Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba

Granma International

Havana. December 27, 2006

Oscar Arias: Vain, mediocre and obsessed with being a star

THE Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba has learned with profound indignation of the most recent statements against our country and President Fidel Castro pronounced by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias. They are not the first and surely will not be the last.

This time, in a disrespectful and completely unethical way, he compared Fidel to deceased Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. He also referred to the current situation of Latin America, where, according to him, “there is a pack of irresponsible demagogues and charlatans who are playing with people’s aspirations,” in clear reference to the new progressive leadership that is emerging on the continent.

As everyone knows, the United States government has always had one or another opportunistic clown at hand disposed to follow its aggressive anti-Cuba plans, the majority of them shady policies that end up in the garbage dump of history. With the new winds blowing in the region, it would seem difficult to find someone willing to lend themselves to the despicable task of acting as Washington’s figurehead, but the egomaniacal Arias has offered himself with unusual enthusiasm and abject loyalty to the empire. At some point, it will be known what his price is.

In case anyone has questions, suffice it to illustrate with some examples:

—On March 11, 2006, President Bush called to congratulate him on his election as president of Costa Rica, and told him, “You can help me a lot with respect to the new situation in Latin America.”

—On August 28, 2006, Arias published an article, “La Hora de la Democracia en Cuba” (Democracy Time in Cuba), an almost exact repetition of what U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Thomas Shannon had said about “transition in Cuba” five days earlier.

—On September 23, 2006, Arias met with John Maisto, the U.S. ambassador to the OAS, and announced the anti-Cuban agenda he was planning to take to the Ibero-American Summit in Montevideo, and which finally he did not dare to bring out, having discovered that his audience there would not be conducive to his doing so.

—On December 6, during his meeting at the White House with President Bush, he extensively discussed “the Cuban case” and told reporters, with the complacency of the master: “You are well aware of my commitment to restoring democracy to the Cuban people after 47 years of dictatorship.”

Mr. Oscar Arias is a vulgar mercenary.

President Arias shamelessly supports the U.S. plans to annex Cuba and has no respect for the heroic and selfless struggle of our people for our independence and sovereignty.

President Arias, moreover, has no moral authority to criticize Cuba or anyone else. In his zeal to once again occupy the presidency of Costa Rica, he used his influence to get the country’s Constitution changed without the required referendum. He did not hold elections in his party. He was elected president with just 25% of the vote in a process plagued by irregularities that have not been clarified.

Instead of concerning himself with Cuba’s future — something that is solely the business of the Cuban people — he should be dealing with corruption in his own country, which has even involved a vice president and three former presidents. He should be attending to the dignified protests of the Costa Rican people, our brothers and sisters, against a free trade agreement with the United States that President Arias is attempting to impose without listening to their demands. He should be concerned about the 23% poverty rate that his people are suffering, the level of citizen insecurity, the lack of jobs, the insufficient access to education for thousands of children and young people, and the growing social inequalities in that nation.

President Oscar Arias is, moreover, out of context, and does not fit into the new times of genuine and definitive Latin American integration. He clashes like a servile parrot of Yankee imperialism, and it is certain that nobody will go to his political funeral.

He is a vain, mediocre person, obsessed with being a star.

He cannot be taken seriously.

Havana, December 27, 2006

Translated by Granma International

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