Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC

Castro Hails Progress

Algiers PRELA in Spanish to PRELA Havana 2020 GMT 12 May 72 C--FOR OFFICIAL

[Text] Oran, 12 May--By Miguel Rivero, special correspondent--Maj Fidel
Castro once again extolled the heroic struggle of the Vietnamese people,
saying that Cuba and algiers are dutybound to struggle to stimulate and to
set an example for other countries.

The chief of the Cuban revolution delivered an impassioned speech to a huge
crowd in Oran, the second major city in Algeria, the third country he has
visited on his current 10-nation tour of Africa and Europe.

Accompanied by President Houari Boumediene, Fidel Castro arrived at Oran's
main square at 1650 hours. Tens of thousands of persons had gathered there
to await the arrival of the Cuban delegation and its hosts.

Shouts of "Fidel" and "Boumediene" rang out in the broad square as the
crowd waved Cuban and Algerian flags as well as huge banners reading "long
live the Cuban revolution" and "long live 'Che' Guevara."

As though the event was taking place in Cuba, the Algerian radio stations
broad- cast the 26 July anthem to go into network and carry the speeches of
Fidel Castro and President Boumediene.

Fidel Castro began speaking at 1714 hours. He noted that it would have been
impossible 12 hours ago to hold such a massive popular rally because in
1960 the Algerians were still fighting the Cubans were closely following
the struggle from day-to-day. [as received]

Fidel stressed the steadfastness and patriotism of Algerian people, whose
struggle awakened wide approval in Cuba.

Cuba and Algeria won their independence almost simultaneously, he said, and
now we can convey to Algeria the solidarity of our revolution and work

The Cuban prime minister said he was genuinely moved by the Algerian
successes in all fields, and that both Algeriers and Cuba were dutybound to
encourage and serve as an example for other countries.

He extolled the heroic struggle of the Vietnamese people in Vietnam. There,
he said, the Yankee planes drop tons of bombs every day and commit
thousands of crimes.

Fidel Castro also expressed Cuba's total solidarity with the Palestine
people; who are fighting to regain their land, and also with Guinea-Bassau,
where a patriotic struggle is being waged against colonialism.

The Latin American statesman praised the work of the Algerian technicians
in farming and industry, stating that all farming is being cared for
perfectly, "as I am sure the colonialists had never imagined."

He then added: "The colonialists had thought that Algerian petroleum would
not flow without them, but now production has increased, new gas pipelines
are being constructed and the Algerian revolution looks to a splendid

Referring to the technological progress which he observed at the Arzew
chemical complex, he said that prior to this time, one had to go to France
or England to see that, but now this can be seen in Algeria.

Fidel Castro highlighted the fact that the Sahara's gas and oil are being
used advantageously, noting that those resources are being converted into
heat and foodstuffs for the Algerians, because fertilizer is extracted from
the oil.

We feel sure, he added, that Algeria will achieve a great economy and
become a great country but not because oil is the country's main product,
nor because of its iron and energy resources--other countries possess
these, but the colonialists make off with them.

Continuing, he stated: "Algeria shall become great because of the Algerians
and the Algerian revolution." This elicited a big ovation. The three
pillars of Algeria are its technological-educational revolution, its
industrial revolution and its agrarian revolution. The order of the day in
Algeria is "study, work, development and progress." President Boumediene,
he added, is a good strategist because he has synthesized these ideas in
the three directives outlining an educational, industrial and agrarian

Times have changed, he added, in the past, everyone looked at Europe as the
civilized part of the world and look down on our countries. But this is no
longer so. Our people are learning to use their natural resources. He then
spoke of visiting the huge Mers-el-Kebir military base built by the
colonialists, and asked: "Wherefore all those investments and expenditures?
To oppress the people."

Fidel then drew a parallel between his visit to the base and his visit to
the "Ernesto 'Che' Guevara" hospital in Mostaganem, which is devoted to
caring for the people's health. He asked "How many hospitals could have
been built with what the base cost?"

He then told of the money the United States is spending in Vietnam, saying:
"$80 billion is 80 times what the Mers-el-Kebir base cost. How many
schools, factories and hospitals could have been built with that money?"
And he added: And it is not just the money they spend but the money they
force us to spend to defend ourselves."

"Is it that the capitalists' world can be called civilization?" Fidel
asked. And he answered himself with a resounding "no." Socially they have
fallen behind. A society which converts man into a tool, an object, cannot
be called cultured. Such societies have fallen behind us. Revolutions, the
Cuban prime minister asserted, create ties of friendship and solidarity
among people.

Fidel Castro concluded his speech by again conveying to the Algerian people
the fraternal revolutionary greetings of solidarity from the people of

The crowd's ovation with shouts of "Yahia Fidel" "yahia Cuba" (long live
Fidel and Cuba rocked the Oran Square when the chief of the revolution
ended his speech at 1800 hours Algerian time.