By Circles Robinson

Raul Castro, center, flanked by Venezuelan Energy Minister Ali Rodriguez, left and Vice President Rafael Ramirez, right. Photo: Marcelino Vazquez Hernandez, AIN news agency

HAVANA TIMES, July 26 — The commemoration of the attack on the Moncada Garrison (July 26, 1953) is almost always the venue for the year’s most important speech by a Cuban president, setting the tone for the direction of the country.  This year that was clearly not the case.

First Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who had announced his participation, cancelled his trip to Cuba at the last minute because of an intelligence report of a possible attack against Venezuelan territory by the Colombian military.

Venezuelan VP Rafael Ramirez and Energy Minister Ali Rodriguez were on hand for the ceremony.

No mention had been made if Fidel Castro would be present at the commemoration held in Villa Clara but since he has made several surprise public appearances over the last three weeks, including one Friday in Artemisa, outside the capital, the possibility of his showing up was not discarded.

Lastly, President Raul Castro was present, presiding over the activity as announced, but he did not give the keynote speech as most had expected.  NPR reported that it was the first time in 50 years that the Cuban president did not deliver a speech at the July 26th commemoration.

Instead, First Vice President Jose Ramon Machado Ventura rejoiced over the recovery of Fidel Castro and recalled the heroic feat of 57 years ago that sparked the 1959 Cuban revolution.  He repeated a frequent call for greater worker efficiency and savings of energy and resources to combat the country’s economic problems.  He also denounced the threat posed against Venezuela by Colombia and its US ally.


4 thoughts on “No Chavez, No Fidel, No Raul Speech

  • Maybe Fidel was not there in person, but Raul’s silence spoke volumes that Fidel is still in charge. I think the Castro bros are in the middle of a major power struggle. I’m sure Fidel said to Raul a couple of weeks ago, “Shut your mouth, I’m doing the talking around here!” and left to make his rounds around Havana, talking about his silly nuclear war theory. The only reason Raul has not mysteriously disappeared yet (like so many others that threatened Fidel’s super ego & drive for power) is that he’s his brother. Maybe even Fidel has a line he won’t cross, which are not many.
    Also, it is such a shame to see so many VeneCuban’s there today. What a disgrace & fraud Chavez has become. I can’t believe I’m seeing a replay of what happened 50+ yrs ago in Cuba taking place again in my lifetime. I thought the end of these dictators with their deceptions & lies would end with the Castros in Latin America. Boy, was I ever wrong.

  • Anti-communists will never be able to make a proper analysis of anything socialist in this World, simply because they have their narrow, reactionary agendas — which blind them to what is positive about socialism and socialist revolution; at least in their possibilities. But, yes — what is indeed disappointing about yet more ‘bureaucrats on stages making speeches’ here, is that no signal in the least is being given to anyone about any imminent changes to the awful stalinist distortion of socialism, anywhere — a state of affairs which the World still labors under everywhere. Including in the imperialist World, in the negative.

    The cuban stalinists have little time left in which to relinquish their power peacefully, and in an orderly manner — rather than by the usual ‘lowest-common denominator’ method of social and political revolution and outright World war: the end results of which no one can reasonably foresee.

    All Power to the Workers’ and Farmers’ Councils and Communes.

  • Venezuela’s media is over 80% in private or opposition hands so the slam against Fidel and Chavez does not wash in this respect.

    But their is a bureaucracy that has held back and are sabotaging the completion of the revolution. No reason to feel sorry for the Venezuelans because they still have a very active grassroots something the Cubans could learn from, maybe we need the Bolivarianization of the Cuba masses!

    And like president Chavez at least Fidel has spoken out against the corruption and bureaucracy and maybe the time for speeches should be replaced by deeds and action….
    Cuba does need to correct it course soon or Capitalism will come back.

    Rojo Rojito
    Cort

  • Circles, I was too expecting some big changes on the positive side this 26 of July but I keep getting disappointed I guess I am an eternal optimist.
    Raul keeps delaying real and meaningful changes I do not know what to make of this.

    Chavez seems to be going with the full Fidelisation of Venezuela by eliminating all opposition free press that was critical of its government and now he also manage to find the close enemy to the West in Colombia. I am so sorry for Venezuelans. Hope they realized what they are getting into I already think is too late for them to get out of the totalitarian regime that is coming to them.

    Going back to the why no Raul or no Fidel speech I will venture to say maybe they have some disagreement between them and they decided not to do anything for now. Raul seem to me like it was getting ready to do some major aperture with regards to personal freedoms. It appears that Fidel has always been Stalinist with the iron hand.

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