The recent revelations about the USAID’s farfetched scheme to foster a popular anti-government protest movement by infiltrating Cuba’s mobile phone network perhaps bring full circle America’s 55-year campaign to destroy the Cuban Revolution. Fortunately for the people of Cuba, none of these bewildering, hairbrained and often violent schemes – which have included countless attacks on Cuban soil – have succeeded.
“Cuba is neither the hell that our enemies like to pretend it is nor the paradise that our friends wish it to be, but a country which struggles just like many others.” This is the assessment of our Cuban tour guide during the last day of our 10-day, 10-person people to people visit to Cuba in December 2013, led by the mayor of Richmond, California, Gayle McLaughlin.
If viewers use a critical eye, they will see that Hip Hop is in fact an aspect of cultural globalization that has infiltrated the barrios, favelas, neighborhoods, board rooms, billboards, closets, hearts, minds, and psyche of young people in diverse locations around the world. Pick a location anywhere on the globe and I will bet that the young people there have been influenced by Hip Hop. For better or worse.
On a recent visit we learned that Cuba has been raising its fruits and vegetables organically for more than 15 years, using worm and vegetable compost and integrated and natural pest management to raise crops for its people. In the process they have decentralized agricultural production, tripled farmers’ average income, built stronger communities and shown the way to living well after the end of cheap oil.
Ben Caldwell is a mainstay in Los Angeles’ Black cultural district known as Leimert Park. He has had a part in assisting in the careers of many of LA’s most talented artists over the last 20 years, but most notable would be the influence that he and his venue, the Kaos Network, had on the legendary LA artist collective known as Project Blowed.
We celebrate 60 years of failure. Human rights have been converted from a noble goal into an instrument of foreign policy used by rich and powerful nations against the poorest and weakest people of the world.