6 November 2015

Liberation Struggle

Anti-Imperialism, War and Peace, Part 10

Jorge Risquet Valdés Saldaña

Liberation Struggle

In political education, our method is to remove ourselves in place and time. We go to the “classics” and to authors of the intermediate period, and we study other places, in the past or in the present.

All of these provide us with examples. The examples provide us with a theoretical and practical “sandpit” that gives us a “codification” or in other words a basis upon which we may have a common dialogue.

Dialogue is where political education happens. Anything that can provide an occasion for political dialogue is good for education.

Our own history can be used, but what do we find? When looking for history of our liberation struggle, and the history of the armed struggle in particular, we find very little. The materials about the culminating struggle in Angola assembled below will have to suffice for now. They can also serve as a small contribution towards recognising the Cuban and Soviet comrades who fought faithfully and often fell for us, until victory came.

Vladimir Shubin has written and published two books in English: “ANC: A View from Moscow” and “The Hot 'Cold War’: The USSR in Southern Africa”. These books are presently available from bookshops in South Africa, or they can be ordered via the Internet.

The Soviet record of events does not correspond in every respect with the Cuban record, and this contrast would force the readers or students to make judgements of their own, as to what was really the critical path that led to the final political result, which was victory in Angola, Namibia and South Africa. Let us hope to find a suitable Soviet or Russian article in electronic form, soon.

Fidel Castro has written a lot. Linked below, as our main item, is the speech he made on 2 December 2005, on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the first Cuban expeditionary force to Angola, which became what the US Imperialist diplomat Chester Crocker called an “unprecedented projection of power”.

Jorge Risquet Valdés Saldaña, fighter, negotiator, and currently member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba, has written (in Spanish) “El Segundo frente del Che en el Congo” (ISBN 959-210-412-3, Casa Editorial Abril, 2006) – the history of the Patrice Lumumba Battalion, in which Risquet served. The picture above is of the same Jorge Risquet, a great and brave hero, also famous for his friendliness and joie-de-vivre. The person seen to the left of Risquet is Piero Gleijeses, of whom more in the next item.

·        The above is to introduce the original reading-text: Thirty years after Angola and 49 after Granma, Fidel Castro.


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