Speech by Miguel Mario Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC) Central Committee and President of the Republic, during the closing of the Central Committee’s second plenum, held at the Convention Center, October 24, 2021, Year 63 of the Revolution

Taken from Granma Newspaper

Dear Army General Raúl Castro Ruz, leader of the Cuban Revolution;

Compañero and compañeras, members of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba;


For almost two days the second plenum of the PCC Central Committee has met, the first one following the Congress, since, you will remember, the first plenary session was held during the Congress, and that it was postponed due to the occurrence of a resurgence of the pandemic, which has required us to focus on aspects concerning the functioning of the Party in giving continuity to the Congress, and also address current issues of the Party’s work.

We have addressed the implementation of Eighth Congress agreements; the modification of statutes; norms for the functioning of permanent commissions; the strategy for implementation of the cadre policy, the program for transformation of political-ideological work; the process of evaluation of PCC committees; and the program of digital transformation of the organization.

In addition, the political assurance of important processes to be undertaken, and necessary debate on the improvement of People’s Power, were discussed.

The complexity of the present moment implies the need for us to meet more frequently to debate and make decisions on the most urgent and strategic problems the country currently faces, especially if we are able to discuss the issues in depth, objectively, comprehensively, and in a critical manner, in order to find solutions to the complex problems that concern us.  This spirit was evident during this second plenum, as the Army General stated.

An analysis of the country’s situation and the global situation shows us that the world in COVID-19 is not only the unjust world that revolutionaries dream of changing.  It is that world, but now under the effects of many simultaneous crises: economic, labor, productive, environmental, sanitary and also moral crises.

Cuba has not escaped the critical conjuncture facing the planet; undoubtedly, we are not the most affected, but we are the most punished.  No underdeveloped nation is burdened as we are with the aforementioned crises along with the conditions imposed by the economic blockade, reinforced and intensified with 243 measures imposed by Trump and maintained by Biden, in addition to facing an intense, blatant and perverse communicational war.  We are the only people in the world facing punishment this cruel, for this long.

It is up to us to give a worthy response to this undeserved, immoral sentence.  Our originality is obliged to be as great as the wickedness of our adversary.  We are challenged to be exceptional in our ability to resist and create.  This is how it has been since the beginnings of the Cuban nation; this is how the Cuban Revolution has resisted 62 years undefeated.

The enemy has not ceased in its efforts to destroy us and cannot forgive the audacity of younger generations to continue the will and commitment to maintaining our independence, sovereignty and the construction of socialism.

The stated objective of the U.S. government is to overthrow the Cuban Revolution.

The enemy’s hope is that our great material difficulties will weaken the people and bring them to their knees; that are why they promote the idea that the country cannot resist.

This U.S. administration is trapped by the desire to win the Florida vote and these electoral purposes condition its policy toward Cuba, which has become dominated by the Cuban-American mafia in Miami.  These facts are not coincidental; there is an intention, premeditation, and political interest.

The imperialist strategy is to create maximum discontent within our country.  To foment instability through the erosion of the population’s living conditions, make it more and more difficult for us to survive, in order to lead us to the eruption of a violent conflict.  They intend to fill us with hatred and take away our happiness.

The campaign is malicious; they disparage our achievements, disseminate grossly distorted images of our reality, attempt to strangle us economically, undermine solidarity with Cuba, making use of lies and slander. Representatives of the U.S. government constantly make human rights accusations against Cuba in their social network posts, keeping the issue in high profile.

Reflecting the current situation of bilateral relations with the United States, the U.S. embassy in Cuba has been playing an active role in efforts to subvert the internal order of our country. This behavior is not new; it has always been the norm in one way or another since the establishment of the interest sections in 1977.

In contrast, although our mission in Washington carries out intense political and diplomatic work in favor of bilateral relations, in terms of lifting the economic blockade, showing the truth of our reality and counteracting slanders against Cuba, it can be categorically stated that there has never been any illegal activity aimed at undermining the political, legal or constitutional foundations of that country.

The record of our Embassy and of our former Interests Section is absolutely spotless.

U.S. diplomatic officials frequently meet with leaders of the counterrevolution, to whom they provide guidance, encouragement, logistical and financial support.  In their communication platforms, including digital networks. On a daily basis, they issue offensive statements that constitute open interference in the internal affairs of our country.  This is provocative behavior, far removed from what should be the conduct of a diplomatic mission and in total violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, which has among its pillars that diplomats will respect the laws of the country where they are accredited and refrain from passing judgment on its internal affairs.

The U.S. embassy seeks out information to defame Cuba on issues like human rights, democracy and social contradictions in our country.  They attempt to identify and promote leaders, especially youth, training them abroad with the goal of using them to promote their anti-socialist, pro-capitalist and neo-liberal ideas.

We will not stand idly by in the face of such behavior.  We are determined to confront the subversive and aggressive work of this diplomatic representation, including public denunciation.  We have the experience of many years of diplomatic and operative work dealing with the United States under the guidance of the historic leadership of the Revolution, and we also have the support of state institutions, political and mass organizations which, under the guidance of the Party, play an important role in this battle.

We have as powerful tools unity, discipline, organization, agreed-upon work strategies, the necessary procedures and ideological clarity.

This is an appropriate moment to also make some remarks about the so-called July 11 events, which were nothing more than provocations and acts of vandalism as part of this entire strategy of non-conventional war and a “soft coup” against our Revolution.

This is about maintaining a narrative that seeks to present July 11 as a turning point of rupture and popular rejection of the Revolution, and attempts to take advantage of the existing dissatisfaction to provoke destabilization; but July 11 was not evidence of rupture, it was, in fact, evidence of unity, and July 11 was one more victory for the Cuban Revolution.  Revolutionaries came out to defend the Revolution with high morale, ready to fight and win.

They believed that the Revolution could be overthrown in a matter of hours, just as they thought when the socialist camp collapsed, but once again they were mistaken.

We have also learned some lessons from these events and from what we have lived throughout this last year and a half of pandemic.  One of these lessons is that we must defend, and assume as strength, the heterogeneity of Cuban society, and this implies, as we have discussed here, differentiated political-ideological work. We must strengthen and develop mechanisms of popular participation and work with the population, which cannot be discarded in any adverse situation we may face, and that our revolutionary guard, revolutionary vigilance can never be neglected.

The reference, in fact, is the Eighth Party Congress.  During that great event of our organization, the causes of all the problems that the country is experiencing were analyzed, the strategies and also proposals for work to confront them were addressed, and that is the true reference point!

The country has lived through other difficult moments over the course of the Revolution, and this is not the most complex of those moments.

The idea is to create the state of opinion that nothing works, that everything functions poorly, and deny the work of social justice we have achieved. This is why we must encourage critical analysis of our reality, self-criticism, and move away from complacency, emphasizing the need to communicate in a more timely, better manner, and ensuring that all our work structures listen, dialogue, provide answers and solutions.

It is important to prioritize work in attention to and dialogue with youth, which must be a priority, along with the need to propose and implement measures to support solving problems by perfecting the methods of attention to the population.

As we are doing, it is important to revitalize social work in communities, where the social base of support for our Revolution lies, crafting and developing a genuine, inclusive, democratic and participatory process that defends the concept of people’s power we were discussing here, to reach consensus on how we can exercise it.  These issues are distinguishing elements of our unity, our capacity for resistance and our dignity.

Amidst these difficulties, the country is moving forward; we have the courage to face them and the capacity to find solutions.  We cannot be discouraged, because peoples who are discouraged, as Fidel said, do not get far, they are victims of confusion and headed for failure. This will not be the case of the Cuban Revolution.  We are winning this battle by defending and developing the ideas of socialism; within our people we have tremendous power of intelligence, creativity, innovation, initiative, tenacity, firmness, consciousness, patriotism and revolutionary spirit. We have the obligation to move forward, and they, the imperialists, will learn a new lesson if they underestimate us.

We must remember what the Comandante en Jefe said when we were living in the times of the Special Period: “We bear our difficulties and our shortages with dignity, with the dignity of those who do not give up, with the dignity of those who will never get down on their knees.”  This is why we are going to emerge victorious from this battle, under difficult conditions, against an empire rife with arrogance and frustration.

Struggle is the way to overcome obstacles and problems, not surrendering to the designs of those who cynically and shamelessly are the main cause of these problems, making no concessions that violate our principles, never ceding our independence or sovereignty.  These are difficult times, but also times of prospects for new opportunities to grow and surpass ourselves.  We have a great responsibility as generations, the challenge of saving the Revolution and saving the Cuban nation.

There are serious objective problems, there are shortages, circumstances like these, as Fidel also warned us, are ripe for opportunism, cowardly acts, inconsistency, desertions, betrayals, weakness, cowardice, which requires more from the Party’s work.  We cannot be satisfied with what has been done, but we cannot accuse the Revolution of being inept or incompetent, because the problems we are confronting, amongst all of us, are truly big.

In the midst of this situation our national pride grows, when we win victories, like our scientists giving us vaccines; when in the midst of a complex situation we are able to carry out an intense legislative program; when we have a proposal for a truly inclusive and modern Families Code; when we open the way for new economic actors; when we are engaged in neighborhood revitalization and exchanges during meetings with a variety of social sectors in our country.  We can irrefutably affirm that the majority of our people accompany and support the Revolution (Applause).

Under these circumstances and given the failure of their plans, new plots continue to be hatched.  Now they are appearing with an allegedly peaceful march that is nothing more than an escalation of their modus operandi against the Revolution, challenging authority and the socialist rule of law established in our Constitution.

It is a plan orchestrated from abroad; think tanks and U.S. government spokespeople are involved in the conception and preparation of these. Recently they have threatened to impose more sanctions on our country if the legislation in effect here is used to prosecute those who disobey authorities’ rulings. 

This action has been welcomed in circles of the anti-Cuban extreme right wing in the United States and is among action methods outlined in their non-conventional warfare manual.  Their violent goals are evident when we recall the guarimbas (street barricades) in Venezuela, the crimes committed against Chavista fighters, events in Nicaragua, the promotion of vandalism, death threats against revolutionaries and support of characters and organizations with violent and terrorist histories, based in the United States.

The right to demonstrate is recognized and regulated in Article 56 of the Constitution, and must be exercised for lawful and peaceful purposes, respecting public order and in compliance with precepts established by law.  Another of our Constitution’s articles, Article 45, states: “The exercise of the rights of individuals is only limited by the rights of others, collective security, general welfare, respect for public order, the Constitution and the law.”

On the other hand, Article 4 of this legal document states, among other issues, that the socialist system recognized in the Constitution is irrevocable, and that citizens have the right to combat by all means anyone who attempts to overthrow the political, social and economic order established by the Constitution.  The call for the march is, therefore, not lawful; it is a protest announcement in which promoters, public projections and links with subversive organizations or agencies financed by the U.S. government make clear the manifest intention to promote a change of political system in our country – a provocation as part of a “soft coup” strategy.  Its goals coincide with the principal lines of attack, slander, lies and threats followed by those financed by the U.S. government who oppose Cuba’s political system and are attempting to destabilize it and restore capitalism.

We are not going to legitimize imperialist meddling in domestic politics, nor are we going to open channels to aspirations for neocolonial restoration, accrued by some and reinforced in a situation of crisis.  This is not a civic act; it is an act of subordination to Yankee hegemony.  Such actions are intended to return the country to a historical period of subjugation, to which we will never return.

In the midst of these circumstances, many are also asking where we are heading, and I think it is important to answer this question. There is nothing new to say, we are simply moving toward what is contained in our programmatic documents, toward the development of the ideas from the last three congresses of the Party, which are contained in the Conceptualization of our Economic-Social Model and our National Plan for Economic and Social Development through 2030, in our Policy Guidelines and, above all, in our Constitution and all these documents, there are elements that provide an answer: “Cuba is a socialist state of law and social justice, democratic, independent and sovereign, organized with all and for the good of all as a unitary and indivisible republic, based on the work, dignity, humanism and ethics of its citizens for the enjoyment of freedom, equity, equality, solidarity, well-being and individual and collective prosperity.”

Our Vision of the Nation defines us as a sovereign, independent, socialist, democratic, prosperous and sustainable nation, with a long-term National Economic and Social Development Plan and other actions in place to consolidate this vision.

Guaranteeing the irreversibility and continuity of our socialism by strengthening the principles that sustain it, economic development and raising the standard of living and quality of life of our people are combined with the necessary formation of ethical and political values, and is among the issues we have addressed here.

A democratic, prosperous and sustainable socialist society can be achieved based on deep revolutionary consciousness and sense of duty; the recovery of the value of work with efficiency and efficacy; the participation and creative initiative of workers; motivation; rational use and conservation of resources; progress and the application and generalization of the findings of science, technology and innovation; also taking into account a sustainable increase in production, as the essential material premise to gradually raise the standard of living and quality of life of the population, and contributing to the full realization of human beings and their individual, family and collective projects through fair and equitable distribution of wealth, advancing in the eradication of illegitimate inequalities.  This is the path we have taken, this is the path we are following and the goal we will reach sooner rather than later.

If someone were to ask us to define our socialism, in a short sentence, in a short phrase, we would say that it is to achieve the greatest possible social justice. (Applause)

In a meeting like this, we cannot ignore the economic situation the country is experiencing; the inflation the economy is facing is currently at levels higher than those foreseen in the Reordering Task, affecting the purchasing power of income received in Cuban pesos by retirees, pensioners, workers and the population.

The tightening of the blockade, along with the effects of COVID-19 have reduced the country’s foreign currency income to minimum levels, which has not allowed for the financing of industrial productions, or imports of raw materials and consumer goods to maintain a stable supply in state retail outlets, in Cuban pesos, a situation that unscrupulous persons take advantage of to profit at the expense of the people’s needs, reselling products, including food and medicines at prices much higher than the official ones.

On the other hand, due to the growing demand for foreign currency by the population and the non-state sector for domestic purchases and imports, along with the impossibility we face (to meet this demand), obliged to sell foreign currency at the official exchange rate, an informal market for the purchase and sale of foreign currency has been generated, also at exchange rates much higher than the official ones, which is expressed in the prices the population pay.  That is why we must continue prioritize working on the implementation of anti-inflationary measures that require greater participation on the part of national state and non-state producers, in order to satisfy the demands of the population.  Actions are required that allow for better control of the liquid resources in the hands of the population and that the increase be accompanied by an increase in supply. 

In addition, compensatory measures have been adopted to protect the most vulnerable, but, nonetheless, they remain insufficient.

The opening of tourism and economic activity, given our success in confronting the epidemic, will put us in better conditions to address this complex scenario. Thus, we can see bright spots along the way; there are solutions for each of the problems.  Continuing to encourage collective debate to promote solutions to the problems, to explain them, socialize them, convince, reassure, mobilize, participate and improve are all necessary.

In the face of the offensive to discredit the Cuban Revolution and campaigns on social networks, provocations on the international level, calls for constant protests and destabilization attempts, we have in place a revolutionary articulation on these social networks, are effectively confronting the counterrevolution with revolutionary and administrative vigilance, that have been reorganized during this period.

In facing the intensification of the blockade, we can count on international support, our own constant condemnations, as well as increasing participation and support from the Cuban community abroad that has not broken with the Revolution, or broken with its country.

Given limited income in foreign currency, we must continue advancing in reviving the economy under current conditions, boosting tourism, exporting vaccines, generating foreign currency, increasing domestic food production and also contributing to energy savings and efficiency.

In view of the shortages we have experienced for a prolonged period of time, we must get domestic products on the market, do everything possible to better supply stores in national currency, increase the marketing of agricultural products and also seek greater incidence and impact of measures we have adopted recently as the economy is opening, the development and contribution of new economic actors, along with that of state enterprises.

In order to eliminate long lines, we need to improve domestic commerce, seek a better supply of goods and services, better schedules, better management, and ensure that the opening of new economic activities also contributes to this.

Regarding the instability we have experienced in the National Electric Power System, we are making progress in repairs, maintenance, conservation, and also in attention to the system’s workers, which will allow us to be in a better situation by the end of the year.

We are beating the pandemic with the health measures adopted and with our huge vaccination campaign, to which we are now adding boosters, which undoubtedly has already produced a significant level of immunization within our population, in this way we will continue advancing in cutting the transmission rate and returning, in the shortest possible time, to a new normal, which will also allow us to conduct our economic and social activity with more intensity.

And addressing the population’s dissatisfaction requires a great deal of sensitivity and work with people, adequately attending the population, working in neighborhoods and reactivating mechanisms of popular participation.  All this we must keep in mind in the discussions we hold during important upcoming processes, which we must ensure politically amidst this situation and were also discussed here.  This requires from the Party a broad deployment of revolutionary politics.

We must make convincing arguments, propose debates and conduct them coherently, communicate with precision and clarity, put ourselves in the place of others and try to understand their realities, counterpoise ideas and positions that lead to objective conclusions and that allow us to build a solid perception of the circumstances around any given phenomenon. This is about becoming pedagogues when interacting with society, not only in the way we transmit content, but also in the way we learn from this interaction.

The greatest virtue lies in being useful and doing for others.

Armando Hart analyzed these revolutionary practices and defined them as “the culture of doing politics,” and we must do politics, referring to Martí and Fidel as their most outstanding and relevant exponents, and pointing out both as representatives of the “purest and most useful fruit of the history of Cuban ideas.”

We must all assume, as a constant of life, Marti’s definition of politics, as “the art of inventing a resource for each new resource of our adversaries; turning setbacks into good fortune; adapting to the present moment, without the adaptation requiring sacrifice, or delay… of the ideal being pursued; step back to gain momentum; attacking the enemy, before he has his armies in line, and his battle prepared.”

As Hart reiterated on more than one occasion, it is necessary to know how to differentiate and, at the same time, relay ideology, understood as the production of ideas, with science, ethics and politics.

In these times, it is humanism that relays culture, development, social justice and allows to understand with science and ethics the confusing globalized world, in the real and the virtual, in the present and the future.

This legacy, as a whole, constitutes the culture of doing politics, conceived as a category of practice that, fundamentally, consists of defeating the “divide and rule” used by the enemy, and establishing the revolutionary idea of “uniting to win,” on ethical foundations that incorporate the vast majority of the population.

Thus, doing politics is determining the contradictions we have in society, studying them, considering their causes, evaluating and proposing solutions; interacting with the population, taking into account their opinions. Enrich, convince, summon, mobilize, participate and solve, and participate effectively also through networking around each of the issues we address, evaluating results and then providing feedback through all our systems, in order to improve them. This means, among other things, special work with the population and in particular with our youth.

Maintaining maximum awareness of the role to be played by each revolutionary institution, working individually with each citizen, one by one and convincing; becoming proselytizers or pastors of the Revolution and socialism; preparing ourselves well and studying deeply to make decisions; deepening our knowledge and ideas of what is happening in our country and in the world; to be honest, courageous, effective and self-critical, with a dialectical and flexible mentality, never dogmatic, never tolerating opportunism, adhering to revolutionary principles, equipping ourselves with ideas and solid arguments so our cadres can perform their work; go out to visit and talk with each person in each place; to discuss, explain, teach, educate and learn from each process.

Recuperating the time lost due to routine, schematicism and the lack of ties with the grassroots in a number of cases, and constantly extolling the dignity and resistance of our people, their talents and strengths, requires the prevalence of an anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist approach, opposing the injustice and oppression that exists at a global level. This is why we must systematically maintain the meetings with sectors of our society that have contributed so much. In fact, many of their proposals are already being applied in what we are implementing.

To continue working adequately in the implementation of agreements reached at the Eighth Congress and to continue defending, as we saw here, the concept of people’s power. In our neighborhood work, seeking democracy and participation, which means there are spaces to debate and propose and that after debating and proposing, there are ways to implement, and that after debating and proposing, action is taken. Then there will also be transparency to control, to exercise popular control, to be accountable and advance.  And all this we can achieve with our ties with the people, with popular mobilization and strengthening and updating the work of our mass organizations, as demanded during debate sat the Eighth Party Congress.

We must continue the identification of and confrontation against obstacles and bureaucratism, deepen the essences of the Revolution, promote debates, strengthen the exercise of popular power, and thus we will be strengthening the state; advance laws that deepen socialist democracy; develop the practice of workers’ parliaments; reinforce the role of unions, assuming as a conviction what Che told to us early on about not conceding even a tiny bit to imperialism.  We cannot capitulate to imperialism and its lackeys, and we cannot take even one step backward in the conquests of the Revolution. (Applause)

Cuba’s response was designed by the maximum leader of the Cuban Revolution, the Comandante en Jefe, and it lies in people’s power, a people’s power that is not transferable, based on the people’s sovereignty and articulated in the state structure through organisms with different functions.

To defend this concept of popular power is to defend the sustainability and viability of socialism in Cuba because it generates a truly democratic system far superior to capitalism.

Everything that stimulates, promotes and makes possible popular participation has defensive and constructive importance for our socialism and contributes to social emancipation and national emancipation. This is why we must guarantee the dimension of the principle of popular sovereignty that power comes from the sovereignty that resides untransferably in – who? In our people.

We must consistently promote mechanisms of popular participation. This is not a concession; it is an element essential to the legitimacy of our government.

Articulating and promoting participatory mechanisms in municipal and community spaces to meet the needs of citizens, is needed.  And municipal administration must be based on avoiding and preventing problems in the community, leaving behind indifference and justifications, and designing true, effective popular control; the people exercising control over adherence to approved public policies and their effective implementation.

It is time to study and propose the improvement of existing public policies or the approval of new ones to address manifestations of poverty, marginality, vulnerability in individuals, families, and communities and in attention to youth and the elderly.  These aspects were also discussed here as a continuation of the meeting we held with presidents of municipal People’s Power Assemblies recently.

Compañeras & compañeros:

The country is organized, we have a strong Party, an improving government, a Revolutionary Armed Forces and a Ministry of the Interior that are part of the people, with glorious histories and very loyal, and mass organizations which are revitalizing their work.

The country and the Revolution have suffered as a consequence of the situation we have lived, but patriotism and heroism have also been sown, commitment has been sown and is being harvested.

We must draw inspiration from the people, it is an opportunity for us to become aware, to overcome the difficulties, to struggle and fight for victory with no discouragement whatsoever.

The decision is to fight and win!

To close ranks, to struggle against our problems, to struggle with creativity, this is part of the battle!

There are enough revolutionaries here to confront any type of demonstration that seeks to destroy the Revolution -with intelligence, with respect and in defense of our Constitution, but also energetically and courageously.

Let the imperialists beware that they will be obliged to fight against a people that does not allow itself to be deceived, a people sufficiently numerous, courageous and heroic to struggle, not intimidated by threats!

Every problem is an opportunity to become aware of our responsibility, a challenge to our ability to overcome difficulties, a test of our will to struggle. Onward always to victory!

Ready and willing to do everything to defend what is most sacred, what unites us; to be consistent with the unwavering decision of ‘Homeland or Death,’‘Socialism or Death’ and the deepest conviction that we will win! (Venceremos!)

Thank you very much. (Applause)

Por Redacción digital

Equipo de redactores del sitio web de Radio Mayabeque

Deja una respuesta

Tu dirección de correo electrónico no será publicada. Los campos obligatorios están marcados con *