Date: Sun, 25 Jul 1999 00:08:19 -0500 (CDT)
From: email@example.com (Rich Winkel)
Subject: Cuba-US Court: US Naval Base violations
/** reg.carib: 262.0 **/
** Topic: Pt8 Cuba -US Court. Naval Base viol **
** Written 5:31 PM Jul 22, 1999 by firstname.lastname@example.org in cdp:reg.carib **
subject:Pt8 Cuba-US Court. Naval base violations
¨ Copyright GRANMA INTERNATIONAL DIGITAL EDITION. La Havana. Cuba
COMPENSATION CLAIM AGAINST THE UNITED STATES
Continuous violations from the naval base
Naval base violations
Pt. 8, Cuba -US Court
22 July 1999
THE illegal status of the U.S. naval base on Cuban territory in the
east of the island was no obstacle to that military enclave being
utilized for 30 years (from the '60s to early '90s) for a whole gamut
of attacks on the island's sovereignty, adding up to 13,498 in total.
Rifle shots, the launching of objects, verbal offense and obscene
gestures, among other acts, are on the list of 5236 acts of
provocation mounted by U.S. marines on the Border Brigade guarding
Cuban territory. In his presentation of evidence to the court,
Colonel Luis M. Garca Cu±arro, a witness called by lawyers
representing the plaintiffs, described these deeds as systematic and
In his report, Garca Cu±arro offered a wealth of data on the matter.
He recounted how, in the '60s, ships and aircraft carried out
training exercises with live ammunition, and the consequent dangers
represented by these. During the so-called October Missile Crisis
there were 5800 men under arms on the base.
He likewise presented as evidence a document declassified during the
trial arising from President John Kennedy's assassination. Outlining
a plan for military intervention in Cuba, it was put before the Joint
Chiefs of Staff for their consideration. This was the "select
document on Cuba," which contains a whole catalogue of pretexts that
could be utilized by the United States to this end.
According to the plan, there was to be a well-coordinated series of
acts of self-aggression, including the sabotage of a U.S. warship in
the base's port, which even took into account the potential number of
Garca recalled the deaths of young Cuban soldier Ramn Lpez Pe±a in
1965 and Luis Ramrez Lpez, aged 19, one year later, as a direct
result of those acts of aggression. Taking the total of all the
violations (8262), it is calculated that an injurious act was
effected every 36 hours on average.
The harassment of workers who had worked in the enclave for years was
also denounced. That harassment was followed by mass dismissals by
the base authorities in 1964. According to information given to the
court by Justo Luis Noriega, who acted as head of the Border
Battalion from 1962-64, the Revolution directed half a million pesos
to cover those workers' wages and subsequently relocated them in
Division General Sixto Batista Santana, who was Chief of Staff of the
Border Brigade in the first half of 1966, explained the series of
measures adopted by the Revolution to protect the lives of Brigade
members, and to alleviate the psychological tensions resulting from
their constant humiliation by the marines. Moreover, it was necessary
to ensure that the situation didn't provoke a response that would
serve as an example of provocation toward the United States.
During that session of evidence on violations mounted from the
Guantßnamo Naval Base, a 40-minute documentary faithfully recounting
the history of acts of provocation perpetrated by marines up until
the early '90s, was shown to the court.
Focal point for subversion since 1959
That enclave - established 100 years ago via the confusingly drafted
1903 Agreement, which granted the above-mentioned base to the United
States "for as long as it is needed," was converted into a focal
point for subversion in 1959, as David Concepcin Prez, head of the
Border Battalion from 1961 to 1963, testified to the court.
In addition to detailing the tons of munitions taken from the base to
help the armed bands "rapidly eliminated in Oriente (province),"
Concepcin Prez denounced the torture and murder of Caimanera
fisherman Rodolfo Rosell Salas in May 1962.
Orlando la O Estrada - head of the Ministry of the Interior in
Guantßnamo from 1959 to 1984 - offered an exhaustive testimony on the
torture and murder in 1961 of Rubn Lpez Sabariego, who worked as a
freight truck driver on the base.
Married with nine children, Lpez Sabariego's body was discovered
on territory belonging to the base by other Cuban workers and
returned to his family after two weeks. One of his daughters,
Evanglica Lpez, told the court of the multiple signs of torture
found by pathologists on his body.
Andrs Noel Lardue testified how he was seriously wounded in one arm
and the lung by bullets fired by two marines in 1964; Berto Beln, a
Ministry of the Revolutionary Armed Forces photographer, showed
injuries occasioned by a marine with a telescopic rifle, likewise in
1964; and base worker Manuel Prieto Gmez recounted how he was
detained and maltreated there for a number of days in 1961.
Orlando la O also testified on munitions taken out of the base for
various targets, including leaders of the Revolution, and referred to
what was known as the Patty-Candela case, aimed at the assassination
of then Commander Ral Castro, in 1961, for which those involved had
30-millimeter machine guns, mortars, two 37-millimeter cannons,
submachine guns, rifles, rockets and grenades.
He noted that he worked on 23 cases proceeding from the naval base in
10 years; 20 agents were neutralized and a further 153 were screened
"During all those years," David Concepcin Prez declared, "not
one provocation from the Guantßnamo Naval Base that could serve as a
bridgehead for the United States to unleash a direct aggression
against our country was ever accepted."
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