So which country has endured more years of state terrorism than any other since WWII? The answer might surprise most, since the country in question in on the current US government list of countries that sponsor terrorism. The answer is Cuba. According to this new collection of essays edited by Salim Lamrani, the US government has engaged in over 40 years of terrorism against the island of Cuba and its people.
The book is divided into two sections, beginning with a series of essays that provide an overview of US policy since the first Cuban revolution at the end of the 19th century. The bulk of the terrorism against Cuba however, has been committed since the 1959 revolution. Several articles detail the kinds of terrorism employed by the US and its proxy forces; tactics like assassination, bombings, kidnapping, chemical and biological warfare. The US government has attempted to assassinate Fidel Castro, financed the bombing of a Cuban airliner in 1976 killing Cuban athletes and infecting livestock with swine fever resulting in the slaughter of 500,000 pigs unsuitable for human consumption. Despite this well documented legacy of state terrorism you won’t find it much in official history or in current media discourse on the War on Terrorism. The fact that this history is little known in the US demonstrates how the media in this country has become little more than a cheerleader for the government.
The last half of the book looks at a more recent aspect of US terrorism against Cuba, the arrest and bogus trial of what have become known as the Cuban Five. Arrested for conspiracy to commit acts of terrorism against the US in 2001, these Cubans were actually gathering intelligence in order to alert their government of future US efforts to undermine their country. Some of those charged have a long history of heroism, particularly fighting in many of the liberation wars in Africa in the 1970’s and 1980’s. As of this writing the Cuban Five have been granted a new trial, but you are not likely to hear about it from the corporate media. Unfortunately these Cuban patriots are not Michael Jackson or Martha Stewart. To get the background on their case the last few essays include comments from the lawyers defending them and perspectives from international journalists who have been following the proceedings. A great resource for debunking the US government myth that our foreign policy is committed to preventing acts of terrorism.
Salim Lamrani, ed., Superpower Principles: U.S. Terrorism Against Cuba, (Common Courage Press, 2005).