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Ghost Dog

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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Canary Islands Archipelago
Home country: Spain
Member since: Wed Apr 19, 2006, 12:59 PM
Number of posts: 16,726

About Me

A Brit many years in Spain, Catalunya, Baleares, Canarias. Cooperative member. Geography. Ecology. Cartography. Software. Sound Recording. Music Production. Languages & Literature. History.

Journal Archives

Helms-Burton Act Title III; Venezuela: Destroying Cuba?

https://www.plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=39389&SEO=us-helms-burton-act-and-the-insistence-in-destroying-cuba

Havana, Mar 3 (Prensa Latina) In the next few days, the United States will decide whether or not it will enforce Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, an initiative that evokes the darkest elements of the Monroe Doctrine to destroy the Cuban Revolution. That title had been (repeatedly) suspended by all US administrations for six months since 1996, but the current government, headed by President Donald Trump, has decided to postpone its approval for 45 days only, a stance that Cuba has described as political blackmail and irresponsible hostility.

With the possible activation of Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, the United States bets again on the domino effect to destroy the Cuban Revolution, the researcher Olga Rosa Gonzalez said. The deputy director of the Center for Hemispheric Studies and on the United States (CEHSEU), attached to the University of Havana, said in an interview with Prensa Latina that Washington is trying to step up the blockade of Cuba to achieve its long-awaited goal of a regime change. She noted that Venezuela plays a key role in that political scheme by the White House, because as an added effect from its coup attempt in that South American nation, the US seeks to finish off the social(ist) system in Cuba...

... Donald Trump is threatening to activate its Title III which, if approved in the next few days, would authorize lawsuits in US courts to demand compensations for properties nationalized in Cuba in 1960. Even though that process (the nationalization) was carried out on the basis of international laws, the United States did not want to negotiate with Cuba as other countries did, Gonzalez ratified...

https://www.plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=39389&SEO=us-helms-burton-act-and-the-insistence-in-destroying-cuba

Cubans voted in Referendum to approve new Constitution

So... Take your pick:

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/452768-cuba-referendum-socialist-us/
Cuba snubs Trump’s anti-socialist crusade with massive constitution vote
By Pablo Vivanco, former director of Telesur English. Published time: 1 Mar, 2019 15:03

Cuba’s new Magna Carta reinforces the island’s revolutionary model, even as Washington ramps up its efforts against leftist governments in Latin America...

--- The ‘yes’ campaign obtained 90.6 percent, or roughly 6.8 million votes, compared to just over 700,000 who rejected the proposal... Over 130,000 meetings were held at job sites, neighborhoods, schools and universities, hospitals, and any other place people gather in order to discuss the draft and give feedback. Upwards of 800,000 proposals were then sent up to the National Assembly of People’s Power for consideration and review... All told, 63 percent of the original draft’s articles were changed based on feedback from the Cuban people.

“All Cubans had the opportunity to give our opinions on this constitution, which comes at a very important time for our country, and which will be very important for our present and our future,“ said Nereyda Lopez Labrada, a member of the National Assembly and Secretary General of the National Union of Cultural Workers. ..“This has been a total success and in total democracy.”

To characterize these changes as important is surely an understatement... As optimistic as Cubans are about the steps taken with a new constitution, many are aware that they may have to rely on their past in order to secure their future.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/452768-cuba-referendum-socialist-us/


https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/cubans-are-losing-their-patience--and-their-fear/2019/03/01/ece6791e-39d9-11e9-a06c-3ec8ed509d15_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.baeed72e0174
The Post's View Opinion
Cubans are losing their patience — and their fear
By Editorial Board March 1 at 6:32 PM

MORE THAN 86 percent of the votes cast Sunday favored approval of Cuba’s new constitution, which barely tweaks the system of single-party rule established by Fidel Castro six decades ago. But far more telling was the surprising share of eligible voters who cast “no” ballots or stayed home. In the last constitutional vote in 1976, when Castro had established a totalitarian state, 99.02 percent voted yes. What’s notable in Cuba is not the lame maneuverings of the Communist Party but the unmistakable signs that hundreds of thousands of people have lost their fear of the authorities and lost their patience with a decaying economic and political system.

The new constitution is the handiwork of the authoritarian clique that stumbles on after Castro’s death. The key decisions were made by a commission appointed by former president Raúl Castro, who still leads the Communist Party, and has amendments by the rubber-stamp parliament. Genuine political competition — the essence of democracy — was absent. The state-run news media ignored those who would advocate a “no” vote, and in the final day, nervous about the outcome, the authorites blacked out the digital newspaper 14ymedio, run by the dissident blogger Yoani Sánchez, who had openly called for a “no” vote on social media. José Daniel Ferrer García, a tough-minded activist and regime opponent, was detained after sitting in a park in Santiago de Cuba with a hand-lettered sign that proclaimed, “No.”

The new constitution is hardly earth-shattering. It recognizes private property for a “complementary role in the economy,” but continues to enshrine a “socialist economic system based on ownership by all people of the fundamental means of production as the primary form of property as well as the planned direction of the economy.” For most Cubans, this reality is a dystopia reminiscent of the Soviet Union, with shortages of eggs, butter and other basics...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/cubans-are-losing-their-patience--and-their-fear/2019/03/01/ece6791e-39d9-11e9-a06c-3ec8ed509d15_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.baeed72e0174


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-cuba-constitution-explainer/explainer-what-is-old-and-new-in-cubas-proposed-constitution-idUSKCN1QA273
Explainer: What is old and new in Cuba's proposed constitution
Marc Frank. FEBRUARY 21, 2019 / 4:12 PM

The new version keeps the Communist Party as the only legal party and maintains its role as the guide of the nation, stating that this is irrevocable. At the same time, it eliminates a ban on the use of private property to exploit the labor of others.

SOCIALISM
The new version reinforces the state’s dominance over the means of production and land, as well as the role of centralized planning. This too is deemed irrevocable. However, for the first time it recognizes the market as a fact of economic life, though it can be countermanded at will by the government.

PRIVATE BUSINESS AND FOREIGN INVESTMENT
Private businesses and non-farm cooperatives are included for the first time in the new version as legitimate economic actors. The role of joint ventures and other forms of foreign investment is upgraded from secondary to “important” or “fundamental.”

GOVERNMENT
The president of the nation, who is elected every five years by the national assembly, may serve only two consecutive terms and must be under 60 years of age when first taking office...

(much more...)

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-cuba-constitution-explainer/explainer-what-is-old-and-new-in-cubas-proposed-constitution-idUSKCN1QA273




Cuba constitution referendum is 'first chance for open dissent' | Al Jazeera English
Published on Feb 24, 2019

Cubans will vote on a new constitution for the first time in decades. It could mean more freedom in trade, property and foreign investment. And for the eight million registered voters, it will be a rare chance to voice opposition to the government. David Ariosto in New York, an executive producer of Eurasia Group's G-Zero Media and author of the book "This is Cuba", talks to Al Jazeera about the significance of the referendum.

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https://www.plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=39329&SEO=cuban-electoral-commission-informs-final-results-of-referendum
Cuban Electoral Commission Informs Final Results of Referendum
Havana, Mar 1 (Prensa Latina)

Alina Balseiro, president of the National Electoral Commission (CEN), stated that about 6,816,169 people voted in favor of the new Cuban Constitution for a 78.3 percent of the voter registration lists, while reporting the final results of the national referendum.

During the Sunday elections, 'votes against reached 706,400 for an 8.1 percent of the list and nine percent of those who voted, Balseiro informed on Friday night during the daily radio and TV Round Table program... The results that are disclosed are part of an arduous, serious work, in accordance with the law of the electoral authorities and I congratulate them for their previous performance and the February 24 consultation to ratify the law of laws, Balseiro said .

https://www.plenglish.com/index.php?o=rn&id=39329&SEO=cuban-electoral-commission-informs-final-results-of-referendum



Edit: So around 72% of eligible voters voted to approve the constitution while 28% did not.
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