When the government of the United States determined to use against Cuba the economic, commercial and financial blockade, it considered that that would be “the wonderful formula” to destroy the Cuban Revolution.
Among the “theoreticians” who thought that way was Lester Mallory, who held the position of Assistant Secretary in the Department of State, when referring to the benefits of the blockade and the objectives that were expected to be achieved with it, he wrote on April 6, 1960:
“The majority of Cubans support Castro… There is no effective political opposition… The only effective way to make him lose internal support (to the government) is to provoke disappointment and discouragement through economic dissatisfaction and hardship… All possible means must be put into practice quickly to weaken economic life… by denying Cuba money and supplies in order to reduce nominal and real wages, with the aim of provoking hunger, despair and the overthrow of the government ”
Mallory’s letter has already turned 58, but there are still politicians in the United States who believe it is the correct formula to apply. It is as if they continued using the typewriter, instead of the computer, as if they were watching television in black and white, instead of in colour, as if to move they used an expensive 1960 instead of a 2018.
The visceral hatred against the Cuban Revolution determines that they live in obsolescence, with 58 years of delay.
We cannot deny that living under the unjust and capricious regulations of the blockade is uncomfortable and causes serious economic damage to our country; however, when analyzing the Mallory note, we can conclude that this type of policy has failed and the United States has not has managed to achieve the results it expected from it.
Mallory acknowledged in his note that “the majority of Cubans support Castro”, which is something that has not changed and is decisive in applying a punishment policy such as the blockade, aimed among other things at suppressing support for the revolutionary government.
“There is no effective political opposition”, this appreciation of the assistant secretary can be said to maintain the same panorama that he observed 58 years ago.
As for the effects that were expected from the blockade, we can say without fear of making mistakes that the effect has been quite the opposite, he hoped “to provoke disappointment and discouragement, through economic dissatisfaction and hardship”. The economic problems suffered by the Cuban people, which are not few, have not fostered disappointment and discouragement. The revolutionary government, in the most serious moments of the blockade, was concerned to maintain a minimum of conditions to affect as little as possible the lives of Cubans.
The rebellious spirit of our population knew very clearly who was responsible for their problems and instead of disappointment and discouragement developed their inventiveness and spirit of struggle against the problems we faced, showing an iron determination to continue on the side of the revolution.
The last effect that was expected “to cause hunger, despair and the overthrow of the government”. Before each new limitation applied by the government of the United States, the revolutionary government responded with a counter measure that ensured the subsistence of the people and the maintenance of the political principles that have ruled our revolution from the beginning.
The former president of the United States, Barack Obama, acknowledged the failure of the administrations that preceded him, in the application for more than 50 years, to follow this type of policy. He was looking for another formula to destroy the Cuban Revolution, but he knew perfectly well that the blockade would not succeed because it was an outdated policy.
Without handling very specific data and perhaps only seeing the news that the press offers us through newspapers, television and radio, we can say that, despite the difficulties that the blockade wants to impose on us:
• This year we will receive more than four million tourists, which supports the construction of hotels throughout the island and that, within those, a five-star property will be inaugurated called Pakard, in Havana;
• Visits by cruise ships have increased;
• A lot of the population spend their vacations in recreation centres, most of them on the beaches;
• The education centres began their classes on the indicated date, counting the students with the necessary means to receive the teaching;
• Many schools were repaired and renovated for the start of the school year;
• The equipment of some hospitals was improved, and repairs and extensions were also made. This resulted in the health indices of the Cuban population improving. The prestige of Cuban doctors is increasing every day;
• Difficulties with transport are maintained, but work is being done to improve the railways, increase the number of buses that are ready to render service and maintain the streets and roads;
• It has worked hard in the improvement of the water supply, which has solved serious problems;
• It has developed a world-leading bio-pharmaceutical industry;
• We work daily in the establishment of new installations of solar generator panels, and other energy sources. Gas pipelines are being built to improve the service of plants that use gas to generate energy;
• Thousands of homes have been built for families affected by natural disasters and also for new families;
• Telephony and computer services have been considerably expanded, which has improved the communication possibilities of our people.
There are still problems to be solved, some caused by the US blockade and others caused by the blockade of irresponsible people who offer poor service, increase bureaucracy, control trade in agricultural products and their thinking rather than the general welfare of the population is focused on earning them as much money as possible.
The Yankee blockade is obsolete; its effects clash every day with the initiative of Cubans, who in one way or another seek solutions to it when possible. The other blockade, that of the irresponsible, we have to eliminate it as fast as we can; that is in our hands.
Dr Néstor García Iturbe