Blair would not back US war on Cuba, says survey
Campaign News | Sunday, 3 October 2004
CSC shows depth of opposition to George Bush at Westminster
An overwhelming majority of British MPs of all parties, including Prime Minister, Tony Blair, have made written statements declaring that they would not support any military action against Cuba by the United States, illustrating the gulf between US foreign policy and the views of members of the British House of Commons .
A report issued by CSC on 21 Septmeber, reveals that 79% of MPs, who responded to letters from their constituents on the question of aggressive US policy towards Cuba, stated that not only would they not support US military action, but that they also thought the Bush administration should change its policies towards the island.
The vast majority of the 402 MPs who replied in writing also believed that US foreign policy had caused hardship for 11 million Cubans and damaged the country's economy.
In a letter to a CSC member who lives in his Sedgefield constituency, Tony Blair wrote: "We do not approve of military intervention against Cuba."
The survey was conducted in response the increasingly hostile stance of the Bush administration towards the island. In the run up to November’s presidential elections, Bush and senior members of his administration have been courting the anti-Castro Cuban-American voters in the key election state of Florida.”
Peter Hain, Leader of the Commons, in a letter to one constituent stated: "I am absolutely opposed to military action being taken against Cuba and also opposed to the continuing blockade of Cuba by the United States. I visited Cuba two years ago and was very impressed with the social advances that have been made despite all the pressure from the US."
Cuba Solidarity Campaign Director Rob Miller said: "The responses that we have from a majority of British MPs send a clear message to President Bush that military aggression towards Cuba is one US foreign policy issue that Britain would not support.
“With the backing of these responses we are asking Tony Blair to send the Bush administration a clear message that Britain does not support its policy on Cuba, and to work to foster better relations between Cuba and Britain at this dangerous time.”
· In June 2004, the Bush administration introduced new measures to tighten the terms of the 44-year old blockade and dedicated US$59 million towards activities to hasten ‘regime change’.
· Based on the recommendations of a 450-page report by the ‘so-called’ Commission for Assistance to a ‘Free Cuba’, these measures include using military aircraft to broadcast US propaganda into the island and funding a global campaign to undermine the Cuban tourist industry and further devastate the country’s economy.
· Cracks in the Special Relationship:Britain the United States and Cuba, including full results and a cross section of MP and ministerial responses is available from the Cuba Solidarity Campaign.
Contact Natasha Hickman on +44 (0)20 7263 6452 or email firstname.lastname@example.org