Strengthen Solidarity in Opposition to US’s Escalating Aggression Against Cuba
The increasing and worsening sanctions enforced by the US against Cuba as announced by its State Secretary Michael Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton on April 17 this year are irrational acts of aggression that should be stopped.
We, members of the Philippines-Cuba Cultural and Friendship Association (PhilCuba) have known about the dire consequences of Cuba’s 60 years under US “embargo.” We are deeply upset with Washington’s decision to activate Title III of the Helms-Burton Act and to re-tighten restrictions. Furthermore, we find President Donald Trump’s threat of “full and complete embargo” and “highest-level sanctions” tweeted on April 30 absolutely unwarranted.
We are upset because, while Washington’s pronounced objective is to overthrow a supposedly tyrannical regime and establish one that is democratic and working by the rule of law, the sanctions that the highest officials of the US are escalating would be asphyxiating the Cuban economy and will cause economic hardships among the people.
Title III of the Helms-Burton Act aimed to block US and other foreign investment in Cuba. The US Congress passed it in 1996, as part of a broad sanctions package against Cuba, but the succeeding administrations suspended its implementation because of strong opposition from the US’s allies. With the activation of Title III starting May 2 this year Cuban Americans can now sue any company that benefited from their private property confiscated by Cuba’s revolutionary government.
While it will benefit members of the exiled upper class that owned nearly all the land and business in Cuba before the triumph of the Cuban Revolution in 1959, enforcing Title III undoubtedly aims to scare companies from doing business with Cuba to isolate the country and cause the collapse of its economy.
Bolton is ridiculous in his announcement of additional restrictions: in setting a cap of $1,000 per three months on remittance of Cuban Americans to their relatives in Cuba, in limiting travel to Cuba other than family visits and in suspending authorization that allowed Cuban companies and banks to do “U-turn” transactions in third countries that passed indirectly through the US banking system. These are reversals of Obama-era reforms, which according to Bolton, “enable Cuba’s colonization of Venezuela.”
Such a charge is definitely absurd but Bolton and other proponents of aggression against Cuba have to devise in defense of the US’s aggressive policy against countries they maliciously labeled as “troika of tyranny.” In the same vein, President Trump himself tweeted that grave threat against Cuba along with sinister catch, “if its troops were not withdrawn from Venezuela.”
PhilCuba slams Washington for these irrational acts of aggression against Cuba. It commits to expose the truth about the US’s drive against Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua.
Oppose US schemes that make life more difficult for the Cuban people!
Strengthen solidarity with the Cuban people!
Reject the wanton use of sanctions as a weapon against an entire people!
Dismantle the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba!