Once again the resolution presented at the UN General Assembly on 1 November 2018 calling for the ‘necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by the United States against Cuba’ received overwhelming support, approved by 189 countries and opposed by only two – the US and Israel. The resolution condemning the US blockade has been presented to the Assembly for 29 consecutive years. The US and Israel are its only die-hard supporters. The blockade began in July 1960 when the US first forced import reductions on Cuban sugar, despite having a set quota. It reflects the US’s attempts to bring about the fall of the revolutionary Cuban government by exerting economic pressure. RIA AIBHILÍN reports.
**Rock around the Blockade(RATB) is a campaign of the Revolutionary Communist Group. It defends socialist Cuba and uses its example as part of the struggle for socialism here in Britain. Here we re-post an important article from the website www.ratb.org.uk about a recent block on RATB’s PayPal account as a result of the US blockade of Cuba.**
Rock around the Blockade has fought off an attempt to use the US blockade to obstruct our work in solidarity with socialist Cuba. Without consultation or warning, the US-based company PayPal blocked our website payment account citing ‘possible trade with Cuba’.
'We must break the blockade of information. There is a lot of misinformation and disinformation about Cuba throughout the world. They are very powerful and able confuse the international public; Cuba is not immune to that. It is because of the blockade of information that the work that RATB does is so important.'
Osmani Castro, Provincial Assembly Delegate
The US is collaborating with other imperialist countries to further tighten the economic blockade of Cuba; despite the opposition this is provoking in the region. On 25th October 2011, for the 20th consecutive time, the UN General Assembly voted 186-2 to end the blockade. The only country to support the US was Israel, which continues its own genocidal blockade of the Gaza strip. At the Bolivarian Alliance for the Latin Americas (ALBA) summit February 2012, a declaration was made against the blockade and Cuba's exclusion from the US-dominated OAS (Organisation of American States). When the OAS meeting came about in April, Rafael Correa of Ecuador boycotted the meeting in protest; leader after leader spoke out in opposition to the US veto of Cuba's presence. ALBA countries, and other leaders made it clear that without a radical change in the nature and structure of the summits, they would not attend again. Even arch-reactionary Pope Benedict XVI on his recent visit to Cuba criticised the: 'restrictive economic measures, imposed from outside the country' which 'unfairly burden the people.' With worldwide condemnation of imperialism's blockade, what does it mean for people on the ground in Cuba? The 'Justice for the Cuban 5' solidarity brigade visited Cuba this February, finding a country defiant and united in the face of this imperialist aggression.
Tuesday 7 February 2012 marked the 50th anniversary of the implementation of the commercial, economic, and financial blockade of Cuba by the United States. Over the years it has cost Cuba’s economy over $236 Billion.The US began issuing sanctions and a partial blockade in October 1960 when the Cuban government began expropriating the U.S. corporations that had controlled most of Cuba's resources and over half of its sugar production before the revolution. The expropriations ensured Cuba’s resources would be produced for the Cuban people and not for the profits of US conglomerates. As expected, any threat to the US hegemony in a region that they view as their ‘backyard’ would be met with severe actions. The initial refusal of US-owned oil refineries in Cuban to refine imported soviet oil was followed by the Bay of Pigs (Playa Giron) invasion, the Cuban missile crisis and continuous terrorist actions committed against the Cuban people by the US. The latter included the introduction of dengue fever to Cuba in 1981 and numerous failed attempts on Fidel Castro’s life.