What I (and Ben Bella) Love About Cuba – Follow Up

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What I missed most in the United States was the warmth of human fellowship. America is a wall…a wall that separates people. What is lacking is communication among people…I was struck by the absence of that human warmth that is, for us Algerians, an essential element of life, an ingredient without which we cannot breathe.

With what delight we immersed ourselves, as soon as we had boarded the plane, in the warmth of the Cubans. We had just sat down when they served us an excellent cafecito, very strong, very sweet, very fragrant, which was a welcome change from the pale brew they call coffee in the United States…

– Ben Bella, Prime Minister of newly-independent Algeria commenting on his visit to the US & Cuba, 1962

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2 responses to “What I (and Ben Bella) Love About Cuba – Follow Up

  1. Thank you for this, it is true and is also true of your people. As a teen, i studied Ben Bellas triumph, and of all of the people who have made Algeria, proud i am sure be Ben Bella would be one.
    i am Cuban, and recently returned from my homeland to much dispair. It is not so much about the cold manner in which many american react to others but rather the uncompromising manner in which many americans see Cuba.
    Many, are as cold as ice on a glass on a chilly eve in December, and seem to know very little about my country, yet they have the answer for all of our ills.

    For many who have dared venture to speak with me about conditions in Cuba, for the most part its all Fidels fault.
    However, noone wants to speak about why Cubans, have been made to suffer due to an inhumane econ embargo placed against our tiny island by a president whose own family were involved in bootlegging in america during prohibition?
    For many supremacists of all cultures (Euros included) its simply about our Cuban resources, and how they can come into my country and suck it dry as with Africa, and then blame the colonized. Ben Bella knew something about this.
    i am from Matanzas, a haven for folkloric music etc, my family are grammy winners and i am a former percussionsist singer and dancer.
    i too have made many trips back to my home most often at high risk, however, before i would cease (in the past) to do so, i would give my life, helping my people/country is my obligation
    Now that we can travel as much as we can/want i am seeing the other Cuba, the racism, the violation of human rights, the harrassment, and the overall disregard for the dignity of all Cubans.
    My belief is that these conditions will only cease to be when Pres Castro, and the US Adm can come to the table and act like men. (Billary leave your pantsuits at home) Also unless and until Fidel willingly go back to his promise of Dec 1 1959..and change the Cuban Constitution all talk will be for naught..It is time for action.

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