In the long-awaited response from the home-grown communist sympathizers in the United States, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) “AOC” and Black Lives Matter have issued statements that mirror the mirror one another. The common theme? Blaming the US for the conditions that led to the Cuban people protesting their tyrannical government.
Black Lives Matter issued their statement earlier in the week and to no surprise, their stance was not to stand firmly against the ideology of Marxism that has gripped Cuba for decades, but rather to admonish the United States for the embargo against the island nation.
“Black Lives Matter condemns the U.S. federal government’s inhumane treatment of Cubans and urges it to immediately lift the economic embargo,” the group said. “This cruel and inhumane policy, instituted with the explicit intention of destabilizing the country and undermining Cubans’ right to choose their own government, is at the heart of Cuba’s current crisis. Since 1962, the United States has forced pain and suffering on the people of Cuba by cutting off food, medicine and supplies, costing the tiny island nation an estimated $130 billion.”
“Without that money, it is harder for Cuba to acquire medical equipment needed to develop its own COVID-19 vaccines and equipment for food production. This comes despite the country’s strong medical care and history of lending doctors and nurses to disasters around the world,” they continued. “The people of Cuba are being punished by the U.S. government because the country has maintained its commitment to sovereignty and self-determination. United States leaders have tried to crush this Revolution for decades. Instead of international amity, respect, and goodwill, the U.S. government has only instigated suffering for the country’s 11 million people – of which 4 million are black and brown.”
“Cuba has historically demonstrated solidarity with oppressed peoples of African descent, from protecting black revolutionaries like Assata Shakur,” the group said of one of the FBI’s most wanted terrorists, “through granting her asylum, to supporting black liberation struggles in Angola, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau and South Africa. Now, we look to President Biden to end the embargo, something Barack Obama called for in 2016. This embargo is a blatant human rights violation and it must come to an end.”
What the statement did not point out or condemn was the form of government responsible for the Cuban people’s suffering and the cause for their week-long protest. The statement given by Ocasio-Cortez mirrored the same type of tone-deaf nature of the Black Lives Matter statement, ignoring the root cause for the civil unrest taking place.
“We are seeing Cubans rise and protest for their rights like never before,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “We stand in solidarity with them, and we condemn the anti-democratic actions led by President Diaz-Canel. The suppression of the media, speech and protest are all gross violations of civil rights.”
“We also must name the U.S. contribution to Cuban suffering: our sixty-year-old embargo,” she continued. “Last month, once again, the U.N. voted overwhelmingly to call on the United States to lift its embargo on Cuba. The embargo is absurdly cruel and, like too many other U.S. policies targeting Latin Americans, the cruelty is the point. I outright reject the Biden administration’s defense of the embargo. It is never acceptable for us to use cruelty as a point of leverage against everyday people.”
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) has been leading the effort here at home to try and shine a light on the plight of the Cuban people and leading efforts to condemn the communist regime as well as help the people in their fight for freedom from it. In a tweet from earlier in the week, he made a statement that would seem to come in stark contrast to that of the congresswoman and the Marxist group.
These two statements ignore the complications that are brought about by the state-run means of distribution of goods and services brought about by socialist and communist ideologies. However, to condemn these ideologies would be to condemn their own beliefs systems and prove to be hypocritical. In a tweet from back in 2016, the Black Lives Matter organization offered their condolences to the late Fidel Castro upon his death. As this tweet highlights, it is difficult for supporters of this type of government to step back and condemn it when they have spent so much of their time and efforts calling for it to be the replacement to the capitalist system.