Seeing the cesspool that Havana had become for Americans and Europeans because of a dictatorial ruler whose hand was in the American pocket, the young Fidel organized a band of patriots who fought to liberate Cuba from the oligarchs, corrupt politicians, and foreign interest. Applauded around the world for his bravery, genius, and strategic skill, Fidel never forgot the people who lifted him to power and glory. Now those same people have declared nine days of mourning, from Havana to Santiago.
African people weep across the globe for the loss of Fidel Castro. Who was it but Nelson Mandela who defied the Miami Cubans to declare Fidel Castro a friend of all revolutionaries? What we know about Fidel is that he saw Cuba not as a Latin American nation but as an Afro-Latin country. What we know is that when the people of Angola were in the throes of revolution attempting to throw off the weighty oppression of the whites of South Africa and Portugal, it was Fidel who declared that Cuba was willing to sacrifice its blood to protect and defend the people of those countries.
In November l975 Fidel sent troops to Angola to support the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola on the eve of its independence when South Africa and Congo (Zaire) backed by the United States tried to subvert the liberation of the country. Again in l988 Cuban troops were sent to Angola to hold back a major invasion of South African troops. Fidel Castro Ruiz is an African hero because of what the Cuban soldiers did by assisting the Angolans in stopping the white South African soldiers at the heroic of Battle of Cuito Cuanavale. Beyond warfare, Fidel Castro was a man of monumental brilliance in the fight against rampant and immoral capitalism, militarization of the Americas, and Western consumerism that robbed people of their spirit.
Afrocentricity International mourns for all of those who will miss the massive presence of this once in a hundred years revolutionary figure. Now Cubans, and Africans, and others who believe in breaking the boundaries of race and class must stand up and declare that they, too, are Fidel. Let the praise of Fidelismo become the battle-cry of all freedom-loving people and let Afrocentrity International lead with “Unity is our Aim; Victory is our Destiny!” Long live Fidel!
Peraat Ama Mazama
Molefi Kete Asante
International Organizer, AI