selected to lead the brigades.

This in turn gave us another idea when it was necessary to train a group of
technicians for this type of crop and the first 10 comrades from the
technical institute had been sent to specialize in these crops. We decided
that another 20 students whom we had decided also to send to specialize as
technicians in these crops should be selected from among the women students
in the technical institute.

Therefore, in this project the workers, the brigade chiefs, the
technicians, that is the technical personnel, and the leadership personnel
are practically all going to be women, women. (applause) And this is one of
the great lessons about which we spoke earlier. One of the great teachings
and perhaps one of the greatest victories against prejudices of, I am not
going to say years or centuries, but prejudices of millenniums, the
prejudice of thinking that women are only capable of washing dishes, doing
laundry, ironing, cooking, cleaning the house, and bearing children.
(cheers, applause)

The millennium of prejudice situated women within society in what was
practically a lower stratum--one cannot even say within a productive
system. These prejudices are a thousands years old and they have survived
different social systems, because if we are going to talk about capitalism,
women of a humble class were doubly exploited or were doubly humiliated.

A poor woman belonging to the working class or to a working family was
exploited simply because of her humble status, because of her situation as
a worker. But besides this, within the class itself and within her own
situation as a working woman she was in turn scorned, underestimated. She
was underestimated, exploited, and scorned by exploiting classes, but
within her own class women were looked at through innumerable prejudices.
This is why actual deeds are giving all of us a great lesson, giving all of
us revolutionaries a great lesson. These prejudices of course still persist
to a considerable extent.

If women believe that their situation within society is an optimum
situation, if women believe that their revolutionary function within
society has been fulfilled, they would be making an error. It seems to us
that women still have much to struggle for, that women still have to put
forth a great effort to finally achieve the place they really ought to
occupy within society.

If women in our country were doubly exploited, were doubly humiliated, this
simply means that in a social revolution women ought to be doubly
revolutionary. (applause) This may perhaps explain or help to explain, and
it can be said that it is the social base which allows one to explain, why
Cuban women so resolutely support the revolution, so enthusiastically
support the revolution, so staunchly support the revolution, so loyally
support the revolution. (applause)

It is simply because it is a revolution which means two revolutions for
women, which means double liberation for women, women as part of the humble
sectors of the nation, of the exploited sectors of the nation, women who
are discriminated against not only as workers but as women within the same
exploiting society.

This is why the women's attitude in our revolution responds to this
reality, responds to what the revolution has meant to women. And the
working sectors, the sector of the people, support the revolution to the
same degree that the revolution has meant liberation to them.

There are two sectors of the nation, two sectors of society which,
independently, aside from economic reasons, have had other reasons to look
favorably or with enthusiasm on the revolution. These two sectors are the
Negro population of the country and the women of the nation. (applause)

I do not know if you recall the bourgeois constitution which Cuba used to
have. An article of the constitution talked about declaring all
discrimination illegal because of race or sex. But a constitution or an
article of a constitution within a bourgeois society which makes such a
declaration resolves nothing, because the discrimination because of color
and sex really existed. The base of all this was a class society, a society
of exploitation. Discrimination for reasons of age (presumably means
"race"--ed.) or sex could not disappear by any means in a class society,
within a society of exploiters and exploited. The problems of
discrimination for reasons of age and sex have disappeared in our country
because the basis for the two discriminations has disappeared and that is
simply the exploitation of man by man.

From the United States, for example, there comes news of the struggles of
the Negro population for equal rights. However, in the United States racial
discrimination cannot disappear until the capitalist society disappears.
This means that discrimination for reasons of color, for reasons of sex can
never disappear within the capitalist society. Discrimination for reasons
of color and sex can only disappear with a socialist revolution that will
make the exploitation of man by man disappear. (applause)

Well and good. Does the disappearance of exploitation of man by man mean
that all conditions have been created immediately so that women can occupy
a higher place within society? No, because conditions for the liberation of
women, the conditions for the full development of women within a society,
conditions for true equality of rights, or for a real equality of men and
women in a society needs a material base. It needs to have economic
development as a base and the social base of the country.

I told you previously about the opinion that many men had of the functions
of women and I said that among those functions the one that they consider
almost the chief function was that of bearing children. Of course, the
function of procreation is one of the most important functions that women
can have in any human society. That is to say it is one of the principal
and most essential functions of women in any society. It is precisely that
function nature assigned to women that forces her extraordinarily, enslaves
her extraordinarily to a number of tasks in the home. Here, for example, we
have a sign that says "a million women working in production in 1970."
Unfortunately in 1970 we will not be able to have one million women working
in production. We believe that this was a goal that will be reached not in
five or four years, but one which we can set for ourselves in 10 years.
That is, 1975.

Why? Because in order to have a million women working in production we need
thousands of children's nurseries. We need thousands of primary boarding
schools. We need thousands of student diners. We need thousands of workers
diners. We need thousands of social service centers. If we do not have them
who will cook at home for the child who is in the second or third grade,
for example, when lunchtime comes? Who will take care of nursing children,
a child of two, three, or four years? Who will cook at home for the man
when he comes home from work? Who will wash the clothing? Who will clean
house? Who will do all these things?

This means, that to accomplish the social aspect of liberating women for
all those activities that enslave her, that prevent her from fully joining
in work, in all the activities that she can do within the society, it is
necessary to create that material base. It is necessary to acquire that
social development and of course it is impossible to obtain thousands of
children's nurseries in four years, student diners, laundries, workers
diners, boarding schools. Even in order to carry out present plans it is
necessary to make a great effort in all areas. In the various projects
where there has been massive incorporation of women it has been necessary
to make a special effort to establish nurseries, arrange buildings,
boarding schools, all in all a number of institutions to allow the women to
go to work.

In Sancti Espiritus, for example, it has been necessary to open several
children's nurseries. It has been necessary to grant a number of
scholarships to the children who are of primary school age, children of
working women who are working in that project. In Santiago it was necessary
to do something similar and in a number of places in Cuba next year another
great effort will have to be made so that a large number of women can also
get into production. To establish clubs, to organize schools we need
qualified personnel, we need materials, we need equipment of all kinds.

The comrades who are with the children's nurseries, the comrades who are in
charge of the organization of the nurseries have explained to us the
difficulties they have, their limitations. For example they explain that
many comrades who are teachers, many comrades who are nurses, many comrades
who not only work in agriculture but also in a number of other very
important services, are constantly asked, are being demanded to resolve the
matter of the children's nurseries and find themselves unable to attend to
all these needs because of all these agricultural plans.

The demand for children's nurseries is enormous but they say that in some
provinces, for example, they have found it easier to resolve the problem.
For example, they cite Las Villas Province where, with the party's help,
their problems are being resolved so far as possible. Now, in Camaguey it
turns out to be more difficult. Why? Because in Camaguey there is great
economic development. The preprocessing and collection centers for
sugarcane are being built there. The Nuevitas works are under construction
there. Thousands of houses are being built. Thousands of kilometers of
roads are being built. The Construction Ministry in Camaguey Province is
working at top capacity. And when a house has to be remodeled for a
children's nursery, it turns out that it cannot build even a cubic meter
more in that province because of the great number of jobs it has to do.
There is a special problem for them over there.

Something similar happens in Havana. Many nurseries are needed there and
apparently the Construction Ministry is also working at top capacity. In
this state, in which we do not have enough cement, enough machines, nor
enough construction equipment, the problem can only be solved by making a
great effort at all levels, sometimes at the regional level, at the
provincial level, at the national level, by using the resources at hand. We
cannot hope that the nurseries will be perfect, that the construction will
be perfect. We cannot hope for services to be perfect now, they can only be
as good as possible but they cannot be perfect.

In many places in the nation we have to resolve these problems as we go,
because awhen we say a million women are to be employed we cannot employ a
million women overnight. In another words, we have to develop a number of
plans, economic plans, agricultural plans.

It would be interesting to know the statistics on the number of women who
have started working, whether in the production of material goods or in
services, since the revolution's triumph. How many women working as
teachers, how many as nurses, how many as nurses' aides, how many as
technicians, how many in industry. In agriculture, because if a statistical
study is made, the number of women who have started to work since the
revolution's victory should be approximately no less than 150,000 women.
(applause) This is a figure without an exact base, without exact
statistical data, but I think we ought to make a study to find out how many
women have started to work in new jobs, jobs that the revolution has

Next year the incorporation of women in work will increase considerably.
Why? Because of a whole series of plans, particularly agricultural in
nature. Several thousand women will join the Banao plan. When the Banao
plan is in full swing it is calculated that 6,000 or 7,000 women will work
in this plan. In Pinares de Mayari next year it is estimated that some
8,000 women will be working, that is next spring. In the coffee plant
(?nurseries) and the coffee planting plans for 1967-68 no less than 30,000
women will get into this work.

In the forest farms thousands of women will also be working. Thousands of
women are getting into the produce production plans in almost all the
cities of the nation. Next year there will be over 50,000 women who will
get into production work. This will require at the same time an enormous
effort to resolve the questions of dining halls, schools, and nurseries.

Now I am going to tell you something: without the incorporation of women
into productive work, the Banao plan could not have been carried out. The
vegetable (? "micro-climate") plans in Oriente could not have been carried
without the incorporation of women into productive work. The coffee
production plans could not even have been conceived. Many of the projects
that the revolution is planning today and is beginning to carry out could
not have been conceived until it could be seen clearly, until it was really
discovered what potential human resources our society had in women. Those
plans, which will contribute extraordinarily to the economic development of
our country, to the improvement of the welfare of our people, could not
have been conceived without the massive incorporation of women into work.

You know how many men, for example, how many young comrades our country has
to use in the defense of the revolution. You know that masses of men make
up part of our armed ranks. Since this means the investment of a valuable
resource, the investment of such energy in the defense of our country, what
are we going to do with our armed forces? We have been viewing,
considering, analyzing, the possibility that the men of the armed forces
give a maximum of help to the economy of the country. It was thus, after
the hurricane, the last hurricane in Oriente through the coffee zones of
Oriente, that nearly 30,000 soldiers and militiamen of the armed forces
marched to the mountains for nearly six weeks to weed and fertilize, and
rehabilitate thousands of caballerias of coffee.

At this time, in this very province of Las Villas, armed force construction
teams are helping to resolve the problems of roads used for the harvest.
This year this was a critical problem caused by a rainy year. Almost all
the rural roads deteriorated because of rain. There were not enough
Construction Ministry men to equipment. The armed forces in Las Villas took
it upon themselves to build the roads for the harvest. Next year 70,000
caballerias of sugarcane will be sprayed with foliar urea by Air Force
pilots. What does this mean? It means that the revolution which has gained
in organization, in experience, and in militance, is every year in a better
condition to use all its material and human resources in advancing and
developing the country's economy.

This means that the revolution not only makes efforts to create social and
material conditions to incorporate hundreds of thousands of women into
production but also makes efforts to incorporate all the other human
resources. It makes efforts to rationalize work. It makes efforts
struggling against bureaucracy, in diminishing activities which do not
create material goods. It makes efforts to use the young men of its armed
forces in the battle of agriculture, in the battle for the economic
development of the country. This means that in all fronts the revolution is
advancing, the revolution is mobilizing its human resources in all
respects. Thanks to this effort it will be possible for the revolution to
succeed in the field of economy. It will be possible to win victory in the
field of economy. Victory will be possible in the field of agriculture.
When the rains begin next spring 150,000 young students will get into
agricultural work for six weeks.

Next year will be a year when the figures of land to be cultivated, the
fertilizer figures, will reach levels never before attained in our country.
Between 15,000 and 20,000 caballerias of cane will be planted next year.
Next year close to 20,000 caballerias of hay will be planted. Close to 150
million coffee plants will be planted next year. There will be a
considerable increase, not only in the amount of land, but there will also
be a considerable increase in the planting methods, in the use of
fertilizers, this coming year.

The first of the 900 bulldozers which were recently purchased in France
have begun to arrive in our country. Some of these bulldozers are in
operation to build roads in the Sierra Maestra, the Segundo Frente, at
Escambray, in the Pinar del Rio mountains. The first road-building brigades
will begin to work in the mountains. Already, during this drought period,
which is the time for the clearing of land and when the lands are being
prepared for spring, some 150 bulldozers will join the agricultural tasks
by clearing land and making the necessary preparations for agriculture.
Next year, just next year, close to 700 bulldozers will come to our
country. The women comrades who have worked here in the various
agricultural plans know what this means because the women comrades who are
in the Banao plan know that all that area was once brush. They know that
all that area where the grapes, strawberries, asparagus, and onions are
being planted today, was land covered with underbrush, covered with weeds.

Today, visitors are greatly impressed when they see the magnificent
preparation of the land, the irrigation, the methods, and the use of
fertilizers which will give us extraordinary yields. It is good enough to
say that last year one hectare of strawberries was planted there. Now, some
270 hectares will be planted. That one hectare of strawberries planted last
year in Banao yielded more than 30,000 pounds of produce--more than 30,000
pounds. With that 30,000 pounds and with the production from another
plantation in Oriente Province, we have had enough strawberries for all the
ice cream put out by the dairy industry. There have been enough
strawberries to satisfy a whole series of needs. Take into consideration
that this year 270 more hectares of strawberries will be planted in Banao
than last year.

In Banao, for the first time in Cuba's history, asparagus is being grown.
There are already close to 20 caballerias of asparagus planted at Banao. In
other words, for the first time in Cuba, next year we will have asparagus
soup, fresh asparagus salad, and canned asparagus grown in Cuba. (applause)
In Banao--(here Castro apparently turns away from, the microphone and says
something inaudible--ed.). This year 10 caballerias of grapes have been
planted. Also for the first time in our country, grapes are being grown on
a commercial scale. (applause) Now, how many caballerias will the Banao
plan have? It will have 600 caballerias, out of which 200 will be planted
in onions. In other words, about two-thirds of the nation's demand for
onions will be grown at Banao.

What production is expected at Banao? It is expected that not less than
5,000 quintals of onions per caballeria will be produced at Banao. How many
tons of fertilizer are being used at Banao? Thirty tons of fertilizer per
caballeria are being used in the production of onions. In other words, a
plan not only in size but in concentration of methods is being used at
Banao. In other words, Banao will have 200 caballerias in onions, 60
caballerias in grapes, 20 caballerias in asparagus, and 20 caballerias in
strawberries. Of course, since the crops will have to be rotated to be able
to grow 200 caballerias of onions, we will need 300 caballerias of land.
But the onion production will be rotated with the production of legumes for
livestock feed. In other words, we will produce food for milk and meat
production while rotating the onion production. The total production of
this Banao farm will mean in goods for the nation, approximately--we hope
that it will reach between 20 and 30 million pesos every year, in products
for the country.

How can this be done? How is this possible? How can we do this? Simply, by
work--by work. Thanks to the work of those, who in the first place--thanks
to the work of the women who are taking part in this plan. (applause)
Thanks to the party's work in Las Villas Province, to the interest which
the party has shown for this plan. Thanks to the work of the women comrades
of the FMC in this province (applause) who have so justly won first place
in the national emulation. (applause) We must also say--thanks to the
splendid work of a technician, a good technician, of a true
technician--that is Comrade Rene Acosta who has technically directed this
plan. (applause) and Rene Acosta is not an agronomy technician. Rene Acosta
was not able to study at the university. He became an agriculture teacher,
but he continued studying because he happened to have the qualities of an
enthusiastic technician and a studious technician. This comrade is in
charge of growing strawberries on a nationwide scale, of grape production,
and in addition, he is in charge of the Banao plan as far as methods are
concerned. How has it been possible to plant grapes? How has it been
possible to grow strawberries? How has it been possible to grow asparagus?

It was simply because we had a technician--not only capable, not only
studious, but in addition determined, dynamic, and bold. There are other
technicians that if you talk to them about planting a caballeria in
something, will say, first let us grow one plant the first year. In the
second year, we will grow 10 plants; in the third year, we will grow 100;
in the fourth, 500; in the fifth, half a hectare. Really with that idea,
with that criteria, with that spirit, perhaps the great-great grandsons of
our present generation would get to eat asparagus. (applause)

The revolution must by necessity be bold, bold. It cannot follow those
plans, long and unending. Of course it is easier and safer to grow one
plant this year, two next year, and three in the third, fourth, or fifth
year. This is a safe way to avoid failure, yet it is a sure way to fail.
Because failure does not mean that we will suffer a setback by planning 5
or 10 caballerias. The failure would be if we only grew one plant instead
of the 10 caballerias. Because if you grow one plant, that plant will not
produce--you will not have production. If you grow a plant and that plant
produces, you do not have production either. If 10 caballerias are planted
and the 10 caballerias are lost, we do not have anything, but if the 10
caballerias produce, we have 10 caballerias of production.

Logically, this does not mean that any of these plans have been carried out
without previous research. No! First it was proven that strawberries could
be grown. First it was proven that grapes could be grown. First it was
proven that onions could be grown there. All of this was previously proved.
It was proven that asparagus could grow there. In other words, tests were
run there. Experimental work was done there the previous year. However,
when we arrived at the conclusion that this product could be grown there,
that by good technology large crops could be reaped, we drafted plans to
resolve problems--to resolve problems.

I will tell you a story: One day, speaking with an administrator of an
organization in one of the provinces, I asked him about his plans. "We have
so many caballerias of this, and so many of that." I asked him about some
of the products. I asked him, for instance, about bananas, or papayas--I
cannot remember now. He said: "Yes, we have one caballeria." I answered him
and said: "Listen, comrade, you plant a caballeria here of, let us say,
parsley." (audience laughs) Actually, I used another word, the word
"parsley" is merely a fill-in word. (laughter). I said: "How in the devil
can an organization plant only one caballeria of something in this country.
Speak to me of 10, 20, 40, or 50 caballerias. How can you talk to met about
a state minifundio?" With a manifundio, with a little caballeria of this or
that we cannot hope to solve any supply problem.

Quite simply, the policy that is being pursued in the country at present is
to plant in quantity and for quality. In this very province, you know the
Juragua project, where the young people the party has been mobilizing to
work in agriculture are. That project will have two 250 caballerias in
bananas; 150 in cooking bananas and 50 in eating bananas--I mean 100 in
eating bananas.

When will those 250 caballerias be planted? Next year! The ground was
prepared this year. All the banana shoots in the country were still
insufficient to plant all the banana trees we wanted to plant this year.
Banana tree nurseries have been created. That is to say, the policy being
pursued is a policy of agricultural development in quantity and quality,
sufficient to solve all food supply problems, that is, to solve the food
supply problem at present levels of consumption by our population.

Formerly, any of these things might show a surplus. People lacked jobs,
they lacked funds. Anything was enough. But gentlemen, when an entire
population consumes, when not a single beggar is on the streets, when not a
single child is on the street shoeless and abandoned, not a single street
urchin, when there is not a single abandoned individual in this country,
when there is not a single person in this country without the means of
buying something, then logically production and production projects must be
big projects. It is with that concept, with that criterion, that we are

We have spoken to you of the Banao project, for it is the one best known in
this province, but similar projects are under way in every province,
similar projects are carried out throughout the island, from one end of the
island to the other, and we do not have the slightest doubt, we have not
the slightest doubt of the success of these projects. We have no doubt at
all that by the last days of February we will be gathering the first onions
in Banao.

Very well; but those onions will not be sufficient to meet the demand
fully. What will we do with them? We believe that those first onions
fathered in Banao, from those 20 caballerias, should be sent first to
sugarcane areas, to the areas where 200,000 workers are cutting cane in the
cane harvest. (applause) That is to say, we should divert some of those
items, or in the case of the onions, for example, all those onions, to
those sectors where the country's most important work is being done at that
time, and that is the cane harvest.

Of course, as the program develops, more of all these products will be
available and we can succeed in supplying the whole country. Our aspiration
is to satisfy, to the highest possible degree, all demands, that is, all
needs of our country for all of those items. Now them, for this it is
necessary to continue making an effort, continue pushing all these plans,
continue pushing this program. Las Villas Province has rightly won its
place as vanguard in this king of activity. It seems (applause)--now they
say that first place is shared with Oriente Province. They had told me it
was Las Villas that had won first place, without sharing it with anybody,
but it appears that in the tally the Oriente people scored some points too.

It must be said in all fairness that in Oriente--and you must not think
that this is regionalism, or anything approaching it--in Oriente too they
have put forth a great effort. In Oriente too, thousands of women have
joined in productive work in agriculture; it is something (word
indistinct). (applause) But this initiative of issuing the four slogans, in
production, in beautifying towns, in education, in setting quotas, this is
to say, in militancy by the women of the federation, which has made
possible this gathering of 15,000 women who have fulfilled those four
tasks. (sentence as heard) (applause)

I remember last year Milan was talking to us during the cane harvest about
how he was going to organize women's brigades to gather the tops to fed
stock, and since then he had not spoken of the idea of holding this
function. Well, if last year it was necessary to mobilize the tops in Las
Villas, this year a similar effort must be made throughout the country.

Why is this? Because if 20,000 caballerias are to be planted in pasture, as
I was telling you, many of those caballerias are now natural pasture land,
or part brush, partly pasturage. In order to be able to plant such a big
spread of land in special pasture in one spring, it will be necessary to
feed the cattle. If the next year we plant those 20,000 caballeria, we will
be in a better situation in future years.

Why? Because the amount of stock has increased considerably. Along with
this increase in the number of cattle, there must be an increase in the
number of pasture planted. And when such a large amount is to be planted, a
difficulty arises over the number of cattle, the amount of land needed by
them, even if it be in bad natural pasture, and the land that for months
has to be readied by plowing and planting. As a result, this initiative
launched in Las Villas last year must be imitated on a nationwide scale. A
nationwide effort must be made this coming year to utilize the sugarcane,
that is, to utilize the tops in feeding stock, so that in the spring we can
begin seeding the 20,000 caballerias of pastureland, so that in the fall
most of that land can be used in feeding cattle. Of those 20,000
caballerias, 5,000 or 6,000 will be leguminous pasture; this means that
there is already work on quality as well as expansion.

This is the reason why we expect the other provinces which were unable to
attain first place this year to make an effort and to try to learn from the
experiences of Las Villas, of Oriente, and of some of the other provinces.
They should try to profit from them to obtain maximum results. Next
spring--next spring we hope that the women, the soldiers, the students, and
an entire army of people, together with all of the resources of the
country, will turn to farm production, to planting the breadth and length
of the country. This coming year we are going to have a good crop. This
coming year we will have a harvest which for practical purposes has already

As you know, we have 48 sugar mills in operation, (applause) and about 100
million arrobas of sugarcane already cut. This is of great
significance--the fact that we were able to begin the harvest in
December--because the sugar plan calls for the mills to work from five to
six months. In order to meet sugar goals, it is necessary not only to
expand the sugar mills now under expansion, but it will also be necessary
to extend the duration of the harvest. For the first time in the history of
our country, this year we will be able to operate almost 50 sugar mills.
Nearly 100 million arrobas of sugarcane during the first 10 days in
December--this is a good and magnificent start. It means that if we keep
this up, we will be able to meet our sugar goals by 1970. It means that
although the goals will be higher, we will be able to fulfill our

Next year, we plan to invest nearly 400,000 tons of fertilizer in sugarcane
plantations alone. This year, covering the months of September through next
June, we will have applied 105,000 tons of fertilizer to the coffee plants.
To give you an idea of how much 105,000 tons of fertilizer is, it is enough
to say that before the revolution the fertilizer used in all Cuban
agriculture did not exceed 100,000 tons. Between last September and through
next June we will have used 105,000 tons of fertilizer on the coffee plants

The coffee groves here formerly produced 30 quintales per
caballeria--sometimes 40 to 50. In some instances, a new coffee grove would
produce 100 or perhaps a little more per caballeria. We must make up our
minds to produce not less than 200 quintales of coffee per caballeria. In
other words, we must triple or quadruple coffee production per caballeria
from what was formerly produced under capitalism. In other words, in only
two products--coffee and sugarcane--we will use half a million tons of
fertilizer. We must add to this the fertilizer to be used on vegetables in
general, fruit trees, and all farm products in general.

Our country, therefore, is entering an era of the use of fertilizers,
machinery, and technology on a large scale. If, for instance, these
caballerias planted with onion in Banao, which will yield 5,000 quintales,
were to do without fertilizers, the first year we could expect 2,000 or
3,000 quintales. The second year, they would product about 1,000 quintales.
In our country, with the use of fertilizers, we could virtually triple our
farm production. Technology, (?with the exception) of a few products, such
as potatoes and some tobaccos, formerly was not employed. Only in a very
few instances did capitalism use fertilizers on sugarcane. For practical
purposes, coffee plants never got any fertilizer. Most of our agriculture
lacked fertilizers.

Under capitalism, if a caballeria yielded 50 quintales, the coffee would be
enough to fill the demand, and there would be some left over. However,
under the current conditions in our country, if a caballeria should product
100 quintales, our demand will not be met. However, we will manage to make
it fill the demand--we estimate that our country's coffee demand will reach
1.5 (?million) quintales. Before the revolution, our demand for coffee
amounted to about 600,000 quintales. We believe that in the future, we will
consume about 1.5 quintales of coffee.

Formerly, we consumed about 150,000 tons of sugar. Currently, we consume
nearly as half million tons of sugar. This trend, holds true for all
products. This is the reason why all of us have to work, and this is why
all of society must join in the work. However, people should join work not
only physically, but with technology, with machinery, and all of the means
that can be employed to increase production, to develop wealth, and to
satisfy our needs. In our country, all of society will not only join
productive work, but will be aided by technology and by machinery. The
enemies of the revolution--the imperialists, the bourgeois--thought that
the Cuban people would be stymied, that without the landowners and the
technical experts of capitalism and with the imperialist blockade, our
country would collapse.

However, it will not be as they thought, we will not fail as they thought,
but our country will experience extraordinary successes. Our country will
reach production levels that will reach production levels that will attract
the attention of the entire world. In livestock, for instance, at this
time, we already have 1.2 million cows in the cattle-breeding program. We
must say that our country ranks at this moment as one of the first in the
world in cattle breeding. By the end of next year, we will have close to 2
million cows under this cattle-breeding program. With this figure, our
country will hold first place in the world in this field. (applause)

Many people will ask: What does this mean specifically? What practical
value is there in the application of artificial insemination? It means that
a Zebu cow--I believe that all of you here have seen a Zebu cow--which
produces 1.5 liters of milk, can bear a calf that can produce, through the
application of genetics, 8 or 10 liters of milk. What do these plans mean?
We cannot, of course, perform this feat between one year and the next.
Could be have produced in 1960 1 million cows through this insemination
method? No. No, because when the revolution triumphed, I believe that we
had one or two experts in cattle breeding in the entire island.

How many experts in cattle breeding do you think we have today? We have
2,000. Why have we been able to reach and exceed 1 million cows? Because as
a result of our dreams, we already have 2,000 experts in cattle breeding.
We not only have 2,000 experts in cattle breeding, but we have multiplied
five-fold the production of cattle under this cattle breeding program,
because we have organized the herds and we have given these experts
motorcycles to carry out their work. In other words, we have motorized our
experts in cattle breeding. You have no doubt met them on the roads coming
and going.

What does it mean that several years elapsed before we were able to have
2,000 cattle-breeding experts, and before we could have 1 million cows?
What does this mean? It means that these cows will bear calves in 1967.
They will grow during the following year. In 1969, they will be serviced.
In 1970, we will have hundreds of thousands of milk cows from these million
cows. If in 1970 we have approximately 400,000 cows, in 1971, they will
multiply to nearly 1 million more.

We have had to wait. We have had to work during these years, but the time
is not far when we will begin to harvest the fruits of our labors. We have
already started to harvest the fruits of our work by having already 2,000
cattle-breeding experts. By 1970, we will have 5,000 of these experts. Do
you want to know how many we will have in 1975? We will have 12,000
cattle-breeding experts--12,000 experts. You might ask: Why so many experts
in cattle breeding? We hope to have approximately 8 million cows and calves
by that time.

In addition, experience has taught us, some underdeveloped countries might
need technical aid, or they might ask us for technical aid. Why do we want
to reach the 12,000 figure in cattle-breeding experts? Perhaps we would
have enough with 9,000 or 10,000. There are however, two reasons why we
want to have more than we need. They are the following: 1) countries in the
future might need technical aid and might request it of us; 2) if we have
2,000 or 3,000 experts more than we need, I want to say that we can have
2,000 or 3,000 technicians studying and improving their knowledge. If we
need 9,000 and we have 10,000 it means that for one entire year, we can
take out the extra technicians and keep them studying and keep them
constantly improving their skills.

On this coming 18th we will graduate the first hundreds of technicians from
the technological institutes. Do you know the number studying in those
technological institutes now? It is 16,500. Do you know how many there will
be this January? There will be 25,000. Do you know how many agricultural
and animal husbandry technicians we will have graduated by 1970? We will
graduate 12,000. By 1975, 40,000. (applause) To understand what our country
will be when those tens of thousands of technicians of every sort--for
thousands of young people are preparing for the fishing fleet, thousands
for the merchant marine; and more than 20,000 girls are studying to be
teachers. In the University of Havana, in the University of Las Villas, in
the University of Oriente there are some 30,000 university students.

And what does this mean? I was explaining to some comrades that in order to
get an idea of what a society with hundreds of thousands of technicians can
become, suffice it to see what Acosta has done in Banao, or what Eliseo, an
agronomy engineer who specialized in cane, has done in Camaguey. Suffice it
to see what can be done by a technician, an enthusiastic technician, a good
technician, a capable technician, a revolutionary technician. Suffice it to
see what can be done by one, or two, or three, to realize what a society
can become and do if it can count its technicians by the hundreds of

In an attempt to smash the revolution, the imperialists did their utmost to
take the technicians out of our country. They waged a campaign. Of course,
Yankee imperialism does not try to lure technicians just from Cuba. There
were few enough technicians in Cuba, and in many branches of science Cuba's
technical level was very low. The imperialists draw technicians from
England and all Europe. All industrialized countries face the problem of
the Yankees' offering double and triple the pay and taking away the
technicians from England, from many countries of Europe. They plunder their
own allies of technicians.

Many doctors and engineers who graduate in Latin America emigrate to the
United States because the United States tries to plunder technicians from
everybody. It plunders technicians from its own allies, as I was saying. In
Cuba, the United States did not do this because there were many technicians
or good technicians. In Cuba, it did this to wreck us, that is, to destroy
the revolution, to ruin the country. It (the United States--ed.) was not
interested--for I can assure you that not all the technicians it has taken
from this country put together are worth as much as one good revolutionary
technician. (applause) Assuredly, all the technicians taken away by
imperialism, with those technicians they are not going to reach the moon or
discover anything, for in the immense majority they were incompetents,
good-for-nothings, parasites, reactionaries, and scoundrels. (applause)

It is impossible to conceive of a good technician who does not begin by
being a human being, and it is impossible to conceive of a human being who
is an (?egotist). Can a selfish individual be called a human being? It is
impossible to conceive of a technician without human feelings. And only a
technician who feels love for his fellow man, who feels a passion for work,
who lives inspired by the idea of serving his people, serving his fellow
men, can become a good technician.

Imperialism tried to take away all those people. Did it do much harm? It
may have done us some harm, but what is that, what is the importance of the
specimens they took, what is the importance of the foul pieces of garbage
they took, compared to the technicians, the tens of thousands of
revolutionary technicians loyal to the death who are being trained by the
revolution? (applause)

With great satisfaction we can say it: In spite of the vile plunder by the
imperialists, in spite of their campaign, our country can in the next few
years number itself among the countries with the greatest number of
technicians, among the countries that have the greatest number of
technicians among the developed countries--the underdeveloped countries of
the world, and on a part with many of the developed countries. In certain
techniques--I was telling you about artificial insemination in development
our cattle industry--we are already close to first place. By the end of the
coming year, beyond a doubt, we will hold first place worldwide. That is
one technique; tomorrow it will be another, then another.

You know how sports are developing in our country. You know the place our
country occupies in sports. Chess olympics were just held, and all the
visitors--many of whom were used to seeing the slander, lies, and outrages
that the imperialists print throughout the world about our revolution--were
astounded and marveled at the attention, the organization, the people's
interests in chess, the participation of the masses in these activities,
which in almost all other--many countries of the world, particularly in the
capitalist countries, are reserved for a privileged minority.

This stadium in which we are meeting, with a capacity of more than 10,000,
you know that when the championship games began not one person more could
be crowded in. We have estimated that on some occasions more than 10
percent of the population of the city of Santa Clara has come to this
stadium. And not all have come who could come. This means that mass
participation by the people in cultural activities, educational activities,
sports activities, productive activities, the people's participation in the
defense of the country, the people's participation in building the
country's future, is a fact, real, mighty, and irrefutable, which has
prevailed over the fury of our imperialist enemies, their blockade, their
aggressions, and their attempts to crush our country.

And with every passing day, every passing month, every passing year it
becomes increasingly clear that they cannot destroy our revolution, ever!
Every day it is more impossible to crush our revolution, (applause) which
is daily more powerful, more stable, more solid! What will they say of
that? What will they say of the tens of thousands of women who enter
production, who join the working force, who enter the university's school
of technology, who enter the school of medicine, or arts and sciences? What
will they say of the thousands and thousands of women who have gone into
health services? What will they say of the tens of thousands of women who
have gone into education, into services, into child care centers, into
schools? What will they say of the women who have gone into production?

What can they say? For what did capitalism and imperialism hold out for
women in our country? To work at the worst jobs. What did they hold out for
the daughters of workers and peasants? Decent work? No. A brothel! But
brothels have disappeared now as a place of women's employment in our
country. (applause)

The worst jobs. The most humiliating. The most contemptible.
Discrimination. Underrating. That was all a woman in our country could
expect from capitalism and imperialism. Today that already seems a
nightmare from the past. Now no worker, no head of a family, finds himself
obliged to send his daughter to work for the rich or in some bar or in a
brothel, because that past, that nightmare, that odious fate which that
society foisted on Cuban women has vanished forever.

To see what the revolution has done for woman and to see at the same time
what woman is doing for the revolution, one should go to Banao, or San
Andres, Los Pilares de Mayari, Maisi, La Caoba, Palenquito. (applause) One
must visit the hundreds of poultry centers all over the country, the dozens
of rabbit-raising centers that are being developed all over the country in
order to see women engaged in decent work, honorable work, liberating work.

And of all those places, because it is one that has impressed me most,
because it is the one where I have seen the clearest expression of the
revolutionary spirit and vocation of women, it is the one that I have
mentioned here; it is Banao. The skeptics, those who did not believe or do
not believe, let them go to Banao. (applause) Those who underestimate a
woman, those who do not appreciate her full ability, her full potential,
let them go to Banao. (applause)

And let them visit many other places, because the revolution does not try
to solve the problem of work for women by bureaucracy, by some little job
in an office. And when I say that, once again I say you must not think we
believe that work in an office is dishonorable work, useless work. No. The
indispensable, the minimum amount of office work, is necessary. What is not
indispensable is bureaucratism. What is not indispensable is the
accumulation of bureaucrats in offices. (applause)

But for those who do not understand what bureaucratism is, for those who do
not understand that bureaucratism does not make anybody happy, that it does
not many any worker happy, that it does not make any woman happy, let them
go to some office full of woman employees; and afterward, let them go to
Banao, let them check, let them see, so they can compare what difference in
the enthusiasm, what different joy, what a different happiness is the
happiness provided by creative work, productive work, knowing that one is
useful, knowing that one is serving one's children, one's husband, one's
people, one's country, one's revolution (applause) by striving, creating
useful things, contribution to prosperity.

Let the indispensable minimum remain in the offices. Let us not slacken in
our commitments and in our offensive against bureaucracy. Bureaucracy is an
evil that will require a permanent battle against it in the next few years,
because, if we lower our guard, bureaucracy will take the offensive. We
have explained it with one phrase, that it, that the committees for the
fight against bureaucracy have become bureaucratized. They have become
bureaucratized. That means that they have lowered their guard, that they
solve the problems in bureaucratic fashion, that some agencies have
employed new personnel without talking things over with the committees, and
some people and some offices have--without requesting it--increased the

However, we shall not cease to be on the alert. We shall not lower our
guard. We must now proceed to debureaucratize the committees fighting
bureaucracy and imbue them again with the revolutionary style, and method.

We have gained ground, we have gained sufficient ground in the fight
against bureaucracy. An antibureaucratic awareness has been created.
However, bureaucracy still lies in wait. The vices of bureaucracy are still
apparent in different ways. Some officials contract students, even though
they know that it is expressly forbidden to do so. In other words, we
prefer to give a student with economic difficulties a scholarship or an
economic loan, instead of giving him work. This will prevent him from being
both a bad worker and a bad student. Some agencies do contract students
freely. Some offices and places have violated the rules of the fight
against bureaucracy; they have added new personnel. So, finally, I take
this opportunity to give this alarm and to warm the bureaucrats that we are
on the alert, to warn the comrade revolutionaries that the committees
fighting against bureaucracy and that those committees must

In this, we can count on the complete enthusiasm of the people. We can
count on the complete enthusiasm of every woman in this country. We can
count on the enthusiasm of every one of us to promote plans, to promote
woman's creative work, and to develop the country's economy. To the same
extent, we would not be willing to agree that while we ask the women to
work in our fields and while we ask the mothers to send their children to
the day nurseries, to get up early in the morning, and to go to their jobs
in order to create useful wealth there should be bureaucrats who, unaware
of the meaning of productive work and of creative work, are freehanded and
generous with the people's money, generous with money for which they have
not had to sweat, and squander money. Not only to they squander money but
what is worse they squander intelligence. They misuse their brains. If one
of those bureaucrats who could fulfill his task with 20 persons invents
jobs and positions and employs 80 additional persons who produce nothing
and make a nuisance of themselves--as happens in many cases--this man, this
bureaucrat, this antisocial being, this enemy of the revolution is only
squandering 100,000 or 150,000, or 200,000 pesos. What would it cost to
produce 100,000-pesos worth of onions, tomatoes, strawberries, milk, meat,
grape, sugar, anything? How much would it cost? How much work? How much
sweat? How many caballerias of land? How many hours? How many sacrifices?
How much does it cost a bureaucrat to spend 100,000 pesos or to pay out
100,000 pesos in unnecessary wages and in abstract work? Can he consider
himself a revolutionary, a socialist, a communist, a participant in a
proletariat revolution when he does not even know how much work is needed
to produce a liter of milk, a tomato, a bean of coffee, or a malanga?

When I want to find out if someone is or is not a revolutionary, the
method, the barometer, the rule I use is to find out if that man has any
idea of what it costs to produce any of those things, if he knows that to
produce a liter of milk a man has to get up at two in the morning and work
until dawn milking cows and spend the day or night in the pastures fighting
the animals to produce one liter, 10 liters, or 100 liters of milk, and if
that man knows the value of that effort and how to appreciate the product
of work and the value of a human being. I say that that bureaucrat is not
only squandering 100,000 pesos--because to produce 100,000 pesos maybe 100
women will have to work an entire year--but he throws it away. What is even
worse he is misusing 80 persons, he is immobilizing 80 persons, he is
squandering the intelligence and the energy of 80 persons.

This is a bureaucrat. Maybe we should say that there is no bureaucracy?
Yes, we have fought against it but the fact is, though, that we still have
it. Are there no more bureaucrats? Yes, we still have bureaucrats and many
of them. We have many who have no idea of what a peso is. (applause) Many
of them do not know what it costs to produce a peso-worth of milk, meat,
vegetables, fish. They throw money away: they squander it. Such persons are
not revolutionaries.

That is not being a revolutionary; that is not helping anyone. I believe
that the worst damage that can be done to a person is to employ him in
useless work, to employ him in work in which he can see that his effort is
not useful. Whereas a woman cultivating a tomato or sowing a coffee shrub
is happy, the former is unhappy. There are still many about who do not
understand that.

We still have with us many imbued with the petit bourgeois spirit. Is this
perhaps the meaning of proletariat awareness? No. This means having the
awareness, habits, and mentality of a petit bourgeois. The petit bourgeois
spirit still infests enough of our socialist administration. However, the
proletarian spirit is advancing even faster throughout the country. In the
face of these reactionary, conservative, and petit bourgeois tendencies,
that other spirit is advancing along the length and breadth of the island
and the people surge toward productive work and acquire an awareness. As we
acquire that awareness, I repeat, we shall overcome that petit bourgeois
spirit and we shall open wide the doors to our proletarian, socialist, and
communist revolution. (applause)

There only remains for me to say this with all my strength: Long live the
Cuban women! (applause) Long live the revolutionary spirit, discipline, and
devotion of the Cuban women! (applause) Long live the feminist revolution
within the socialist revolution! (applause) Fatherland or death; we shall