Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


Santiago Chile Domestic Service in Spanish 2303 GMT 3 Dec 71 P

[Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro's press conference from the studios of
Chile Films in Santiago--live]

[Text] [Castro] Gentlemen journalists: During our tour of Chile, on
numerous occasions we received requests for interviews and meetings with
journalists which we were not in a position to meet because of the intense
schedule. That is why we decided to hold a large press conference at the
end. We are here to answer your questions. I will answer all those
questions that I have an answer for, or can answer, on which circumstance
permit me to answer. I will try to be explicit as possible. As you know,
this meeting is completely free, perhaps following that model of freedom of
the press that is so often mentioned. I know that there are journalists
here representing various points of view and various newspapers. There are
newsmen who are friends and some who are not friends--those who agree and
those who do not agree. That will be no obstacle for me to try to reply to
each one of you, to every question which you ask, in a frank and open
dialog, without censorship of any kind.

If you will allow me I prefer to stand. I've I get tired I will ask your
permission to sit. The time for this conference is indefinite. I believe
that the curfew could be the limit; however, I believe that you will
probably get tired before then; we are going to get tired and the public
may have gotten tired before that. Let us begin.

[Reporter] [Announcer explains that reporter is a Hungarian journalist In
your speeches you have often repeated that there are many ways or paths to
socialism. (?Could you give us a general picture of [words indistinct]).

[Castro] Well, I do not believe that I said that there are many. In any
case, I have said that there could be more than one path, which is to
proved; and to a certain extent it is being proven and that new variables
would arise. I said this at the University of Concepcion. And the variables
will arise. The first revolution will not be the same as the last one. The
first one (?set in a class), will be the most difficult one and the last
one may possibly be the easiest. Where it will occur, no one can predict.
How it will happen, no one can foretell, in the United States, perhaps.

The paths taken so far have been the classical revolutionary struggle. A
new path is the Chilean way. A variable is the case of Peru. How far it can
go we are not in a position to determine. It is a variable. Naturally, the
Peruvian case is not a constitutional case. It would have to be determined
whether the path was absolutely peaceful or whether the government was
taken by arms; however, it is not, let us say, a classical type of
revolution or revolutionary process, but a different variable. That is why
we said that new variables are arising and that we, far from being
displeased by it, are gladdened by it.

[Reporter] [Question by [Oscar Waiss] of LA NACION, Santiago] Regarding the
subject you were discussing, Major, I would like to ask a question that
concerns large Marxist circles in Latin America. It is not a question of
political routine, but one of a theoretical nature. Do you believe that
with the experience of the last 10 years of revolutionary struggle in
various countries in Latin America that the idea of the revolutionary
(?focus) has been replaced by other forms of struggle, or is that the
theoretical condition that has been maintained by [words indistinct] still

[Castro] It depends on what is understood by the term revolutionary focus.
[words indistinct] corresponds to the system as follows: If we again found
ourselves in Cuba in the year 1948, or better said, 1953, or in 1955, or
1956, under the condition we had then with the experience we have today, we
would have chosen the same path. Perhaps we would have saved a long detour
because, as you know, we began the struggle with the attack on La Moncada
barracks with 160 men, 120 at La Moncada and 40 at another fortress in
Bayamo City. We committed the mistake of dividing the forces. We should
have concentrated the 160 men at the principle point. Also, we arrived in
Cuba with 82 men. We experienced great difficulties.

Today we would not repeat the attack on La Moncada barracks. Today we would
not repeat the landing of the Granma. Today, with those men and that first
action, we would have studied an area of the Sierra Maestra and we would
have been guided by it. We would have attacked a small unit, taken its
weapons and begun the struggle that way. Thus we would have avoided the
long trip. La Moncada and the Granma landing. And it is not that La Moncada
would have been impossible to take. We would have been able to take it.
Analyzed even today in the light of our experiences, we believe that the
takeover of that regiment, which was the second most important unit in the
country, could have produced the victory of the revolution at a much
earlier date; however, it was a much less sure path because it would have
depended upon many imponderables. But I can assure you that by avoiding
that complex and difficult operation which had to be planned in complete
secrecy, and by avoiding the task of secretly planning, under difficult
conditions, an expedition of 82 men, which in the end was reduced to seven
armed men, and faced with the necessity of continuing the struggle with
those seven armed men, it would have been much more logical, much simpler,
and much surer to begin there--to begin precisely at the Sierra Maestra,
without an attack against la Moncada and without the landing of the Granma.

However, for another reason, when we undertook the La Moncada operation it
was almost an attempt to take power quickly by taking over the regiment and
its arms, inciting an uprising in Santiago, Cuba, and calling for a general
strike in the country. If we could not have managed this, we would simply
have marched into the mountains with those arms; however, if we had gained
victory at that moment we would have gained it with a team of very green
men, without sufficient experience. In the final analysis the struggle of
the Sierra Maestra taught us much more about every stage of life. It taught
us to fight; it taught us to solve difficult problems; it developed the
highest virtues of common men during the 25 months of struggle. We believe
that this experience was decisive afterwards.

I wonder what would have happened if we had been victorious in 1953, which
much less experience but also with a much more favorable correlation of
forces. The event (?would have) occurred in such a way that we would have
attained victory almost precisely at the exact minute and second when we
could have encountered a very difficult international situation, difficult
circumstances that would have given us a minimum margin of survival. I want
to say that if we found ourselves in that situation today we would do
exactly the same thing.

If one wants to call that a focus or whatever, the terminology makes no
difference. I do not now if there are other countries, I do not know them
as I know my own, but if there is another country in the same circumstances
I believe that the tactics and strategy and form of struggle that we sued
would be fully valid.

[Reporter] [Identification of reporter indistinct] Major Castro, you said
yesterday that after this visit you are returning to Cuba with greater
revolutionary spirit. May I ask you why?

[Castro] [Words indistinct] Since I said it. It is a sentiment. We believe
that man, as he gains experience during his life, accumulates new
impressions and new motivations. We believe that with the years we have
become more and more revolutionary. After observing the Chilean experience
we also have new motivation to further our vocation, our revolutionary
character. But I say this very frankly, seeing the spectacle of the
struggle between revolutionary and reactionary ideas, between the cause
that represents the future of the humble and exploited masses and the cause
that represents the privileged few; the attempt to maintain
domination-practically the slavery of man. We can see what means, how many
resources, how many lies, how much slander, how much infamy, how many
malicious maneuvers are being employed to obstruct the future of the

This spectacle of division hurts me. I am not referring to the division
among the revolutionary forces, but the division of the country--the
struggle to confuse, to deceive, to deceive the worker; if possible, to
deceive the middle class man so as to bring him into a cause which, in my
opinion, is not just. All these ruses, tricks and methods of struggle will
logically produce in a man who has some revolutionary sensitivity a feeling
that makes him think of our country, that makes him remember the path we
have taken to achieve having a united people today who struggle for
tomorrow- where an effort is made to lift morale, where an effort is made
to gather the people's energies to march into the future, to make the
country strong, to protect ourselves from great dangers. That is what I
wanted to say: the contrast, the vision of the present that the struggle is
developing, and the memory of our own struggle and our path, which confirms
the whole immense justice of our struggle and our cause. That is why I will
leave with this feeling of being more revolutionary, more extremist. I am
employing the word extremist as one who is more revolutionary. Extremism
can have...[pause] I simply wanted to use that word to give it more
emphasis. One feels extremist when one observes a situation like this one.
That is the sentiment I wanted to express with all frankness yesterday
afternoon. [applause]

[Reporter] [name indistinct] from ULTIMA HORA, Lima, Peru.

[Castro] I cannot quite identify you.

[Reporter] I want to ask two questions. How long are you planning to stay
in Lima tomorrow, and appealing to your critical spirit, I would like to
know what you believe are the successes and the mistakes of the Peruvian
revolutionary government?

[Castro] This is the answer to your first question. Our stay will range
from 2 to 4 hours. No strict or exact limit has been established. It will
depend on the circumstances. The margin of time that we have available is
not much. So much for your first question.

I want to answer your second question with another question. Do you want me
to make a judgment on the successes and mistakes of the Peruvian Government
precisely on the eve of my first visit to that country and the first
contact with the leaders of that country? If I were qualified to do so, and
I do not have sufficient information to do so, and I do not have sufficient
information to do so, I could most surely not, based on elemental common
sense, accommodate you and offer a judgment.

[Reporter] Marta Solis, from the magazine SIEMPRE, Mexico City. Major, not
to stray from the subject of Latin America, I would like to ask you: Today,
at the end of 1971, after the complete consolidation of the Cuban
Revolution and after the revolutionary movement has overcome several
tactical reverses, and after other countries such as Chile and Peru have
opted for the process of revolutionary changes, how would you define the
possibility of the development of the revolution in Latin America today?

[Castro] Well, I believe that there is struggle. I believe that there are
imperialistic attempts to stop that process. I can say more. Imperialism
has won partial victories. There is the recent case of Bolivia. I do not
want to delve too deeply, taking into consideration my status as a visitor
and not as political science professor or something of that nature, who
would have much more freedom than I to express himself.

We have the case of Uruguay where all the resources and all the weapons and
(?banners) were mobilized. There were even military maneuvers along the
borders. Fear was instilled over the tragic consequences that would follow
a Broad Front victory. Imperialism mobilized to prevent another popular
victory at the polls, and it mobilized with all the means at its disposal.
There was imperialistic action, and yesterday several newspapers reported
that the Chilean Popular Government has only a few months of life left.
Along with this there were very coincidental events which is proof of a
strategy, of an intelligence, a power behind all this. We know those powers
and those strategies all too well.

Naturally, there are possibilities for revolution; they do in fact exist
for one simple reason: Revolutions are not invented by men. Revolutions are
determined by events. Revolutions arise from real objective factors that
produce awareness at a given moment. That awareness is a subjective factor.
Sometimes it comes earlier, sometimes later, however, we believe that this
continent has in its belly an infant called revolution, which is on the way
and which inexorably, by biological law, by social law, by law of history,
will be born, and it will be born one way or another. The delivery could be
institutional, in a hospital or at home. It could be illustrious doctors or
a midwife who pick up the infant, but there will be a delivery in any case.
In that situation we believe that the result of this antagonism (?creates?
a vital need among our people, and if a powerful empire attempts to prevent
us from marching toward progress and life, there must necessarily be a

It is not the revolutionaries, we repeat, who determine that path. It is
the reactionaries and the imperialists. We have before us the Chilean case,
in which the Marxist parties won office in the company of progressive
parties joined in the Popular Unity. And they attained it by electoral
means. They attained it by peaceful means. And already imperialism speaks
of its overthrow, the disappearance of that government. From events we can
already see how the imperialists and their agents use violence against
those who marched along the path of the institutions and ballot boxes;
therefore, when this country is trying to present a model to the world, an
example of the possibilities in Latin America of attaining structural
changes by peaceful means and through the institutions, a whole economic
and political plot is organized against it, a whole subversive plan.

Tell me then, who could be pointing out the path of the people, because
nations need to advance, and where their paths are closed by democaratic
means--so-called democratic means, which is notthing but the means
established through the institutions of the class dominators--those who
will point out the path that the people must take will be the oppressors,
the privileged, as has always been the case in history. If those paths are
closed and if even when a door is opened, they close it, the people's will
have no alternative but revolutionary violence. This is not a proclamation;
it is the result of logical analysis. [applause]

[Moderator] Before continuing I would like to ask the reporters not to
applaud because applause takes time which should be used for questions.

[Reporter] George (Anderson) of the CBS news

[Castro] CBS?

[Reporter] CBS, Columbia.

[Castro] You were at Santa Cruz?

[Reporter] Yes.

[Castro] You were the ones who asked about our position with relation to
the United States?

[Reporter] Yes, I was the one.

[Castro] Well, it was not broadcast right.

[Reporter] It was correctly broadcast throughout the whole United States.

[Castro] I saw a dispatch and it was not very clear. [laughter]. And it
said Castro foretells that relations will improve with the United States.

[Reporter] I did not say that.

[Castro] Someone said it. [laughter]. Misrepresentation, without doubt.

[Reporter] It was an interpretation, analysis.

[Castro] However, I saw a newspaper [word indistinct] recently in which
appeared the essential position which we had expressed to you. I was
worried that there might have been a misrepresentation, but not on your
part. [reporter interrupts.] You do not look like a liar. [laughter].

[Reporter] Thank you. Although it is not my question, did you not say that
there is a possibility of improving relations with the United States?

[Castro] Yes.

[Reporter] That there is a chance of improving relations with your
government? That is not my question. Please, I have another.

[Castro] But there should not be any confusion. We said clearly that, while
that country's government assumed the role of policeman in the world and
reserved the right to intervene in Santo Domingo, in Cuba, or in any Latin
American country, we had no interest in improving relations with the
government. [applause] I want to clear this up. Because it is a very
important matter--we do not want any doubts about this. You ask this
question because you were confused. The situation was not very clear, but
we wanted to clarify it. We wanted to discuss the question more fully. We
would wait until there emerged in the United States a government--not a
revolutionary government--but a realistic government which understood that
that country no longer has in the political, economic, military conditions
nor domestic order to enable it to continue its role of world policeman. It
would have to be a realistic government capable of establishing a realistic
policy--that policy could only be a policy of peace. Then, with that
government we could have relations under honorable conditions, without
abandoning our primary duties of solidarity with brotherly countries of
Latin America. Because, before the interests of our country today are the
interests of our country of the future, of all the Latin American
countries. [applause] Excuse me for having to make this explanation. Now, I
am ready to answer your question.

[Moderator] I would like to ask the reporters not to applaud because that
disrupts the press conference.

[Castro] You probably will have to declare a state of emergency. [laughter]

[Reporter] Do you recall that about 12 or 13 years ago, a U.S. writer, C.
Wright Mills, write a book called "Listen, Yankee, Listen"? If you today,
13 years later, had to send a (?message) listen Yankee, yes, listen Yankee,
please, listen Yankee, Yankee, to the United States, what would you say?

[Castro] I would not tell them practically anything. Do you know why?
Because we do not believe that even with messages, as a simple act of good
will, will we be able to have the Yankees or North Americans listen to us.
When we use the word Yankee, we are not referring to the North American
people. This is a word that we give a bad connotation to, and we use it for
the monopolies and the system, but not for the North American people. I do
not know why Mills used that word. I said no because it has not been the
good will messages of men which have determined or can determine the
changes in U.S. policy. We could spend many years sending messages. I am
not saying that messages have no value. Messages, especially if they have
an ideological content, can help one become aware of things.

But life has taught us that the changes which have occurred in the last 12
years, when our movement came to power, the powerful strength of the United
States, the powerful strength of imperialism and its influence in the
world, we saw how in the course of 12 years, the events, the peoples'
struggles, the military adventures, the policeman role, the reactionary
policy, have led to a progressive deterioration of the economic power, of
the political power, and even of the military power of the United States.

The Vietnamese, from our point of view, have been the ones who have done
humanity the service of hitting hard at the price, the omnipotence, the
invincibility concept of being all powerful, and the feeling of being
masters of the world, which North American imperialism had. We believe that
the Vietnamese people's struggle has contributed powerfully to the shaping
of the consciences of the U.S. people, as have the struggles of the North
American blacks for their civil rights, the antiwar movements, the national
minorities, like the Puerto Ricans, Chicanos, and other national minorities
which are discriminated against and humiliated in the United States.

The sum of all these factors, which enabled them to become aware of the
Vietnamese people's struggle, have been very important ones in the
awareness of the North American people. That is why I said that words and
messages have a relative value. Facts are the ones that teach.

Our country also has a message for the United States--the Cuban revolution
itself, its existence after 13 years of aggression, blockade, and
hostility. There are many North Americans with noble feelings. Thus we have
to say the following, which is very important: How the American nation
emerged, how at one time it was the model for the persecuted--the
immigrants--how it was even the first country, before the French
revolution, to proclaim the rights of man, and it became the ideal of
society at that time; how through the effects of the social development
laws, as that capitalist society developed and was conceived, helped by
natural factors and [word indistinct] and was able to achieve great power,
it then transformed itself into a monopolist society, something which you
all know. But nevertheless the American people continue to believe the myth
that they were the champions of freedoms, of man's most valuable rights.
Nevertheless, under those flags, some crimes began to be
committed-expansionist, international-type crimes.

The war against Mexico was an expansionist crime. That country was deprived
of more than half of its territory and vast natural resources. The war in
Cuba was motivated by imperialist factors. Nevertheless, the North
Americans were told of the sacred freedom when preparations were made to
help that country that was fighting.

It was all a lie. For 10 years the U.S. objective was to take over Cuba. If
frequently stepped in to keep the Cubans from receiving arms. When the
Spanish power was virtually defeated, the U.S. stepped in to seize Puerto
Rico, to seize the Philippines, and even to try to take over Cuba.

If it did not do so in an official manner, it did so semiofficially. It
gave us a conditioned freedom, despite our people's having shed a lot of
blood to achieve that goal. From that point--the Panama episode--the canal,
there were dozens of interventions, always disguised as the defense of a
country or, in some cases of U.S. citizens' rights, of American lives and
goods--labeling our people savages.

By the same token, and even in the last world war--the first and second
world wars were imperialist wars--the United States was able to disguise
its appetite for all kinds of things, as genuine feelings for freedom. Then
came modern times.

There were the aggressions against Guatemala, against Cuba, the
intervention in Santo Domingo, the war in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and its
intervention in the Congo with the assassination of Lumumba. Then there was
its participation in the Indonesian plots and many others.

They no longer can be disguised as struggles for the freedom of man or the
rights of man--which were the slogans which were constantly hammered at the
American common man.

In our view the most important thing that has happened over the past 100
years in the United States is the awareness derived from the war in
Vietnam. If it had been known that excuses for waging wars were frequently
fabricated, on this occasion it was possible to prove unquestionably,
irrefutably, that the Gulf of Tonkin incident was an absolute frameup.

It was with that incident that an attempt was made to justify the launching
of hundreds of thousands of tons of bombs over that country, the killing of
hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children in the Southeast Asian

We believe that the revelation of the U.S. documents for the first time in
history has shown the U.S. people the mask of imperialism--the way the
people have been fooled. We believe this has helped develop awareness. This
was actually the object.

Remember the Giron expedition? Remember the bombing with B-26 bombers
disguised with Cuban flags? That was an act of piracy, a war crime. But
that was no obstacle for Nixon to declare in the United Nations that those
planes were Cuban planes which had revolted, attacked the bases, and flown
to Miami. It was not Nixon, it was Stevenson--Stevenson, who had been
considered a liberal, even; who was looked upon as a progressive man.

But none of these virtues attributed to him kept him from making a lying,
false speech trying to justify the crime that had been committed, an attack
emanating from bases in Guatemala and Nicaragua against our country.

That is the true story of the lying methods, the despicable, scornful
methods used by imperialism. We believe that this has been causing the U.S.
people to become aware. It has helped. True enough, all means are employed
to perplex and distract the people.

However, the people have developed awareness. Moreover, all we can do is
feel more optimistic, express our solidarity over this acquisition of
awareness, our solidarity with the North American Negroes, with the Puerto
Ricans, the Latin Americans, the Mexicans--all who are persecuted--to the
strugglers for peace, the men who acquire awareness, the men who oppose
war, the men who oppose imperialism. All we can do is express our
solidarity and tell them that the hope of our people lies precisely in that
development of awareness. We shall wait patiently, steadfastly, as we
always have until the time comes when that opinion will gain even greater
weight in the United States, and this helps that country's leaders to
sincerely become aware of the common realities and resign themselves to a
policy of peace.

In the meantime if one must speak of a message, we convey our message of
solidarity to the men who resist, the pacifists, the strugglers, and the
U.S. revolutionaries. That would be our message. [applause]

[Reporter] [Moderator says: "Newsman, (name indistinct), Chilean, of Punto
Final] Major, in the speech you made yesterday at the national stadium, it
seemed to be deduced that one of the weaknesses of this Chilean process is
the ineffective mobilization of the masses. At the same time you told us
that in your country you are able to militarily mobilize the people in 24
hours. What formula have you employed to achieve this in 13 years of the
revolution taking into account that your people, as you admitted yesterday,
were much less politically active than what you have observed here during
your visit?

[Castro] I believe that yesterday's mobilization was relatively weak. This
is not my estimate as a person involved in that really since we believe
that is not and should not be important at all. But it was an expression of
a moment which the process was experiencing. One would expect a strong
response from the masses to yesterday's rally.

Yesterday's rally was not planned as a farewell but rather gave the masses
an opportunity to--it was a rally in which the masses were to make their
presence felt. We say sincerely that the mobilization was relatively weak.
We shall tell no lies. We are not concerned that these statements will be
later published by MERCURIO or any other newspaper and the press which will
say: Castro admits weak mobilization of the masses.

We have always told the truth. We have never resorted to tricks or lies.
For this reason we said in our country we have (?a much stronger) power to
mobilize the masses. This does not reflect the real potential of the
Chilean people of Santiago, the real potential of popular unity and the
leftist forces. I believe that there exists great potential but this
potential is not realized. There are no instruments for their mobilization
[words indistinct]. In our country the mechanism, the instruments, and the
mans of mobilization exist. This is not all. For example, to cite a recent
case: When some Cuban fisherman were arbitrarily captured by U.S. ships
they were imprisoned in the United States for several weeks, and there,
most certainly, they maintained a very upright attitude.

They acted as any youngsters would, who are no longer scared when they see
a battleship, even though they had been taught to be scared whenever they
saw a battleship. The youngsters, in their fishing boats [words indistinct]
in front of the battleships, showing them that they were not afraid. We did
not know when these youngsters were going to return; we did not know the
date or hour because we had to negotiate their freedom. There were also
some North Americans who had arrived on Cuban shores, and we were
negotiating, [words indistinct] the military strength of a united country,
which in 24 hours or less could mobilize--listen to this--600,000 men and
have them on a war footing. This is proof of the revolution's strength.

But they are two different matters. When we spoke of the weakness of the
mobilization of the masses, that was a different matter from what we said
when we spoke of hoe strong a country is when it is united, and when it has
deep convictions to fight and struggle. And when we say that we, a united
country, which is another matter, have a tremendous defensive force, and
when we say that we can mobilize 600,000, that figure is not determined by
the number of men and women in the country who are ready to fight, but by
the amount of combat equipment we have. But you can be sure that if we have
to mobilize a million, we will mobilize a million.

Our force is not determined by the people's readiness and will to fight,
but by the amount of weapons available. They are two different matters.
This is an interesting point. I thought it my duty to be frank; I think I
was not hurting anyone, I mean, I do not think I was harming the Chilean
process or Chilean Popular Unity by saying that. I think no one would
[words indistinct], lack of sincerity, because then what would be the
object of this visit? I am not a tourist. I came to learn about the
country, to strengthen the relations, to bring solidarity, to converse. I
recall that I even asked the [words indistinct] for permission, because it
was dealing with matters pertaining to the Popular Unity, unless they are
also protesting because I pointed out some of the Popular Unity's problems.
But they cannot protest that I expressed an opinion without the Popular
Unity's consent. I am glad you asked that question because I am aware that
some people did not understand what we meant when we said 10 minutes. We
meant that in 10 minutes we could round up so many persons. Perhaps we
exaggerated a little when we said 10 minutes. It could be 15, 20 or 25
minutes; the time it takes our [word indistinct] which belong to the
people; hear this, the same as all our industries, all our centers belong
to the people. Those centers mobilize within the spirit of interest in the
revolutionary process. We do not have to wait a quarter of an hour
anywhere. We have our systems, which are also the alarm systems calling us
to battle stations. Our people have had to live beside the United States,
always threatened. We would be in a spot if we did not have our combat
alarm system. Not only that, we are forced to maintain many forces
constantly on the alert, to prevent a surprise attack. Not only do we have
a system for mobilizing the combat forces, but also a system for mobilizing
the masses; and they rally, you can be sure of that. Whoever has been to
our country knows that this is so. I really did not say it through
exaggerated revolutionary chauvinism. I said it to express something, to
express an idea, something that I had to state.

From our viewpoint, when the reaction, when fascism issues a challenge and
takes to the streets, we have to expect the revolutionary masses to
mobilize, even for a peaceful event, like the one at the stadium, and to
hope that we have the necessary organization to mobilize. I am sure I did
not exaggerate; I did not lie. I am sure that I merely said something felt
by the men and leaders of the Popular Unity organizations. But we believe
the potential force [words indistinct]. We would have to study the factors
and the circumstances as well as the potential factors. These potential
factors are not transformed into true factors of mobilization. That is a
question which must be asked of the revolutionaries, and we must have them
solve it. I could only make a comment. [applause]

[Reporter] Cordoba of Channel 13 of Catholic University. As you have had
the opportunity to know our country's press-the opposition as well as the
government press....

[Castro] [interrupting] I have not had much time to get to know about the
press, if I started reading a newspaper, I would fall asleep.

[Reporter] I would like to know your opinion of the newsmen's role in this
historic stage, this revolutionary process in Chile?

[Castro] It depends on who the newsman is.

[Reporter] A revolutionary newsman?

[Castro] Revolutionary newsmen should struggle, should analyze all the
factors before arriving at conclusions [words indistinct]. There are
problems, real objective problems, such as what equipment, what artillery
do you have available for combat? Undoubtedly they are at a disadvantage.
It seems to be that they are at a disadvantage, but they should not be
discouraged by that. Sometimes the battle is waged under disadvantageous
conditions; Numerical or potential disadvantages. But if there is good
leadership, good thinking, good strategy, a good battle can be fought, even
when one is at a disadvantage.

Newsmen should be aware of the situation in which a great struggle is being
waged. The crisis is worsening. Let us call it the revolutionary crisis, in
which forces are polarized. You know that this struggle has everything;
That which is in a defined position; that which is in another defined
position; and that which is in a certain undefined position. Now the
struggle is to win over the middle [word indistinct], so to speak. There
are also some people who get scared and are neutralized when the going gets
rough. You will have the opportunity to see all these things. It is
difficult in a strictly theoretical way to define the newsmen's role in the
overall situation. It also depends on factors known to you, and which
affect newsmen. But I would say that the most important is to unmask the
counterrevolutionaries, to help the masses to distinguish the enemy, to
make him known, known by his name. In their uncompromising attitude, toward
principles, in their denunciation of [words indistinct], the masses have to
know and be able to distinguish their enemies. The masses do not know them;
they are disguised. The masses do not know who the enemies are; they cannot
distinguish them. Your role is to develop awareness in the masses; develop
the education of the masses in all its aspects; teach them how to carry out
their laws, they dynamics; teach the masses what methods the enemy uses;
unmask their methods, their lies, their falsehoods; teach them never to use
the base and selfish methods that the reactionaries use, but to use the
revolutionary methods, based on reasoning, based on convictions, simply to
unmask them, to [word indistinct] them.

We believe that this plays a very important role in the struggle to achieve
this awareness, to develop this awareness to disarm the enemy, to weaken
the enemy, to strengthen the spirit of the masses. Within their limited
possibilities the revolutionary newsmen have these objectives clearly
outlined, we believe. There is much they can do for the revolutionary

If you wish, you can ask any of the counterrevolutionary newsmen what their
favorite techniques are in carrying out their struggle against the creation
of this conscience, this scaremongers' campaign of deceit, confusion, lies
and base feelings that they employ. They know what they are doing, they
know it well. They use their techniques, their means. They eliminate all
the weak spots; they are aware of minute details. From what little I have
been able to see, I would say you have to see the refined techniques they
use. These techniques are not even of their own invention. We should not
forget that ever since they went through the first revolution, and then to
the next--fear has driven the counterrevolutionary, the imperialist
specialists and scientists to employ specific mass struggle techniques, to
employ specific words to achieve their goal, and it can be clearly seen
that they are doing it; they are employing these techniques. That is why
this process is very interesting to me, because it can objectively be seen
how the struggle between the classes is being waged and how the weapons are
being employed.

Frankly, I am not saying anything that any Chilean revolutionary does not
also say: That there is a factor of disadvantage in this struggle, and that
revolutionary elements are not up to par with the reactionary elements in
this struggle. I have heard many Chileans say this. I am merely echoing
this opinion, and I am expressing what I observed on the scene. This is all
I have to say.

[Reporter] (Clyburn) of NBC television in the United States.

[Castro] NBC, who was it that interviewed the president?

[Reporter] [Words indistinct]

[Castro] When the president mentioned Lincoln, who scornfully said that
there was no resemblance between Lincoln and me? That the only resemblance
was the the beard? Really, I would never profess, I would never have the
unpardonable lack of modesty to pretend to resemble Lincoln, whom I so
admire. He is one of the best men the United States has ever produced. But
I recall reading that dispatch and the contemptuous and depreciating tone
used. I take advantage of this opportunity to lodge my protest. [applause]

[Reporter] That was not my fault, that was not my answer.

[Castro] What was that?

[Reporter] That was not during my part.

[Castro] Probably your part was very good. With your satellites and...
[interrupted by applause]. They have the technology, the satellite, the
[words indistinct] the questions, all those things. They always use them. I
am referring to loyalty and frankness. If you were interested in an
interview via satellite, it might have its publicity advantages. But I do
not follow the publicity psychosis. If we lived with this psychosis we
would believe in the effects of that publicity, and we would have been
crushed. The people of North America would have been cured of the
revolutionary virus forever. And yet, it has been proved that in spite of
how massive that virus is, there is a possibility of reaction. Sometimes
North Americans ask for this psychosis, but I am not worried. I do not
become impatient over this.

Sometimes there is the opportunity, and there are those who get excited
because they have an opportunity; they think they have a chance to say this
or that because there are 10 or 20 million people listening. We do not get
excited. What we do not get accustomed to is the 20 million lies every day.
Sometimes our truth is like a shooting star on a dark night. That is why we
do not place much importance in the publicity (?on us) in the United
States. Not that we underrate it, but we do not feel any special
veneration. We do not prize it.

Nevertheless, often we do not seek any interest but to please the newsmen,
because we see a person doggedly seeking something. We can see that there
are true newsmen. Let me tell you, I have a very high opinion of many North
American newsmen; They are sharp, witty, intelligent and able to
synthesize. There are all types: Some are objective; some are good; some
are bad. But that is why I say that often, out of courtesy toward the
person, who have spent time on those programs. But maybe because of that
statement, which are really very scornful, I believe it was disrespectful
toward the president of the republic. I believe it was more disrespectful
toward him than toward me, that I did not show any interest in using the
satellites in that program. Maybe I am mistaken and it was not you but
another network that carried that program. But that is enough of this,
please ask your question.

[Reporter] Major, I want to ask you about a problem which concerns the
American people; it is about airplane hijackings. I would like to hear your
idea on this matter and ask if your government would be willing to discuss
the problem with U.S. government officials?

[Castro] I believe that that is an interesting question. That question can
be useful in clarifying that in the first place we did not invent plane
hijackings. The hijackings were invented in the United States. Such a
diabolical invention was used against our country. At the beginning of our
revolution many Cuban airplanes were hijacked. They were taken to the
United States, and what is more they remained there; they were not
returned. These are historical facts. I do not have the figures with me but
that can be verified. Not only airplanes, but many ships were hijacked.
They were hijacked and they remained in the United States.

Not only that, illegal departures from Cuba were promoted. In our country,
after the revolution's victory anyone who wished could leave, because we
understand a country to be a voluntary association of free men. Those who
wanted to choose the U.S. paradise were given permission to leave. This
lasted until the October 1962 crisis; when there were still 100,000 people
remaining in the group of those who had asked for permission to leave, they
halted the departures, using the October crisis as a pretext. They kept it
closed for 6 or 7 years. While on the one hand, they were following this
official policy; on the other hand, because many families had been divided,
they fostered illegal departures and violations of Cuban laws, as well as
U.S. immigration laws. This went on until we--in view of this policy aimed
at creating disorders, at promoting violations, and at the same time at
serving as propaganda--dared the U.S. Government: Since you halted this all
these years, if you permit entry, we will open a port here so that those
who have relatives here can come to get them. Because the worms in the
United States believe in the revolutionary government even more than they
believe in the U.S. Government, because they know the path we follow;
hundreds of ships came, in absolute confidence. On day there were 500
traitor ships in Camarioca Port in Matanzas Province. Absolutely trusting
the revolutionary government's word, they came to get sardines.

This created a problem for the United States, because it would have had to
use the Seventh Fleet in the Caribbean to half all that illegal traffic of
ships coming and going. It was really a means we used--faced with the
hypocrisy, lies and the policy they were following. When that happened, we
reached an agreement: To open the lists for all those who wanted to leave.
We agreed on a number of weeks. We extended it for months. We did not agree
to having those lists open indefinitely, because knowing the efforts the
United States is making to take technician, skilled workmen--offering them
high incomes--we believe this might create lack of discipline. We said all
those who wish to leave may do so. For months that list was kept open.
Everyone was given the opportunity to leave, and the list reached its end.
Then the lie was spread that we had changed our policy--the eternal
lie--that we had changed our policy and had closed [words indistinct].

Then, what has been our stand regarding hijackings--that strategy employed
against us turned into a boomerang--you know what a boomerang is. It is a
weapon used by I do not know what country in Polynesia--a weapon which when
you throw it away from you, comes back to you. The United States created
illegality in the Caribbean--the violation of laws--and illegality suddenly
turned against them for various reasons: Because of tensions existing in
North American society; because of political problems, including military
problems, and hijacking of planes to Cuba started. At least we returned the
airplanes; however, our planes would not have been returned to us. When the
problem was raised, we said that we were willing to reach an agreement. A
law was drafted, but that law had to include not only airplane hijackings
which was what they were interested in. We have very few planes. Besides,
they could hardly be hijacked, because there are men aboard who will not
let the plane be hijacked. People have become accustomed to travel by air
without fear, because they know that before a plane is hijacked there is
going to be a battle in the air. That is the way our people have become
accustomed to these things.

If a CIA agent tries to hijack a plane he knows there will be a battle in
the air--not air combat--but a battle in the air. Under these conditions
they cannot take Cuban planes. The big business enterprises, the big
airlines are concerned over this, because of expenses, losses and so forth.
They have the largest air fleet in the world. They are interested in that.
We are not only concerned with planes, we are interested in the acts. We
are interested in halting illegal departures, that is to say violations of
our immigration laws, which are the same as those of the United States. We
have told them, these are the prerequisites for reaching an agreement that
would include planes, ships, and illegal departures. If an agreement has
not been reached it is because they have not wanted to reach one. There
will be no agreement on planes unless it is on these bases. That is out
stand. I repeat it here so that it will be perfectly understood. If they
are willing to reach an agreement according to the bases set forth in Cuban
law, we can discuss the issue and reach an agreement. They do not have to
come, they have the Swiss representative who represents their interests; he
is there. That is our position.

There are a few other points. We have the Guantanamo base, which is more
illegal than the hijacking of planes, because it is a part of the Cuban
nation that has been seized. It has a frontier of a few kilometers full of
soldiers, marines and others. There are other points pending. There are the
pirate raids, the spies, the infiltration, some old and some recent. I
believe that it is my [words indistinct]. Perhaps some day we will file a
claim for all the harm done to us, and someone will have to pay, because
you also invented the principle of indemnification. You have invaded many
countries. You have invaded many countries. [applause] You have invaded
many countries claiming that you are protecting U.S. citizens and property.
You have cost our country many lives, many properties. You have done us
much harm with your blockade and aggression. So that some day, when the
time comes to talk about everything, I could also say that we are going to
include the airplane issue in a general agreement. We have the right to do
this, because, since the law was drafted 3 years ago, we have received no
reply. We could include everything, but up to now that discussion has not
been reached. There are many points pending. Perhaps the solution would be
to settle some questions which interest you more than us, because you are
the ones who have the problem, not us. We have followed a principled
policy, and if we enact a law, or if we have to solve a problem, we are
willing to solve it.

There are still many other issues pending. Well, the only situation is for
them to leave Guantanamo and give that part of our territory back to our
country. I do not see any other solution. What could the solution be?
[applause] Do not believe that this would actually be possible. [paragraph

Neither Nixon, nor the Pentagon, or any of them could permit such a gesture
or such a policy, because demogogy, and diplomacy with specific ends is one
things, and deeds which would not dishonor a great country are something
else. The arrogance felt by the empire, its rulers, its warring leaders,
all those people who have blind hatred for our country, people who are
unwilling to abandon that base. From a military and strategic viewpoint the
base is useless nowadays. One single missile could destroy the base and all
the ships in it. That missile could be launched from any point, but
unfortunately, not from Cuba.

I say unfortunately, not meaning that we want to launch it, but in the
sense that we do not have them. [applause] We do not have them, and if we
had them we would not launch them. [words indistinct] logically, under
special conditions in which we had no other choice but to defend ourselves.
What I want to tell you clearly is that this military base is useless.
Strategically it is useless. In a strategic war this base would be useless.
The base is there only to humiliate our country. It is kept only as a point
of provocation and humiliation.

Yesterday we were telling the aviation aide who was with us how many
attacks had been prepared against us. On one occasion I saw the automatic
weapons, the bazookas then the grenades which had been sent from Guantanamo
to a counterrevolutionary group to murder me. We think that this is a
monstrosity, but when it deals with a small country such as Cuba and a
powerful country such as the United States, no one learns of it because it
is not published. Unfortunately in many countries only the news produced by
U.S. news agencies is available. When monstrosities such as these occur, no
one learns of them. I have had the chance to see, regretfully, bazookas,
grenades, and machine guns enough to kill not only one man but 10 men. Not
only a man, but an elephant, 10 elephants, 100 elephants, could have been
killed with these weapons. I thought this was incredible, a flagrant
violation of international law, and complete lacking shame. These weapons
came from the base. Basically, they know that they will not defeat us, and
that this is a problem they will have to live with because otherwise they
would have to commit genocide in Cuba. They will not find us divided and
unarmed but united, well armed, and trained. To occupy our country they
will have to kill the last Cuban, and this is not easy in today's world. It
is not easy morally or militarily. It is impossible to take over my country
in 24 hours, or 48 hours, or 72 hours.

As long as a people fight back they cannot be taken over, and we have our
own plans for defense. What we want to say is that this base is there to
humiliate us, like a dagger stuck in the heart of our dignity and
sovereignty. Not only an historic dagger, but an unjust and illegal
landgrab. It was like an imposition when the constituent assembly was in
session, at the beginning of the so-called republic which they left us,
with the right to intervene included in our own constitution. The base is
useless and millions are spent there with the sole purpose of humiliating
the country. So we shall leave it there until they become tired and bored
with it. Our objectives do not include the conquest of this base or
recovery of it. We know that it is a symbol, but we know it means something
else in today's reality. We also know that there are other things in
today's realities.

We want Cuba's example to be a banner and a moral principle to help
liberate an entire continent. We do not deal in cheap chauvinism, in narrow
nationalism based on the belief that the future of the country depends on
whether they leave this base. We know that our future depends on the
solidarity between peoples and the solidarity with the other Latin American
peoples and for this the liberation of all these countries is essential.
They do this to us because we are a small country, just as they do in
Panama, but if we were united we would be a powerful country which no one
would try to humiliate, and which no one would dare to attack. I think that
these cases are useful to create an awareness, because it is the
revolutionaries who have to create this awareness, the revolutionary
newsmen, not the reactionaries who want to keep our countries weak and
divided, unable to defend themselves. All this reactionary preaching and
the millions spent by the American agencies and the newspapers controlled
by them in Latin America, have an ideological objective: to keep the
peoples divided and weak so they can be exploited and repressed and to
deprive them of any right or place in the world, to sack their natural
products, and to have these peoples at their mercy.

While the 13 colonies grew and purchased the Louisiana Territory, our
peoples have remained divided and weak. Naturally we have been paying for
this for 150 years. Cuba paid part of this price too. The Latin American
countries gained their independence during the last century. How could Cuba
have been left as the only colony, with the Americans ready with their
claws to grasp it? We had to fight alone. We believe that if the dreams of
Bolivia and San Martin had been carried out we would have had a great ally
who would have obtained Cuban independence, we would not have had to fight
this war alone. During the decade of the 60's (?we were) alone for almost
12 years. We had to fight alone for almost 30 years during the past
century. Cuba, after our revolution, became the first territory free of
imperialistic domination in Latin America, I mean really free. For these 12
years we had contact only with Mexico. With the victory of the Popular
Unity we had relations with Chile. Just see the price we have had to pay
for being a small country beside a powerful one. Despite this they could
not seize the island. Despite this they could not turn it into a base
against other peoples. Despite this we have recovered our wealth, we have
made a revolution. Despite all this and despite the [words indistinct] we
had regarding support from other Latin American countries. Some day, when
victory is achieved, there will be recognition of the role played by the
people of that small island in that hour.

This is why we see there are things more important than the recovery of
this small American base which has no military value. As a humiliating
factor it does not work with us, it provokes instead our revolutionary
strength and our fighting spirit. I is another element of revolutionary

[Reporter] Carlos Mora of the Central American Press: Major Fidel, I am
interested in two questions.

[Castro] What newspaper are you from?

[Reporter] From the Central American Press, that is to say from several
Central American newspapers.

[Castro] Is it a large syndicate, a powerful one?

[Reporter] No sir, it is not as powerful as Cuba.

[Castro] Is it rich?

[Reporter] No. It is proletarian. My first question, Major, is in relation
to our small countries, the second is directly related to Cuba.

My first question, Major, is how would you explain the constant failures of
Central American guerrillas, especially when there is a revolutionary
awareness in many of these countries?

[Castro] It could depend on the problems they face. We had our
apprenticeship which was very difficult. Our revolutionary struggle is not
known. We experienced very difficult moments. On several occasions we were
on the verge of being exterminated. Precisely because of our [words
indistinct] we learned as we went along, and when we learned, it was much
more difficult to exterminate us. When we had some force we could really
say we were invincible. Perhaps it would be better to gather more
experience. It is difficult to be able to answer this question accurately.
The impression I have personally, however, is that there is nothing which
can guarantee victory. Like all struggle it involves the possibility of
defeat. We, too, could have been defeated. I think there is lack of
experience on one side and the better techniques of the reactionaries on
the other. The repressive forces in these countries have also improved
their techniques. Inexperienced revolutionaries have had to face the
accumulated experience of the repressive forces. It is also evident that it
was not only the technical or the military factors, but the political
factors, the errors in conception and the poor political leadership which
contributed to the defeat of these rebels.

I would not like to go deeper into this because it is a delicate matter and
because I am a visitor and, as I said this morning, I would prefer a more
appropriate place to talk of this matter. This is why I have answered in
broad concepts. I also understood that not all the movements have been

[Reporter] My second question is. Do you think that Chile is presently
prepared--in the revolutionary process it is experiencing--with the
revolutionary awareness to continue its revolutionary process?

[Castro] My impression of these people is that they have special
characteristics. They have a tradition of struggle and a labor movement
with many years and much experience. They are also an enthusiastic and
emotional people. When you ask if they are prepared, we have to define what
we understand by being prepared. If we refer to a superdeveloped awareness,
an optimum organization of the masses and mechanisms, I could not, from
this point of view, give an affirmative answer. If you ask me under the
present conditions and characteristics if these people can take this
process to its final culmination with their morale, national attitudes and
courage, I would say without any least hesitation that we have here all the
social, moral, character, and patriotic elements. Because there is a
mixture of many things, character and patriotism, of tradition and cultural
levels, we believe that here all the elements exist to take this process to
the end. I hope that this answers your question.

[Reporter] (Guadaba Shamper) director of PARISINA magazine and
correspondent of the newspaper [words indistinct]. Mr. Premier, in the
Havana Tricontinental Conference, among the agreements reached was a
resolution which condemned Yankee imperialism, international zionism, and
Israel as an expansionist racist state and beachhead of imperialism in the
Middle East. My question, Mr. Premier, is: Is this resolution still in

[Castro] What makes you think that it is not still in effect?

[Reporter] That is what I want to know.

[Castro] I am asking you what makes you think it is not in effect. Do you
have any doubt?

[Reporter] No. I do not have any doubt.

[Castro] Then, what do you want?

[Reporter] I want you to ratify it. You know that our position counts.

[Castro] Well, I will (?not) accept the quote textually, because I do not
recall the exact text, but we have supported the Arab countries--the
Algerians in their struggle for liberation, and the Arab countries against
imperialist aggressions. It is well known that we have supported the
Palestinians' right to live. You know that this entire problem was created
by imperialism. It has created a tense situation, a situation of risk and
threat of war. We, knowing that the Arabs are victims of this aggression,
have supported them. With a spirit of tricontinental and quinticontinental
solidarity we have given them our moral support and our solidarity and this
position remains unchanged.

[Reporter] Mr Premier, I asked because you all know that there is world
tension over the Middle East. In the United Nations the Security Council is
discussing this problem. this is why I asked this question. I had no doubt
that Cuba would always be on the side of the oppressed and on the side of
free countries, especially Palestine. Thank you.

[Castro] I really wish that the Arab world were more united. It would be
stronger and better able to defend itself from aggression. Unfortunately
this is the problem within the Arab world and it should be an objective
lesson that those countries where exploitation of many by man exist--in the
form of feudal privileges--are too weak to defend themselves from foreign
aggression. This example is worth mentioning because it applies to several
Arab countries.

[Reporter] Major, I am Miranda of the PUNTO NEGRO magazine of [word
indistinct]. I am going back to something you mentioned a while ago. You
said in your speech last night that this is a historic process--the Chilean
political process. Can we understand then that for you it deals with a
unique case? The defeat of the Broad Front in Uruguay as an alternative of
[word indistinct] gives strength to the possibility of armed struggle.
There are countries with apparently constitutional regimes where the
electoral way is closed, especially in Venezuela. Your opinion on this
matter would be very encouraging to the revolutionaries to whom I write on
the various fronts where revolutionary armed forces are fighting.

[Castro] If we were in our country, I would discuss the matter, but you
have previously heard my position of not discussing this matter since it
would only serve to create problems for this government, and we would be
receiving protests of every kind. Even in a private conversation with a
priest I was asked about Uruguay and I gave an opinion, knowing that it was
not a press conference, but there was a protest of some kind. Although I
was at the Cuban Embassy, on Cuban territory, even though I would have
avoided the incident out of respect to the government I am visiting and its
foreign policy. We must be very careful not to create problems of this
kind. This government is establishing itself. There is an attempt to
isolate and weaken it, and you must understand clearly that I cannot say a
single word that can in any way serve the mills of imperialist intrigue.

[Reporter] [words indistinct] Major, what is your government thinking of
doing to normalize relations with other Latin American countries?

[Castro] Look, we are not desperate to normalize relations with other Latin
American countries. We do not want relations for the sake of relations.
Since many governments took the initiative of breaking with us following
instructions of the OAS and the United States, you can understand that a
natural feeling of dignity in Cuba, an elemental revolutionary feeling,
prevents us from showing any interest in resuming these relations. We limit
ourselves to watching the attitudes of these governments. If we see a
government with a pro-imperialist attitude supporting the United States, in
all its adventures, without any national independence, why should we be
interested in resuming these relations? We know that if at any time the
United States orders a break in relations we would again be wasting money
spent on ambassadors, buildings, furniture and so forth, because we do not
have any real [word indistinct] in these places, and then we would be again
left without representations.

In the first place, how can we establish relations with countries that are
not independent? They obey orders from the United States. When we resume
relations with any government, the elemental requisite is that they be
governments with their own policy, independent governments. We do not speak
of total independence like Cuba's, but of governments which have a [words
indistinct] where the workers deserve our respect. We do not say they have
to be socialist revolutionary governments, but governments that are really
independent. [Words indistinct] in these cases we must have a moral and
even a practical content. This is our policy.

[Reporter] "Violete Mancilla of AHORA magazine. My question if the
following: How are relations between Cuba and the socialist countries? Are
there any disagreements in these relations? And, on the same theme, what do
you think of Nixon's trip to China and the Soviet Union? It seems to me
that the Vietnamese war has not ended yet.

[Castro] Let me tell you. Our relations with the socialist countries are
normal. They are better with some of them for economic reasons. Sometimes
we have had disagreements, but they have not been substantial. Sometimes
disagreements are based on idealism. Sometimes we want things to be the way
we have imagined them. We can describe our relations with the socialist
camp as good, and with the Soviet Union, as very good, [paragraph

We have had disagreements, but we keep in mind that during the critical
moments of our revolution, during moments of life and death for our
country, when we were deprived of our sugar quota, when we were cut off
from petroleum, and our people had been sentenced to death through hunger
or extermination, when invasions were prepared against us, we had the
Soviet market, and the Soviet fuel supply. They sent us all the weapons we
needed and they have supported us politically and during all these years
they have given us exceptional aid with unquestioning international spirit.
I have spoken of this on other occasions.

I do not care if any reactionary birds have written that Cuba is a Soviet
colony, that we are economically dependent, and more of those myths.
Apparently what they wanted was that when the Yankees blockaded us, when
our petroleum was cut off, and when we were invaded they wanted us to have
no help. How painful, harsh and sad it would have been for millions of

What hurt the reactionaries was that solidarity helped us. They discovered
that for the first time in the world a small country could resist and
maintain itself against all these crimes and aggressions. This irks them:
To know that a revolutionary country can have allies, as we have had in the
socialist camp, and especially the Soviet Union. This help has never been
lacking, even under difficult conditions. So I emphasize this with a sense
of justice and without reservations of any kind. We even understand the
hatred of the Soviet Union because of this help. How much poison has been
spread, and how much intrigue against the country which defeated fascism,
the country that really pulverized the best of Hitler's divisions, the
country which has helped Cuba, Vietnam, and the Arab countries. We have not
forgotten that when France and England allied with Israel attacked Egypt in
1954, it was Soviet solidarity which saved this country. When Egypt was
attacked as many other countries have been, the USSR played an important

The reactionaries have distilled hatred and poison against this country,
which was the first proletarian state. I understand that [word indistinct]
country there has been much propaganda against the Soviet Union. I say with
sincerity: disagreements can exist and do exist, but they are unimportant.
At present our relations with the Soviet Union are optimal and we are very
glad because this makes our country strong. I believe that all
revolutionaries in Latin America should be glad of this, to know that under
difficult circumstances a country like Cuba could receive the solidarity
and support of this country.

Regarding Nixon's visit to China and the USSR, this is a problem for Nixon
and the countries he will visit. It is not up to me to judge them. It would
be just too much if we tried to say who should receive him and who should
not. The only thing we can say is that Nixon will not visit Havana.

[Reporter] Major, what would you say is the most important, or are the most
important measures, of President Allende's administration--those which
define the Chilean process as revolutionary?

[Castro] I will tell you, but it is something which is not of an economic
nature--it is the relations with Cuba. It is a revolutionary action in
international politics. For example, I will mention relations with the
German Democratic Republic, and various other countries. This is to say
Chile has a sovereign and independent foreign policy. From a structural
point of view we think the fundamental measure has been nationalization. It
is one of the most important as well as [words indistinct] the
reaffirmation of the agrarian reform.

I understand that a large number of landholdings have been expropriated.
These are all symptoms of a revolutionary process, and you know perfectly
well that this is only the beginning. There are many problems yet to be
solved. There is the social area law under discussion and other problems
related to industry, agriculture, and all these things. For me this is the
best proof that the measures taken in government policy and economic
structure are what we can call a revolutionary process. We saw examples of
this yesterday and the day before yesterday. We saw it in the hatred of the
reactionary sectors, in the seditious attempts, in the emergency of a real
fascist movement. This is a process of revolutionary crisis which is
scientifically (?inevitable) when the struggle of opposing interests
becomes acute, when the privileged and the powerful feel their interests
are threatened in such a way that they resort to all means and weapons to
eliminate the revolutionary movement.

There is no doubt that this struggle is presently taking place in this
country. This can be clearly seen and everyone knows it. For me this is
clear proof that there is a revolutionary process. This is a serious
struggle. The price of a revolutionary process is very high. The price paid
by nations for a defeat is very high. The price paid by the popular
movement is very great, because when this process becomes acute, the
hate-filled privileged classes try to prevent these changes in society and
resort to any means and arouse the most extreme violence and the most
terrible crimes. This can be seen in modern history. Humanity has been
accumulating experience in this process for over a century. From our point
of view we feel that this process is simply on the march and it is very
essential that the revolutionaries become aware of this. The reactionaries
are aware, and they are acting with all their strategy and with foreign
inspiration. There are many [words indistinct] in the hands of the CIA. We
know this (?first hand) because it worked against our country for a long
time. It can be seen, one has to be blind not to see it.

[Reporter] Luis [word indistinct] of DIARIO magazine.

[Castro] [words indistinct] please send me your magazine. I am really sorry
I could not accept your invitation, I am personally very grateful.

[Reporter] What positive personal experiences will you take to your people
and what positive experience would you leave for the Chilean people and
revolutionary government. [words indistinct]

[Castro] I believe that the Cuban people are as informed as I am of all the
things that have happened. The Cuban people are fully informed about all
the talks, speeches, and conversations. Our country has a high level of
awareness. I do not want to be modest about it. I can tell you that they
are following everything and seeing everything, so it would be very
difficult for them not to have the same impressions I have had. It would be
very unlikely for them not to know exactly that I know. They understand
when we say we gathered so many people in 10 minutes and so many in 2
hours. This language is logical to them. We will have little to tell them
in addition to expressing our thanks. They have become aware of all the
sympathy expressed to us. Regarding experiences shared with Chile, these
would be about the advantages of the unity of revolutionary and progressive

[Castro] We stated in our speech yesterday, and we would like to reiterate
this today, about the need to struggle in the ideological field, the need
to struggle with the masses, the need to win over the middle classes of the
people in this struggle--inasmuch as both forces are struggling for
this--the need to develop awareness, the need to awaken minds--in simple
words, the need to struggle and not let the adversary take the initiative.

I would say that this class struggle has its laws, and passivism and as a
defensive attitude is bad. In this struggle, the revolutionary forces must
be active. This is historical law applicable to any country under any
circumstance. I would say the following: Apply the laws of history, apply
the wisest principles of Marxism, and do this intelligently and creatively,
and you will see that you will win. [applause]

[Moderator] A lady.

[Reporter] (Maria Senelcamo), of Radio Nuevo Munde [Santiago] program
"Chile in the World."

[Castro] I beg you pardon?

[Reporter] (Marie Senelcamo) of "Chile in the world" of Radio Nuevo Mundo.

[Castro] Just a minute, I was just handed another sheet of paper.

[Reporter] In your speech yesterday, you touched on other experiences of
people fighting the advance of fascism, could you note the lessons learned
from these experiences regarding sound and erroneous political actions in
fighting fascism?

[Castro] I cited the classic countries. If you ask about the countries
where there is fascism, which fight against fascism at this time, then the
physical case concerns you people--the most current case I can recall at
the moment. But you could mean past examples and (?Nazism). There is the
case of Germany in the time of Nazism, and there is Italy, which even
invented the word and the methods. Have you not read about the way fascism
worked in Italy--its methods, its assault guards, its blackjacks, its
crimes, its propaganda, its constant exalting of the basest instincts, its
constant exalting of chauvinism, its constant exaltation of egoism, the
lie, the bastardliness, its truculence, all these things which were used by
fascism in its struggle against the labor movement in Italy--all these
things which we know from history. Just look around and you shall see them
being repeated now, except they have been enriched. The only difference is
that fascism in Italy possibly never had the help of any powerful
imperialism--that is the difference.

Then came the tragic events in Germany, and after that the problem in
Spain. The way political events evolved in Spain are an experience.

Those were classic examples. Now then, there is another fact. There are
other countries, and I have not said that the profiles of a fascist
movement are clearly delineated. For it is difficult, it is difficult to
(?discern) this in situations of crisis--circumstances wherein a movement
opposes a government that is striving to change structures and run smack
against the well-experienced reactionary who has organizations, veterans,
great informative means.

Have you not realized that the situation here is that 65 percent of the
radios are in the hands of the right? We have realized this, and I say this
is a tremendous means of mass communication. This media is unceasing in the
houses, in the homes, constantly bombarding. And they also have the great
bulk of the printed media. It is said that there are 60,000, 100,000 more
rightist than leftist newspapers. [daily issues]

They have great economic resources, expert and well-advised persons--subtle
persons who divided their newspaper chains, their different publicity
organs to attack from different angles, different points, ranging from
secure, apparently objective stances to less secure and less objective,
biased stances. And they have organs hammering away with the most dastardly
basest attacks and all kinds of insults. In addition, they have a highly
coordinated strategy. They even feel strong, insolent, for they seek to
make capital of everything that goes wrong.

So, when this happens, in such a specific case as Chile--where we find
fascism--the constitution loses its usefulness when the classic mechanism
for maintaining power no longer serves to maintain control. After that
control is threatened by the fascist attitude and the rightist breaking out
of the constitutional and legal bounds, practicing violence with a view to
preventing structural changes. And all this is going on in Chile. The right
already is striving to liquidate all vestiges of legality to preserve its
class domination. The object of sedition is to overthrow the revolutionary
government--this is clearer than water. This, then, is the situation in
Chile. I do not believe that at this time--I am trying to remember--if
there is any other country where the conditions for the type of struggle
going on in Chile are being set so objectively. I do not believe a movement
similar to the one in progress is occurring in any other country.
Yesterday, I said this was a unique, a virtually rare case.

[Reporter] Gonzalo Betaneouri of EL PUEBLO of Madrid. On Tuesday in
Valparaiso, major, you told me that relations between Cuba and Spain are

[Castro] Do you think these relations are going to be ruined because I
mentioned the case of Spain against the historical examples?

[Reporter] I make no point of that because I cannot major.

[Castro] I was speaking only historically. I do not see...

[Reporter, interrupting[ Major, I ask you...

[Castro, interrupting] It is my duty to talk in those terms. Now what do
you want to talk about? Spain or the relations?

[Reporter] Of the relations.

[Castro] Fine, that is more concrete.

[Reporter] With the two countries having such different political regimes,
how are relations so normal--and tending to improve--in light of the
meetings opened in Madrid on Wednesday to improve relations?

[Castro] Look, I am going to explain something to you. We are aware of the
fact--and it is a fact--that there are absolute and diametrical ideological
positions, absolute and diametrical philosophies and that the philosophy of
the Spanish Government is different from the Cuban Government's philosophy,
ideology, everything.

Now then, what circumstance was there? First, there were many Spanish
families in Cuba --some members of these families lived in Spain and others
lived in Cuba. If you will remember, the traditions after our independence
are quite recent. They do not go back 150 years. They go back a little more
than 70 years, or at least to when the revolution triumphed--about 60 years
after independence. [as heard]

Many Spaniards and their dependents remained in Cuba. Many Spaniards
arrived after the republic was established. And a great bond--not only
cultural, for generally there were already the bonds of the
language--family bonds were established between the people of both

Secondly: Spanish character, independent of ideological positions. You
invented Don Quixote, though I do not think you were the only Quixotes in
the world, and I also think you bequeathed us some quixotic natures--you
left that behind when you left Cuba. Furthermore, we Cuban revolutionaries,
in the best sense of the world, are somewhat quixotic too. There is a
certain Spanish trait that could be called spiritual with the Latin
American countries--and even more so with Cuba, in light of recent
relations owing to the presence of these tens of thousands of families.

And from my viewpoint, this helped the Spanish Government in its resistance
to United States pressure vis-a-vis Cuba. It helped Spain resist the
pressures to break off with Cuba. But, of course, economically--and trade
factors carried some weight--a number of products traditionally consumed in
Cuba came from Spain. In turn, a number of Cuba's traditional
products--tobacco among them--were part of the industrial raw material
trade that was highly important to Spain's economy.

Many factors were influential. But there was a special circumstance: From
our angle, the United States tried to isolate us, and it almost did isolate
us from the entire world. It broke off trade. It obliged all Latin American
countries to quit trading with us. It exerted pressure on many Western
European countries to cease trading with Cuba. So it practically isolated
us, employing much more power than it has now.

Allow me to point out that the political and economic power of the United
States has diminished a lot during the past 12 years. Today, for instance,
Japan is an industrial power that fights for markets and constitutes a
formidable competitor of the United States. That was not the case in 1959.

Europe greatly developed its industry--but naturally, it has a kind of U.S.
penetration in this field. Nevertheless, it has problems unique to its
region and it fights for markets, also competing with the United States. In
other words, our situation was very special. And this motivated Cuba's
endeavor to preserve the few trade sources it had in the world--it was a
necessity. It was these conditions and factors that determined our
preservation of diplomatic and trade relations with Spain. There have been
difficulties and problems, but you asked me, I said the relations were
normal, good. In point of fact, we have had relations with many other
countries, notwithstanding their social system and political concept.

If the United States had not pressured those countries, they would not have
been obliged to break with us. We were not the ones who invented severing
trade. It was the United States. And it began by breaking off trade with
us. Thus, all this breaking off of trade is not part of Cuba's policy, but
a policy imposed by the United States through its numerous allies in the
world. We believe it was worthy of Spain to resist those pressures, for at
times the pressures were strong. You can understand that despite the
differences, we are honest enough to recognize Spain's merit in resisting
those pressures. Spain resisted, and it helped us. In this sense, we
consider it a constructive factor, that is how I answer your question.

[Reporter] [Name partially indistinct] (de Castilla) I want to ask you,
major, what role you think the woman should play in a revolutionary
process. Do you believe the woman is a conservative, adverse factor in this
process? I also want to know what you think of "machismo." Is it very much
present among the Chilean women in Chile's present process?

[Castro] As for the woman's role in the revolutionary process, I can tell
you that in Cuba she plays a big role. Women widely participate, an even
increasing participation, through their organizations. And she is one of
the solid forces the revolution counts on, as much in the political as in
the organizational, educational, in many fields. Women also are important
in the struggles for better sanitation and health, and against sickness.
Our mass organizations participate in all this.

As for "machismo," I can tell you that it existed and it still exists
somewhat. There is the problem of idiosyncrasy, and we do not believe that
anyone can suppress this by laws. We believe that women themselves will
have to shake off machismo. This is part of women's and society's goal,
because, logically, it affects them. This is not a question of man's
self-improvement or self-criticism; it is the woman's own struggle to
attain their rightful level of equality, respect and esteem before society.

The classist regimes encourage machismo. And the capitalist system
encourages machismo too. For actually, they see woman as a decoration, an
instrument for pleasure, a (?mare). That is patent of a capitalist society.
No, it does not want to [word indistinct] it is only interested in
business. In other words, the values of a person, (?regarding sex) is
either bought or sold. if it does not net a profit, capitalism is not
intreested. This deforms men and women. Furthermore, the capitalist system
with its inequalities, unemployed women, prostitution and all such factors
helps create a hellish situation within society.

I imagine that you Chileans face the same problems we have faced, but with
its own specific characteristics. According to Chileans, machismo exists
here, but only you [words indistinct]. As for woman's role, we met with the
women here and these meetings were interesting and exciting. But I want to
say something more: I have heard that the reactionaries have tried by all
means to gain ground among the women. How? Well, there are many sensitive
points. Frequently, ignorance is exploited. We related, I do not remember
when, what happened in Cuba--a diabolic invention. It was a parental
authority law. I think it was an old trick. As I believe I read one day, it
was a [word indistinct] which shocked me.

In any case, many of the things we saw employed in the Cuban revolution
were found not to be new, no new invention. For in 1918, at the time of the
Russian revolution, many of those things had been in effect, lies, rumors,
all those weapons. later, these were used in our country, and assuredly
they are applying them here or they will try to.

They tried to sow fear among the women, frequently trying to stir woman's
maternal instincts. They resorted to everything. If they could work women's
religious feeling, they tried. They tried every means--above all fear, and
insecurity. I believe this is part of the political struggle. In any case,
it is decisive to the process to win over the women. And I can say one
thing: If in Cuba the workers were liberated, women were doubly
liberated--as a humble segment of society, as a worker and as a woman. One
must say, examine the conditions under which women lived in our country,
and this means the women, the family, the children.

Begin by considering the fact that more than 50 percent of the girls, the
women, were without schooling, for example. Think what it means for the
country's entire rural population to be without hospitals. What affects
women are unemployment, lack of schools, medical services and, morally, the
problem of prostitution, juvenile delinquency, poor, beggardly children,
the percentage of infants that die before becoming 1 year old. Then there
is the problem of maternity, maternity protection laws, child protection
laws, and the welfare, moral and material laws.

What affects women is lack of job opportunities, lack of opportunity to
study for certain careers and university schools. In a word, women are
affected by discrimination.

Women are exploited as workers. They are discriminated against because they
are women. All kinds of social prejudices affect women. They are despised,
and victims of intolerance. This is a fact. Revolutionaries must face this
situation bravely, though they encounter prejudice, machismo, and all those
things. And these things still exist in our country.

Cases arise in which the revolution takes years to train a woman as a
teacher or as a nurse, then, though we need their services, their husbands
want them to quit work and to come home to have them there as an ornament
and [words indistinct] In a revolutionary process, these problems arise,
and this will be the object of a long struggle, I believe.

But the fundamental role of liberating women must be done by women
themselves, by incorporating themselves into the process and the struggle.
That is how it must be, but it is inconceivable for women not to be in the
forefront of a process of social and revolutionary change. Women are
precisely the ones who will benefit the most in all fields. The
reactionaries will have to be soothing, subtle, and crafty to keep women
ignorant. Nevertheless, I would say that the movement we observed as
massive, enthusiastic, and combative. I am sure that women will join the
process and constitute a very important revolutionary force in Chile.

I do not like to make predictions or prognostications of any kind. But it
seems to me that the women's movement will develop and develop with a
unitary spirit. I think the movement is gaining strength and it will be
strong. The revolution needs this. This is what I can tell you.

[Reporter] (Oswaldo Curze) of Radio Corporacion, Santiago. We sports
reporters are especially interested...

[Castro, interrupting] You did not have to [word indistinct]

[Curze] No, no. We sports reporters were particularly impressed with Cuba's
performance in the last Pan-American Games. Comrade Fidel, what are the
broad guidelines of the sports policy of your revolutionary government, of
a revolutionary government?

[Castro] The first step was to do away with professional sports, and
everyone predicted that sports would disappear--there would be a lack of
material encouragement for sports. But from the outset, sports were one of
the objectives of the revolution. Sports were not taken as a means, but as
an end involving the well-being, the recreation, and the health of young

I believe that one of the most horrible things that can happen to a human
society is the lack of physical education, sports. You can ask doctors how
much this has to do with high blood pressure, the heart, all the vital
organs of the body.

Apparently, Chilean women know about physical education, as it can be seen
they are stylish, and I have asked if this was due to the fact they eat a
lot of meat, or exercise, gymnastics.

But anyway, I wanted to say that we consider sports and physical education
part of a cultural, educational program. We have given sports the utmost
support, the utmost development. We formed a school of physical education
teachers and established sports industries.

As a result--but above all, sports motivation [sentence as heard] An
attempt was made to bar us from all tournaments. But we maintained that
trench and remained in the Olympic committee, in Central American sports,
the Pan-American games. Thus, we developed the sports struggle with the
utmost drive. And we did this to the extent that in Cali we made a big
leap. For the Americans were expected to sweep the field.

I believe that a moral issue was infused also to make us feel humiliated.
In my opinion, the United States used sports to create an inferiority
complex among our people--a powerless complex. They would go to an
international tourney and sweep the field. They thought the strong race,
the intelligent race, the super race, and superior social system, would
smash these miserable Latin Americans, for they were backward, second-class
beings, and so forth.

Nevertheless, as for sports--Cuba now has almost 8 million inhabitants.
Those who left are now excluded. Those who remain go forth to contend in
sports as motivated soldiers. They go forth to defend earnestly the moral
value of sport which they possess. And they struggle with tremendous

They did so to the extent that, as we have said before, the United States
was defeated in almost all team games. They had an advantage in swimming.
They are ahead of us in this--not too much--but we shall see, we shall see.
Because in the primary schools and in secondary schools we are building
swimming pools so children can start swimming very early. Some day we too
will have great swimmers.

They invented baseball and yet they lost. They did not go to the world
series being held in Havana--I hope to see at least one game, one game. I
listened to games over the radio for years, and now when the series started
I still had to listen over the radio to see what was happening. I think
there will be an all-star game. I think Cuba has won the series. Anyway,
they are going to pick an all-star team and I believe Sunday night a game
will be played between the Cuban team and the best players of all the other
teams. It should be a great game.

The Americans did not go to the games. You know what they said? That they
had no funds with which to go to the series. Nevertheless, teams from Asia,
Italy, Holland and many other countries went. The Americans invented
baseball, but they did not go to the games.

Then, the Americans invented volleyball and were defeated. They invented
boxing, and were defeated in Cali. They invented basketball, and were
defeated. They did not invent soccer, but they were defeated in this also.
(?that's what I heard), I believe so. [words indistinct] In other words,
they were defeated by our athletes in all the team games they had
invented--it was not just defeat in games like baseball--which they
consider a professional sport--but also in volleyball, nonprofessional
volleyball--men's and women's.

They were defeated in nonprofessional sports, put to the test. Since sports
have developed in Cuba, they can no longer sweep the field. Let us say we
are another small trench defending a Latin American feeling--in the sense
of a downgraded, inferior race, and all that. All this despite the great
man, better said, the great hunger which there is in Cuba--that is odd, no?
[Castro chuckles] Do you not think this is odd, for us to beat the United

And do you know where we get our athletes? It is not at the maternity home
that we feed them well. They come from the great mass of the people. A
revolution improves conditions for developing many things. When the
revolution triumphed, we established that each child in Cuba should get a
liter of milk. Chile established a half-liter. We were able to do that,
although you are a wealthier farming country. And this is reflected in
better health. Now, gastroenteritis, tuberculosis, many diseases which
biologically affect the people, and the lack of shoes and such are
virtually nonexistent. And this is despite all the campaigns, all the

Furthermore, there is not a single new car. One arrives in Havana and one
sees many old cars. He who believes that progress brings only neon signs
and new cars--him with a consumer's mentality--can rest assured that he
will not understand Cuba. He who penetrates into the very heart of our
people and sees the humane work our revolution has accomplished can indeed
understand our country. This was done by well-known Chileans who left Cuba
deeply impressed.

Several days ago, I talked with the rector of Concepcion University and the
rector of the Northern University. I asked what impressed them. They really
were impressed. I wanted to know what angle. It was the human angle, the
human solidarity seen everywhere, the people's unselfishness--many, many
factors, moral factors. Do not ever try to measure the revolution by what
it gives the masses materially.

Although countries are poor they can distribute more, but not in plentiful
quantities as the United States and the developed countries. The developed
countries have a lot, but still there are children who die of starvation or
for lack of medical assistance. This does not happen in our country. We do
not have the vast abundance of an industrialized society, but no child dies
for lack of medical care.

There are no orphans, no abandoned children, no beggars, no aged in the
street, no woman who has to live from prostitution. There are none of those
things in our country. We have won great humane victors which have given
the human being great dignity. He who strives to measure the effect of the
revolution by any material benefit--benefits only the industrialized,
so-called consumer societies have--is mistaken.

In our country, among all young children, all the young people, 500,000
scholarships have been awarded. They are 500,000 young people,
university-age youths. Here you have the problem that 90,000 want to enter
universities, but you have no space for all of them.

Then, too, how many secondary school graduates have the opportunity to go
to the university? How many sixth-grade students, regardless of where,
graduate from that grade but do not remain in school to take higher
courses. In Cuba, if there is secondary school space available, students
are given scholarships. For 1972, we have created space for 20,000
secondary school scholarship students. By 1973, this will increase to
30,000 and by 1974, this will be 50,000. We are embarking on a vast
educational effort. This is reflected in our young people--in their
attitude, patriotism, culture, spirit for work. This is a big human factor,
effort which undoubtedly will create a much better generation, a generation
free from inhibitions, free from complexes--all those terrible things a
child suffers from in a class society.

For in such a society a child finds himself barefoot, poor, hungry, without
toys, or anything, while another child has everything, an excess of things;
a house, sometimes two houses, and every material thing, everything.
Children suffer.

But this does not occur in our country. No child is unprotected. There are
many cases when a worker, better said, a family, a husband, pays the rent
and he works on his own. Suddenly an accident happens. He dies and the
family is left in the cold because he is not included in a union retirement

For such cases we have social security. It immediately takes charge of the
family, is responsible for aiding it, paying its expenses. Thus in our
country there is no child, man, woman, aged or young person who is
unprotected. And our young athletes are the new generation. Though we do
not have much, what little we have is well distributed or at least we
strive to distribute it in the best possible way.

Everyone has the essential things. Pursuant to that principle the more we
get the more everyone gets. The new generation already is making a name for
itself in sports. The new generation will have to contend with the
Americans in the future.

But I want to add something: The United States, which in the past has won
easily in sports, now has to worry. It is taking steps to see how it can
hold Cuba back in sports, how it can keep Cuba back in sports, as this is
part of the U.S. cultural plan: to make others inferior. This is part of
its political instrument. Sports has become its political instrument for
making our people inferior. It is concerned with trying to stem Cuba's
advance in sports. But I think it will fail. I am sure of it.

[Reporter] Maj Fidel Castro, Jose Antonio Rodriguez Costeira, of the
Spanish newspaper YA. My question seeks to reenter the theoretical field.
Lately a new power instrument has emerged which is described as the
revolutionary progressive left. These are the military, or a group of
military. I would like--asking you to look to the future--to pose two
questions. To me these could be two problems. First, what would be the
regeneration or succession in power, and second, what would be the base
support or the communication between the bases and the power?

[Castro] I believe that is too theoretical. To tell the truth, I frankly
did not understand it. If you do not put it into more popular vernacular I
am not going to understand.

[Reporter] Well then: I would like to refer to specific countries--the case
of Peru, for instance. You say there is not perfect communication between
the bases, the Peruvian people, and the government--a regime that is moving
toward a socialist, progressive system. My question is: How can that
initial lack of communication be overcome?

[Castro] I think that there can be no revolutionary process if, as a
general principle--it does not matter if the aim is to accomplish the
utmost, the very best by law in a human society--it is not linked.
Everything must be linked to the masses.

In the specific case of Peru, according to our information, they have been
striving to create social mass mobilization or mass incorporation

As far as I know, I do not know how successful they have been in attaining
their purpose of linking the masses to the revolutionary process.
Nevertheless, I believe they are aware of the need to establish those
links. That is what I can tell you because that is all I know.

I do not know if there will be enough time, if there will be an
opportunity, to learn much more about their ideas in this regard when we
talk to the Peruvian leaders. Of course we have no agenda for the meeting,
though I imaging topics of interest to them and of interest to us will be

[Reporter] Bernardo Caceres of television channel three.

[Castro] Is he the same person? Yes? A different one?

[Moderator] Right.

[Reporter] Major, in Chile the Popular Unity government is striving to
consolidate our revolutionary process respecting bourgeois laws. However,
some groups are trying to accelerate the process, frequently ignoring the
bourgeois laws. Do you think the action of those revolutionary groups is
actually constructive and effective for the revolution?

[Castro] I would reply that I believe that all leftist forces should unite
under one program and a common strategy. [applause]

[Castro] I will not say one single word which would serve to condemn any of
those forces, and I will not say one single word that would tend to divide
any of those forces, because I believe it is my most basic duty as a
revolutionary and a polite person not to speculate politically on matters
which could harm the revolutionary process, for I am, above all else, a
revolutionary. I have hopes that life itself will teach us these things
since the secret of our success is unity: The art of uniting, working, and
advancing. It is not enough to unite; we must also advance. That was
decisive for our country. [applause]

We also experienced our reactions, and the struggle was violent. As I
explained, armed gangs were organized against us throughout the island for
years. We suffered hundreds of infiltrations and arms drops. In fact, we
had to face all this, and, of course, all that was not published. We were
always alert for any attempt to divide us.

I neither exhort nor dishearten the Chileans in this respect. You all know
our ideas about many things. We have our opinions about parliaments. We
explained this extensively yesterday when we said, concerning parliament or
any other historically anacronistic institution, no one will suppress them
before they can be suppressed; no one should suppress them after his is
able to suppress them; and no one should try to suppress them before they
can be suppressed. [as heard]

We also have our ideas about the so-called bourgeois freedom of the press,
in which the owners, the wealthy, those who have access to the embassies of
the big capitalist empires, can count on every means to sow distrust,
spread poison, and so forth. This does not happen in our country because
such means belong to the people and are at the service of the people.
[applause] Finally, we would like to say that we have abolished certain
institutions, but not all of them. We abolished the bourgeois parliament
and the so-called freedom of the press. But there are other institutions we
have not abolished, such as the mass organizations; we have not abolished
armed institutions. On the contrary, we have developed powerful armed
institutions, perfectly equipped, and having high technical and
professional efficiency. Let it be known that the socialist revolution does
not abolish armed institutions, because our revolutionary and socialist
country needs them to defend itself. This should clear the matter about the
institutions we suppress and those we reinforce within the state
institutions. [applause]

[Reporter] [name indistinct] Major, how would you describe the cooperation
offered by the intellectuals to the Cuban Revolution and what is the role
of the writer in the struggle to carry out socialism?

[Castro] Let me ask you this: What do you mean by an intellectual?

[Reporter] The intellectual worker.

[Castro] Who are the intellectual workers?

[Reporter] The writers and artists, the artisans.

[Castro] What artisans?

[Reporter] Those who work on ideas, for example.

[Castro] The sculptor, the artist--are these the only intellectuals? Are
not the investigators, the doctors, the engineers, the university
professors, the high school professors, the teachers, also intellectual
workers? Why should we only consider the writers and artists to be

I believe that that is an erroneous interpretation. In our country we
consider the teacher, the professor, the investigator, the scientist, the
sculptor, the artist, the poet, the novelist--all are considered to be
intellectual workers, in a broader concept. We aspire to the day when all
will be intellectuals.

I want to answer this, because I know what you mean, but I also know what I
want to say. We aspire to the day when every man will participate in manual
and intellectual work. That is an aspiration of the communist society, as
we also aspire to the disappearance of the state. At first, it was
difficult for me to understand this concept. Later, however, I observed how
equality was becoming a reality, as the doctor stopped being the "witch
doctor" of the tribe, or the poet or the artist stopped being the "witch
doctor" of the tribe. (?such concepts) did prevail, unfortunately. They are
part of the underdeveloped societies, intellectually underdeveloped
societies, lacking universal knowledge. Many intellectuals and artists
often isolate themselves from reality. We had such experiences.

If you ask me what the intellectual and the artist should do, I answer that
they should identify themselves with their people and their cause, and with
the best aspirations of humanity, and struggle for them. We believe the
intellectuals and artists should (?strive) for the better world of
tomorrow, and fight with his pen, his intelligence and his art. I do not
believe in apolitical art, like the many other things that we have said
there that we do not believe in. Many pretend to appear as conscientious
critics of society. One must be revolutionary, one must be in a position to
change that society and fight for such a change. It is often easy to play
the role of conscientious critic, without any identification with the
process: A sort of separate caste. We have known such types in our country;
those who identify themselves with the process and fight for it, and those
who consider themselves alien to it, and are, in fact, sponsors of the
cultural ideas of the developed societies, whose circumstances and problems
have nothing at all to do with the problems in our countries, which are
quite different.

Is there anything else you want to know? I interrupted you to find out what
you meant. I protest that only a sector of the intellectual workers is
considered as such. The teacher and the professor were not considered as
intellectuals. [passage indistinct] about children's literature. How much
children's literature is there in Latin America? We have seen many aspire
to the title, but how many have tried to write for children, to make
movies, television and literature for children? How many prizes have we
given teachers for having written the best pedagogic text?

Would it not have been right to involve the education process in the
intellectual work and promote contests not only for movies and poetry, but
also for children's texts? That is why we protested at the Congress of
Education and Culture in Havana (?because we considered) they were all
intellectual workers. Someday in our society everyone will be an
intellectual worker. There will not be one poet; there will be thousands of
poets. There will not be one painter; there will be thousands of painters;
and there will be no need to award anyone such prizes, because such
endeavors will be a phase of (?development). Culture is not yet universal
because the participation and benefits of artistic creativity are not yet

We believe that all these things [words indistinct] today; nobody invents
anything alone. Already, the greatest achievements of the creativity of the
intelligence, the great technical feats, are the result of teamwork. In the
future it will be very difficult to decide among millions of creative
people who is the best, and the individualists will tend to disappear,
because we all have some individualism within us.

I also have hopes that someday there will be no leaders; that there will be
a time when nobody will have to be a leader and nobody will have to support
the conditions and circumstances imposed on a leader's life. The day will
come, as a result of the development of human society, when problems will
be solved in quite different ways, and such difficult tasks will disappear.
[words indistinct] the thousands of persons who want to see their president
everyday, with thousands of problems, and who fail to understand that the
heavy load of work and pressure his work involves is practically

My experience on this trip has demonstrated how one is overwhelmed with
programs and ceremonies. They schedule 6 additional [word indistinct] in 30
hours. Neither the voice, the vocal chords, the lungs, nor I believe even
the heart, can stand all this. I do not know how it has been able to
resist. I believe it is because I have trained it to resist. In fact, I
plan to donate it to a museum of natural history [laughing in background],
with a little sign that will read: "This is the heart that stood the visit
to Chile." [more laughter] Now, was that all you wanted to know?

[Reporter] Yes.

[Castro] All right, then, and please excuse my interruption, but I wanted
to clear up a matter of (?conception).

[Reporter] Felicia [name indistinct] of EL CLARIN. Major, during your visit
you have held talks with the representatives of our armed forces and you
have also become acquainted with them. What (?impression) do you have of

[Castro] I spoke about this yesterday, and gave my impressions frankly, and
what I said yesterday, I confirm tonight.

[Reporter] Patricia Mayorga of the Magazine RAMONA.

[Castro] What is the magazine RAMONA?

[Reporter] It is a magazine dedicated to the memory of a young communist
girl named Ramona Parra, who was murdered. My question is: (?Chile) has
recently defined itself as revolutionary. What, in your opinion, should be
the aim of a revolutionary youth publication?

[Castro] To create an awareness in the youth. It is just beginning here. I
believe I said it before when I spoke about the role of the revolutionary
newsman. I do not believe that it is necessary to repeat each of the
opinions already voiced. I wish to say that the highest priority now in
Chile, in my opinion, goes to this process; a publication for the youth to
create an awareness in them to become a part of the struggle; an instrument
of the vanguard.

[Student] [word indistinct] (?Chester Hutchinson) of Iceland.

[Castro] Are you here as permanent correspondent?

[Student] No, as a student and also to witness the process.

[Castro] You are then, also a visitor and observer of the process? Then, we
are in a similar status. This will be a question from one observer to
another observer. [laughter]

[Student] You have called yourself a revolutionary...

[Castro] [Interrupting] I have not called myself a revolutionary, life has
done that. I merely described myself as one.

[Student] At the same time, you said you wanted to have relations with any
nation having an independent policy. It seems to me there could be a
contradiction if we were to consider two conditions: a nationalistic one
and a revolutionary one. The question actually is, if tomorrow the fascist
governments of Argentina or Ecuador were to offer you good relations....

[Castro] [Interrupting] Why do you call the Ecuadorean Government fascist?
What right do you have to judge the people and a government? On what basis
do you say that? (?Is it because that) government was in favor of the
admission of the PRC to the United Nations and the expulsion of Taiwan, all
of which was not agreeable to the United States? Now, I am scared, for I
expected to stop over in Ecuador [laughter] I will have to suspend that
trip then. [Words indistinct] we plan to discuss technical problems there.
In this case, however, since we are going to discuss technical problems,
then we will try to make a technical stopover in Ecuador. Right? Now, go

[Student] At the same time, in having technical relations with a country,
one can also fall into certain inconsistent noncompetitive situations, such
as is done by the Soviet Union, for example, in Bolivia, now that it is
helping that country, or as Communist China does with its aid to Pakistan.

[Castro] [Again interrupting] I believe you are going to have to make some
contact with the leaders of those countries and ask them, because I cannot
reply regarding those problems. I told you what our position is, the
position of Cuba, of the Cuban revolution, in relation to the Latin
American nations, when they asked me what our policy regarding relations
is. We considered the requirement concerning a truly independent
government. There are different types of independence. Let me tell you that
the thing that could be most troublesome to U.S. imperialism today would be
for some countries to challenge the accords imposed by them in its colonies
ministry, the OAS, and establish relations with Cuba. For the rest do not
waste your time, for those nations unconditionally at the service of
imperialism are not going to bring up the question of relations. It is
merely a theoretical matter. Thus, our policy [word indistinct] absolute
independence. We evaluate specific facts. In our opinion, a fact of utmost
importance was the expulsion of Taiwan from the United Nations. It
constituted a great victory against imperialism. Let me tell you that three
Latin American nations besides Cuba contributed decisively to this: Chile,
Peru and Ecuador. All of this constitutes a process that actually does not
please the United States.

Do you want an answer from a true observer of the facts, and not a
theoretician in an ivory tower making appraisals of the problems of the
world? I ask because it is not the same to be on the battlefield as it is
to be a distant observer of the battle. It is not the same to express an
opinion about certain things as it is to face the problems affecting our
nations. Therefore, I am a revolutionary of principles, not a dogmatist. I
guide myself by Marxist principles, and I can assure you there are no
contradictions in our visit to Ecuador, and that there would be no
contradiction if the Ecuadorean Government were to wish to establish
diplomatic relations with Cuba.

[Student] Could it not help the national bourgeoisie...

[Castro] [Interrupting] The [word indistinct] of the national bourgeoisie
is obedience to the dictates of imperialism, not challenging such dictates.
[Passage indistinct] you apparently seem to be affected a little by that
excess of theoretism that affects many Europeans who are unable to
understand our world. This is my frank opinion, and I assure you that there
is no fascist government in Ecuador. It may be a government that may have
contradictions and other problems, but it cannot be described as fascist.
Well, it is not a revolutionary government. Is the government of Iceland a
revolutionary one? Do you have landowners? Do you have industrialists
there? Is it a government of the people or of the proprietors?

[Student] No, Iceland is a very special case. There are only 200,000
persons inhabiting it....

[Castro] [Again interrupting] Yes, but are there any proprietors?

[Student] There are very few proprietors.

[Castro] Is the system a communist one?

[Student] [answer indistinct] [laughter in background]

[Castro] Let me tell you one thing: The capitalist governments are all
repressive. No capitalist government is a government of the people. Let
this be very clear. The government in the capitalist nations is in the
hands of the classes that own the means of production. All class societies
are repressive. This, however, does not mean they are fascist. Let us not
confuse the definition. But you did not finish explaining what happens with
the 200,000 Icelanders. Who owns the fishing business in Iceland?

[Student] It is partly private and partly public.

[Castro] What other industry do you have there, shipyards?

[Student] Yes, and we have small industries.

[Castro] Are there any big industries?

[Student] There are none, except one, aluminum.

[Castro] Does it belong to the state?

[Student] No.

[Castro] Is the power industry a property of the state?

[Student] Yes.

[Castro] Do you have a steel industry?

[Student] Very small.

[Castro] Mechanical industry?

[Student] Very, very small. [laughter in background]

[Castro] Is it then a socialist or a capitalist country?

[Student] Well, it a country along the same line as those in Scandinavia.
The difference now is that we have a government which includes communists
and it has a policy of accusing the Yankees who have interests there. It is
not a revolutionary government, but rather reformist.

[Castro] Reformist? But will it eliminate the Yankee bases?

[Student] I do not believe so. [laughter]

[Castro] Because it does not want to or because it cannot? Because we
cannot eliminate the one there [presumably in Cuba]

[Student] [Words indistinct] that it does not want to.

[Castro] Then, it is not a government of the people?

[Student] Well, it is in the sense that it has a majority of...

[Castro] [interrupts] Is it a fascist government?

[Student] It is not fascist.

[Castro] You do not have Yankee bases there?

[Student] There is only one Yankee base, the same as they have in Cuba.

[Castro] What did you say? Well, I explained the difference very well. You
said you do not want to eliminate it, and I said we cannot eliminate it in

[Student] Of course, the Icelanders also say they cannot because [laughter]

[Castro] But you told me the Icelanders say they cannot, but that you
actually think they do not want to. Now, I said we could not. Now, I ask
you if you really think we do not want to. Answer.

[Student] It would be the same as if 20,000 persons were to die in Santiago
as a result of the smog. I do not think it would be that many, but...

[Castro] [interrupts] You have not answered me. You apparently think we can
take the Guantenamo base from the North Americans.

[Student] If you have to take it, you will take it from them.

[Castro] We want to take it from them, but we cannot do so. And this could
be described as a great provocation, madness. We, who have the
responsibility for the lives of 8 million Cubans, do not engage in a
fruitless war. We do not engage in fruitless adventures, least of all to
satisfy the criterion of theoreticians who spend their lives speculating
throughout the world. Anyone who says we can and should try to take the
Yankee base by force from the United States should be disqualified as an
observer. I wish we could do so.

[Reporter] Claudio Aguirre, of the magazine COMPANERO. This question is not
from one observer to another observer, but from one militant to another
militant. There is one thing that always concerns a revolutionary; that is
the organization of its vanguard party. In the Cuban Revolution, the
vanguard party was organized according to socialist concepts. I would like,
comrade, for you to refer to this experience, which could be of great value
to us.

[Castro] Nowhere in the world do two things happen exactly alike.
Generally, in our country a group of fighters was organized, a movement, a
program; the work began and we were successful. The movement that generated
this struggle was much greater than our own organization. [Words
indistinct] we merely promoted the unification of all this force;
therefore, in the case of Cuba it was not a party that created a
revolution, but a revolution that created a party. [Words indistinct] least
of all to think that the revolution must not be directed by a vanguard
party. The specific case of Cuba and the circumstances that prevailed were
quite different. [Passage indistinct] We organized a force, a political
movement [words indistinct] it led to a movement of masses that overwhelmed
the political organization. [Words indistinct] The fundamental, the
logical, the principal thing is that the vanguard political organizations
(?initiate) the revolutions. [passage indistinct]

[Reporter] Oscar Riera, of EL CLARIN. [interruption] [apparently question
disregarded. The student from Iceland is heard]

[Castro] Is the Icelander upset? [laughter] Icelander, are you upset? I had
no intention of upsetting anyone. Well, since the dialog is over, go ahead
and speak. [words indistinct]

[Student] [Words indistinct] that the revolutionary position is absolute,
without compromises, or not?

[Castro] [Words indistinct]

[Student] It would be much better if you invited me to Cuba.

[Castro] It would be quite discourteous on my part not to grant you such a
request. Go to our ambassador and ask for a visa. And what about the fare.
Do you have the money for the fare?

[Student] I wish I did. [laughter]

[Castro] Well, you know we are poor, do you not?

[Student] Yes, but perhaps we could arrange something. [laughter]

[Castro] Perhaps there may be an empty seat on the plane, and we would not
lose anything by your occupying it. Speak to our ambassador and see if your
visit to Cuba can be arranged so that we may continue our argument there.
If you want, we may even take a trip to the area around the Guantanamo
base. [laughter]

[Student] Thank you very much.

[Castro] I have tried to answer all your questions as best I could, and I
hope you have been satisfied with my answers. [applause]