Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


Havana Domestic Radio Service in Spanish 0115 GMT 7 Jun 71 F/C

[Speech by Cuban Prime Minister Maj Fidel Castro Ruz at the ceremonies
marking the 10th anniversary of the founding of the Interior Ministry from
Havana's Central Organization of Cuban Workers building--live]

[Text] Male and Female Combatants of the Interior Ministry: The great
amount of important tasks which constitute the work of the Interior
Ministry is considerable, and it is not easy to sum them up in just a few
words. We want to first point out that the Interior Ministry comrades
continuously, day after day, hour after hour, minute after minute wage an
unending struggle. They have been waging it for the past 10 years. They
even waged it years before that when what was to be the forerunner of the
Interior Ministry was established. This has been an unending struggle
against a truceless enemy who will not quit, be it in the area of practical
activities as well as in ideological activities. This is imperialism. It is
the counterrevolution.

But the Interior Ministry comrades not only have that task which has taken
the main part of their energies during the first years of the revolution,
they also have other important tasks such as struggling against crime and
antisocial activities. That is also a truceless and unending task. They
also render many other additional services as outlined tonight, services
such as security, fire fighting, traffic, and many others. That is why I
stated that the ministry's duties are broad and are typified by their
characteristics of being unending tasks in the past, present and future.

The struggle against the counterrevolution or in the face of the
counterrevolution-- this way in order not to sound repetitious, that is two
times against--is a struggle that will last a long time, and the struggle
against crime and antisocial activities will also last many years. I
believe that all of us hope that this struggle will end someday. I believe
that all of us hope that someday there will not be any counterrevolution.
We also hope that someday there will not be any type of crime. In any case
we would fail as revolutionaries if we did not agree that the disappearance
of classes of course is among society's objectives, thus the end of all
struggles between classes. Also among the objectives of our socialist and
communist cause is the disappearance and elimination of all crime.

Of course we should not mistake the wishes and final desires of a social
objective for realities. Nobody can predict when this struggle will end.
Imperialism exists, and it is still strong. Imperialism encourages the
counterrevolutionary struggle. It encourages the exploiters of the old
days. It tries to plant, spread, and support the prevalence of views which
for a long time served as an ideological foundation for that exploiting
class. Thus, it will be a very long struggle. It is the same thing with the
other activities of the ministry.

That is why I would like to say that not only has it been necessary to
struggle over a period of many years but that we will have to struggle for
many years to come. Of course there are some activities left. Nobody has
ever said that we will be able to eliminate all fires. It looks like this
belongs in the field of physics and chemistry, not entirely a social

It even seems that it will be very hard to finally root out traffic
accidents. At any rate, the Interior Ministry comrades should not feel
discouraged to think that in the end the Interior Ministry will have the
sole duty of fighting traffic accidents and firs. Not at all! With the
realities of the social process, newer and newer duties will develop if we
just let our imagination roam for a while on the road to the future.

But I say saying that you have so many, many different activities that they
run from the political field to the fields of physics and chemistry, and,
as I was saying, the fight has been without quarter. It is fitting for me
to speak today about the Interior Ministry veterans. It is proper for me to
present awards to several comrades--today thousands of comrades [as
heard]--marking 10 years of unblemished service to the revolution in the
Interior Ministry because the duties they perform are a daily never-ending

I want to add something that is the hallmark of the Interior Ministry
trooper in our society. It is a hallmark that radically differentiates him
from the public order agent and police of the past. In the past, such
activities stemmed from a given social situation in which by "order" was
meant the order of the exploiters, the laws of the exploiters, the
interests of the exploiters, and in which activities of all types were tied
to the repression of the people. The people looked down on policemen, on
public order agents. Actually, they looked at them with fear and contempt.
There was an absolute lack of identity between the functions of one and the
interests of the other and this brought about an insoluble contradiction.

The populace, instinctively, I may go so far as to say, often cooperated
with outlaws, failing to consider whether they were engaging in common
criminal or political activities. The functions of the public order agents
had to be carried out by means of violent methods, by means of torture, by
volunteer informers, or by paid informers.

With the triumph of the revolution, entirely new conditions were created;
the police began to identify with the populace, with the masses; they
identified politically and socially. They also identified in the fight
against the imperialist enemy, the enemies of the revolution--ideologically
and practically speaking--against the enemies of common law, the enemies of
public order, the enemies of laws for any type of reason.

This identity of interests took place in every respect. Of course, the
state ceased being subordinate to the power of an armed force. The state
being an expression of an exploiting class. The state becomes an expression
of the interests of the exploited classes. It is not just the expression of
such interests nor is its strength any longer that of a specialized group,
of an armed professional minority. It is rather the strength--from that
moment on--of the populace itself, the strength of the masses themselves,
which, in this case, have now assumed power and make up the majority in
addition to possessing the arms.

When the militia was organized, when the Committees for the defense of the
Revolution were organized, when the students were organized, when the
workers were organized, when the masses were organized, they were organized
to do battle. They were organized as part of the process, as the marrow of
the process, as the essential strength of the process.

Then the phenomenon took place that is so hard for the
counterrevolutionaries to understand; that is so hard for the reactionaries
to understand--wherein lies the power of the revolution? Wherein lies the
overwhelming strength of the revolution? It lies precisely in that absolute
identity between the organs of revolutionary power and the revolutionary
masses. That is from where the strength and the solidity of our socialist
state is derived. From it is derived its strength, its capacity for action
in the face of the enemy; from it is derived, practically speaking, its

A while ago, I was looking at pictures of the many activities of the past
10 years. It is well to realize that in spite of all the equipment, all the
economic and material resources of our enemies, no matter how often and in
what way the counterrevolution has tried to rear its head, it has been
crushed. We should be aware of the fact that in the first few years our
troopers did not have the experience they have now, our troopers did not
have the equipment they have today, they did not have the organization they
have today.

During the first years our mass organizations did not possess the
experience they now have. Nevertheless, ever since the beginning of this
[revolutionary] process, the counterrevolution has been defeated in every
battle. A true mass struggle has taken place in our country, because the
exploiters' interests were radially and seriously affected in our country.
Our enemies were fighting against the revolution resolutely and with great
hatred. They were determinedly supported by Yankee imperialism with all its
means, all its resources, and all of its ideology.

There are numerous instances of that type of struggle. It began from the
very beginning, almost since 1959. They began their activities with
sabotage, and setting on fire commercial centers, industries, and
warehouses. We can recall very well that it began with the blowing up of
the freighter La Coubre, which was one of the activities of the CIA, as you
all know. After that, thousands of freighters loaded with all types of arms
have been unloaded and none of them have blown up. Nevertheless, after the
third or fourth vessel loaded with arms had arrived in our country, the
freighter La Coubre, bound from a capitalist country's port, blew up here
killing scores of workers and rebel soldiers.

Undoubtedly it was a well-handled sabotage from the outside. It is possible
that someday it will be know, the manner in which that brutal sabotage was
carried out, just as many other things have become known. There were all
types of sabotage against the economy. There were terrorist attempts such
as bomb blasts. You will recall how the Committees for the Defense of the
Revolution were created precisely immediately after the explosion of three
homemade bombs over a period of 20 minutes. There were all types of
plotting and the development of all types of spy networks against our
defense and our economy with the collaboration, of course, of those who
shared their ideology and who holds posts in the state. It was virtually
the same state we inherited from the capitalist system with all of its

It was followed by revolts which were mainly staged, but not the only ones,
in the area of the Escambray Mountains. They continued their subversive
activities and revolts in Pinar del Rio, in Oriente, in Camaguey, and even
in Matanzas and Havana Provinces. They were able to organize groups of
counterrevolutionaries. During a certain period of time, they were
operating almost all over the island. The sizes of the groups were not
small. They were able to operate with more than 1,000 bandits in the

You will recall how every night there were arrivals of aircraft loaded with
arms which were parachuted down. You will recall how they attempted to land
on our coasts the most modern explosives and all types of arms to support
the revolts. They were burying and landing arms everyday in our country
during those years. Along with this, there were many plots, attempts on the
lives of persons.

These were occurring constantly. There were attempts on the lives of
leaders of the revolution, plots, plans-- in other words, there were so
many that it is impossible to believe that the revolution's leaders were
able to survive all of them.

I would say that this was possible due to the strenuous, intelligent,
courageous, and ingenious work of the MININT combatants. [applause] In one
way or another the MININT comrades protected the lies of the revolution's
leaders and actually, in that field, they did not suffer a single defeat
even though, I repeat it all happened during the period of training,
because the guerrillas had no experience in these matters. The guerrillas
did not know anything about security, intelligence, and
counterintelligence. This art was developed in the midst of the struggle,
but we must report that it has operated with excellent efficiency.

In the beginning the struggles against the Escambray bandits and the gangs
of mercenaries were developed on a frontal basis that was aggressive on the
part of the revolutionaries, but it was also a new phase. The guerrillas
knew their jobs and tasks as combatants. They fought an aggressive war. It
can be said that an essential characteristic of our rebel army was that it
never quit and never stopped fighting. In other words, it was always
watching for the opportunity to attack the enemy, to inflict casualties on
them, to seize arms from them, and to pursue them. This was an essential
characteristic of our guerrillas- the aggressiveness demonstrated
throughout the war in hundreds of battles, small battles, big battles, and
bigger battles that took place as our forces developed. The mercenary
forces were imbued with a wait-and-see attitude. They were imbued with a
self-preservation mentality, not an attack attitude, not one of carrying
out a war with the aim of destroying our forces, but one basically of
always waiting for the moment when an invasion would take place where U.S.
participation would settle the issue.

Hence their mentality was one of committing villainies, of committing the
murder of honest peasants; of teachers, students, literacy teachers. We all
remember with great anger that sad day when the news came of the murder of
Manuel Ascunce who had been stabbed to death. Murdered with him was a
peasant who left a family behind in the Escambray Mountains. Months before
they had murdered Conrado Benitez. Dozens of crimes of this type took

The basic objective was to sow terror, to kill, assassinate; not to fight.
Thus they even developed techniques, possible they received training in
eluding capture and survival and since such techniques were well-developed
and efficient to some degree, at a certain time they became moles, they
burrowed tunnels, holes. They were able to go anywhere, in the most
unlikely paces, the most incredible places, always avoiding combat.

Of course, when they were encircled they had to go into combat, especially
when they knew that the weight of the law would fall enerringly on them.
The fact is that the revolution never relented--and it was right in so
doing--against the mercenary forces.

We never invited them to surrender. We never made them any offers if they
laid down their arms. No, we knew that this evil had deep roots, we knew
that at its roots was nothing less than the Yankee empire. These roots ran
very deep. We had to root out that well-nurtured outcropping of
counterrevolution, no matter how much trouble it gave us.

There was also the fact that the revolution had established this
truth--what truth had the revolution established? That the people could
fight. That the revolutionaries could fight against professional armies.
The revolution flatly belied that fascist apothegm so much in the vogue
then that a revolution could be made with our without the army, but never
against the army. Yet our revolution was made against that professional
army, that army that was at the service of the exploiters.

Our revolution grew from a small nucleus, a practically insignificant force
in numbers and weapons. It grew progressively, then demolished and
shattered that apothegm. It established the fact that you could indeed
fight a professional army at the service of the exploiters. It established
that you could indeed fight such an army if your flag was that of the
people's cause, when the interests of the masses were being espoused, when
you were fighting for the masses and against the exploiters.

But that historical deed, that clear demonstration that revolutionaries
could fight against such an army, established a truth, but it also had a
counterpart--the belief held by the counterrevolutionaries and the
imperialists that you could fight against a people's army, against a
revolutionary army.

Thus they pitched in enthusiastically in the task of organizing not just a
small nucleus, but to try to organize hundreds of units, or arming
thousands of men, and they though that they were going to be invulnerable.
And I repeat that although they developed techniques that were quite
advanced, that although they were imbued with a survival and evasive
attitude, still they were defeated, they were liquidated, and the
revolution had to establish the second truth--it had established the first
one that the people, the revolutionaries, could make revolution against an
army--which was that you cannot wage guerrilla warfare and that you cannot
wage counterrevolution! In other words, you cannot carry out a victorious
armed struggle against a people's army, against the people.

That struggle cost hundreds of millions of pesos. It also cost hundreds of
lives. It also cost more lies than the battle of Giron because day after
day, month after month, year after year, the struggle went on. Sometimes
our forces were cut down to small nuclei, and then they again tried to
begin to grow again.

In that struggle against the enemies, the troopers of the Interior Ministry
played a decisive role. In order to exterminate the very last group and to
capture the very last bandit, it was necessary for the Interior Ministry
comrades to do an effective job. They did their work conscientiously.

The anecdotes and accounts of the extraordinary heroes are well-known! Many
of them gave their lives, many of these troopers even served anonymously
for years--unnamed heroes. Their real identity could not be divulged. They
played a doubly-heroic part of giving their lives for the revolution and
doing so without the people even knowing that the one who was dying there
was not a mercenary but a revolutionary. [applause]

We cannot find examples of greater self-sacrifices. It is hard to find more
relevant merit. We remember the struggle against the tyranny. We remember
how the revolutionaries fought and died but each time revolutionaries fell
they bequeathed the flag to their comrades, their family, and to all the
people. Always admired for their conduct were the undercover troopers who
gave their lives. But now, not even that. Now they were running risks and
they were serious risks at that. They were going to their deaths but they
did not even have the other that their role was not know to public opinion
or to the people.

I think that this is the measure of the true revolutionary; The one who
fights for a cause, the one who struggles so unselfishly that he is not
even concerned with fame and honor when fulfilling his duties. Many
comrades here worked, fought, sacrificed themselves, and made possible the
capture of every gang, that is, the capture of every bandit. The day and
time of day when the last bandit was captured is a matter of record.

Some of these combatants have excellent records of capturing several groups
of bandits without firing a single shot. Logically the secret was well
guarded for several years because it involved operational techniques which
had to be kept in reserve. Now the possibility for renewed gang activity is
very remote. When the peasant militia were organized in the country later
on, it became virtually impossible for a counterrevolutionary ant to move
about in our fields and mountains. It has been virtually proven that it is
impossible to escape from this organized mass-- our peasant militia. When
there have been infiltration attempts in successive years, such as the one
at Baracoa and others, our army units and the MININT units together with
the peasant militias have taken care of the adventurers quickly, those who
believed for a moment in the remote possibility of harming the
unconquerable resistance of our people against those activities.

We all have observed many examples, even during televised appearances and
in other ways, which reported the stories [of the counterrevolutionaries],
what they thought it would be like, what they believe in, and what happened
to them. Of course, lately there have been no more televised programs.
Lately they have had to pay for their crimes right at the place of capture
without alternatives. The only appearances that take place are in front of
revolutionary courts. [applause]

The identity existing between the authorities--our Revolutionary Armed
Forces and the MININT--and the people formed in mass organizations creates
this indestructible force. It creates this unconquerable force. That is
where the revolution's power originates. This is the reason for the
revolution's victories. Counterrevolutionary activities obviously have
continued in one way or another, and they will continue to exist. They are
defeated one way and then they develop other ways for the struggle, and, of
course, in coming up with new ways, they do it more conscientiously and
ingeniously. Every time that they an carry out some type of sabotage, they
do it; everytime that they can burn something, they burn it; everytime that
they can supply the enemy with some type of information, they supply it.
How many spies did the enemy have? Hundreds of them. Just as the revolution
had its allies, just as the revolution can count on the exploited classes
as its allies, imperialism can count on the exploiting classes as its

The revolution had its allies in the ranks of the exploiters, it had its
informers, and do not kid yourself, a true revolution is a profound
struggle of classes. Struggles of all classes are governed by a set of
rules--historical rules. The behavior of each social class is governed by a
set of rules. There are exceptions, but they are limited to individual
cases. The exceptions are individual. For example, men from a bourgeois
class could support the revolution's cause, just as there are cases of men
from the ranks of the exploited classes who could sell out to the
exploiters, and could take the arms of the exploiters. But, of course,
imperialism has had the collaboration [of these men] over the past five

Imperialism took with them many of its allies. For a while it followed an
open- door policy for propaganda purposes and certain real objectives. But
everything has a negative and a positive side.

They took with them many allies who went across the ocean and are there now
doing as they please, at least some of them. they could depend on having
spies at all places, informers at all places. These are not fancies. If
anything was moved and a worm saw it, he did not waste any time in trying
to report that he had seen something that was being moved on one of the
roads. If he would see a truck loaded with tree trunks, be it pines,
mahogany, or cedars, with a tarpaulin over them, he would not waste any
time in writing one way or another reporting that he had seen a truck
loaded with strategic missiles, and so on, and so forth. [applause]

Thus, everytime anything was moved, the imperialists could count on the
logical, natural, and spontaneous collaboration of the counterrevolutionary
worms. They have, of course, waged a fight to the death, and they have
behaved well. They have understood this historical battle and have tried to
find ways to harm the revolution, what kind of information they can supply,
and what they an do about it all. This is the way it happened. We have
stated that this revolution involved a tough struggle, a class struggle, a
deep struggle. It was not fun.

We have not been playing any game; we have been undergoing a dramatic

I was saying that we would continue in one way or another no matter how
subtle or less subtle the activities of the enemy are. In any field, in the
practical field and in the ideological field, they will always be trying to
take advantage of the smallest error, the slightest inattentiveness, the
slightest failure of the revolution in order to turn it into a weapon
against the revolution. They will always be vigilant, they will always be

The same holds true for the ideological field. They have not abandoned this
trench and they will not abandon it either. They use every means. In this
national and international struggle, imperialism uses every means. They use
all weapons in the battle of ideology. Of course, we all remember how at
the outset of the revolution, the counterrevolution openly adopted
bourgeois ideological forms. They simply fought against socialism. They
fought against communism from anti-socialist positions, from anti-communist
positions, from liberal positions, from bourgeois positions.

Yet, bourgeois and liberal ideas have been so badly discredited that now
[Castro chuckles] no counterrevolutionary uses the arguments of liberalism,
or the bourgeoisie, to fight the revolution ideologically.

Now it is in vogue to fight the revolution from communist positions, from
socialist positions, from Marxist positions, from leftist positions; no
loner is it the liberal argument. [Castro chuckles] No longer is it the
bourgeois argument. It has been discredited too much. It is too much in
disrepute among the masses. Therefore, the vogue has changed.

For example, internationally it is plain and it is also plain in speaking
nationally, although our masses are politically well-educated, that is to
say, they have made great progress politically. They are alert and, of
course, no vogue of this type can prosper.

But I say so just to point out how mechanisms, methods, and means of
struggle change against the revolution. And, I repeat, the struggle will be
long. But, essentially, I can say, I can assert with absolute certainty,
that in the face of the reactionaries, in the face of the imperialists and
their mercenary agents, our Interior Ministry troopers have rendered a
formidable service. They have worked with eloquent and admirable
efficiency. They have defeated the enemy on every front, they have dealt
the enemy countless defeats, and they have written brilliant pages in every

They have written brilliant pages in the struggle, in combat, in the risks
to their lives that they have faced, and they have written brilliant pages
in wits, in self-sacrificing work, in technical work; in other words, in
victories of valor, in victories of the wits.

The merit of these victories lies in the fact, as is known, that our
troopers are faithful to the best traditions of the Sierra Maestra troops,
and they always uphold these ethical principles, these revolutionary

Never, never, in a single case have our troopers resorted to physical
violence; never have our revolutionary troopers resorted to torture.
Possibly no army has been more lenient, no army has been more circumspect
than our rebel army in the treatment of prisoners, in interrogations, and
there has never been a single exception in compliance with this principle.

This tradition was inherited by our revolutionary troopers, our troopers of
the Interior Ministry, that honorable and noble tradition of never
resorting to physical violence of never resorting to torture. And we can
loudly proclaim it thus: That the victories against the enemy have been
victories of wits, victories of political capability, victories of moral
capability of our troopers. Right has always been on their side. Valor has
always been on their side. Mortality has always been on their side. Because
right and morality have always been on their side, our troopers have scored
sensational successes. They have dealt with persons who never showed any
morality toward them, who never had any solid spiritual encouragement on
their side, who virtually caved in before the evidence, before the
arguments, and before the truth brought to light against them.

Thus, on a day like today, I wish to voice my repudiation and my anger here
against the group of miserable persons who would have people believe
throughout the world that a self-critical statement by a writer with
counterrevolutionary positions could have been the result of physical

The revolution has been the target of many slanderous imputations. The
imperialist enemy has made them. But there are realities so clear, so
universally know, that we consider that one of the most contemptible
actions, one of the most despicable lies that have been uttered against the
revolution is the allegation that at least one of this country's citizens
has been the victim of physical tortures.

The history of this revolution should have some sort of value. The
tradition of our rebel army should have some sort of value. The honorable,
exemplary, and uncensurable conduct with which our combatants have waged
this fight must have some sort of value. It has been brutal, yes, but it
has been brutal on account of the enemy. [applause] It has been a brutal
fight in which the imperialist enemy has used all the types of arms that
have ever been or will be used against the revolution. Not long ago
information supplied by CIA agents was published in which they stated that
they had organized attempts against my life at the orders of the U.S.
Government. These are practically official statements, officially
acknowledged, that it was their arms and ammunition.

A few minutes ago we recalled how Ascunce was stabbed to death and later
hanged. We recalled the explosion on the freighter La Coubre. How many
things can the revolution recall about arms used against us by the enemy?
Nevertheless, the revolution was loyal to its rules, to its ethic.
Specifically, intelligence work was not developed among our combatants to
the same degree that they used the easy method of making somebody talk or
else. This would never have simplified the development of revolutionary and
capable combatants.

To the same degree that they govern themselves by an ethic, to the same
degree that they follow exemplary rules, the capability, intelligence, and
competence of our combatants have been developed, and with it they have
dealt the enemy many defeats and many more will be dealt in the future.

That is why this revolution will never forgive the wretched persons who
have insinuated that our revolution could use such procedures involving
physical tortures in order to attain any objective.

We believe that it is just that on a day such as today we should say this
clearly because such vileness has hurt us since we are revolutionaries.
Nobody of course should mistake an action in accordance with ethical
practices, an action in accordance with revolutionary norms for any kind of
weakness. The revolution acts in accordance with ethical practices but does
not admit any type of weakness. The revolution has had, has and will always
have the courage to face up to its responsibilities. [applause] The
revolution has never murdered anyone, and will never use any such methods.
Such hypocrisy can never be the hallmark of a revolution--the methods used
by exploiting societies in which its laws appear to be benign, very good.
The death penalty did not even exist, yet the youths were found murdered by
the dozens in the fields, on the roads, in remote suburbs. We can recall
those dastardly actions.

The revolution has real laws. It is not hypocritical about its actions, and
bravely announces its adopted measures and responsibilities. There are
courts and they are the ones that try and sentence. When it becomes
necessary, they hand out the harshest sentences, but without hypocrisy or
lies, without cowardice. [applause]

So we can see that the front of the anti-imperialist struggle, the struggle
against the political enemies of the revolution, is solid and strong. They
will always be on guard and vigilant, aware that they can never rest, aware
that the struggle against the counterrevolution will be long, of many years

We also have other duties in the Interior Ministry: The other activities to
which we referred, the other services rendered by the ministry to the
country, such s the fight against vices, crimes, general delinquency,
violations of laws, traffic violations. We also have the fight for the
protection of socialist property, of citizens' rights, of citizens' peace
and quiet, for the security of our citizens. This is another area in which
the ministry develops its activities, and where we have a long way to go.

During the first years the ministry was mainly concerned with matters and
activities of a counterrevolutionary nature. This absorbed most of its
efforts. This does not mean that other activities have been neglected, but
there is no doubt that counterrevolutionary activities were of the greatest
concern, and thus were accorded the greatest attention. In coming years,
together with the fight against counterrevolution, the fight against common
crime, the fight against antisocial activities will be given a prominent
spot, a spot just as important, a spot just a decisive.

There are a number of activities which virtually belong to the past. Let us
say, that for example, gambling was once a legal activity in which
corrupted officials shared in our country. There was legal and illegal
gambling, there were laws permitting gambling, there was illegal gambling
permitted by the tolerance of those who, theoretically, were called on to
enforce the law.

In our country, just as in all capitalist societies, prostitution was a
venerable institution. It was inseparable from a society of exploiters.
Prostitution was also legalized or tolerated. Today this institution is
neither legalized nor tolerated and it could be said that it has been
virtually rooted out from our country.

Drug traffic was also a very common activity. Narcotics used to be imported
and produced locally. I do not mean to say that it has been completely
uprooted and that there are not some individual cases of prostitution,
pimping, gambling, and drug trafficking on a minor scale. In other words,
there may be spotty, isolated cases of these problems but as institutions
go, they have been rooted out.

We must, however, be vigilant and we must not think that because the policy
of the revolution in this field is most just, that the revolution's policy
is most human, either because of the mere reasons of morality or because
there is no tolerance nor legal basis for any of such activities, that this
in itself will make them wholly disappear. Unfortunately, we still have
some of these shameful activities in one form or another.

A number of criminal activities exist and will continue for many years.
They are old criminal activities--homicide, murder, rape, in other words
crimes against persons. Crimes against property exist and will continue for
a long time. In this case, it is the property of workers, the property of
all the people, because today crime against property is against the
property of persons who work and sweat their shirts or against the property
of all the people. Crimes of this kind exist and will continue.

Some acts were not crimes under capitalism, for example, laziness, since
the exploiting class was by definition an expression of social laziness.
However, in our society, it is an antisocial and criminal condition which
goes against the interests of the masses. These are new types of crimes.

Unfortunately, we still have juvenile delinquency. These are crimes
committed by minors. There are still some legal concepts that belong to
other areas and times on the subject of the definition of crimes that are
not relevant to today's realities.

Some laws are more than a century old. They were relevant to other
societies, other worlds. There are processes that are adapted to other
circumstances and there is also a conglomeration of jurisdictions and
procedures, of diverse laws addressing all these questions.

In our country it is time to review all the compendium of laws that address
all these questions of common crime and antisocial activities as well as
all the procedural investigative and judicial processes for such

For many months work has been under way by certain commissions to write
such laws. Of course, they have not been fully written yet. It takes time.
Perhaps one of the most difficult things in any society is to legislate.

We hear of the Napoleonic code, the Napoleonic civil law. Rome is still
renowned for its old laws. It is said that they are the expressions of the
wisdom of that society. Of course, that was a class society. A society of
slaves and slavers--a class society. Such laws regulated relations in that
class society.

Throughout history, the juridical expressions of societies have always been
considered as one of their most difficult and complex creations. Therefore,
no one should try to legislate easily on such complex matters. A code of
laws is not made overnight. It takes days, months, and years of work.

There is no question, however, that a compendium of new laws should be
prepared. The legal process should be uniform. The jurisdictions should be
unified. It is a task that belongs to the revolution in this field and at
this moment.

There are crimes and activities that are not defined as crimes. There are
crimes for which there is insufficient punishment. There are things today
which are most seriously taken because of the interests affected. There are
some things that irritate the people, such as crime against property,
pilferages, thefts from persons or dwellings. These crimes directly affect
the people's interests. That is why in our society there is no identity
with the criminal. It is exactly the opposite in our society, the identity
is with the authorities, the identity is with the police force.

If there is any complaint among the citizenry, it is not as it was
before--the policeman taking advantage of his uniform, the corrupted
policeman, the policeman who took bribes, the policeman who could be paid
off, the policeman who accepted money from gamblers, the policeman who
accepted cash in the red-light district and later shared it with his
immediate superiors. That was an immoral, commercial, and corrupt society
which knew all these problems. Our police force is the complete opposite of
that mentioned, at the opposite end of the pole. Our policeman is
respectful, prudent, and honest. The citizenry observes this attitude and
fully identifies with it.

We have noticed that the citizenry has complained because they believe that
the policeman should be most drastic, harsher. Nowadays the citizenry is
irritated when a lumpen or criminal does not respect the policeman, when he
insults the policeman, when he "courageously" tries to attack the
policeman. It is not the same policeman who used to beat up, take advantage
of his uniform. No, he does not do these things. What do the workers and
their relatives expect from the police force? They expect the police force
to look after their interests, their properties, their families, and their
children against all threats that might endanger them.

Our citizenry's attitude is firm, is hard, is demanding. It demands the
most aggressive actions against criminal activities and antisocial
behavior. [applause]

What is accomplished today by insulting a policeman? What happens when an
insolent criminal insults a policeman? The result is the anger and rebuff
of the citizenry. What is accomplished today by raising the tone of the
voice? Insulting? Who is being insulted? Is the corrupted official being
insulted? No, we can say that there might be in other countries policeman
as honest as ours, but nowhere are there more honest personnel than the
ones in our public order force. [applause] They are modest, humble, and
honest. They are politically aware of their duties and their work. They are
totally identified with the people. They are the type of public order
officials which our revolution was seeking. It is the type of policeman
which our revolution will always have.

We are proud of being able to make this statement. We are proud of making
this announcement. We are proud that our revolution has developed this type
of combatant, this type of worker, this type of people's servant. Thus, we
have the basic human elements and the best basic social elements in order
to fulfill this very important service, which is the protection of the
Cuban workers and their relatives from inconveniences, harm, annoyances,
and results of crime and antisocial activities-- sometimes most damaging.
This of course involves, as we stated before, legal work, exhausting legal

We stated that this work is going to take much more time, but sometime in
the upcoming months some legal measures must be adopted and in that manner
we will not have to wait for the laws on each subject to be completed. In
this manner we will have the judicial elements necessary to cope with those
red-hot problems, those matters that are more urgent.

Thus, we must accomplish a task of legal nature, and we have reached an
agreement by which we will do this legal work in order to be able to have
the means and tools to energetically cope with and to energetically combat
all those activities which irritate our people. This legal work will cover
some temporary measures until such time as the more complete laws are

It is also necessary to define the jurisdictions. We must determine and
make the necessary rules for the crimes in order to know which court is
competent in each case. It is necessary to carry out a broad, educational
and informative drive in order to attain the greatest efficiency in the
fight against crime. There is, of course, a revolutionary rule which is
basic. Fighting crime in our society is not the exclusive task of the
public order officials. The fight against crime is primarily a task of all
people and a battle in which all people must participate. [applause]

Would it have been possible to win the battle against counterrevolutionary
activities if this would have been the exclusive battle of our security
officials? No, it would have never been possible to win that battle. The
battle against the counterrevolution is the battle of all people, and with
the people's participation and support it has been possible to beat the

The battle against criminal and antisocial activities should be the battle
of all the people. That is why it is necessary to stress this matter. It is
necessary to become aware of this problem. That is why we stated that
during phase [of the revolutionary process] the other battle drew the most
attention from everybody--the revolutionary leadership and the people. But
it is necessary that we understand that this other battle must also draw
the attention of the revolutionary leadership and the people in general.
The fight against crime is an educational battle, and the battle against
crime of course is an extended one and will have to be mainly a battle of
professors and teachers. It is a battle of the schools. It is a battle of
mass organizations, which must educate. It is a battle of the party which
will have to educate. It is a battle of the Education Ministry which will
have to educate.

We can still observe many of our problems in many of the juvenile
delinquent cases. We can see our poverty in many of them, we can see the
lack of raw materials in many cases, we can see many of our social
problems, housing problems. We can see the lack of schools in many
instances, that is, adequate schools, schools with material need such as
sports fields, laboratories, where a total education can be developed. We
can see many problems such as single sessions, in other words, schools
which are attending half a day--places where students go to school in the
morning and not in the afternoon, or the other way around, and during the
free time nobody looks after them.

There are problems of a material nature. Our deficiencies are our lack of
resources, our lack of cadres, our lack of sufficient buildings. Our
material poverty is reflected here. It is impossible to change the material
poverty overnight. The housing problem has a lot to do with it. The
promiscuity in which many families live has a lot to do with it.

We must be conscious that this economic development of the nation will be
an important factor in the disappearance of many of the conditions which
are adverse to education-- conditions which corrupt today, which facilitate
and stimulate criminal activities today. That is why, as we manage to
control these conditions and the way in which education advances and
progresses, we will win the strategic battle against criminal and
antisocial activities in the long run.

Today the people must participate by being well-informed, by having a
militant conscience against these actions. The people must participate in
this battle in order to prevent and suppress criminal activities.

Even when we know that formidable factors exist today which promote or
facilitate the development of criminal activities, this should not mean
that we must remain with our arms crossed. We cannot adopt the
philosophical attitude of crossing our arms. Criminal activities exist and
we must do out utmost to prevent them; and if they occur we must also do
our utmost to suppress them. That is to say, there is no other remedy other
than to have a basic concept of the defense of society.

We also have an additional complex and arduous task: The task of the
reeducation of the criminal, the rehabilitation of the criminal. Naturally,
efforts have been made in this area, but they have not yielded the desired
result. It must be said that worthy efforts have been made, efforts that
have been positive and necessary. However, they have been conditioned by
the lack of experience in this field, the lack of material resources, the
lack of adequate facilities, the lack of precise or more developed
concepts, especially in the matter of the reeducation and rehabilitation

It will be necessary to define all these problems in order to prevent
reeducation from being accomplished in a haphazard manner, thus giving rise
to more criminal acts. We must work to prevent reeducation from being
converted into a form of impunity. Rehabilitation must be genuine--a
reeducation and adaptation for the individual so that he can live in
conformity with the interests of society. Therefore, the revolution must
prevent and repress, and in addition it must reeducate.

These three tasks are the tasks of the people. Public order officials must
become a corps which is better trained to confront them--one which is more
specialized, one which will be the executive arm of the people. Actually,
it must become the instrument of the people who must carry out this battle.
These concepts are very important. All people are irritated by robberies,
the corruption of minors, and violence--in short, all of these types of
actions which greatly affect the people.

However, it is necessary that all people--all workers, all farmers, and all
mass organizations--understand their unquestionable duty to participate
directly in this battle for reeducation, rehabilitation, and suppression of
criminal activities. They must remember that the battle for reeducation is
as important as the battle for rehabilitation.

Furthermore, it must not be forgotten that it does not depend entirely on
the efficiency of public order officials. It also depends on other
factors,such as the preparation of cadres, competition, the technical
advances which are made, the supplementary methods which are used in the
investigation of criminal activities, the specialists, laboratories, and
the various types of resources. Unfortunately, our nation does not have an
economic or material base which will allow it to equip our police and all
of our public order organizations with all of the most modern techniques

We suffer from deficiencies and a lack of resources, which is occasionally
evident in our transportation. For years our patrol cars have suffered
because of a shortage of resources. We have been utilizing cars which are
10, 12, or 15 years old. It is frequently very difficult to obtain spare
parts or even provide efficient service. The nation has made efforts--and
will continue to do so--to provide the ministry with all material resources
which are indispensable for it. The ministry will be provided with
transportation, patrol cars, laboratories, personnel, and in short all the
resources needed to develop and raise the qualifications of our police and
our cadres.

In the past, the capitalists defended themselves against criminal
activities, which worried them a great deal, such as assassinations, by
spreading myths regarding the efficiency of the police, the superefficiency
of the police. This was done so that no one would optimistically assume
that an assassination would have impunity, that assassins would not be
found. Also, the capitalists praised certain investigative methods and
certain techniques.

We must not develop any myths. We have to develop the genuine efficiency of
our technical and investigative methods. We must begin to acquire the
necessary knowledge so that in the investigation of any crime,
assassination, or criminal activity we will have the maximum potential for
discovering the perpetrators and be able to provide unfailingly the
necessary proof. It is our duty to develop the capabilities of our police
and to prepare qualified personnel in the techniques of criminology. We
must begin to acquire the most modern techniques and employ science and
technical skill in the battle against criminal activities--not only in the
investigation but also in the prevention of crime. We must develop thorough
techniques in analyzing developments within a particular kind of activity.
We must conduct social research. We must resort to every scientific and
technical resource within our ability in order to raise the efficiency of
those who are combating crime.

During a recent meeting at the Interior Ministry, several aspects of
controls were studied. These included laboratories and methods. The meeting
sought to give the people a complete report so that they would aid and
cooperate when an incident occurs-- a report on what they should do, what
they should not do, what should be handled, what should not be touched.
Indeed, it sought to begin preparing all citizens to cooperate in this
extremely complex struggle--a struggle as varied and diversified as the
criminal activities that occur.

In the last analysis, and as a beginning, we must raise the quality and the
levels of our forces; we must develop technical and scientific methods in
the battle for the prevention and suppression of criminal activities. At
the same time, we must concentrate on the reeducation and rehabilitation of

We are working on this matter because we are the voice of the revolution.
We feel sure that the directorate of the ministry during the next
decade--which begins today--will experience a decade of extraordinary
advances in this field. We have said that we made extraordinary advances in
the political area. Now we must score new achievements in this other field,
because this is one of the tasks, duties, and services which our citizens
expect from our Interior Ministry.

These principles require the participation of the people so that our
objective of developing a highly technical ministry can become a reality.
You are all aware of the effort that the entire nation is making to
rationalize human resources in the economy. You are all aware of the
necessity to develop the economy and to increase rewards of production and
to augment social benefits. You are all aware o the work the nation is
doing to rationalize human resources. This policy is the policy of the
ministry. They are trying to resolve their fundamental problems efficiently
through technology and the support of the masses. We are attempting to make
a qualitative advance in our effort to improve our capability for combat in
this field. It is our desire to have the ministry become one which has
specialized, technical, and better trained personnel. This is of the utmost

This is why we must believe a new phase is opening for the Interior
Ministry during this decade. Some problems are of great concern to our
citizens because of the influence they have on the security of their
families. For example, there is a problem about which there has been a
great deal of talk. There have been a number of reports on this, and the
measures adopted have been proven inefficient. This is the problem of
transportation. There is a maze of statistics and myriad questions that
could be discussed here today; I really have selected only a minimum. I
have some data regarding this matter of transportation in order to show our
citizens that this campaign is being carried out, that this struggle is not
a special form of public order mania, that this is not a matter of slight

It is important that the people know that there is a reason for this
activity, that if these measures had not been taken others would have been
necessary, so that all the people become aware of the importance of the
fight against [words indistinct], not only participating in a peaceful
manner, suffering the consequences, but participating actively, cooperating
in this fight and consequence of which [words indistinct].

One can say it in a few words. Examining the period 1963-70 how many
traffic accidents occurred? Do you have any idea? Would it be 50,000,
100,000? In 8 years there have been 209,616 traffic accidents. Total
injured: 145,928, 145,928 injured persons. The total number of deaths in
these accidents: 5,728 persons. [words indistinct] The number of persons
who suffered serious injuries: 31,674. Between 1966 and 1970, in 5 years,
the number of minors injured was 14,381. The number of minors killed was
705. Material damage during the 8 years amounted to 55 million pesos.

A MINSAP [Ministry of Public Health] study in Havana in September 1970 made
in the Havana hospitals showed that the average stay of those injured in
traffic accidents was 18 days. Consider the fact that of those seriously
injured it an be calculated that more than 1,600 died and the others needed
more than 500,000 bed/days of attention for serious injuries. That is, more
than 195 beds in our hospitals permanently occupied by those seriously
injured in traffic accidents, 195 beds.

Well, what are the basic causes of these accidents? We pretend, but we do
not believe, that accidents are practically a [word indistinct] phenomenon.
We will always have traffic accidents, work accidents, but we do have the
duty to struggle to reduce these accidents to a minimum. One must be aware
of the way all activities are being mechanized. One must be aware of how
the movement of vehicles is growing as the country is developing. There
will be more and more machines, more and more vehicles, more and more
transportation, more and more millions of ton/miles to transport, more and
more millions of passengers daily. This is now and not the future. This is
one of the problems of the developed countries--traffic accidents. But
there, of course, the conditions are different. There, there are even
persons who benefit from these accidents: Private medicine, private
hospitals, auto makers, those who earn a living fixing cars, the funeral
homes. Who knows, who knows in capitalism how many people want accidents to

There is absolutely no one here who wants accidents. No one lives off
accidents. No one gets rich from accidents. No one gets rich when a car or
truck is destroyed. No one gets rich when the beds of the hospitals are
full, medicines are used, thousands of hours of doctors' time are expended
on illnesses and injuries. No one gets rich [words indistinct]. There is no
type of commercialism, no business linked to it.

In our socialist, collective society no one benefits. Every citizen is hurt
when an accident occurs. The hurt may be very close, such as the loss of
life of a comrade's loved one or the material damages which occur as a
consequence of accidents. Of these 145,928 injured--more than 30,000
serious--we have not mentioned the number of those who have been mutilated
or partially incapacitated as a consequence of accidents. This affects all
of us. It affects all of the people. This is one of the characteristics of
a society like ours, unlike other types of societies, where such calamities
can benefit the families and an serve as business for many trusts. Our
country is not like this. Everyone understands the duty to struggle against
this phenomenon. It is a basic duty to reduce it to its simplest
expression, it is evident that the number of accidents is not declining.
There is a definite tendency toward an increase. The struggle against
accidents must be measured by the degree to which the basic cause of
accidents tends to decrease. There are parts and mechanical problems. But
what are the basic causes? They are human violations. Man consciously or
irresponsibly violates the traffic laws. Here we have seven basic causes:
1) excessive speed--this is a fault, unfortunately, of many persons in this
country, of many of our revolutionary comrades. I have seen them at
supersonic speeds on the highways like airplanes. Unfortunately we see it
every day--comrades with the responsibility for millions on the highways.
This is the truth. We must be the first to impose on ourselves the most
strict observance of the traffic laws, giving the example, a good example,
of course, and not the bad example which is often given, excessive speed.
2) failure to yield right of way. 3) careless driving. 4) illegal turns. 5)
cutting off another car. 6) following too closely. 7) travelling without

These seven factors, these seven infractions cause 71 percent of the
accidents. So 71 percent of the accidents are caused by these seven types
of strictly human failure. [words indistinct] in the middle of the street,
driving down the highway without lights. Therefore, in this 71 percent of
the accidents it is in our power to considerably reduce this number of
145,000 injured, thousands of deaths.

But we cannot do all we want to in just a few years. We cannot build all
the construction projects in such a way as to help avoid accidents. We have
to put greater effort into these responsibilities so that the level of
accidents can be reduced. We are continuing to develop progressively better
roads, wider ones. We continue to develop more facilities which should
result in a reduction of accidents, but this is not enough.

It is possible that--take epidemics, for example: Polio was a terror, but
polio possibly has not killed so many, many children nor injured so many
children as have accidents. This history of the revolutionary fight against
the annual threat of polio is a great story. There is a similar fight
against gastroenteritis,against malaria, against typhus, against rabies,
against tenanus. But these diseases, all together, kill fewer persons than
are killed in traffic accidents.

I believe that these data, these reliable reports--and there is an
impressive number of them--amount to 209,000 accidents, and our country is
not one that has millions of automobiles. Some 145,928 injured, a really
[word indistint] figure. Naturally there are more accidents in the urban
areas and among the urban centers in the city of Havana.

Statistics reveal that the crime rate in Havana is 50 percent of the total
for the country as a whole. This is characteristic of the large cities.
Almost 50 percent. It is clear, also, that in the city there are many
conditions--sometimes social, as we said before--which are detrimental to
the struggle against crime. There are some zones of the capital in which
the crime rate is five times--for some crimes, six times--what it is in
other areas of the country. Violent crimes increase at festival time. Also
at times the number injured in fights in recreation areas as a result of
drinking is high.

Thus, we looked into the problem of bars and workers' opinions on the
matter. There was general opinion expressed on this kind of dry law and on
recreation centers. This must now be complemented by adequate behavior and
awareness that a place of recreation is not intended for fighting or
showing off. Why should any citizen feel the need to show off at such hours
of the night. Such things belong to the past. It was in the past that a man
suffered inferiority complexes and believed he was insignificant while an
exclusivist authority represented everything. Today is is the people, the
soldier, and the worker who represent authority. Workers today contribute
to the strength of the revolutionary armed forces.

Only a maniac and a no-good can find pleasure in causing disturbances and
fights in recreation areas. Las year, on the occasion of mass festivities,
several cases occurred in which people demonstrated some kind of sectarian
superstition, people with strange ideas who enjoy the sight of blood. If
they want to see blood let them donate some blood and contribute it to the
health campaign. [applause] We must put an end to such incredible primitive
demonstrations. When a man wants to fight let him become a boxer. Let him
practice this as a sport. There are magnificant possibilities for
practicing boxing in our country and it seems unbelievable that a man
should want to do his own kind of fighting on a Saturday night, showing
disrespect to women, provoking incidents, and ignoring the right of other
workers who come to enjoy an evening with friends.

Such acts must be unanimously condemned by our people. It is only when they
are totally repudiated that we can be strong enough to end this kind of act
by elements who make life impossible for all others concerned. There are
many thousands of people who are prevented from enjoying entertainment by
the fear of meeting one of those individuals who may stab and harm them. We
cannot allow such activities constantly and drastically to affect public
peace and the happiness of our citizens. But the struggle against crime is
particularly difficult in the capital. There are kinds of crime that are
practically nonexistent in rural areas.

Unfortunately, there are still other aspects to this problem, the struggle
against crime. Mass organizations and administration departments have to
give their fullest support and, above all, the example in respect for
existing laws and regulations. There is also the problem of fires, which
occur mostly through negligence and disregard for fire prevention
regulations. This does not apply only to those who have responsible posts
and the responsibility to see that regulations are being obeyed. What is
needed to collective awareness. Many traffic accidents occur as a result of
violation of traffic regulations. Many fires occur because of disregard of
fire prevention and these help the counterrevolutionaries who want them to
happen. Crimes against property are often committed by carelessness.

In all this, we need the support and fullest cooperation of administrative
organizations to watch, control, and initiate appropriate measures.

Greater efficiency in the policy of re-education will also help in this
struggle against crime. Plans are being prepared in this matter and we
believe they will prove very beneficial. They will offer true reeducation
through work. They will reorganize the participation of prisoners in
production in a very sensible manner. They will apply necessary measures
involving correct classification and evaluation of prisoners, determining
which of them can work in open state [fase abierta] and which should
participate on closed state [fase cerrada] production. There is a plan for
the construction of better installments. We are working out a plan for
construction to be carried out by open stage prisoners. This plan promises
very fruitful results both for rehabilitation and economic development.
Important industrial installations are involved.

We have elaborated new formulas, ideas, and concepts for participation of
families and the outlook seems very promising. There are also plans for
closed state production. All repeater cases will be given a thorough study
to determine which criminals should not be given any rehabilitation

This study must be carried out in accordance with the law. Laws and
prohibitions must be fulfilled. No law violation must remain unpunished.
Any idea that criminal acts can remain unpunished must disappear.

Adequate establishments for juvenile delinquency are being planned with the
objective of giving better scientific, educational, and psychological
treatment. Treatment for delinquent youth has been determined, taking into
consideration the age at which legal responsibility really begins because
we are not living in the middle ages but in a different world. Studies have
shown that over 50 percent of juvenile delinquents are between 16 and 17
years of age. This has resulted in the fact that serious cases of juvenile
delinquency remain unpunished. The starting age for legal responsibility
will also be revised. Our law on military service calls for 17-year old
youths to enter service. They are considered mature enough to bear arms in
defense of the country. Our old laws consider 17-year old youths legally
responsible. This constitutes a flagrant contradiction. Studies carried out
by the ministry have led to a clear and rational determination of the
youth's responsibility. Juvenile treatment will be much more adequate and
will be carried out in appropriate educational centers. This is a problem
which gives great concern to families, [words indistinct] especially when
confronted by the danger their children may run into, the criminal
activities of workers, and the inconvenience caused by thefts by minors.
You know that the law will provide severe penalties against adults who
teach youths to rob and take advantage of their legal irresponsibility. The
ministry has also a plan for the creation of adequate centers for youths
who commit crimes. It is a modern plan and has a scientific basis. We will
proceed to build these centers as soon as the plans are ready. We hope that
within a relatively short period we will be able to approach the problem of
juvenile delinquency in a correct and adequate manner. Until now youths
were put in an institution and returned there after being released. They
would then be released and sent back to the institution, this only results
in repeated acts of delinquency. It is necessary, therefore, to apply
adequate measures. These are the tasks that will represent a substantial
part of the ministry's activities during the coming years. At study of
techniques, laws, and legislation shows the importance of experts in
juridical matters. These experts used to be called lawyers. The entire
problem of organizations of courts, their systematization, assistance to
popular tribunals, and participation in the court study of crimes
necessitate legal knowledge. In all revolutionary processes there exist
specific classes whose laws become obsolete.

A revolutionary process is characterized during its initial stage by an
iconoclasm in the face of existing obsolete laws. It becomes necessary to
destroy systems, laws and all. But then two truths are to be faced.

The first truth is that capitalist legality must be destroyed. The second
truth is that socialist legality must be established. [applause] We
revolutionaries have two parts to play--destroyers of laws in accordance
with the phase of the revolution, and creators and defenders of laws in the
other phase of the revolution. This is in full agreement with another
law--the dialectical law of history. We must all, therefore, live through
this very dialectical stage of first destroying and later creating. We
inherit from the first phase a certain illegal spirit which underrates laws
and applies this underrating of laws to the revolution itself. Here it an
be plainly seen that the new society needs an intelligent and scientific
order. Here it can be plainly seen that what role the jurists play, as
creators, as advisors, as those who apply laws. It is also evident the part
the people play when they have a wide knowledge of laws. Heretofore laws
did not interest practically anybody unless it applied to them personally.
Today we have the same situation but the laws are of interest to all of us
since they affect all of us.

We must remember that all of these measures are adopted for a reason. For
instance, the traffic laws are for a reason. Many people do not understand
these laws until they are involved in a crash which leaves them invalids.
Many of these have never had an accident. They are the most optimistic and
the most careless while driving. They use the pretext that they have never
had an accident. Really, it is not necessary to crash, it is not necessary
to have a crash. It would be a disgrace if every citizen had to be involved
in a crash in order to understand the traffic laws.

The fire regulations have to be understood. The laws regarding work
accidents have to be understood. Of course, this work is within the realm
of the comrades of the Labor Ministry, which has the mission of seeing that
laws and regulations regarding physical protection of the workers are
observed. However, negligence in traffic, work accidents, and fires cost
the nation many lives, blood, and resources.

Our society, which is free of antagonism, has, as its function, to struggle
against these problems affecting all society. These problems do not affect
a minority or a class. They affect all of society. This is a good
illustration of what socialism is, what communism is, what the people and
the application of laws mean, the people and their weapons, the people and
mass organizations, the people and the organs of power-- things that can
only occur under a socialist and communist system.

In our country--especially where we have attempted to create a new society
in the midst of poverty, were we are trying to crate a new society in the
midst of underdevelopment-- these tasks are not easy because the same
scarcity of resources complicates them, the same lack of basic materials
conflicts with its objectives. Promiscuity, lack of housing, all conspire
against us. Scarcities conspire against the attainment of these objectives.

If we lived in a nation where all industry had been developed, undoubtedly
the pace toward obtaining our objectives would be much easier, we would be
able to count on may more material resources. We must learn to struggle for
these objectives under present conditions, where poverty does not help,
where the lack of material resources does not help. We have to develop our
system, our society, in the midst of the lack of material resources, in the
midst of a difficult scarcity.

This only adds merit to this work. It not only raises it higher but also
gives man, who must play a fundamental part, greater importance. The
scarcity of material resources does not frighten us because economic
development will come. Man is the only one, with his sensitivity, and his
attitude, who can change everything. We sincerely believe, comrades and
lady comrades, that you have before you a very important task, a task that
will be very difficult but which will be very honorable, a project from
which the people expect much. This work has been entrusted to you by the
people, who believe you are the fundamental instruments for preserving
their lives, health, peace and happiness in the daily battle in the two
arenas--the political and social arenas. We sincerely believe that the role
of the director of the Interior Ministry, of the ministry's militant
workers, is one of the most honorable and dignified roles which a
revolutionary may play in this process. It is a stimulating task filled
with honor and confidence. You have before you a wide field which advances,
progresses, develops, and conquers new study techniques.

You have before you the great possibility of rendering our people and
nation one of the most fundamental and appreciated services. The revolution
is sure that you will know how to respond to this confidence. The
revolution is sure that during the next decade you will know how to
gloriously fulfill you duty. Fatherland or death! We will overcome.