Candlelight vigils and other actions in solidarity with Cuba took place in about half a dozen U.S. cities, as well as other countries, on December 23. The following are reports from three of these actions written by participants.
By Pete Seidman
Some 30 people gathered at Miami’s International Airport in a candlelight vigil December 23, one of the busiest travel nights of the year. The vigil, organized by the Miami Caravan Against the U.S. Blockade of Cuba made a striking visual impact on the hundreds of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians streaming by. Participants were gratified at the turnout and the generally positive response they received despite the fact that many usual caravanistas were out of town for the holiday, or isolated due to Covid, or tied up with other commitments on this holiday evening.
The action, under the theme: Peace on Earth! End the Blockade! Build Puentes de Amor [Bridges of Love]! was part of a worldwide vigil initiated by the Miami Caravan and supported by Puentes de Amor, the National Network on Cuba, the U.S. Cuba Normalization Coalition, and other organizations. So far, we know of parallel actions that took place in: Holguín, Cuba; New York City; Albany, NY; Milwaukee, WI; Memphis, TN; Seattle, WA; Vancouver, Canada; and of course: Rome, Italy. In Rome, a team of pilgrims led by Carlos Lazo completed a walk from Assissi to St. Peter’s Square on a mission of Puentes de Amor to bring the anti-embargo message to the Vatican.
Our goal was to focus the spirit promoted for the holidays onto the demands to end the blockade, restore family remittances, begin again the family reunification program, open consular services in Havana, re-start flights to all of Cuba’s major cities, establish scientific and medical collaboration with Cuba against Covid-19, and allow US citizens to travel to the island freely.
NEW YORK CITY
By Mark Satinoff
In coordination with similar vigils and rallies around the world, the N.Y.-N.J. Cuba Sí Coalition held a candlelight vigil and solidarity rally the evening of December 23 in front of the main branch of the N.Y. Public Library in Bryant Park, in midtown Manhattan. Under the slogans Building Bridges of Love and Peace on Earth, about 25 participants demanded: “We Stand With The World. End the U.S. Blockade Against Cuba.”
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA
By Mark Friedman
Despite torrential rains and holiday traffic snafus, members of the L.A. U.S. Hands Off Cuba Committee marched through all of the terminals of the Los Angeles international airport with banners and distributed to travelers more than 500 flyers demanding an end to the embargo of Cuba. This was part of actions at a number of U.S. airports.
Led by committee youth, this action followed on the successful meeting about Cuba’s internationalist aid to Africa held December 12 in the Black community here. That event attracted about of 50 people.
On January 1, we celebrate the anniversary of the Cuban Revolution—Cuba’s victory over the U.S.-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista in 1959, and the beginning of the fight for Cuba’s sovereignty as the U.S. government does everything in its power to deny the people of Cuba the right to determine their own future.
That was the origin of the U.S. Hands Off Cuba movement internationally. A tradition we and millions of others continue today as we champion Cuba’s internationalism and success against Covid-19.
Categories: Cuba/Cuba Solidarity