The unsustainable position of the empire
by Fidel Castro
Nobody can assure us that in its agony, the empire won’t be dragging human beings down to catastrophe.
As we know, while our species remains alive, everybody has the sacred duty to be optimistic. Ethically, any other behavior wouldn’t be admissible. I remember well that one day, almost 20 years ago, I said that there was an endangered species: Man.
In front of a select group of bourgeois government leaders, flatterers of the empire, among them being the immense well-fed bulk of the German Helmut Kohl and others like those forming the chorus of Bush Sr., less dismal and alienated than his own son, W. Bush, I couldn’t help but express that truth which I was seeing as being very real even though it was more distant than it is today, with the greatest sincerity possible.
While our species remains alive, everybody has the sacred duty to be optimistic.
Turning on the television at about 12:15 at midday, because someone told me that Barack Obama was giving his announced speech on foreign policy, I paid attention to his words.
I don’t know why, despite the piles of dispatches and news I listen to on a daily basis, not one of them mentioned that the guy would be speaking at that time. I can assure the readers that there are more than a few stupidities and lies that, among the dramatic truths and facts of all kinds, I read, hear or see in pictures every day. But this case was something special. What was the guy going to say at that time in this world overwhelmed with imperial crimes, massacres or unmanned planes dropping deadly bombs, that not even Obama, now master of some life and death decisions, was imagining when he was a student at Harvard just a few decades ago?
Of course nobody should suppose that Obama is master of the situation: He merely handles some important words that the old system in its origin granted the “constitutional president” of the United States. At this point, 234 years after the Declaration of Independence, the Pentagon and the CIA still have the basic instruments of the imperial power created: technology capable of destroying the human race in a matter of minutes and the means to penetrate those societies, dupe them and manipulate them shamelessly for as long as they need to do so, thinking that the power of the empire is boundless. They trust they are handling a docile world, without even a single disturbance, for all future time.
It is the absurd idea upon which they base tomorrow’s world, under “the kingdom of liberty, justice, equal opportunities and human rights,” incapable of seeing what is really happening with poverty, lack of basic services of education, health, jobs and something worse: meeting life’s very basic needs such as food, drinking water, housing and many others.
Strangely enough, could anyone wonder, for example, what would happen with the 10,000 dead per year as a result of drug-related violence, basically in Mexico, to which we could add the countries of Central America and several of the most populated countries in the southern part of the continent?
I harbor absolutely no intention of offending those peoples; my purpose is just to point out what is happening to others on almost a daily basis.
There is one question that has to be asked almost immediately: What is going to happen in Spain where crowds are protesting in the country’s main cities against the unemployment of 40 percent of the young people – just to quote one of the causes of the demonstrations of those fighting people? Could it be perhaps that they are going to start bombing the NATO country?
Fidel Castro is the former president of Cuba and writes for Granma. This story previously appeared on Counterpunch.