Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


Moscow in Polish to Poland 1700 GMT 24 Jan 74 L

[Text] Fidel Castro, first secretary of the Cuban Communist Party Central
Committee and prime minister of the Revolutionary Government of the Cuban
Republic, has granted an interview to Soviet TV. Comrade Castro was asked
by the reporter to comment on the role to be played by the visit CPSU
General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev will pay to Cuba at the end of January in
the further consolidation of the friendship and cooperation between our two
countries and parties. [Castro recorded in Spanish fading after a few
sentences into Polish translation]:

"We have been hoping for a long time that Comrade Brezhnev would visit
Cuba, and we have been waiting impatiently for a long time for the
opportunity of having Comrade Brezhnev visit our country. The relations
between the CPSU and the communist party of Cuba, relations between our
governments and peoples are developing as well as possible. Despite this,
Comrade Brezhnev's visit is of truly historic importance for Cuba. It is
perhaps the most important visit ever paid in the history of our country.
It gives me particular pleasure to say this. Our people are very happy,
full of enthusiasm and very glad about the visit. Our people want to meet
Comrade Brezhnev. They want to welcome him and the Soviet delegation in
order to express their feelings of love, respect and gratitude."

"My personal meetings with Comrade Brezhnev," said Fidel Castro, "have
always been very interesting, very useful from both the political and
purely human point of view. I think that Comrade Brezhnev's visit will
contribute to an even greater tightening of our friendship and to the
continued development of our relations. We derive particular satisfaction
from the thought that Comrade Brezhnev will become acquainted with our
country, our people, with the achievements of our revolution, our
fatherland, and that he will be able to learn personally about the feelings
of our people and about their enormous gratitude and love for the Soviet

The reporters asked Comrade Castro what he intends to show Comrade Brezhnev
in Cuba:

Fidel Castro replied: "We want above all to demonstrate to him the feelings
of our people. We would also like to show him, within the limits of time at
our disposal, the economic and social achievements of our revolution. We
shall visit places of historic interest. We shall open a magnificent school
named after Vladimir Lenin. We shall organize mass meetings. I think
Comrade Brezhnev will be able to become acquainted with our land and our
sea. We shall show him everything we can without putting too much strain on
his time. In addition we hope to carry out a wide-ranging exchange of views
on many questions affecting our relations."

Comrade Fidel Castro has visited the Soviet Union many times, and not only
Moscow, but many other towns. What did he remember best?

"Yes indeed," answered Castro, " I have visited the Soviet Union four
times. I have visited various localities and regions of your country. Apart
from Moscow, I have visited Leningrad, Kiev, Volgograd, Uzbekistan,
Krasnoyarsk and Baykal. I visited the Bratsk GES while it was being built,
and I have been to the Urals, the Crimea, the Black Sea coast, to Georgia
and the environs of Moscow, the forests near Moscow and other localities.
The enormous successes achieved by the Soviet Union were visible

"I was full of the greatest admiration for the achievements accomplished in
the development of the economy, science and technology, and in the social
sphere. In a very few years, in a few decades, the Soviet Union has
achieved what other countries would have taken centuries to achieve. But
what astonished me most during my visits to the Soviet Union was not so
much the material and economic successes as the Soviet people themselves.

The reporter asked what characteristics of the Soviet people Fidel Castro
regards as most outstanding:

"Their general culture and above all their political awareness," replied
Fidel Castro. "Their fraternal human feelings, hospitality, the love of the
fatherland, their proud sense of internationalism. The Soviet people work
with dedication, and an unbounded loyalty to the ideas of Lenin in
characteristic of the Soviet people. One might say that a new type of human
being has been formed in the Soviet Union, as befits a society which has
constructed socialism and is building communism. We can see, sense and
visualize this. We can indeed see a new type of man in the Soviet Union. We
have seen this during our meetings with the Soviet people, Soviet experts,
scientists and technicians. They are all people dedicated to their cause,
to their work. They are very capable and know their profession very well.
This is why we do not have the slightest doubt that the Soviet people will
score enormous successes in the future, even greater than those they are
scoring at present.

"We have celebrated the 15th anniversary of the Cuban revolution,"
continued Fidel Castro, "and we can already see the beneficial influence of
the revolution on our people, and, in particular, on the new, growing
generation. Indeed, the socialist revolution does produce an entirely new
type of man, a man of purer, more noble endeavors, of an entirely different
attitude toward life. I can see these traits very clearly every time I meet
Soviet people."

The reporter than asked Fidel Castro a question prompted by the fact that
Soviet TV had filmed the last voyage to its permanent anchorage of the
heroic schooner, Granma. What were Fidel Castro's thoughts as he steered
the schooner 17 years after the heroic landing from Granma, during the 70
minutes the ship took from Havana to its permanent anchorage? What did he,
the hero of Granma, think?

"Above all," replied Fidel Castro, "I recalled the comrades who were with
me at the time of that famous voyage, and of course all my comrades who
died in the struggle. I remembered all the difficulties which we had to
overcome in those years, full of faith in our people, in the future of our
fatherland, because we did indeed have to overcome collosal difficulties.
It is not easy to visualize this now. But in fact we have to cover 1,500
miles in that little schooner. And finally," said Fidel Castro, "I ought to
tell you with satisfaction that we know that not a single sacrifice was in
vain, that many of us were lucky in the sense that we have witnessed the
implementation of the dreams and ideals for which we had struggled so
stubbornly in those years."

Asked if he would like to convey a message to the Soviet people and the
Soviet nation, Comrade Fidel Castro said:

"I should like to convey to the Soviet people our warmest feelings of
friendship, love and solidarity. I also take this opportunity to convey
greetings to the Communist Party leaders, members of the Central Committee,
the Politburo and the Soviet Government. We shall soon be granted a great
honor when Comrade Brezhnev arrives here.

"I should like to convey to him, through Soviet TV, our special personal
greetings, to express to him our joy over the fact that he will soon be
among us, to tell him about the great enthusiasm of the Cuban people, about
the great happiness over seeing him here in a few days, when he arrives in
our country.

"I want to assure Comrade Brezhnev that throughout this stay he will be
happy in Cuba, that he will be happy among us, stressed Fidel Castro. I
should also like to think Soviet TV for the opportunity to address the
Soviet people. I thank you very much," said Fidel Castro in conclusion.