On September 26, 2021, car caravans and other actions demanding an end to the U.S. embargo against Cuba took place in more than a dozen cities across the United States, as well as Canada, the Caribbean, United Kingdom and other countries in Europe, South Africa, and elsewhere in the world. Below are reports, along with photos, from five of these actions in the U.S.
By Pete Seidman
Some 60 people (driving about 50 vehicles) joined the 16th Miami Caravan Against the US Blockade of Cuba today. The caravan assembled and rallied outside Miami City Hall to express outrage at Miami Mayor Francis Suarez’s call (during the rightist mobilizations here following the July 11 events in Cuba) to investigate “humanitarian military intervention” in Cuba as was done “in Panama and Yugoslavia.” The idea that someone would call for the type of military invasions against Cuba with bombs, civilian casualties, and thousands made homeless in the name of helping the Cuban family is outrageous.
Speaking at the rally were: An activist who lived through the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia as an 18-year-old who will never forget the terror and was outraged at the idea that this would be done to Cuba; Oni Shango, one of the people who walked with Carlos Lazo from Miami to Washington, DC, in July who proclaimed his support for all caravans and actions against the blockade; and Medea Benjamin from Code Pink.
Right-wing Miami station Radio Mambí had called for a counter-demonstration to what they called a “Communist” rally. But only eight people showed up, very aggressive and with loud sound systems aimed at disrupting our program. We had a permit for the rally and police arrived to separate the rightists and allow our peaceful, legal event to proceed.
This caravan was 50% larger than the one the previous month. We were all inspired with the increased unity and turnout for the event. For sixteen months in a row there has been a caravan against the U.S. blockade made up mostly of Cubans! In Miami! We drove down Calle Ocho in the heart of Miami’s Little Havana. Numerous activists told me they were pleasantly surprised at the number of thumbs up our caravan received as we passed by.
The caravan ended up at a small park where we took down our signs and had a joyous celebration of this important day in the fight against the US blockade of Cuba.
By Sandi Sherman
Today’s caravan was organized by the Solidarity Committee on the Americas and the Minnesota Cuba Committee. We had 18 co-hosts for the action, including Minnesota State Senator Sandra Pappas.
We had 20 cars in the caravan, seven motorcycles, and a bicycle. The motorcyclists are a group known as the Bikers riding against police brutality. They kept us safe in traffic. We had a short rally before the caravan. One of the speakers was Senator Pappas who has sponsored resolutions in the Minnesota legislature against the blockade and in favor of health collaboration with Cuba.
The caravan went through several neighborhoods. During the action, organizers were able to use an FM radio frequency to communicate with all of us participating, lead chants, etc.; we were able to use it to spread the message about ending the blockade and letting Cuba live.
LAS VEGAS, Nevada
By Reynaldo Jorrin Cateura
Eight Cuban brothers and sisters in six cars took part in the car caravan here today. We are taking initiatives to attract more people, not only Cubans but other Americans, Hispanics, Europeans and anyone who is interested in helping us.
Our activities include outreach to social justice organizations here and throughout Nevada. We are talking with coworkers, fellow students, and friends. We are publicizing our movement against the U.S. blockade of Cuba and the great difficulties this injustice creates for families in Cuba.
The caravan here showed once again our love and unity with the people of Cuba, and with all sisters and brothers in the United States, Canada, Europe, Russia, Asia, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean extending their support and solidarity with Cuba.
We will continue opposing the blockade and all the sanctions against Cuba. We will hold firm in our duty to defend the freedom and sovereignty the people of Cuba have. We won’t stop until the imperialists lift their boot and let Cuba live.
LONG BEACH, California
By Mark Friedman
Responding to an invitation by Puerto Rican political activists, the LA Hands Off Cuba monthly caravan joined with Peace Inside Out at the El Dorado Park in Long Beach in a commemoration of the Grito de Lares rebellion of 1868 organized by Puerto Rican independence fighters.
A presentation by that organization’s leader, Hector Rivera, detailed the history of US colonialism in Puerto Rico as well as the historical links between Cuba and Puerto Rico. A rally was held before the caravan drove through Long Beach.
Also participating in the event and caravan was Floyd Bryan, President of the District Council of the Southern California International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU); JP Cabrera, a Cuban American leader of the committee; and Brenda Lopez, committee co-chair.
The committee will participate in the October 2 march to defend a woman’s right to choose with a flyer on advances of women in Cuba since the revolution, and will speak at the October meeting of the ILWU district council.
By Duane Stilwell
The committee that organizes caravans and other actions against the US embargo of Cuba, and against the many other punitive sanctions imposed by the Trump and the Biden administrations, met Sunday, September 26, at a park in central Phoenix. The aim was to reach as many people as possible with the anti-blockade message. The group began painting a banner that will be “dropped” at a freeway overpass next month, and decided to set up an informational table regularly at the city’s popular and well-attended First Friday events. A table at First Friday earlier this month collected 19 signatures of people interested in learning more about the embargo and participating in the committee’s activities.
Categories: Cuba/Cuba Solidarity