Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


Havana Domestic Radio and Television Services in Spanish 0320 GMT 13 Jan 68

[Speech by Prime Minister Fidel Castro at ceremony in Havana's Chaplin
Theater closing the Havana Cultural Congress--live]

[Text] Delegates to the cultural congress, comrades: We must express the
impression gathered from several participants in the congress that this
international event, the first of its type, has been a complete success.
Some foresaw that the holding of a congress of this nature would be a
difficult task and thought that it would perhaps be impossible to carry out
an assembly of this nature with the participation of a large group of
intellectual workers from no fewer than 70 countries, speaking many
different languages, whose ideas might differ in many areas. They thought
that the cultural congress could become a place for polemics of all types,
for misunderstandings, and that it would be very difficult for the
intellectual workers to arrive at practically unanimous conclusions.

There were various reasons for this belief, among them, probably, the
reputation that intellectual workers in general have of occasionally being
excessively individualistic, and indeed the congress itself analyzed how
much men of any society are influenced, regardless of their positions, by
the ideas, customs, and living conditions of the part of the world where
they live. Possibly, also, that belief was the result of an underestimation
of the intellectual workers.

We must ponder what the factors were that made this congress really
possible, what factors inspired the discussions of this congress, what
factors helped give it a profoundly revolutionary character, a
revolutionary character that in truth can be said to exceed the most
optimistic forecasts. The factors that made this congress possible and
determined its results is the universal consciousness that is developing
today--the universal consciousness of the most profound problems of the
contemporary world, of the grave threats that hang over all the countries
of the world, of struggle, of the universal sense of justice that is
spreading throughout the world.

Reasons for Unanimity

The strange thing is that the men and women gathered here did not come here
as members of any political organization. Congresses have taken place at
many places at many times among similar organizations of members, of
similar parties, but this congress has been characterized by the broadness
of its representation, by the variety of its members' places of origin, by
the different activities that each of the participants perform.
Nevertheless, a number of questions, a number of fundamental principles
were dealt with rare unanimity. There were intellectual workers of the most
diverse philosophical schools, following the most diverse scientific points
of view, and artists holding the most diverse political opinions. All the
same, a general agreement could be noted, and this we really believe will
constitute a cause for concern among the enemies of mankind.

And this universal consciousness is determined by what? Is it perhaps an
idealistic feeling in those who met in this congress? Is it perhaps the
outcome of simple altruism, of a noble and generous sentiment? Even though
such sentiments are plentiful in this congress, there is no question but
that the factor that has created this universal awareness is precisely the
danger--the threat--of aggression, and the actual aggression against
various peoples of the world for which practically the whole world is

The development of that universal awareness has grown side by side with the
aggressive spirit, with the acts of oppression and subjection, with the
threats that are hovering over all mankind. What must be said is that the
men and women who are met here undoubtedly constitute that vanguard, that
nucleus, that is capable of penetrating deeper, that is capable of
understanding first what the nature, type, and seriousness of contemporary
problems is, that humanity is suffering from and being threatened with.

We have read all the resolutions about the various themes debated, and it
can be said that the basic problems faced by mankind today, the most
serious problems, were discussed, and in our judgment were discussed in a
very correct manner. There are some deeds about which no one who has any
conscience, about which no one who has human feelings, who has feelings of
justice, can feel indifferent and can remain inactive.

Imperialist Aggression

There is, for example, the aggression against Vietnam--that unheard-of deed
of our times, that act of genocide that Yankee imperialism is carrying out
savagely against these people and that is unjustifiable from any viewpoint.
Its employment of means of war and acts of savagery unquestionably remind
anybody who had a chance to live or to know about it at first hand or from
afar, or from books, of the deeds of Nazism in Europe. They are
unquestionably reminded, for example, of all those acts which later
constituted war crimes, for which many--far fewer than deserved it but at
least some--were punished and on some occasions executed.

The Yankee imperialist policy reminds us today of Hitler's policy. It
reminds us of the acts of barbarity of Nazism save for one difference:
imperialism has been able to collect technical resources, hence military
resources; it has been able to accumulate a force of destruction and death
that is incomparably greater than any which the Nazi-fascists could ever
have imagined.

It is logical for mankind to be concerned when it seems such tremendous
forces advancing along that path. But at the same time, not only does the
nature of the crimes committed contribute to the creation of this
awareness, but is also contributes to an even higher degree to the
admiration we feel for the heroic people who so bravely, so successfully,
so incredibly are confronting these powerful forces, who are fighting so
hard against them, and who are capable also of defeating them.

Indignation on one side, hate on one side, and admiration on the other
side, with regard to the events taking place in Vietnam, have contributed
in a most notable way, perhaps more than any other act in these times, to
the creation of that congress. But at the same time humanity is seeing more
clearly every day that these events are not by any means isolated
incidents, but the fruits of a concept, a system that they are trying to
apply to the entire world. That extraordinary unanimity that is today
condemning the actions of Yankee imperialism is the logical result of a
chain of similar events that have taken place in the world in recent times.

Those imperialists who are savagely murdering and killing in Vietnam are
the same imperialists who invaded and occupied the territory of Santo
Domingo, who participate in the repression of revolutionary movements
throughout the world. They are the same imperialists who promoted the
events which terminated in the murder of Lumumba, who carry out acts of
aggression and provocation in Korea, intervene in Laos, threaten Cambodia,
maintain a discredited puppet in Formosa; who with their support, weapons,
and resources maintain the oligarchic governments of Latin America, the
tyrannies, the archaic systems that prevail on this continent.

They are the same who maintain Portuguese colonialism in Africa, who
support not only the coups d'etat in Latin America, a daily happening, the
coups d'etat in Africa, something that is all the rage in recent times,
but, even in Europe itself, support the reactionary military coup d'etat in
Greece and encourage the aggressions against the Arab countries. [applause]

It is not even necessary to mention Cuba, for our case is no longer an
isolated case. It is just one more case. Our lesson in the activities and
conduct of imperialism has been learned only too well. The imperialist
aggression against us is no longer what determines our people's attitude,
their indignation and hate for imperialism. It is the understanding of the
role imperialism plays throughout the world. There is not a single
continent, a single country, a single people; not a single contemporary
problem in which the activity of imperialism cannot be seen and felt. There
is not a single infamous cause in the world that imperialism does not
support, just as there is not a single just cause in this contemporary
world that imperialism does not fight against.

It is no longer the case simply that imperialism fattens on and attacks
what it calls the third world, or the underdeveloped world, or the world in
development, as others call it. Parenthetically, this "world in
development" is a concept that is truly ill-applied. If we observe the
reality of that world, rather than a world in development from a technical
point of view, from an economic point of view, we could call it a world in
regression as a result of the conditions which imperialism has imposed on
it. It is not because the claws and actions of imperialism attack only that
part of the world. The acts and deeds of that imperialism also attack more
seriously every day the interests of the countries considered developed.

In this concept of developed and underdeveloped there exist differences in
terminology because it is said, sometimes, that a very industrially and
economically developed country is at the same time a politically and
socially underdeveloped country, and that a nation that is economically
underdeveloped is politically and socially more developed.

We are not offended--far from it--if we are included among the
underdeveloped nations. The development of consciousness, our social
development, and our general cultural development is becoming a
prerequisite for our economic and industrial development.

In this country, as it should occur in any other nation under conditions
similar to ours, the development of the people in politics and in
consciousness has become a prerequisite for winning the battle of economic
underdevelopment. But imperialism, as a universal phenomenon, imperialism
as a universal evil, imperialism as a universal predator, cannot exist
unless it acts as a wolf throughout the world and unless it acts against
the interests of the whole world. And this imperialism acts the same
against the interests of the so-called underdeveloped world as (?against
the) industrialized world.

Today--in political terminology--one usually talks about imperialism headed
by the United States because, in contemporary reality, there is just one
really powerful imperialism. In contemporary reality, the bastion of
imperialism, imperialism in essence, is North American imperialism. The
imperialisms powerful yesterday are today extraordinarily weak compared
with Yankee imperialism. It is because of this fact, which is increasingly
understood by the whole world, that effort and the struggle is centered on
Yankee imperialism, the buttress of all reactionary governments, the prop
for all the evil causes of the world.

This imperialism threatens to devour and to a certain extent is devouring
the rest of the imperialist powers. It is unnecessary to argue about this
point; it was debated in the congress. On this point, brilliant ideas were
expressed and proposals introduced. An analysis presented in one of the
congress papers dealt with the phenomenon of the drain of capital--not the
export of capital, now, but the drain of capital that Yankee imperialism is
perpetrating in the underdeveloped world, an analysis that was backed by
figures. There was also an exposition regarding the brain-drain by Yankee
imperialism from the whole world.

U.S. Economic Control

And the deeds that characterize this contemporary monopoly of science and
technology, the utilization made by imperialism of modern science ad
technology, were brilliantly described in the congress. One is the idea
that at present, when the Yankee imperialists make investments in Europe,
they only have to deposit 10 percent of the total value of the investment
and then mobilize the balance of the funds in the rest of Europe. We know
the extent of Yankee imperialist penetration in Europe and we ought to say
seriously that, perhaps more than Europeans themselves imagine, Yankee
imperialism rules in Europe. [applause]

We know it. We have constant proof of it because against us, for example
imperialism carries out incessant economic sabotage, economic blockade. It
does everything possible to prevent us from acquiring any useful thing in
any part of the world. The worst thing is that on many occasions--on very
many occasions--the imperialists sabotage and prevent the transactions that
we make in countries which consider themselves very independent, very
sovereign, and very developed. The imperialists have majority shares in
many companies in Europe, control of many patents used in Europe, and if we
want to buy any machine manufactured under a North American patent, or it
part of the machine is manufactured under a North American patent, we
cannot buy it.

Sometimes they sell us part of a plant but cannot sell us the complete
process because the patent is American. On many occasions, even if it is
not an American patent or a plant with financial participation by North
American capital, we cannot buy what we want because they are important
customers of that industry and become angry if that industry sells us
something. In that way they exert pressure, sabotaging and preventing our
economic transactions. Therefore they govern in Europe, either as owners of
companies, as owners of patents, as important customers, or as the allies
of some European governments, using their influence to sabotage Cuban
economic activities.

It is incredible how far and in what detail they will go in this. Therefore
we who are not Europeans know to what degree the economy of Europe is ruled
by the United States. The problem that that Europe--yes, even that
capitalist Europe--has before it is to find out whether there is some way
to control, to contain that economic penetration, whether there is some way
to resist that penetration. And even if perhaps ways exist within the
capitalist concept, within the capitalist laws, it makes no difference how
much they protect themselves with tariffs and with import duties; the
financial and technical potential of the United States is so great that in
many cases it can sell at lower prices, with some products at dumping
prices, to overcome any type of tariff barrier.

On occasions, they do not have to overcome any barrier because they simply
buy the European companies. For example, even things like this have
happened to us: We brought a certain number of trucks from a European firm.
After we received the trucks, the North American businessmen arrived and
bought the factory. As of that moment, we could not get a single spare part
for those trucks. Sometimes we have the impression that they voraciously
seize everything. Sometimes we even have the impression that when they
European industry supplies us with products that may be important to our
development, they do not stop until they buy the industry.

Fortunately, they have not been able to do so with all the industries.
Fortunately, contradictions crop up. Fortunately, as a result of these
contradictions, as a result of that penetration, as a result of the
competition that Yankee imperialism wages with Europe, in the midst of all
difficulties, trade exchange between Cuba and Europe is increasing. We also
have an idea of the degree of the ever-growing resistance of European
industrialists and governments, of their growing concern, their growing
anguish about the economic penetration and the control of European economy
by the United States. Some things that years back were very difficult for
Cuba to buy are not so difficult to buy at this time. Our nation's
credit--and forgive me this disgression--the number of offers made to our
country is growing.

And so in these acts we see the contradiction, in these acts we see the
tremendous influence the Yankee imperialists have in Europe and at the same
time we see the growing concern in Europe capitalist circles themselves
about this phenomenon taking place in Europe at the present time.

The Universal Enemy

And so there is an enemy that can indeed be called universal. And if ever
in the history of mankind there was really a universal enemy, an enemy
whose attitude and whose acts are of concern to the whole world, and in one
way or another perpetrate aggression against the whole world, that really
universal enemy is Yankee imperialism.

To the degree that mankind is becoming aware of this problem, mankind is
mobilizing. To the extent that it is becoming conscious of its problem,
mankind is beginning to act in one way or another. Sometimes we have heard
intellectuals, scientists, and artists criticize themselves for being
removed from problems. I am not referring in this case to intellectual
workers of the third world, to name them in some way; I am referring above
all to the European intellectual workers and their self-criticism--that
they are removed from problems--at times they label it paternalism, and so
forth--as regards the problems of the world.

Intellectuals' Resistance

How do we see this question? We guess we would be wishful thinkers, we
would be sinning as idealists, were we to wish that this conscience that we
have talked about would emerge overnight in a miraculous dawn. We will not
stop to analyze the degree to which the intellectual workers mobilize in
the world on behalf of just causes. Rather, we stop to consider that no
matter what the degress of this development, no matter what the
effectiveness of this solidarity, the true fact is that this movement is on
the upswing. The true fact is that this movement is developing. The true
fact is that this movement is growing. And we could say that we have often
seen how given causes which most affect today's world, how certain
aggressions, how certain crimes, have met with more support, more response,
more protest, and more combativity, among groups of intellectual workers
[applause] than among organizations or political types from which we would
expect the greatest combativity. [applause] On occasions, we have seen
supposed vanguards far behind the lines in the rearguard in the struggle
against imperialism! [prolonged applause]

We really have not come to this platform to offend anybody or to hurt
anybody. Besides, we do not like to offend or attack anybody by indirect
means. And I say this because I am attesting to a truth that we have felt.
It is the viewpoint, in short, of the victims of aggression, the viewpoint
of the revolutionary fighters of a nation that is fighting against
imperialism, of a nation that, if it is not in the frontline--Vietnam is
unquestionably in that frontline [prolonged applause]--is a nation that
occupies a modest combat position but defends it firmly and resolutely. And
when we see a man of the vanguard, or one whom we suppose to be of the
vanguard, in the vanguard, it is the most natural thing in the world to us;
but when we have seen those who were not considered vanguards marching in
the vanguard of protest and struggle, we are so filled with admiration that
we do not stop to measure the degree to which they fight, but observe and
judge the fact that when just banners have no one to take them up in some
countries, there are yet worthy men who do so. [applause]

And there are not just a few examples of these phenomena. During the course
these years of revolution, we have learned much. Among other things, we
have learned to distinguish between the true and the false, between a
revolutionary attitude and a revolutionary slogan, between words and deeds,
and between dogmas and realities. Can anyone believe that the experience of
the October crisis was not an unforgettable experience for us? We do not
like to speak of that episode, but undoubtedly our people lived moments of
great danger, and nobody should interpret it as a demonstration of pride
when we say here that our people conducted themselves with dignity, with
integrity, and with courage. [applause]

Peace Movement

We must at the same time, however, declare that a long time ago, when we
were almost adolescents, we heard of the great campaign in favor of peace.
And with this I do not criticize the men who have fought for peace, the men
who honestly, in one way or another, have seized the banner of the struggle
for peace, who to the limit of their power have waved that banner. What
really attracted our attention was the fact that when peace was truly in
danger, when the world really was on the brink of a nuclear war, we did not
see in Europe--and it was to be supposed that there would be war in Europe
also, nuclear war, it was to be supposed that in a clash between the great
nuclear powers it was unlikely that a Europe linked by military pacts to
one of those powers, Yankee imperialism, would not have suffered the
consequences of that war and would have been in the war--nevertheless, we
did not see great mass mobilizations.

If there were some, we did not learn of them. If there were large or small
ones, we did not know of them. We had the sensation, the impression--which,
if it is false, we would be grateful to whoever could erase from our spirit
its profound effect--that the slogan had been nothing more than a slogan,
an amusement, and that it was not capable of mobilizing any mass; that the
slogan was not even capable of awakening the masses! instinct of

Che Guevara

Where were the vanguards? Where were the revolutionary vanguards? We have a
recent, very recent, example which touched us very closely, and that was
the death of our heroic Comrade Ernesto Guevara.

[prolonged applause] It will be difficult to find a man like him. It will
be difficult to find a more full-fledged, more consistent, more complete,
and more exemplary revolutionary than he. When they try to set us an
example of what a revolutionary is and must be, can there be a better
example than his? Nevertheless, who were the ones who waved his banner? Who
were the ones who waved it throughout the world? Above all, who were the
ones who flaunted his name in Europe, the ones who exalted his example? Who
were the ones who mobilized, painted signs, and organized ceremonies in
Europe? In which sector was it that the death of Che Guevara had the
greatest impact? It was precisely among the intellectual workers.

They were not organizations. They were not parties. They were honest men
and women, sensitive people who had the attitude of assimilating,
understanding, admiring, doing justice before those who ask: Why did Che
Guevara die--before those who are incapable of understanding and who will
never understand why he died and who will never be capable of dying like
him or of being revolutionary like him. [applause]

And we know how that deed pained the hearts of the true revolutionaries
throughout the world. We know particularly how that deed pained the most
exemplary fighters of this era, the Vietnamese fighters. [applause] We have
known many condolences, true condolences, formal condolences--we say
condolence because there is no other word. Of course, the death of a
fighter is not a reason for sorrow if we believe, as we have always
believed, as our people and the revolutionaries have always believed, as
our people and the revolutionaries have always believed, that no true man,
no true revolutionary, dies in vain.

And of this our own enemies have given us irrefutable proof. Of this we
have proof from those who, not respecting his condition as a wounded
fighter incapable of continuing to fight because even his weapon had been
destroyed, in cowardly fashion murdered him.

Not only did they murder him in cowardly fashion. They also made him
disappear in an even more cowardly way.

Recently, the news agencies have been publishing reports and have been
talking about exchanges of counterrevolutionaries imprisoned in Cuba for
Regis Debray. Of course, we are sure--because we have seen Debray's
attitude, because we have seen his formidable defense, because we have seen
the serenity, the courage, and the integrity with which he unmasked those
who were trying him--we are sure that Regis Debray will never accept such
an exchange.

But we do not evade the challenge issued by the gorilla Barrientos. If they
want to free counterrevolutionaries, if they want counterrevolutionary
leaders, we say, we suggest, let them return the mortal remains of Major
Guevara and we shall release 100 imprisoned leaders, [applause] we shall
release immediately, not one counterrevolutionary leader, but 100
counterrevolutionary leaders selected by the CIA and the Pentagon if they
have the courage to return the remains of Major Guevara, [applause] for it
is they who must demonstrate whether it is true or not that they fear Che
more dead than alive. [applause]

This is a formidable illustration of what an example is. It is a formidable
illustration of the fact that ideas cannot be destroyed. It is a formidable
illustration of the fact that revolutionary causes, just causes, cannot be
crushed whatever the blows and the losses may be; for we are human for some
purpose, we are men for some purpose, and in man ideas are values which are
above all other things, and naturally, far above their lives. We have lived
these experiences. Therefore, without wishing to flatter, with absolute
sincerity, we express the feeling aroused in us when we see how the
intellectual workers, in ever-increasing numbers, are uniting and are
becoming formidable standard-bearers and defenders of just causes.

I mentioned the example of Che. We have seen the force the movement of
support for and solidarity with Vietnam is gaining throughout the world. We
have seen an ever-increasing number of intellectual workers in the United
States raising the banner of struggle against the savage aggression against
Vietnam. [applause] We have seen the intellectual workers of the world
offering ever greater support to the Negro movement in the United States.
We have seen the intellectual workers of the world, everywhere, raising the
banner of struggle against the imprisonment of Regis Debray. We have seen,
in events that have been occurring in recent times, in events that are
[word indistinct], how the solidarity movement of the intellectual workers
is growing throughout the world, and we deeply appreciated this phenomenon.

This does not mean that we must be conformists. It does not mean that we
think that the maximum has been done; far from it. This does not mean that
that movement has the strength it should. It means only that we are
optimistic, because that movement--a movement of conscience, a movement of
justice--is growing and developing. There is no doubt but that it will
continue to grow and develop, for to the same degree that a universal enemy
becomes more and more aggressive, to the same degree that his crimes are
increasingly repulsive, to the same degree that his claws are increasingly
threatening, that movement, that force, will grow. And while saying that
Yankee imperialism is mighty, while saying that Yankee imperialism has
accumulated great financial and technical resources, powerful means of
destruction and death, we never accept the thought that this threat to
mankind, all the forces accumulated by that imperialism, can be more
powerful than mankind.

And we are again shown by Vietnam, a tiny part of mankind, how it faces,
how it fights, and how it defeats that superpowerful imperialism, an
imperialism that is trying to frighten the world, trying to blackmail the
world, and only succeeding in sharpening the world's conscience still
further, increasing still further the world's indignation and fighting
spirit in the same degree that its acts become more criminal and more
abhorrent; that enemy, who seeks to resolve everything by force of arms,
who seeks to resolve everything with his gold, who had just as soon murder
as bribe, who oppresses by force and corruption alike and who penetrates
every sphere, who penetrates every activity--it is logical that the
intellectual workers could not help feeling repugnance at seeing how man's
finest creations, how the most extraordinary products of human
intelligence, how the creations of men of science and technique, how all
these means that man has developed for the good of man are being used today
to kill, destroy, oppress, and corrupt--the advances of physics and
chemistry and electronics and biology equally, because he manufactures
weapons ranging from bombs that disintegrate into thousands of fragments to
poisons, chemical means of destruction, biological means; in short,
everything that men of science have created.

It is logical that intellectual workers of the world should in one way or
another feel victims of that spoliation, should in one way or another feel
attacked, just as they feel they are victims of aggression from this policy
of buying minds, pirating technicians, this policy aimed at monopolizing
science, aimed at recruiting scientists from the whole world, whether from
a so-called developed country or from a country termed underdeveloped. This
fact is clear, it is known, statistics on it are being released in the
United States itself, so then the country that has more developed
techniques, as we said on 2 January, practices that pillage of minds, that
pillage of technicians.

In view of these facts, what then is extraordinary about a meeting being
held here by men and women, intellectual workers of the most varied
philosophical positions, the most varied political or apolitical positions,
the most varied militancy? And we must say there are certain things about
this congress that have been truly impressive. [words indistinct] this
universal awareness that the problems of the modern world cannot be solved
by means of obsolete social systems that have been overtaken by the
development of science and techniques, and overtaken also by the evolution
of human conscience; and how there was a unanimous expression of opinion by
intellectual workers from both the third world and developed countries to
the effect that it is impossible to solve the great problems of any modern
country, developed or underdeveloped--the developed countries, in order to
overcome the deep-rooted contradictions that exist in capitalism, to remedy
a society that has practically been abolished by history; and in the case
of the underdeveloped countries, as the only way--because otherwise a
country whose lag behind the rest of the world is constantly widening can
attain a rapid rate of development only by the via crucis of capitalist
development under conditions of imperialist domination.

But after all, these were matters of basic knowledge and basic conviction
for the people who took part in this congress. Still, there are a few
things--one thing in particular that impressed us a great deal, in all
truth, because it demonstrates the scope that the revolutionary movement is
acquiring throughout the world. It is the paper submitted by a group of
Catholic priests who took part in the congress. I am not going to name them
because [words indistinct], but I am going to read the paper for our
people. I suppose you are familiar with this paper. It says:

"We Catholic priests, delegates to the Havana Cultural Congress, convinced
that imperialism currently, and particularly in the third world, is a
dehumanizing factor that destroys the foundations of the individual
dignity, opposes the free expression of culture, blocks the authentic forms
of human development, and promotes ever-worsening and oppressive conditions
of underdevelopment;

"Convinced that, in spite of existing differences between Christianity ad
Marxism on the interpretation to be given man and the world, Marxism
provides the most exact scientific analysis of the truth of imperialism and
the most effective stimulus for revolutionary action by the masses;
convinced that the Christian religion implies love transformed into
effective service to each and every man;

"Convinced that Father Camilo Torres Restrepo, in dying for the
revolutionary cause, set the highest example of a Christian intellectual
devoted to the people; [applause]

"We commit ourselves to the anti-imperialist revolutionary struggle, to its
ultimate consequences, to achieve the liberation of the whole man and of
all men. Therefore, we condemn U.S. imperialism's economic and cultural
blockade of the Republic of Cuba, the first free territory in America; we
condemn the U.S. war on Vietnam as the most monstrous crime committed by
imperialism against the freedom of a people of the third world; we reject
every form of colonialism and neocolonialism as products of alienating,
dehumanizing imperialism."

This paper demonstrates how, in one way or another, revolutionary ideas
spread and grow, and how these ideas reach even into religious sectors and
how those sectors are producing an ever-increasing number of revolutionary
fighters. In the past few days, we have read one of the many dispatches
that are received here from one of the movement that is developing among
the Catholic clergy in Latin America. They said it was a movement linked
with Cuba, linked with the Cuban revolution, linked with Castro, and so on.
They even made accusations against the apostolic nuncio. They accused the
apostolic nuncio in Cuba and they accused a Canadian apostolic nuncio who
had come to confer the insignia of a bishop on the apostolic nuncio in Cuba
at a reception--and we attended that reception.

Of course, for the imperialists, the worms' nest, and the reactionaries,
perhaps for the CIA, that was a conspiratorial confabulation. There is no
question but that the reactionaries are increasingly frightened. They live
in fear and see conspiracies on every side. They see specters on all sides;
they see subversion everywhere; and it is true, it is true--they have the
specters, they have unleashed the rebelliousness, and they have prompted
mankind's honorable representatives to conspiracy.

Development of Marxism

There is no doubt that we are witnessing new events, new phenomena. There
is no question but that the revolutionaries, we who consider ourselves
revolutionaries, we who consider ourselves Marxist-Leninists, are dutybound
to analyze these new phenomena, because nothing can be more anti-Marxist
than dogma, [applause] nothing can be more anti-Marxist than the
ossification of ideas. Some ideas evoked in the name of Marxism seem like
real fossils. [applause] Marxism had some brilliant thinkers: Karl Marx,
Friedrich Engels, Lenin, to speak of its main founders. But Marxism needs
to develop; get rid of a certain ankylosis [pathological stiffening];
interpret today's conditions with an objective, scientific perspective;
conduct itself like a revolutionary force and not like a
psuedorevolutionary church. [applause] These are history's paradoxes. When
we see sectors of the clergy becoming revolutionary forces, how shall we
resign ourselves to seeing sectors of Marxism becoming ecclesiastic forces?

We hope, naturally, that our saying these things will not bring about our
excommunication, [laughter] nor, of course, bring the holy inquisition down
upon us. But we must take thought, certainly; we must act in a more
dialectic spirit, that is, in a more revolutionary spirit. We must analyze
contemporary phenomena and study them thoroughly. Of course, more and more,
analysis and concepts must be the work of teams of men rather than of
individual men. Just as, in the field of science, the solitary researcher
has practically ceased to exist and cannot exist, in the fields of politics
and economy and sociology, solitary researchers, the emergence of geniuses,
is more and more impossible under modern conditions.

There is a certain underdevelopment, there is actually a certain
underdevelopment in the field of political ideas, in the field of
revolutionary ideas. That is the origin of the tremendous confusion that
exists in the world today, the tremendous crisis that exists in the field
of ideas--that is, in the field of doctrines--at the very moment
revolutionary feeling and action are growing throughout the world. Nobody
can say he has a monopoly on truth. Amid the tremendous complexity of the
world of today, nobody can declare he has a monopoly on truth. We have our
truths here; they have arisen from our experience and are applicable to our
conditions, and we have our deductions and our conclusions. But we have
never tried to be lecturers; we have never claimed a monopoly on
revolutionary truths.

And yet we have seen how revolutionary truths are being found, how
revolutionary truths are emerging as a result of the analysis and efforts
of (?many minds). And there is no doubt but that this is the impression
given by the resolutions reached at the congress. In our opinion, this is
the most extraordinary feature: how such unanimous conclusions have been
reached, how views have been unified, how a handful of truths have been
spoken, how a number of unquestionably revolutionary and human sentiments
have been expressed. The outcome of this congress must leave that
impression on all the (?delegates).

What will the imperialists say? What will they think? They will perhaps say
that this is a Vietnam in the field of culture. They will say guerrilla
units have made their appearance among the intellectual workers; that is to
say, the intellectual workers are adopting an increasingly combative stand.
And we have no doubt but that the imperialists will be deeply concerned
with this event, the resolutions of this event, the revolutionary tone of
this event.

Rusk and Johnson

The thinking of the imperialists is more obvious all the time; their
intentions always more unmistakable. Today, for example, two news
dispatches were received in Cuba about two large imperialist oligarchs. One
is about a general, the U.S. army chief of staff. The other reports the
statements of Mr Rusk. Are they, perhaps, different from the statements
they always make? No, they are not different. Are they, perhaps, different
from many statements made in the congress? No, but they reveal the
correctness and awareness of the intellectual workers and their
resolutions. Let us see what either of the two say, the one you may prefer:
In a statement, Mr Rusk mentioned, among other things, the October crisis,
saying that [presumably quoting] the Cuban crisis of 1962, in which the
United States maintained considerable moderation, has served as a warning,
certainly, to several big and small powers, U.S. Secretary of State Dean
Rusk noted yesterday to the press, adding that many countries learned the
lesson. This is the vulgar language of vulgar blackmail. [applause]
However, what is more important: [presumably quoting] If another problem
continued, it is that of aggression such as in Vietnam, he said--the
aggressions of Vietnam--adding that once the so-called liberation wars are
stopped--the world could enjoy a long period of peace--a pax Romana. Then,
immediately: "Speaking of the population explosion, Dean Rusk stressed the
pressing need to solve it before that danger has reached the stage of
starting a nuclear war. Science and technology will have to overcome these
problems. In the '80's they will acquire a character at least as explosive
as the question of nuclear weapons, he concluded."

And the general, what did the general say? [presumably quoting] Gen Harold
K. Johnson, U.S. army chief of staff, declared today that this country's
experience in the Dominican Republic and Cuba shows that the war in Vietnam
is necessary in order to put an end to the proliferation of communism.

In a speech delivered in this city, General Johnson declared that the
proliferation of communism ended when our country initiated direct
assistance to resistance to the implantation of that system. The military
man added that even in our hemisphere, when we confront the communists
promptly and vigorously, as in the case of the Dominican Republic, they
stop their advance. But Johnson said: "When the United States did not know
how to recognize a communist coup, as in the case of Cuba, the tumor took
root and has attempted to [word indistinct]." General Johnson, who returned
a week ago from his ninth inspection tour of Vietnam, denied that the
communists had taken the initiative in the current war or that the military
process had fallen into a period of stagnation.

Two statements on the same day--from a general with many defeats and an
imperialist grey eminence. All these statements that the imperialist
spokesmen--generals and civilians--make in such a harebrained manner, what
do they mean? Do they disguise imperialist strategy? Do they in any way
conceal their intentions and purposes? [Castro tries to recall the
phraseology of the dispatches] that thing about communism ceasing to
proliferate when we combat it vigorously, or about the case of Cuba--that
unextirpated tumor, he could possibly say--how to stop it? And about that
being why we [the United States] intervened in Santo Domingo with blood and
fire, in order to assist in the resistance--they [United States] helped the
gorillas there. Resistance? They would not have been able to resist the
Dominican people for half an hour. [applause] And are they intervening in
Vietnam for that reason? They say quite clearly that in Vietnam they intend
to crush the revolutionary movement, to give a conclusive lesson in
liquidating liberation movements. That is the terminology of the
international thug. Of course, there is regret that the tumor has not been

And the other, [Rusk] what does he say? Well, he says the same; that when
the liberation struggles cease, there will be peace. But he does not stop
there. It is not enough, no; with the cessation of the liberation
struggles, the birth rate must be controlled, the increase of population
must be controlled, because it does not matter whether or not the
liberation struggles cease--if mankind continues to increase, there will be
explosions more powerful and more dangerous than nuclear weapons. Let
science and technology come to the aid of imperialism; let birth education
come, let birth control come. Imperialism's solutions are very simply.

Two-thirds of mankind is suffering hunger. To put an end to the situation
of hunger, to get out of poverty, they are obliged to make revolutions. Ah,
but no revolutions. Revolutions will be repressed with blood and fire.
There will be peace only if there are no revolutions. However, even if
there are no revolutions, what will happen to two-thirds of mankind, which
is multiplying like guinea pigs? When they speak of the problems of
population and birth rate, they are in no way inspired by any from the
premise that mankind will die of hunger if it continues to multiply. Yes,
in these times, no less, which are neither the times of malthus nor of
Methuselah, when technology and science are achieving incredible successes
in all fields, they resort to technology to repress the revolutions and
they ask the help of science to prevent the growth of population. In two
words, the peoples must not make revolutions and women must not give birth.
[mild applause] That is the synthesis of the philosophy of imperialism.

However, that also reveals the unresolvable contradictions of that
imperialism, the uncertainty, the fear of the future. This shows that that
oligarchy, which is based on cannon and piles of gold, is worried,
uncertain, and frightened of the future. It is to this that the essence of
imperialist political thinking is reduced--of the oligarchy governing in
the United States, which, despite its fierce repressions and its technical
and military resources, feels uncertain. They know that without revolution,
none of those countries will emerge from underdevelopment. They admit, they
understand, they know that there is no way to pass from feudalism to
progress. [Castro makes an aside about a typewriter, followed by chuckles
from the audience] Perhaps it is the UPI broadcasting. [laughter] The
imperialists know that there is no development without revolution, and they
feel impotent before the reality that the world is growing, that the world
is developing, the population is increasing, and the revolutionary
conscience is increasing as a natural and inevitable phenomenon. The
imperialists know that the disparity between the developed and
underdeveloped world is growing. That information is constantly being
published by United Nations' organizations.

It is known, for example, that in 15 years the U.S. gross national product
will increase from approximately 400 billion dollars in 1960 to 800 billion
dollars in 1975; that in the European Common Market, the gross product will
increase in the same period, approximately, from 200 billion dollars to 400
billion dollars. All the economists and all those who work on problems of
commercial exchange know that industrial products are always sold at a
higher price to the underdeveloped world American oligarch said recently
that a quantity of a product of his country that purchased three jeeps 10
years ago could now purchase one jeep.

And while the living standards rise in one part of the world, the poverty
levels increase in another part of the world. The imbalance of increase and
the exploitation are increasing. According to these same estimates, the
imbalance in trade between the underdeveloped world and the developed world
amounted to 4 billion dollars in 1960. In 1970, it will amount to
approximately 20 billion dollars. While the gross product, while per-capita
income increases in one part of the world, per-capita production decreases
in the most populated part of the world. The imbalance increases; the
prices for those who have better living conditions increase, and the prices
for those who have the worst levels decrease. Moreover, resources are
squandered by the feudal lords and the oligarchs in many cases.

Withdrawals of monetary resources increase and an unresolvable problem is
created. This is a problem that has no solution. This is a fact. That is
why they use cybernetics; they calculate, add, subtract, multiply, and
divide. It seems that they have consulted with the computers and the
computers have told them that this situation is unresolvable, that this
situation is untenable. So then, what is imperialism's solution? Repressive
wars against the revolutions! That there will be peace when there are no
revolutions and that the population must stop increasing because if the
birth rate does not stop increasing, there will be explosive and nuclear
wars. Never before in the history of mankind have such barbaric, genocidal,
and brutal statements against mankind ever been heard. This is a fact; this
is an inconceivable fact. This is what contributes to universal
revolutionary awareness. This fact is what brought you together here. These
undeniable facts are the ones that gave a revolutionary tone to this

It is true that in the field of culture, there are many problems to be
solved and many matters to clarify. We do not even attempt to hide that
there are many things yet to be answered. There are some new problems not
yet solved, and we revolutionaries still have these problems, above all
when, as revolutionaries and under special conditions, we must expand a
large part of our efforts in order to survive, to defend ourselves, and to
progress. However, there is the unquestionable intention of finding the
appropriate answers, the best solutions, for the innumerable problems that
arise in the development of society.

[We have] solutions to find; problems to be solved exist and we have no
reason to deny this. But we will find the solutions and we really believe
that this congress is a contribution to us and to the revolutionary
movements. Despite our problems, it has been enlightening to see how the
intellectual workers in this congress have tackled the fundamental
problems, the essential matters, and the things that concern man most at
present. They came together and worked on these matters and carried this
congress forward. Many things could be discussed within the revolutionary
camp in connection with the problems of culture, because those problems are
real. However, this was perhaps what the imperialists expected. Efforts are
focused on the basic contradictions in the heart of the revolutionary
movement, not the problems of the culture in the heart of the revolutionary
movement, but the problems and contradictions between culture and

We do not believe or claim that all the problems and questions discussed
were clarified in this congress, but we do believe that it has been a major
step forward. We do believe that discussions were highly positive, and we
believe that the subjects discussed are essential. We believe that the
concern over the revolutionary society was important and essential,
especially in relation to the new man. Fortunately, in this matter of the
future we have the magnificent pamphlet left to us by Che, in which he so
clearly and brilliantly analyzed some of these problems with the sincerity,
honesty, and frankness that always distinguished him, and in which he
expressed man of the 21st Century should be. We have seen how these
questions were discussed in the congress. We also have seen how Che's
example, his action, conduct, honesty, and integrity guided and inspired
many of the revolutions of this congress.

For us, this successful event, whose results surpass the most optimistic
predictions, will be unforgettable. It is true that our people spend hours,
days, and months working in socialism to overcome obstacles, and battling
for the development of the economy under difficult conditions, against an
aggressive imperialism, with many limitations in all fields. In this
battle, in this gigantic struggle, in this effort that is increasing daily,
and in this work, it would seem that our people would not have been
interested in the congress. However, in reality this is not so. In reality
our people have acquired an extraordinary sensitivity and discipline that
you have had an opportunity to see in some of the rallies, as well as the
speed and agility of our masses in overcoming any problem, the quality of
political awareness of our people, the revolutionary and internationalist
spirit they have developed, and the feeling of solidarity that has been
born of the struggle and been nurtured by and has received the support of
everyone. In each event, whether it be a tricontinental conference, a
conference of Latin American revolutionary organizations, or an event like
this one, our people have been expanding their understanding, knowledge,
and revolutionary horizons.

And as for us, we say that it has been a great honor to have you among us.
We hope that our people have expressed their warmth, recognition, and
feeling in a thousand different ways. It is a great honor for us to have
shared these days with men and women of renown and prestige, whose
accomplishments and works we appreciate more, perhaps, than you can
imagine. We will always remember this great honor. This is why we close
this congress with the sentiments that express the feelings of friendship,
fraternity, and affection. Thank you all very much. Rest assured that these
efforts of progress in all fields--in the fields of economy, culture,
revolutionary struggle, the construction of a superior society, and the
development of a better man--will never stop; and that our revolution will
not fail the faith and hopes that you may have in it. Fatherland or death,
we shall win! [applause]