By Manuel E. Yepe
Exclusive for the daily POR ESTO! of Merida, Mexico.
Translated and edited by Walter Lippmann.
It seems that the State Department propagandists, the CIA and other U.S. agencies are not finding it easy to get out of the ridiculous situation they have gotten themselves into with the issue of acoustic attacks against their embassy staff in Havana.
For experts and observers of this type of propaganda at the highest level of government, the denunciation of an imaginary attack against the United States by another country is not something new in Washington. We must remember the explosion of the battleship Maine in Havana Bay; the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii; the incidents in the Gulf of Tonkin in Vietnam and the supposed presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, which respectively served as lying justifications for launching wars against Spain in 1898, Japan in 1941, Vietnam in 1964 and Iraq in 2003.
The first of these invented situations served to inaugurate the imperialist status of U.S. foreign policy by leaving Washington in possession of the vast Spanish colonial empire.
The United States has surprised the world by the naivete with which US public opinion has accepted official versions of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the abominable terrorist act against the Twin Towers. These two fables look more like tales of Hollywood horror and mystery than anything else. The second of these two tales served as pretext for its so-called “war on terrorism” and, as part of it, the curtailment of the civil liberties of the people of the U.S.
As a rule, the Cuban government -which has been one of the preferred victims of U.S. imperialism lately- has avoided responding to each of the media tricks plotted by Washington in order to avoid its further circulation. It has been the facts themselves, and the friends and sympathizers, who have answered them.
In order to attack Cuba, US propaganda has even added to the 20,000 martyrs left by the Batista tyranny imposed on the island by Washington. They’ve added the number of torturers and murderers of the deposed regime executed by judicial sentence of the popular revolutionary tribunals to the triumph of the revolution. They leave out the aggressors and assailants executed because of the invasion of the Bay of Pigs (Girón Beach) sponsored by Washington and the victims of the hundreds of terrorist acts and attacks promoted by the United States against Cuba in recent times.
With these they try to stain with gross manipulation the very clean record of respect for human rights that the Cuban revolution has always maintained.
In the great farce of sonic attacks, which already has the guise of silent comedy, no guilty parties are identified and the alleged victims are not known either because, evidently, they have not existed.
Observers of U.S. politics maintain that Senator Marco Rubio was the one who devised the show so that the great scandal with his hegemonic participation would make him presidential with his sights set on becoming the first Hispanic president of the United States.
Rubio was aware of certain acoustic problems presented by several officials of the intelligence services accredited to the U.S. Embassy in Cuba. There, a lawsuit was being filed against the American Technology Corporation (ATC), manufacturer of the LRAD-RX equipment used by the National Security Subcommittee (NSSC) to communicate with its agents in Cuba who could be responsible for such ailments. This highly-specialized espionage equipment had just been acquired by the State Department for the diplomatic mission in Havana.
Rubio skillfully devised or commissioned the script to be developed for the spectacle of the sonic attacks. His greatest audacity was to involve, as the main sponsor, President Donald Trump. Michael Wolff points out in his book FIRE AND FURY, much has been written about Trump’s “acting like a child, suffering from psychopathologies such as delusions of grandeur and paranoia, that he is an ignorant person who neither reads nor listens and is totally incapable of fulfilling the duties of his office”.
Therefore, it was to be assumed that in a few weeks nobody would remember the farce of Trump’s sonic attacks, which would only have added to the list of his many “eccentricities”.
But the lie took flight and now the US does not know how to get itself out of the mess with as few political casualties as possible.
September 7, 2018.
This article can be reproduced citing the newspaper POR ESTO! as its source.
September 6, 2018
Translated and edited by Walter Lippmann for CubaNews.
Spain’s Penélope Cruz and Mexico’s Gael García Bernal will join Venezuelan Edgar Ramírez to round off the cast of French director Olivier Assayas’s Wasp Network, RT Features and CG CINEMA announced today in a press release.
WASP NETWORK, whose plot is based on the book THE LAST SOLDIERS OF THE COLD WAR by Brazilian writer Fernando Morais, will focus on the story of a group of Cuban anti-terrorists sent into the United States during the 1990s.
Morais‘ book tells the story of Gerardo Hernández, Fernando González, Ramón Labañino, Antonio Guerrero and René González, the Five; and Juan Pablo Roque, another member of the network who returned before the arrest of his companions.
The cast of this feature film will also feature Brazilian Wagner Moura, known for his performance of Colombian drug trafficker Pablo Escobar in the series Narcos.
Winner of the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA (2008), Penélope Cruz released this year the film TODOS LOS SABEN, in which she shares the stage with her husband Javier Bardem, and played Donatella Versace in AMERICAN CRIME STORY: The Assassination Of Gianni Versace, for which she was nominated for the Emmy for Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series.
Gael García Bernal, winner in 2016 of the Golden Globe for best actor in a comedy series by Mozart in the Jungle, starred this year in the film Museo by Mexican director Alonso Ruizpalacios.
Another film project that will deal with the same theme is currently in production by a Canadian team.
(With information from EFE)
Translated and edited by Walter Lippmann for CubaNews.
For a formatted printable facsimile pdf file of this draft click here.
The draft Constitution of the Republic approved by the National Assembly of People’s Power in its ordinary session on July 21 and 22, 2018, and which is now being submitted for consultation to our people, is the result of in-depth work begun in 2013.
At that time, the Political Bureau agreed to create a working group, chaired by Army General Raúl Castro Ruz, First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, with the objective of studying the possible changes to be introduced in the constitutional order. This follows the agreements of the Sixth Congress and the First National Conference of the Party, the process of strengthening the institutions developed in the country, the need to bring the Constitution into line with our reality, the foreseeable future and the other measures that have been approved in recent years; having as an essential presupposition the thought of the historical leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz.
During all this time, an in-depth study was carried out of our history and constitutional tradition, the constitutional processes developed in Latin America in recent years and the experiences derived from those countries that are building socialism, as well as constitutional texts from other nations.
As is well-known, the National Assembly of People’s Power, in the exercise of its constituent power, agreed, in its extraordinary session of June 2, to form a committee among its deputies. Its task is to represent an important part of the sectors that make up our society, under the leadership of comrade Raúl Castro Ruz, with the aim of preparing a preliminary draft of the Constitution of the Republic.
The Commission has worked intensively, taking as a reference the studies carried out previously and the contribution of experts and specialists from various institutions, and after extensive debates presented the National Assembly of People’s Power with a draft Constitution of the Republic.
The text consists of the preamble, 224 articles (87 more than the current Constitution), divided into 11 titles, 24 chapters and 16 sections.
Eleven articles of the current Constitution of the Republic are maintained, 113 are amended and 13 are deleted.
It is distinguished by a coherent and systematic structure, achieving a logical rearrangement of its contents and avoiding its dispersion.
The language used corresponds to the terminology that should characterize a constitutional text and to our political, economic and social reality. The general wording of its contents confers greater flexibility, durability, security and applicability of the Constitution.
The draft reaffirms the socialist character of our political, economic and social system, as well as the leading role of the Communist Party of Cuba.
The concept of the socialist rule of law is incorporated in order to strengthen the institutional framework and the rule of law, including the supremacy of the Constitution.
The economic system being reflected maintains as essential principles the socialist ownership of all the people of the fundamental means and planning, in addition to the recognition of the role of the market and of new forms of non-state ownership, including private ownership.
Of particular note is the development of a wide range of rights in keeping with the international instruments to which Cuba is a party in this area. Those relating to the right to defense, due process and popular participation are highlighted. The economic and social rights are reformulated, in particular, the right to health and education, which are maintained as a function of the State and free of charge, although it is envisaged that the law will define other issues related to them. The content of the right to equality is further developed by incorporating non-discrimination on the basis of gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnic origin and disability into existing rights (skin color, sex, race, etc.).
It provides for the possibility for individuals to apply to the courts for restitution of their rights or for compensation or reparation for damage or injury caused by the act or omission of State organs, managers, officials or employees in the improper exercise of their functions. In relation to marriage, the current conception that it is only possible “between a man and a woman” is modified and defined as being between two persons.
With regard to citizenship, the fundamental change lies in the fact that our affiliation to the non-admission of dual citizenship is changing and, instead, we are proposing to accept the principle of “effective citizenship”, which consists in the fact that “Cuban citizens, within the national territory, are governed by this condition and cannot make use of a foreign citizenship”.
With regard to the organs of the State, an appropriate balance is maintained between them. The figures of the President of the Republic are incorporated as Head of the State and that of the Prime Minister in charge of the Government of the Republic; both are required to be deputies to the National Assembly of People’s Power. The Council of State retains its character as a permanent body of the National Assembly of People’s Power, with greater interaction with it, among other aspects, because the President, Vice-President and Secretary of both institutions are the same persons. A novelty among the State bodies is the National Electoral Council, a permanent institution in this area, and the inclusion of the Office of the Comptroller General of the Republic in the Constitution has been resolved.
As for the local bodies, the provincial assemblies of People’s Power were eliminated and a Provincial Government was established, composed of the Governor and a Council at that level.
The municipalities acquire greater relevance from the recognition of their autonomy, which they exercise in correspondence with the interests of the nation.
The Municipal Administration Council is ratified as the body that directs the Municipal Administration, in charge of an Intendent, a term that is proposed to replace that of President and Chief currently employed.
With regard to the Electoral System, it is maintained that Cubans over 16 years of age have the right to vote, with the exceptions provided for by law. The National Defense and Security Act appears in a Title, which specifies the mission of the National Defense Council, with powers to carry out tasks since peacetime, and the recognition of a Disaster Situation, in addition to the other exceptional ones.
With regard to the mechanism for Constitutional Reform, unlike the current Constitution, the legitimacy to promote it is pointed out and the intangibility clauses are specified.
Special, transitional and final provisions are established for the entry into force of the main issues regulated in the Project, as well as the period during which the complementary rules must be issued and others in force amended.
The consultation process that is proposed to be developed is an expression of the democratic and participative character of the revolutionary state and constitutes an exercise of the sovereign power of the people, which has become the constituent body of the nation, and which distinguishes us favorably from other processes developed in various countries.
This particularity represents a high responsibility of all citizens in the study of the project and in the participation in the popular consultation, as well as in each of the proposals made. It must be borne in mind at all times that the Constitution is a norm that establishes essential and minimum principles and values, which implies not covering and expressing in detail all areas of political, economic and social life.
All the proposals and suggestions made will be duly assessed. We Cubans must be aware of the commitment that the new Constitution of the Republic, forged by the people to give continuity to the Revolution and socialism, implies for present and future generations.
More than ever, the following words of our undefeated Commander in Chief Fidel Castro Ruz are valid:(1)
“One of the things that concerns us, and that must be of perennial concern, is that […] the Constitution that we make be complied with strictly. We cannot have or approve a single one of these precepts that is not rigorously applied. The Revolution cannot create a Constitution, cannot create institutions, cannot create principles that are not fulfilled.
“That’s why it is our purpose once this Constitution has been approved, to fight consistently and tenaciously, so that each and every one of the precepts of that Constitution will be fulfilled; so that no one can ever blame the Revolution for agreeing to laws and principles that were decided but not fulfilled”.
(1) Excerpts from the remarks of Commander-in-Chief Fidel Castro Ruz, Revista Cubana de Derecho, Año 5, No. 11, enero–junio, 1976, La Habana, pp. 54 y 55.
I want the first law of our Republic to be the worship of Cubans for the full dignity of man;
54 (c) to preserve national security;
55 (d) to ensure equality in the enjoyment and exercise of rights and the fulfilment of the duties enshrined in the Constitution;
59.(h) to protect the natural, historical and cultural heritage of the nation; and
60 (i) to ensure the educational, scientific, technical and cultural development of the country.
129.(a) foreigners who acquire citizenship in accordance with the provisions of the law.
ARTICLE 39: The Cuban State shall guarantee the enjoyment and exercise by the individual of the inalienable, indivisible and interdependent enjoyment and exercise of human rights, in accordance with the principle of progressivity and without discrimination. Their respect and guarantee are obligatory for everyone.
161.(i) be deprived of one’s rights only by decision of a competent authority or a final judgement of a court; and
Any evidence obtained in violation of this provision is null and void and those responsible are punished in accordance with the law.
ARTICLE 51: In its prison policy, the State shall promote the social reintegration of persons deprived of their liberty, guarantee respect for their rights and compliance with the rules established for their treatment in prison establishments.
400.The President of the Republic is the Head of State.
(i) the Office of the Comptroller General of the Republic, in matters within its competence;
ARTICLE 190. Delegates have the following rights:
712.ARTICLE 214. In order to be valid, the sessions of the Municipal Assembly of People’s Power require the presence of more than half of the total number of its members. Its resolutions are adopted by a simple majority of votes. 213The National Defense Council shall be composed of the President of the Republic, who shall preside over it, who shall in turn appoint a Vice-President and such other members as may be determined by law.
TITLE XI: REFORM OF THE CONSTITUTION
The numbers incorporated at the beginning of each paragraph are intended to facilitate discussion during the popular consultation and the analysis and processing of the opinions expressed.
Glossary of terms
For the purposes of a better understanding of the draft Constitution of the Republic, the following terms are specified:
INALIENABLE PROPERTY: These are those goods of socialist property of the entire people and those that make up the cultural heritage; they may not be sold, assigned, donated or exchanged under any circumstances.
IMMEMBERABLE PROPERTY: These are those goods owned by the whole people and which are part of cultural heritage; they cannot be seized or confiscated by any authority.
CONSTITUTION: It is the fundamental law of a State. It establishes the essential principles and values of a country’s socio-political organization and contains its political, economic, social and legal foundations, as well as the structure of the State and its relations with individuals.
POPULAR CONSULTATION: A form of participation in which the people express their opinion on a particular issue, without this having binding effect.
ENTITIES: It is used in its broadest sense as a legal entity that performs economic, social, cultural, scientific, etc. functions. Includes non-state actors.
STATE: It is the system of organs through which public power is exercised and includes various functions (legislative, executive, judicial, control, etc.).
SOCIALIST STATE OF LAW: It is the conception of the State that reflects that its structure and functioning are governed by the observance of what is established in the Constitution of the Republic and in the rest of the normative dispositions that make up the legal system.
GOVERNORS: Position with which the authorities in charge of the executive-administrative functions in the province are recognized.
GOVERNMENT: This includes the bodies whose essential objective is to carry out executive-administrative acts. At the national level it is the Council of Ministers; in the province, the provincial governments and in the municipality, the councils of the administration.
HABEAS CORPUS: Legal procedure that safeguards the freedom of citizens from illegal or arbitrary deprivation of liberty and guarantees the right of individuals to go to court to decide whether or not detention is legal.
IMPRESCRIPTIBILITY: It means that the rights over the socialist property of all the people and those that make up the cultural heritage, do not prescribe, that is, do not lose validity over time.
INDIVISIBILITY OF RIGHTS: It means that human rights cannot be divided or fragmented.
SUPERINTENDENT: Position with which the Board of Directors in the municipalities is identified.
INTERDEPENDENCE OF RIGHTS: Recognizes that all human rights are intertwined with each other. For the realization of a human right, the realization of other rights will be necessary; if one right is violated, it is undeniable that others will be understood to have been violated.
LAWS: Although the term literally refers to the normative dispositions approved by the National Assembly of People’s Power, it is also conceived in the text to refer to any type of norm regardless of the body that issues it.
ABSOLUTE MAJORITY: This is the mode of voting in which more than half of the votes are required to reach a decision, taking into account the total number of members of the deciding body.
SIMPLE MAJORITY: It is the voting system by which a decision is taken to obtain more votes in favor than against, regardless of the number reached.
CONSCIENTIOUS OBJECTION: Is the act by which a citizen wields a certain belief in order not to fulfill an obligation or duty established by law.
ORGANS OF THE STATE: It includes all the organs, agencies and institutions that allow the performance of the functions of the State.
PLEBISCITE: Form of direct popular participation, aimed at knowing whether or not to approve a certain political or government act or measure of relevance to society.
PROGRESS IN RIGHTS: It is the possibility of future recognition of rights not understood at a historical moment, without this leading to a setback or regression of those already achieved.
REFERENCE: Form of direct participation, through which the approval, modification or repeal of a certain legal provision of transcendence is submitted to the people for their decision.
UNIVERSALITY OF RIGHTS: Assumes that all people enjoy all human rights, without distinction of any kind.
NOMINAL VOTING: The one that is carried out by indicating each voter’s decision in person when he or she is appointed to the respective list.
I’d like to thank two people who helped mightily to bring this about. Kimberly Sloss, computer technician, without whose help I would never have even thought to take on such a project.
Peter Roman, whose proofreading of a first draft found many since-corrected errors. Prof. Roman is the author of PEOPLE’S POWER: Cuba’s Experience with Representative Government (Westview Press 1999).
Please let me know of any other errors or omissions you may find. I’m happy to correct all errors. I’d rather not argue over small nuances in translation, but will happily read comments, questions or corrections.