Campaign News | Friday, 25 April 2003






APRIL 25, 2003.

Dear compatriots:

Everything began with the arrival in Cuba of Mr. Cason.

The arrest of several dozens of mercenaries who betrayed their homeland

in exchange for the privileges and money they receive from the

government of the United States, and the death penalty for common

criminals who hijacked a passengers ferry in Havana Bay with a gun and

five knives, were the result of a conspiracy concocted by the government

of that country and the Miami terrorist mob. This should be obvious to


The Cuban authorities cannot be held accountable in any way for

these events. This is something I intend to explain, as well as the

reasons and objectives behind every measure, why and what for they were


The current president of the United States, with a minority of

the total number of votes, acceded to power through a scandalous fraud

for which the Miami mob applied in the United States the methods they

had learned from their Batista-henchmen fathers and other corrupt

politicians from the U.S. neocolony of Cuba, ousted from power by the


On November 4, 2000, tens of thousands of African Americans were

prevented from voting, many thousands of voters made mistakes on their

ballots because of a change in the order of the candidates’ names, and

there was further fraud perpetrated during vote counting. This was how, by a margin of a few hundred votes, Bush obtained a majority in the

state of Florida that determined his election.

He is a considerate man who does not hide his obligation to the

Miami mob and the compromises he reached with these people during a

meeting in Texas.

Even before the election, at a rally held on August 5

commemorating the 26th of July in Pinar del Río, I literally said to Mr.

Bush, and I quote:

“I am very much aware of what you have recklessly told your

close and indiscreet friends in the Cuban American mob: that you can

solve the problem of Cuba very easily, in clear reference to the methods

used in the sinister period when the Central Intelligence Agency was

directly involved in assassination plots against our country’s leaders.”

Bush’s pledge was that he would solve the problem by literally

removing me, something that, quite honestly, after 40 years of

aggression and crimes against Cuba, could neither surprise me nor worry

me much.

His administration has been just as hostile and reactionary as

everyone expected. The mob has achieved more power and influence than

ever before within the administration. Genuine criminals of Cuban

origins, responsible for the deaths of thousands of Central Americans, like the notorious Otto Reich, have been called on to hold senior posts

in key positions for the application of Bush’s preconceived policies, ideas and pledges against Cuba. The fate and the destiny of over 11

million Cubans mean nothing to him.

I will not elaborate further on what Mr. Bush thinks, or about

his obsessions and fixed ideas. Our people and the world know more than

enough about these things.

Otto Reich would be the Assistant Secretary of State for Western

Hemisphere Affairs. The Senate, both Republicans and Democrats, fervently opposed the choice. A recess of the Senate was used as the

opportunity to have him appointed temporarily. Then, from this post, he

was able to set the guidelines for State Department policy towards Cuba.

Outrageous claims rained down. One day they would say that Cuba was

planning electronic warfare against communications in the United States;

and the next, that a Chinese ship loaded with weapons was headed for

Cuba. Neither the ship nor the weapons ever existed. Amidst ludicrous

claims like these, the most heinous accusation of all: that Cuba was

developing a research program to produce biological weapons. All of the

accusations were refuted and ridiculed.

During this same period, in September 2002, Otto Reich named

James Cason, a stalwart ally, as the chief of the USIS (United States

Interests Section in Cuba).

Once Otto Reich’s temporary mandate had expired, his ability to

remain in the post would be subject to the risky challenge of Senate

approval, and his chances there were very slim. Thus, he quietly

disappeared from view. His place would then be taken by Roger Noriega, former legislative assistant to evil Helms.

A short time later, in December 2002, Otto Reich was appointed

Special Presidential Envoy for Latin America in the National Security

Council, where the fundamental decisions of the President are drawn up

and adopted. A terrorist bandit with his finger on the trigger of the

superpower’s weapon aimed at Cuba!

What better proof could there be of the Machiavellian plans of

Otto Reich, his mob and his boss, than the actions of the chief of the

Interests Section in Havana?

What did Cason do before taking over the position formerly held

by Mrs. Vicky Huddleston, who was not assigned to some European or Latin

American country, as she had wished, but rather to Mali, in Africa?

Cason’s appointment was no coincidence. Reich knew all about his

work during Reich’s own tenure as Director of Public Diplomacy with the

Reagan administration. Specifically, they had worked very closely when

Cason worked in Central American Affairs in the State Department, which

was the supporting base for the so-called ‘Contras’ in the dirty war

against the Sandinista Revolution, in which Mr. Reich played a

significant role, as demonstrated during the congressional hearings on

the Iran-Contra scandal. Cason also had work experience in other Latin

American countries like Honduras, where he was the second chief of the

U.S. Mission, in El Salvador, Bolivia, Panama, Guatemala, Venezuela and


Cason had declared in November 2001, at a conference on national

security after the fateful terrorist attack on the Twin Towers, that our

country was “the only one that had not joined in the regional chorus of

sincere condolences, military support and diplomatic cooperation with

the United States.”

The truth is that Cuba had strongly condemned those terrorist

attacks before the national and international media, and expressed our

people’s condolences to the people of the United States and our

willingness to immediately offer medical and humanitarian assistance.

Our country was perhaps one of the first to do so, if not the first.

Cuba immediately offered to open its airspace and airports, to receive

the passengers planes in the air at the time since landing in any

airport in the United States had been temporarily banned. Cuba did not

have to provide any military support to the U.S. war adventures.

Upon learning of James Cason’s designation as the chief of the

USIS in Cuba, the executive director of the Cuban American National

Foundation declared: “We hope this gentleman is qualified to carry out a

strong policy, as President Bush has ordered.”

James Cason appeared as the best choice to implement the

predetermined policy of an increase and escalation in hostility towards

Cuba from his State Department post.

Before he had even arrived in Cuba, on August 6, 2002, five

individuals hijacked a boat called the Plástico 16, based in La Coloma, Pinar del Río. The Cuban authorities, through Note 1428 of August 27, 2002, officially submitted a request for the hijackers to be returned to

Cuba. Months later, the five hijackers were released in the United


What follows is a chronological account of Mr. Cason’s

activities in Cuba.

September 10, 2002

Cason arrived in our country accompanied by his wife, and was

received at the José Martí International Airport by Louis Nigro, deputy

chief of the USIS.

From the very outset, at a welcoming reception held at the USIS, he demonstrated the interventionist nature of his plans, when he stated, during a brief speech to the Cuban and American staff there, that “his

goal in our country was to speed up the process towards a democratic

Cuba, urging support for all those who were contributing to this


September 11, 2002

At a memorial ceremony for the victims of the terrorist attacks

in the United States held at the USIS, Cason referred to President

George W. Bush’s plans for the war against terrorism, and expressed “his

hopes that the Cuban people would play a crucial role in the changes

that should take place in Cuba, mentioning the freedom of expression as

an element to take into account for future changes in our country.”

September 16, 2002

Four days after his arrival, a reception was held at Cason’s

residence, with 17 counterrevolutionary group ringleaders in attendance.

The reason for the reception was to introduce the new chief of the USIS

to them and to determine their needs and interests.

Cason said that he would work to implement the policy announced

by President George W. Bush. He asked how he could help the “opposition”

and to what extent the cooperation provided by the USIS had been

effective so far.

He declared that he was willing to offer both his residence and

the Interests Section headquarters for the counterrevolutionaries to

meet with diplomatic personnel from different countries.

He said that he would travel around the country to learn about

the situation of the various groups. He added that his plans included

participating in political events, such as rallies, and posting the

pictures and names of “political prisoners” in the consulate offices so

that visitors would learn about them.

September 17, 2002

A reception was held at the Cason residence for the same

purposes as the previous day, but with different counterrevolutionary

ringleaders. The topics addressed were subversive radio stations, “the

press and independent libraries.”

September 26 to 30, 2002

The new USIS chief took advantage of the U.S. Food and

Agribusiness Exhibition being held in Havana in those days to show

another line of his hostile intentions.

At the end of a function hosted by the American organizers for

the exhibitors, at the Melia Cohiba Hotel, Cason read a statement to the

foreign press indicating that while he appreciated the fair as a space

for making sales, “There's going to be a lot of beef being shown, but I

expect to hear and see a lot more bull than I do beef from the Cuban


He added that Cuba is not a significant market for the United

States, and that it has debts with the whole world. Businesspeople from

other countries are waiting for Cuba to pay them, he said, and “we don’t

want to be part of that queue.”

Then he claimed: “The Cubans want credits, and nobody wants to

give them any, because they don’t pay. It’s a small market where the

average citizen earns only 20 dollars a month. Cuba has a foreign debt

of 11 billion dollars, he said, and if it has money some day, it won’t


His intentions were quite obvious. He did not, on the other

hand, say a single word about the blockade, the economic war, the

hostility and aggression aimed at Cuba by the United States government

for 44 years.

October 3 and 4, 2002

Cason and the head of the refugee program made a monitoring trip

to the province of Villa Clara, where they visited individuals who had

tried to emigrate illegally but were sent back to Cuba in compliance

with the Migratory Agreements.

On October 3 they visited a home in Caibarién, where they met

with a group of these illegal emigrants, along with another ten people

invited by counterrevolutionary Margarito Broche, head of a grouplet

known as the “Independent Rafters Association, North Central Cuba, Peace, Democracy and Freedom”.

This is a group of illegal emigrants sent back to Cuba that has

been transformed into a group of “dissidents”, pampered and guided by

Mr. Cason.

On October 4, a similar meeting was held in the city of Santa

Clara, with another group of illegal emigrants who had also been sent

back in keeping with the Migratory Agreements.

As a result, a number of these people repeat their attempts to

illegally travel to the United States, knowing that as soon as they set

foot on U.S. soil, they will be welcomed with special privileges. In the

meantime, Mr. Cason recruits “dissidents” among them.

Both the chief of the USIS and the government official

accompanying him used aggressive language during these meetings, with

frequent criticisms and a derogatory tone against the person of the

President of the Council of State of Cuba.

This is how the chief of the Interests Section monitors and

indoctrinates individuals who cannot obtain visas to the United States

because of their criminal and social records, and therefore must attempt

to travel there illegally and are sent back to Cuba.

October 7, 2002

The chief of the USIS hosted a breakfast at his residence, attended by counterrevolutionary ringleaders Martha Beatriz Roque

Cabello, René Gómez Manzano and Félix Bonne Carcassés, as well as

officials from the diplomatic mission.

Cason reported that he had traveled to Villa Clara and seen “the

poverty” that prevails in that province, in addition to making other

comments about his stay there.

October 10, 2002

Cason hosted a breakfast at this residence, attended by

counterrevolutionary ringleaders Oswaldo Payá Sardiñas, Osvaldo Alfonso

and Vladimiro Roca Antúnez, along with, on the U.S. side, the political

and economic affairs secretaries at the USIS, Francisco Sainz and

Ricardo Zúñiga.

The subjects of conversation were the “Varela Project”, the

elections in Brazil, the situation in Venezuela, and

counterrevolutionary grouplets in general.

October 30, 2002

In the afternoon, and with the participation of six officials

from the USIS, a working meeting was held at James Cason’s residence in

connection with the “Assembly for the Promotion of Civil Society in

Cuba” project, organized and promoted by ringleader Martha Beatriz Roque

Cabello. Twenty-four counterrevolutionaries attended.

Mr. Cason observed that he knew about the difficulties involved

in meeting, which was why he was offering them his residence. He

ratified his material and moral support, demonstrating his government’s

position on “democratizing” the island. He then asked to be excused for

not participating in the meeting, as he had other things to do at the

Interests Section offices.

He left them in his residence, protected by diplomatic immunity, and the corresponding food and beverage services.

November 5, 2002

At 3:15 p.m., Cason and his second secretary, Zúñiga, arrived at

the home of a counterrevolutionary ex-convict who exchanges letters with

and receives prizes directly from President Bush, Oscar Elías Biscet

González. Sentenced for actions he had carried out following

instructions from the Cuban American terrorist foundation, he had been

released five days earlier.

The two men asked him countless questions on areas of interest

to them for their counterrevolutionary political objectives. Mr. Cason

told the counterrevolutionary about his plans to urge representatives of

other diplomatic missions to make contact with them.

November 11, 2002

A meeting was held in Cason’s residence with ringleaders Oswaldo

Payá Sardiñas, Osvaldo Alfonso Valdés, Vladimiro Roca Antúnez, Oscar

Elías Biscet González and a U.S. delegation visiting Cuba.

This had become a customary demand made by Interests Section

chiefs from every U.S. delegation visiting Cuba. Their goal was to

boycott Cuba’s political and economic relations with other nations, through the use of any slander and lies that might occur to these

mercenaries on the payroll of a warmonger and aggressive government

threatening our heroic people.

That same day, November 11, 2002, an AN-2 fumigation plane was

hijacked and taken to the United States. The Ministry of Foreign

Affairs, through Notes 1778 of 2002 and 180 of 2003, called on the U.S.

government to return the hijackers and the plane. The U.S. authorities

did not even press charges against the hijackers, who were released four

days later. The plane was seized, auctioned off, and in fact stolen, in

an open and obvious anti-Cuban maneuver.

November 21, 2002

Cason attended a meeting at the home of counterrevolutionary

ringleader Martha Beatriz Roque, with 13 more of his hired agents. Cason

spoke to them about filmed material with personal attacks on the Cuban

head of state. He also inquired about the sale of short-wave and

medium-wave radios in hard currency stores in Cuba, and mentioned the

possibility of bringing them into the country through the Interests

Section’s diplomatic mail pouches, etc., etc. He then supplied those

present with nothing less than four boxes full of copies of the

Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

This, as a gift from the government of a country that has

subjected ours to a blockade for more than 40 years and threatened to

destroy our country, as it has done in other parts of the world.

He also announced his intention to arrange a meeting in January

of 2003 between a delegation of U.S. doctors and the

counterrevolutionaries present there.

Those doctors could very well travel to Central America, or to

countries in Latin America or Africa where thousands of heroic Cuban

doctors provide care and save hundrreds of thousands of lives every year

in remote areas where Mr. Cason’s American doctors are seldom seen.

November 22, 2002

The counterrevolutionary ringleaders Orlando Fundora Álvarez, Yolanda Triana Estupiñan and José Barrero Vargas met at Cason’s

residence. The meeting was arranged by the first of these. Their main

objective: to gather information on people adversely affected by the

Revolution –meaning hustlers, or individuals involved with drugs or

other crimes and illegal activities– in order to claim compensation from

the Cuban government.

This was the first time that the grouplets used USIS premises

for meetings not attended by U.S. diplomats.

November 27, 2002

James Cason and a number of other officials visited the province

of Ciego de Ávila on a “fact-finding” mission.

Upon their arrival in the capital, they headed for the home of a

counterrevolutionary, where they met with another four members of


Cason inquired about the situation of the counterrevolutionaries

and the investigation carried out on them. In response, they regaled him

with lies, as was to be expected, about purported beatings, physical

abuse and harassment of their families.

The “dissident” being visited, along with other individuals of

his kind, had staged a public disturbance at the Ciego de Avila

Provincial Hospital, interfering with the emergency room services for

approximately two hours. The provocation orchestrated by these

individuals adversely affected several patients.

What was Mr. Cason doing there?

December 19, 2002

A “social function” was held in the evening headed by James

Cason with another 12 officials from the USIS, ten members of the

diplomatic corps, including representatives from the United Kingdom, the

Czech Republic, Poland, Greece and Chile, and 52 counterrevolutionaries

from different groups.

Unlike other activities organized by the USIS with these

elements, this time there were no welcoming or farewell speeches. They

dispensed with formalities and the guests arriving at the mission simply

sat where they wished, ate and drank freely, and happily conversed about

their common interests. There was, however, a 30-minute meeting between

the 52 “dissidents” invited and some of the main ringleaders: Elizardo

Sánchez Santacruz Pacheco, Vladimiro Roca Antúnez, René Gómez Manzano

and Félix Bonne Carcassés. Photographs were taken to record the event

for history.

They all felt completely at home. It was such a pleasant experience to

be at the diplomatic mission of the superpower conspiring against the

Cuban people that are defending their small and blockaded island from

the monster!

December 21, 2002

Cason granted an interview to Channel 51 in Miami.

Here is an excerpt from that interview. Although it has already

been published, I think it would be worthwhile to include it here.

Journalist.- …as chief of the United States Interests Section in

Havana, you are now traveling around, you have met with average Cubans, with dissidents in Cuba. Have you also met with leaders of anti-Castro

organizations in exile?

James Cason.- Yes, two or three times. Whenever I go to Miami, I

want to meet and I do meet with all of the groups, the Cuban-American

National Foundation, the Cuban Freedom Council, independent groups, all

of the groups here, because I want to explain what I have seen in Cuba, what is happening, and to hear their points of view on what we are

doing, to see if there is something that we want to do that we are not

doing now. Our conversations are very pleasant, and one of my messages

is that the important thing in Cuba is that there is in fact an

opposition. They are isolated, harassed, but they persist and have a lot

of courage, and the important thing is that they meet, unite and

concentrate on the essential things, on the rights they don’t have and

the freedoms they should have.

So they shouldn’t be focusing on personal concerns, on

differences in ideology. The important thing is that the opposition has

to gain a space, because the day will come when there will be a

transition. There is a transition now, but there is going to be a new

Cuba some day, and they have to play their part in shaping and deciding

the future of Cuba. So they have to gain a space for themselves, and

begin to discuss what needs to be done differently to change Cuba. It is

important that they focus on what is important, not on what is


Journalist.- In the meetings you have had with dissidents –I

don’t know if you want to go into these kinds of details– but where do

you see that perhaps the dissidents are not on the right track? What

message do you have for the dissidents? Before I ask you, if you will

allow me, for a message to the anti-Castro groups in Miami. What message

do you have for the dissidents in Cuba? What would you like to say to

them, based on what you have seen?

James Cason.- Well, first of all, that the future of Cuba… we

Americans are not going to determine the future of Cuba, it is going to

be the Cubans, outside Cuba and inside Cuba. They should, from my point

of view, my advice is to focus on the essential. What are the important

factors? To not be divided, to meet together and try to reach a

consensus or an agreement on 10 points, for example, where they all

agree, and not to talk about where they don’t agree. Because in a

democracy, everyone has their differences, there are actions, but the

important thing is that they are in a military dictatorship, and if the

people don’t meet together, they won’t have much chance of prospering.

So they should concentrate on the essential and look for points of

agreement, not disagreement.

Journalist.- One of your priorities is also to help dissidents

in Cuba. How do you intend to help the anti-Castro opposition?

James Cason.- Well, as I said before, by offering information, moral and spiritual support, letting them know that they are not alone, that the world knows what is happening in Cuba. One demonstration of

this is the fact that many of the leaders have received human rights

awards from Europe and other parts of the world. So the world knows what

is happening in Cuba, and we are there to tell them about this fact and

to help them in any way possible.

We do not give them, it isn’t true that we are financing the

opposition, as Castro says. The opposition is insisting on the fact that

the system has failed, and we are there to offer them the support of the

American people and the rest of the democratic world in what they are

doing, which is demanding the basic human rights that Cuba signed in the

Declaration of Human Rights, in the universal declarations, and has not

fulfilled in all these years.

After reading these public statements by Mr. Cason, how unfair

it would be to say that the government of the United States and the

chief of its Interests Section are interfering in any way whatsoever in

the internal affairs of Cuba, or that the “noble patriots” gathered

there were counterrevolutionaries on the payroll of the United States!

January 9, 2003

James Cason had informed the Foreign Ministry that he would be

traveling to Pinar del Río with four other USIS officials. He was

informed in turn that this trip would not be authorized.

It was known that Cason was planning to meet with several

individuals. That same day, a USIS employee transported nine boxes

containing radios and literature sent to counterrevolutionaries in that

very province.

January 16, 2003

Cason participated in a function held in the home of ringleader

Héctor Palacios Ruiz for the launching of a markedly

counterrevolutionary book, associated to the so-called “independent

libraries” project. The book had been presented at book fairs in

Guadalajara and Miami.

January 19 to 25, 2003

Over the course of six days, James Cason and Ricardo Zúñiga went

on a tour through the provinces of Las Tunas, Holguín, Granma, Santiago

de Cuba and Guantánamo. They had filed their request to make private

visits, however, what they actually did was to take material supplies to

the counterrevolutionary grouplets, in order to strengthen and unify the

so-called “opposition” and establish contacts with the religious sector.

Particularly significant were Cason’s statements about the

existence of something called the “6000 miles” plan, consisting of

systematic tours throughout all of the country’s provinces, aimed at

encouraging and supporting the counterrevolutionary grouplets with

resources to ensure their development.

As if we were back in the days of the U.S. intervention after

our last war of independence against Spain, there was the proconsul of

the empire organizing a political party.

January 29, 2003

The Ferro cement boat Cabo Corrientes, from the Isle of Youth, was hijacked and taken to the United States. The Cuban authorities

presented a diplomatic note requesting the return of the four hijackers.

The United States has still not responded to the Cuban note requesting

the return of the hijackers, who were immediately released.

February 6, 2003

A Cuban border patrol boat was hijacked and taken to the United

States. At this time, it is still not known whether the U.S. authorities

have pressed charges against any of the four hijackers. The Ministry of

Foreign Affairs presented a note to the USIS demanding the return of the

hijackers and protesting over this new anti-Cuban action. The State

Department has yet to respond to that note.

February 7, 2003

In the evening, there was a function at Cason’s residence in

honor of a visiting U.S. cultural delegation. Among those in attendance

were 21 members of grouplets and five diplomats from the USIS. There, Cason consolidated a practice he had begun in late 2002: including

counterrevolutionaries in official USIS social functions, to which he

also invited Cuban professionals.

February 22, 2003

Cason gave a press conference to a group of foreign journalists

accredited in Cuba where he criticized our country and claimed that the

Cuban authorities were afraid of letting books and other materials into

the country. He noted that works by Martin Luther King Jr., John

Steinbeck and Groucho Marx were among a shipment of books seized by

Cuban authorities after being shipped in by the U.S. government. Of

course, he failed to mention the openly counterrevolutionary and

subversive works that came in the same shipment.

An AP wire story under the headline: “James Cason denounces the

seizure of books sent by the United States” reported in some paragraphs, and I quote:

“American diplomats were told it was a ‘firm decision by the government’

not to allow the books into the communist-run country for distribution

to dissident groups, including independent libraries, U.S. Interests

Section Chief James Cason said.

“’They said it wasn’t the books, but who we were going to give them to,’

he told a small group of international reporters. He said the American

mission has imported similar books in the past.

“’It’s fear of losing political control,’ said Cason, who arrived in

Havana five months ago.’”

February 24, 2003

James Cason and two other officials from the Interests Section

participated in a press conference held in the home of ringleader Martha

Beatriz Roque, organized to commemorate no less than the anniversaries

of the beginning of the war of independence and the shooting down of the

airplanes from the Miami terrorist mob organization known as Brothers to

the Rescue.

Foreign press correspondents interviewed Cason. In addition to

answering questions, he read a document and made public declarations

that were openly interventionist, offensive and defiant towards the

Cuban authorities. He called on the other diplomatic missions based in

Havana to follow the example of the USIS.

That same day, the above-mentioned terrorist organization, Brothers to the Rescue, beamed an illegal television broadcast at our

country from international airspace. Despite the fact that the Cuban

authorities had warned the government of the United States before

February 24 of the plans for this broadcast, and had clearly established

that this would constitute a violation of the regulations of the

International Telecommunications Union, the U.S. authorities did nothing

whatsoever to prevent the broadcast.

February 28, 2003

It was known that U.S. prison authorities, following

instructions from the United States Department of Justice, had imposed a

regime that violated the human rights of our five heroes, confining them

to what inmates call ‘the hole’.

They had gone too far.

March 6, 2003

In my speech at the closing session of the National Assembly of

People’s Power latest meeting, I made statements responding to the

offensive interview given by the Interests Section chief during his

get-together with counterrevolutionaries on February 24.

I should note that I did not make these statements earlier, because in the midst of the colossal effort we are carrying out to

overcome obstacles and advance our revolutionary programs, I did not

know in detail the extent of the insolence, temerity and audacity of

Otto Reich’s envoy.

I said, among other things:

“This past February 24, on none other than the day we commemorate the

beginning of the last war of independence called upon by Martí, a

gentleman named James Cason, head of the United States Interests Section

in Cuba, met in an apartment in Havana with a group of

counterrevolutionaries paid by the U.S. government. They were gathered, no less than to commemorate the Cry of Baire, a date of

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