Globe, Latin America

US and its hatred towards Cuba

The economic crisis is serious. Hatred towards Cuba is even greater, with funds that should be set aside to benefit people being spent instead to finance hostile actions against the island.

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Sinay Cespedes Moreno

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After criticising Congress lack of leadership on the economic problems facing the US, President Barack Obama signed an executive order on the 9th November giving government authorities 45 days to come up with a savings plan.

However while many sectors are carrying out cuts, there is much evidence to suggest that in a country where 14 million people are unemployed and that sees daily protests against the economic system, initiatives are being funded to foment subversion against the Cuban government and the people.

A recent example took place in October, when the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) went ahead with preparations for a celebration feast for the awarding of the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize to Cuban counterrevolutionaries Oswaldo Payá and Oscar Elías Biscet, taking it for granted they would win the prize.

To this end a total of 250,000 dollars were approved for activities that would take place in the United States Interests Office in Havana, with 100,000 t-shirts printed with the would-be prize recipients on them, on top of a background displaying the flags of both countries and the slogan “Cuba’s time has come”.

Oscar Elías Biscet

Among paraphernalia – being given away were balloons, flags, watches, key rings, celebratory themed bracelets and, of course, wages for the journalists assigned to cover the event which never took place as the prize went to somebody else.

The budget also included money set aside for the suits that the would-be Nobel recipients would have worn in the ceremony. These people have been promoting destabilisation plans in Cuba for years, encouraged by US government officials as well as their relatives.

In the end the prize was won by Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf (President of Liberia), Liberian Leywah Gbowee (coordinator of the NGO Women Peace and Security Network Africa) and the Yemeni activist Tawakkel Karmen.

Oswaldo Payá

US-funded and organised actions against Cuba have been denounced by the island’s authorities for years and have been covered up by the great media enterprises that operate from Washington.

On occasions, however, those very same US government bodies have admitted to having funded projects in favour of what they call “spreading democracy”.

As part of this assistance, for the 2011 fiscal year alone, the US government approved the setting aside of 62 million dollars for political, social and media actions in Cuba, 34 per cent more than in 2010.

It is interesting to see how despite 14 million people being out of work, 46 million living below the poverty line and constant protests against the failing economic system, “help” for Havana is growing.

What does this help mean? Well it means that this money is being used to reinforce work being carried out by the US Interests Section in Havana and the Office for Cuban Affairs, whose duty it is to direct policy towards its neighbour state from the US State Department.

Almost half of those 62 million dollars is given to Radio and TV Martí, which transmits to the island in violation of regulations established by the International Telecommunications Union.

For 2012 the Obama government suggested it would use 20 million dollars to strengthen projects designed to promote freedom in Cuba, principally through USAID.

Those funds are administered principally by US organisations and businesses based in the State of Florida that send money and teams to the island in aid of small factions, under the sole condition that they are opposed to the Cuban government.

In June of this year USAID published three announcements for plans relating to freedom of information and expression, as well as support for civil society in Cuba, plans that have 21 million dollars worth of support.

The government agency maintained that 6 million dollars would go towards projects that would facilitate free access to information for Cubans, through new technologies and traditional media.

Another 6 million would be used to fund programs designed to encourage freedom of expression and association for young people between the ages of 12 and 24.

The remaining 9 million would then be used to make local communities, neighbourhoods and other groups aware of their rights and civic responsibilities, develop habits of leadership and to prepare them to participate openly in the development of democracy.

But while annual funding of actions against the largest island in the Caribbean continues to increase, according to percentage figures published by the US Census Office, the poverty rate is at its highest since 1993 at 15.1%. PL.

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