Planning for a ReColonization of Cuba




T

he Bush administration’s Commission
for Assistance to a Free Cuba, cochaired by U.S. Secretaries of
State and Commerce, presented a report to the president in early
July, 2006. This “Report to the President” (www.cafc.org)
is a  lengthy and comprehensive plan, detailing the steps that
the U.S. government and other “vital actors” will take
to bring Cuba back into the family of U.S. colonies, which now include
some of the Pacific Islands, Puerto Rico, Kabul, and the Green Zone
in Baghdad. 


This plan is much the same as the one for Iraq (which was not publicly
articulated beforehand). By privatizing what used to be done publicly,
it will bring Cuba into the modern, civilized world by creating
a capitalist “utopia.” Private entrepreneurs from the
“international community” (mostly U.S. corporations) and
the “Cuban community abroad” (mostly U.S. citizens), unencumbered
by societal restraint, will save the “longsuffering” Cuban
people from continuing poverty and tyranny while, incidentally,
benefiting themselves. 


The recommendation for the Cuban destabilization activities going
on now is to continue or increase everything, especially the radioTV
projects illegally being forced on Cubans by U.S. airplanes, tightening
the blockade—i.e., fining foreign banks that deal in Cuba transactions,
punishing and rewarding foreign governments that increase or decrease
Cuba trade, and tightening and increasing punishment for travel
restrictions—the cost of which already triples what we spend
trying to trace Al Qaeda funds. 


The funding for all this will be a new U.S. slush fund of $80 million,
increased by $20 million per year, plus all the dirty destabili
zation money (unknown multimillions per year) now being funneled
through AID, NED, the socalled NGOs in Florida and the U.S. Interests
Section in Havana. 


Under the plan, in the future all Cuban communication, electric
power, transport, mining, industry, agriculture, medical, and other
productive enterprise will be privatized and the vital actors (the
U.S. and its entrepreneurs) will build and create for Cuba a water
and sanitation system, a healthcare system, an education system,
a transportation system, a communication system, a shelter system
(homes for everyone), a food security system (a chicken in every
pot), all presumably similar to what we are doing for or to the
Iraqi people. Much more than we are willing to do for the people
of New Orleans. 


Our“ generosity” to the Cubans is conditioned, however,
on their acceptance of a new political economy, which is similar
to our own. There’s very little said about what already exists
in Cuba and nothing about the effects of our blockade and terrorism
against Cubans. It’s as if the institutions, infrastructure,
and protective capabilities that have been created in 45 years of
independence are so insignificant they’re not worth mentioning. 


Not surprisingly, this plan is rife with the usual code words the
Administration uses to manipulate public opinion, such as “democracy”
(commercial oligarchy), “freedom” (of the big fish to
eat the little ones), “dissenters” (most ly a few hundred
U.S. paid mercenaries). The plan is also full of statements about
what changes the Cuban people want (with no supporting evidence),
but says little about any role for them in pursuing their supposed
desires. Indeed, they are treated overall as the objects of a transformation
to be carried out by others. They are seen as helpless and ignorant,
in need of education and training in the complexities of modern
consumer society.  


The plan is to rebuild the Cuban nation from scratch to an eventual
capitalist neocolony similar to those that now exist in Central
America and the Caribbean. Nothing is said, however, about how we
get from present reality to “scratch.” The first six months
are said to be crucial. This is when the Cuban Transition Government
(CTG) will be set up. Clearly this means a puppet government, such
as was created for Afghanistan and Iraq. Funding will consist of
an imposed IMF structural adjustment loan, other international bank
loans, international investment, especially by the “Cuban community
abroad,” and direct U.S. taxpayer help where deemed appropriate. 



Cuban Constitution 



M

uch concern is expressed in the plan about
Fidel Castro’s “strategy” for succession. Cuba has
a constitution, but no mention of it is made in the plan. Nor, seemingly,
is one to be written for them, as was done in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The plan says that Castro’s strategy is that his brother becomes
president when he leaves office, which the plan’s vital actors
will not allow to happen. 








The
Cuban Constitution was developed at local and provincial levels
in the early 1970s and was approved by 97 percent of eligible Cuban
voters in 1976. Following the “rectification” period in
the late 1980s, it was substantially amended in 1992 by the same
process and a more than twothirds vote in the National Assembly
as required. In 2002, in response to the Varela Project, it was
reaffirmed by a vote of over 8 million, 95 percent of the adult
population. 


This Constitution establishes a nonpartisan participatory/representative
electoral system, which is not similar to ours, but in some respects
is more accountable and democratic. At the local and provincial
levels there must be two or more candidates for each office. At
the national level it’s a parliamentary type system where any
candidate for the 619, 5year National Assembly seats must receive
at least 50 percent of the vote to win office. The executive (called
the Council of State, analogous to our president and cabinet) consists
of 24 members of the Assembly headed by a president and vice president,
which presently are the duly elected Castro brothers. 


The Constitution provides that if the president is unable to continue
or leaves for any reason, the vice president will take over until
the National Assembly elects a new president. The Assembly and the
Castro brothers have frequently said the succession will occur per
the Constitution. The only way it could be stopped or changed is
by  outside military intervention. Thus, the U.S. plan is,
in effect, as Cuba’s Assembly President Richard Alarcon has
stated, a declaration of war. It’s a combination of unsupported
generalities, gross exaggeration, insults, hypocrisy, and outright
falsehoods. It’s an ultimatum, which acknowledges no possibility
that there may be other views and perspectives about Cuba. 


It’s unusual to publicly issue beforehand a plan for the subjugation
of a sovereign nation. Americans should ask themselves why our government
is issuing a plan like this at this time. Clearly, pander is an
important factor. The South Florida business community, which consists
of people with all kinds of ancestry, including European, Latin,
and Cuban, tends to see Cuba as its competitor in its main industry,
tourism. It funds most of our national and Florida antiCuba politicians
and receives from them in return a brutal blockade, a vicious antiCuba
policy, and more taxpayer money in return. 


Many of these people see the present Administration as their last
chance to retake power in Cuba. At this point the overbuilt South
Florida real estate market is looking like a lead balloon and things
are getting a little “iffy” in the construction, mortgage,
banking, tourism, stock markets, and other areas. As suggested in
the plan, business conferences are being held frequently in Miami
to plan the takeover of Cuba and they are already arguing among
themselves about the spoils. 


The plan alleges that Cuba and Venezuela are “intermeddling”
in other Latin countries’ internal affairs (which is something
the U.S. would never do?). No Latin country has complained of such
Cuban actions and no evidence has been produced to support such
a charge. It’s true that Cuba sends physicians, nurses, and
teachers to help poor people in Latin America, the Caribbean, and
Africa, but only on request of their governments. The truth is that
after a century of U.S. corporate exploitation, some countries in
South America are becoming independent nations. The Cuban Revolution
stands as a shining example that such can be done. 


The plan was written and assembled by over 100 experts from various
government agencies, but the CIA is not among these. There are plenty
of good reasons to believe that the CIA, at least the agents who
know something about Cuba, agree with previous Pentagon investigations
of Cuban military installations that Cuba constitutes no risk to
our national security. Nevertheless part of the plan is being kept
secret on national security grounds. 








We
now know that the U.S. has been allowing antiCuba terrorist groups
like Alpha 66 to conduct arms training sessions in the Everglades
National Park and elsewhere. Recently, local authorities in Ft.
Lauderdale and Los Angeles have happened on large arms caches intended
for another Cuba invasion. The weapons include roc ket launchers,
bazookas, Uzis, grenades, and machine guns. The possessors have
been charged, but it’s unlikely they’ll ever be tried
publicly. In the Los Angeles case the defense of an Alpha 66 member
with over 1,500 war weapons in his home is that they were provided
by our government. 


There are several possible scenarios that could be used to publicly
justify another military intervention in Cuba. One of the most unfounded
and dangerous aspects of the U.S. propaganda campaign is the assertion
that the Cuban Revolution has been the work of one man (“the
tyrant”) and the people on the island are desperate to return
to corporate rule. 


Several years ago a poll indicated that 25 percent of Miamians of
Cuban ancestry want to return to Cuba when the leadership changed.
Thus, there’s a distinct possibility of a boat exodus from
South Florida to Cuba, possibly tens or hundreds of thousands of
people. In the Clinton years, Washington, Florida, and Miami had
contingency plans to prevent this by using the Coast Guard and various
agencies. This is nowhere mentioned in the plan, but it can be inferred
that such contingency plans no longer exist or will not be used. 


Any intervention in Cuba will lead to a brutal war and a harsh,
and bloody occupation/insurgency, which will end only when the U.S.
withdraws completely. 





Tom
Crumpacker is a member of the Miami Coalition to End the U.S. Embargo
of Cuba.