By Morning Star, London
Cuban Communist Party leader Raul Castro saluted 60 years of revolutionary victory on New Year’s Day and warned the United States that attempts to crush the island were doomed to failure.
“We are a whole people defending our revolution,” he declared. “We are not intimidated by the language of force or threats.”
Mr Castro acknowledged that the “imperial fence was closing around Venezuela, Nicaragua and our country,” with “imperialist forces willing to challenge international law, contravene the rules of international trade and aggressively apply extraterritorial measures and laws against the sovereignty of other states.”
But despite that “we feel happy and confident when we see with our own eyes that the new generations continue building socialism, the only guarantee of national independence and sovereignty.
“The greatest lesson that revolutionaries and progressive movements can draw from the situation that has been forged is that of never forgetting unity with the people and never ceasing to support the most dispossessed.”
He quoted the words of his brother Fidel 60 years ago: “Tyranny has been overthrown. The joy is immense. And yet, much remains to be done.”
He condemned the rise of the right in Latin America, slamming the coup in Honduras and the “parliamentary and judicial coup” that removed former Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff and prevented fellow Workers’ Party former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva from standing in the recent Brazilian elections, “denying him sure victory.”
He demanded freedom for Lula, an end to the judicial persecution of former Argentinian president Cristina Kirchner and vowed that “nothing will make us desist from our solidarity with the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. The aggression against our sister republic must cease.”
Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel welcomed “sunrise on the 60th anniversary of the revolution, yes to celebration, yes to joy, yes to the tireless defence of everything we have raised and built together.”
Greetings came from around the world, with Bolivian President Evo Morales saying: “With the triumph of the Cuban Revolution, the light of hope and invincible will was born for the liberation of the peoples” while Chinese President Xi Jinping praised the Cuban people’s “great achievements in the cause of socialist construction.”