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Cuban dictator Raúl Castro surfaced Tuesday to deliver a speech marking the 60th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution, which succeeded on New Year’s Day 1959. He chose the moment to blame the United States and its “merciless neoliberal policies” for poverty in Latin America.
Castro addressed a crowd of Communist Party officials in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba, the Castro family’s hometown and where late dictator Fidel Castro is buried.
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While Castro, the head of the Cuban Communist Party and commander-in-chief of the nation’s armed forces, dedicated much of his speech to praising late brother Fidel, the main message of his address was that Cuba’s youth must remain ever vigilant against the United States, particularly under the current Trump administration. America, Castro alleged, “has spent 12 administrations unceasingly putting effort into forcing regime change in Cuba using one method or another, with more or less aggression.”
“Now, once again, the American government appears to take the route of confrontation with Cuba and present our peaceful and allied country as a threat to the region,” Castro claimed. “High-ranking administration officials, with the complicity of some lackeys, disseminate new falsehoods and once again attempt to blame Cuba for all the ills of the region, as if these were not the consequence of merciless neoliberal policies.”
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He blamed the United States not just for hardships in Cuba, but for the collapse of the socialist establishment in Brazil, where the ruling Workers’ Party (PT) fell to a small conservative party led by now President Jair Bolsonaro. “They,” Castro said without specifying, “managed to imprison Comrade Lula da Silva and deprive him of his right to be a presidential candidate.”
Lula da Silva, former PT president, was arrested in 2017 on charges of taking over $1 million in bribes and, after multiple appeals, was sentenced to 12 years...
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