Castro condemns US aggression against Cuba (1961)

In April 1961 Fidel Castro delivered a radio address, informing Cubans of the outcomes of the Bay of Pigs invasion and condemning American aggression against Cuba:

“The people know a great deal about the events which have taken place as a result of our special reports, the newspaper accounts and the interrogation of prisoners. The people know about the invasion, the details of its organisation, and the way in which it was crushed…

We have always been in danger of direct aggression. We have been warning about this in the United Nations: that [the Americans] would find a pretext, that they would organise some act of aggression so that they could intervene. That is why we have followed a cautious policy in regard to Guantanamo Base.

We wish to avoid giving them a pretext for intervention. We made this known in the United Nations. We said that we would never want to obtain the base by force, only through international law, so that we would not provide a pretext for direct aggression.

Our position is that we will fight to the last man, but we do not want direct aggression. We do not wish to suffer the destruction that aggression would bring. If the aggression comes, it will meet the total resistance of our people…

They are the ones who are bringing the world to the brink of war through their warlike spirit, their own contradictions and their economic problems, which cause them to provoke a series of crises in order to maintain their war economy. Their factories run only when they are building war material. Their regime is marching toward a crisis. It is not like our economy, which is perfectly planned.

The economy of our country is based on an increase of 10 percent a year, while in the United States the figure is only two percent. The US economy is managed in the interest of only a few groups; it is divorced from the interests of the people. In war, they have a cure for their crises.

They have the capacity to do all sorts of things for the benefit of their people. But their system demands production, not peace. As a result, there is extensive wasting of natural resources. Look at their military budget. What they could do with this money for schools, industry, homes. What good it could mean for the world.

The United States has no right to meddle in our domestic affairs. We do not speak English and we do not chew gum. We have a different tradition, a different culture, our own way of thinking. Our national characteristics are different. We have no borders with anybody. Our frontiers is the sea, very clearly defined.

Only because it is a big country did the United States take the right to commit that series of brutalities against Cuba. How can the crooked politicians and the exploiters have more rights than the people? What right does a rich country have to impose its yoke on our people? Only because they have might and no scruples; they do not respect international rules. They should have been ashamed to be engaged in this battle of Goliath against David, and to lose it besides…

We shall keep all the revolutionary forces mobilised and we shall plan for the May Day celebrations and we shall work for the victory of the revolution. We shall prepare ourselves to make the necessary sacrifices. The people have tasted victory. Victory is based upon sacrifices, on the basis of the 87 who died to guarantee the future of the country. They sacrificed themselves for the rest, for the independence and sovereignty of the nation and to obtain a better nation. This joy of today we owe it to those who fell and we hope that the future generations will enjoy their lives for today’s sacrifices..”