Cuban Retiree Suggests Re-Printing Fidel Castro’s “Predictions”

By Cafe Fuerte

Fidel Castro in a recent public appearance.
Fidel Castro in a recent public appearance.

HAVANA TIMES — A respectable elderly gentleman is enjoying his retirement in Cuba’s city of Sancti Spiritus in a very peculiar manner. Aramis Arteaga Perez says that, since retiring, he has spent the better part of his free time (which, we can assume, is all the time) re-reading speeches, interviews, reflections and articles by and with Fidel Castro over time.

Delving into Castro’s political literature, our devoted reader has become impressed by how many of the predictions and warnings made by the former leader have become reality. He is so enthused by Castro’s alleged clairvoyance that he has approached Granma to suggest that they celebrate their 50th anniversary by publishing pamphlets of the illustrious retiree as part of efforts to provide the population (especially the young) with political and ideological instruction.

An Active Imagination

“This proposal would be well received by readers and it would be a nice gift from Granma to Cuba’s youth, who have just held their 10th Congress, on the occasion of its 50th anniversary,” Arteaga explains in his missive, published in the newspaper’s “Letters to Readers” section.

Arteaga does not reveal the profession or trade with which he previously earned a living, but there is no doubt he’s been – and continues to be – a very willful and imaginative man. The gentleman from Sancti Spiritus, however, may require a better guide to review some of the Comandante’s speeches from 1959 on.

He should start with the gem of a speech delivered on July 26, 1959, at Revolution Square: “Under no circumstances will the people go hungry, because, after we’ve used every last inch of soil to grow crops, after our factories are working at full capacity, the people will not go hungry, for we will have cassava, plantains, yucca, rice and all of the food the people need.”

Or perhaps this statement from October 2, 1963, made at Havana’s Chaplin Theater: “We have to develop an agricultural system that has nothing to envy those of the most developed capitalist countries, we have to do even better. The advantage of socialist production, where all resources are in the hands of the State and can be destined correctly, cannot be matched by any private producer.”

And let us not forget this other treasure from February 1, 1964, during the opening of the National School for Soils, Fertilizers and Cattle Feed. “Our livestock industry can produce even more profits than the sale of 10 million tons of sugar. In 10 years, we can produce more than 30 million liters of milk a day and slaughter some 4 million heads of cattle every year. We have the conditions to achieve this in our country. If we reach these goals, the value of that milk and that beef will be more than the worth of 10 million tons of sugar, even if it’s sold at six cents a pound. That’s what the livestock industry can mean for us.”

Political Inventiveness

There is a whole slew of similar, sterile “predictions” made by this tropical Nostradamus, everything from the drying out of the Zapata Swamp to the Energy Revolution that was to be brought about by electrical generators and more efficient cooking utensils, to say nothing of the Third World War he dared predict, convening parliament, when he was already a sick, paranoid man.

That Granma should have decided to publish such a proposal makes one think that there is more than one ideological strategist thinking about how to please the Comandante, who will turn 89 in a few days.

For the old and patient Arteaga is going to continue reading and discovering new things, and his passion for speeches, political mobilizations and writing letters to Granma appears to have no limit. We are talking about a regular contributor to the newspaper of Cuba’s Communist Party, an expert in the pamphlets issued by the power elite, as one can easily confirm through an Internet search.

On March 21, 2014, he wrote to quote a speech by Raul Castro and express dissatisfaction over soap shortages: “After reading the magnificent address delivered by the First Secretary of the Party’s Central Committee, Army General Raul Castro, and following the debates held by the work commissions aired on television, I confirmed that every problem has a solution or at least an explanation. This is why I dared write this column again, to reiterate my concerns and proposal in connection with the dissatisfaction most of us feel about the sale of washing and bathing soap in Cuban pesos.”

What his letters show most of all is that we are dealing with an inveterate dreamer, a strange version of the man committed with the revolutionary project. Arteaga is part of Sancti Spiritus’ Jose Marti University for the Elderly, which organizes competitions on historical dates. Most of its 154 members are also part of a committee of mothers and fathers who called for the release of the Cuban Five, and held cultural activities and visited schools and workplaces every month, demanding the release of the three spies who remained in US jails, until Obama returned them to Raul Castro in exchange for Alan Gross on December 17 last year.

By the looks of it, Arteaga’s pension is more than enough for him, for, in a letter he wrote in March of 2014, he publicly suggested that part of the expenses had by the University for the Elderly be financed by the “contributions that retirees make to the union.”

There is no question whatsoever that Arteaga is an ingenious man, a patriarch from Sancti Spiritus with a knack for political invention, a more than blessed mind set to the task of continuing to spin the yarn of Cuban socialism. See for yourselves in the letter below, which suggests republishing the spiels of the Comandante (a.k.a Mr. Moringa) on a daily basis. It’s no joke.

FIDEL’S PREDICTIONS AND WARNINGS

In an interview published by this newspaper on June 27, young Elian Gonzalez told journalist Lissy Rodriguez Guerrero that he enjoyed reading Fidel’s writings very much. I was happy to read this because it demonstrates that we, the elderly, are not the only ones interested in studying the political thought and prophetic statements of the Commander in Chief, to continue defending our socialist system – that there are other sectors of the population who do the same.

Since retiring, I have been devoting most of my free time to re-reading the speeches, interviews, reflections and articles of the revolution’s historical leader, and I am very much impressed to see that many of his predictions and warnings have come true.

Recently, the press recalled his speech during an open tribune held in the Havana municipality of Cotorro on June 23, 2000, where he spoke of the unjust sentences imposed on the Cuban Five and, with the self-confidence that has always characterized him, said: “I will only say one thing: they will return.”

I could quote hundreds of similar predictions and warnings I’ve come across. Some are currently being divulged in the Round Table program on television, as Granma did years ago and should do again, to contribute to the political and ideological education of our people, particularly the young, who haven’t had the opportunity to hear or read these materials, part of the history of the revolution and what we ought to know to defend it.

I write this column to propose that the editorial staff of the newspaper consider this proposal, which would be well received by readers and constitute a nice gift to Cuba’s youth, who have just celebrated their 10th Congress.

Aramis Arteaga Perez
305 Frank Pais St.
Sancti Spíritus


8 thoughts on “Cuban Retiree Suggests Re-Printing Fidel Castro’s “Predictions”

  • I just don’t get how anyone can blame all of the failure of Cuba to thrive on the US embargo. The US is but 1 country, and the embargo did not stop Cuba from trading with other countries, even to being supported by the then Russia. And even with the Soviet support, Cuba never made any real economic gains. Farmland lies fallow, going to brush; house and buildings are beyond saving, yet lived in because there is no other housing; Cattle and other products simply “disappear”; Cuba cannot even feed their own people from their own country.

    The Castros sure did a bang up job alright, the Castros seem to have banged up the Cuban people pretty badly while lining their own pockets.

    Such potential, and such waste.

  • Here’s a couple of examples of what you accept as fact just because Fidel said it: President Reagan alleged that more than 1,000 Cuban troops were in Grenada. Fidel said it was less than 1,000. Since no other third party was present to corroborate either story, we will never know who was telling the truth. What we do know is that Fidel had every reason to lie. His version should certainly not be accepted as fact. Reagan said the runway was built for military purposes. Castro said it was a civilian-only airport being built. The thickness of the asphalt and the length of the runway met military specifications. Again, Fidel’s version can not be accepted as fact….unless you are an idiot.

  • Good point. Its important to note that much of what he predicted, including what he said about beef and dairy production, was done well after the embargo was in place. Carlyle was right to describe castro as megalomaniacal

  • I understand your necessity for spending large amounts of time in the loo . It’s good that you do save an enormous amount to post here at HT..
    I do not expect converts in those reading Fidel’s speeches for the first time but I do know that he was right on the money on a great many things.
    This one stands out ; in the speech he gave around the time of the U.S. Grenada .invasion in Oct 1983, he went through all 13 lies in Ronald Reagan’s pre-invasion speech and explained why they were lies in detail .
    This is info that was not made available to the U.S. public by the corporate media for a few obvious reasons but which is a stellar example of what the U.S. is up to in the world and it is information that is short, sweet and totally convincing as to who told the truth about Grenada ( Hint: it wasn’t Reagan, his administration or the U.S/European corporate media.)
    You call this “blather” and “crap” because you cannot put the lie to any one of his very factual points on the Grenada invasion and so must resort to that moronic fact-free language in your post.
    The problem is that you do have to be open-minded and intellectually up to this challenge to your set-in-fiction beliefs
    to read things of this nature objectively

  • Well said

  • The majority of Fidel’s crazy predictions were made AFTER the embargo was in place. You are completely wrong about those of us who do not share your views being unwilling to read Fidel’s speeches or any other nonsensical blather. You seem to believe that after this crap is read or listened to, one should be converted. I do not share your views and, God willing, never will. It doesn’t mean I haven’t spent quality time in the loo reading the material.

  • This article reveals the truth about Fidel Castro. Five whole years after the revolution and four years after the embargo was imposed he was boasting about the successes that socialism was about to bring to the people of Cuba.
    He had by that time recruited Dr. Reginald Preston from the Rowett Research Institute in Aberdeen to spearhead the development of the beef industry. Hence his confident prediction:
    “In 10 years, we can produce more than 30 litres of milk per day and slaughter some 4 million head of cattle every year. – That’s what the livestock industry can mean to us.”
    Fidel Castro recognized that the embargo need not affect agricultural production when he said that Cuba could produce 10 million tons of sugar per year.
    What are the consequences of the Castro family regime’s plans for agriculture and the application of socialist management principles?
    The beef supply is miniscule and does not permit the average Cuban to buy and eat it at all – and that is not a consequence of 6,700 cattle disappearing in Santa Clara under the socialist management system.
    The sugar industry has reduced to 15% of 1988 level of production.
    Chicken has to be imported frozen, from Mexico, Brazil, Canada and THE USA!
    Fidel Castro Ruz spoke in 1959 prior to the introduction of the embargo of:
    “the people will not grow hungry, for we will have cassava, plantains, yucca, rice and all the food the people need.
    The embargo does not affect the production of the crops he listed. But it was necessary to introduce food rationing.
    Fidel Castro had the conceit to consider that he knew the answer to all economic challenges – and nobody DARED to disagree. He declared:
    “The advantages of socialist production where all the resources are in the hands of the State (ie: me), and can be destined correctly cannot be matched by any private producer.”
    That typifies the arrogance and ignorance of Socialismo!
    As one of those who regularly read his “reflections” on the last two pages of Granma, his unique combination of megalomania and paranoia was frequently evident. I recall his endeavor to educate the readers about the Canadian form of government when his socialism soaked mind illustrated either a total lack of
    comprehension of a parliamentary democratic system OR A DELIBERATE ENDEAVOR TO DECEIVE AND DENEGRATE a political system which might have greater attraction to Cubans than the socialist/ communist dictatorship which he and his sibling had enforced.
    Mention of the Round Table – a TV program names Mesa Redondo which nightly at prime viewing time occupies three of the channels under the smarmy host one
    Randy Alonso Falcon – described as “Director General” reminds one of one of the series of interviews given by Fidel some 3 to 4 years ago when his befuddled mind was self evident and even Alonso Falcon was lost for words. The program was censored, but found its way on to YouTube. Even for his critics like me, it demonstrated why Granma as the official organ of the Communist Party of Cuba has to dig into the archives to find any clarity in Fidel’s views.
    To answer any socialist thinkers who may deplore my use of the words megalomania and paranoia to describe Fidel:
    megalomania:
    obsession with the exercise of power, especially in the domination of others
    paranoia:
    unwarranted jealousy, or exaggerated self importance
    OXFORD English dictionary

  • I have several books of Fidel’s speeches from the early days and he was quite knowledgeable about the past , the present and was also quite prescient in his predictions on imperialist behavior.
    Of course any predictions he made about the economy BEFORE the embargo can now only be considered wrong if you choose to ignore the fact that the embargo prevented a successful Cuban economy AS IT WAS DESIGNED TO DO.
    I doubt that any of our resident counter-revolutionaries would have the intellectual stamina or curiosity to read Fidel’s speeches.
    It’s not their way to read what the opposition has to say.
    I have statistical evidence to show this is true …but it would be as unreadable and boring as Fidel’s speeches would be for them .
    So I’ve been told.

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