Miguel Díaz-Canel, President of Cuba, Nicolás Maduro, President of Venezuela, and Evo Morales, Former President of Bolivia send messages of solidarity to the people of the United States and the organizers of People's Summit, an alternative to exclusionary Biden’s Summit of Americas.
Mexico’s left-wing President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has condemned the illegal US blockade of Cuba as a “type of genocide” and “tremendous violation of human rights.” At his daily press briefing on the morning on June 6, López Obrador was asked about his decision to boycott the US government’s Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles, California. The Mexican president, known popularly by the acronym AMLO, explained that he refused to attend in order to protest Washington’s exclusion of Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. López Obrador denounced the blockade that the United States has imposed on Cuba for more than 60 years, in flagrant violation of international law.
The Summit of the Americas has begun in Los Angeles and the Tower of Babel that Biden built is already tottering. Since June 6, the civil society forums have been in session and clashes between those who support the hegemonic role of the United States and those who defend the sovereignty of the Latin American peoples have not ceased. In these spaces, the discourse of hatred towards those arbitrarily excluded by the U.S. government has prevailed. It was a scenario prepared down to the smallest detail since not only were the governments of Nicaragua, Cuba, and Venezuela excluded, but their civil society representatives. At this point, the most visible case is the 23 Cuban artists, scientists, and social leaders whose visas were not processed to prevent them from attending the Peoples’ Summit. The objective is to make the reality of Cuba and the other states invisible, to replace it with a different one that justifies the permanent aggressions these peoples suffer. That’s why the organizers have invited other political actors, disguised as civil society activists, whose speeches are not only in line with the U.S. policy of interference but are designed in the State Department or the office of some Senators and Congressmen.
For the Peoples of our Region, the Failure of Biden’s Summit of the Americas Would be a Welcome Event
I applaud the decision by Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador not to attend this week’s so-called Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles and hope that by Wednesday a majority of the nations in our region would have joined him. However, I am hoping that unlike President Lopez Obrador who is still sending the Mexican foreign minister, other nations demonstrate that their dignity cannot be coerced and stay away completely. Why do I take this position? If the threat by the Biden Administration as host of the Summit not to invite Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela, all sovereign nations in the Americas’ region, was not outrageous enough, the announced rationale that the administration did not invite these nations because of their human rights record and authoritarian governance is an absurd indignity that cannot be ignored.
The summit convening in Los Angeles next week is yet another proof of the authoritarian and anti-democratic character of the elites that rule the United States. The exclusion of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela from the meeting from the outset confirms this. This is an extremely serious fact, which leads to other very serious exclusions as well.The United States has disregarded the consensus of non-exclusion that had been reached, when Cuba had already participated in the VII and VIII versions of the Summit of the Americas in Panama and Lima after a general clamor of the governments and peoples of the region. This means that Washington does not understand, or does not want to realize, that the era of neo-liberal hegemony, when it could make and break countries and governments as it pleased, is over.
In a recent interview, Brian Nichols, the U.S. assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs, was asked the question that is on everyone’s mind ahead of the June 2022 Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles, California: Will three particular countries in Latin America (Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua) be invited? Nichols responded with neither hesitation nor equivocation that the answer was no. Speaking on behalf of President Joe Biden, he further added that countries whose “actions do not respect democracy”—as the U.S. government views these three countries and others like them—“will not receive invitations.” Nichols’ seemingly offhand comment, said with the usual arrogance of U.S. officials and calling the three countries “regime[s that] do not respect [democracy],” sent a shockwave through the region that the U.S. was likely not expecting.
Cuba has once again hosted the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean that make up the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America-People’s Trade Agreement (ALBA-TCP) for their 21st Summit. The main objectives of Friday’s meeting, held at the Palace of the Revolution in Havana, was to share common development strategies and analyze the regional political situation. ALBA-TCP is currently made up of 10 countries, following the reincorporation of Saint Lucia in the last edition of these summits, also held in Havana: Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Saint Lucia.
I saw with my own eyes the celebration of worker solidarity and the indefatigable defense of the Cuban Revolution as waves of workers walked with signs and costumes and Cuban flags past the iconic images of Ernesto “Che” Guevara on the Ministry of the Interior building with the words he may be most famous for accompanying his image, “Hasta La Victoria Siempre,” or “Always onwards onto victory,” and another of Camilo Cienfuegos on the adjacent Telecommunications Building with the words “Vas Bien, Fidel,” or “You are doing well, Fidel,” underneath the image. Any picture or video captured of the May Day 2022 parade would reflect an unabated stream of masses of people holding banners, waving flags or scarves, and dancing to a vibrant live band between the billboards on one building at the entrance to the Plaza that read “Cuba vive y trabaja (Cuba lives and works)” and the imposing 109-meter tall José Marti memorial that overlooks the plaza.
The seventh iteration of the Symposium on the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases was held May 4-6, 2022 in Guantanamo, Cuba, near the 125 year old US Naval Base located a few miles from the city of Guantanamo. The Naval Base is the site of the infamous US military prison that, as of April 2022, still holds 37 men, most of whom have never been tried as their trial would reveal the torture to which the US has subjected them. 18 of the 37 are approved for release if U.S. diplomats can arrange for countries to accept them. The Biden administration has released 3 prisoners so far including one who had been cleared for release in the final days of the Obama Administration but was kept imprisoned for 4 more years by the Trump administration. The prison was opened twenty years ago on January 11, 2002.
The Workers Summit of the Americas meeting, in Tijuana, Mexico, offers a space to join with all the peoples of “Our Americas.” We will counteract the OAS Summit of the Americas organized by the U.S. Department of State in Los Angeles. The countries of the continent besieged by the USA (Venezuela, Nicaragua, Cuba, among others) will not participate in the OAS farce. The Workers’ Summit gives us the opportunity to invite our comrades in struggle from North America who want to participate. Tijuana is a meeting place with the progressive forces of the South and the North at a moment when the working class is facing the most unprecedented challenges in the history of humanity.
In short, the U.S. imperialism and its allies had already turned the world into a lawless wild west. Since the September 11, 2001 attack on New York, the U.S., at the instigation of its military industrial complex, had put its war machine into high gear, attacking one country after another and bringing death and destruction to many countries of the world, especially to those in Latin America and the Middle East. This period has witnessed the eastward expansion of U.S. and NATO military bases into 13 European countries and even a westward expansion of NATO into Latin America by making Colombia a global partner of NATO, and, according to New York Time, the presence of U.S. military personnel in 173 countries of the world.
On May 16, the Biden administration announced new measures to “increase support for the Cuban people.” They included easing travel restrictions and helping Cuban-Americans support and connect with their families. They mark a step forward but a baby step, given that most U.S. sanctions on Cuba remain in place. Also in place is a ridiculous Biden administration policy of trying to isolate Cuba, as well as Nicaragua and Venezuela, from the rest of the hemisphere by excluding them from the upcoming Summit of the Americas that will take place in June in Los Angeles. This is the first time since its inaugural gathering in 1994 that the event, which is held every three years, will take place on U.S. soil. But rather than bringing the Western Hemisphere together, the Biden administration seems intent on pulling it apart by threatening to exclude three nations that are certainly part of the Americas.
Havana, Cuba - Today, the government of the United States announced several measures, which are positive but of a very limited scope, regarding Cuba associated to the granting of visas, regular migration, flights to Cuban provinces, remittances and adjustments to the regulations governing transactions with the non-state sector. Taking into account the nature of such measures, it would be possible to identify some of the promises made by President Biden during the electoral campaign of 2020 to alleviate the inhumane decisions adopted by President Trump’s administration, which tightened the blockade to unprecedented levels and increased the “maximum pressure” policy applied ever since against our country.
The United States will host the Ninth Summit of the Americas June 6-10 in Los Angeles, California with the theme of “Building a Sustainable, Resilient, and Equitable Future” for the Western hemisphere. This Summit comes at a time of growing disenchantment in Latin America and the Caribbean with an inter-American system rigged to advance US corporate interests, attack left and left leaning governments, and once again plunge the region into US-NATO cold war politics. The Biden administration’s approach to the June Summit, by failing to recognize the firm regional commitments to sovereign equality, integration, and engagement with a multipolar world, has turned the planning and implementation of the Summit into a space of North–South confrontation.
Bolivia's President Luis Arce warned that he will not attend the next Summit of the Americas if the United States excludes Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela. “Consistent with the Bolivian Plurinational State's principles and values, I reaffirm that a Summit of the Americas, which excludes American countries, will not be a full Summit of the Americas. If the exclusion of sister nations persists, I will not participate,” Arce tweeted. “Bolivia bases its international relations on the diplomacy of the peoples, with inclusion, solidarity, complementarity, respect for sovereignty, self-determination, and collective construction of a culture of dialogue and peace,” he added. In the past week, President Joe Biden's administration confirmed that he would not invite Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela because these countries "do not respect" democracy.