Permanent Mission of Cuba in Geneva
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Remarks by the Cuban Ambassador to the Permanent Mission in Geneva in the celebration of the 90th birthday of Fidel in Lausanne, Switzerland.


Dear friends of Switzerland, Latin America, other parts of the world and Cuba:

Allow me, on behalf of the Embassy of Cuba in Switzerland and the Permanent Mission of Cuba to the United Nations Office in Geneva to acknowledge your presence by joining our people to celebrate the 90th anniversary of our Fidel.

It is particularly difficult to express in a few words a feeling that overwhelms us today, speaking of someone we consider a father who is an undisputed revolutionary leader of universal size.

It is impossible to refer to the history of America in the last 60 years without talking about Fidel. We cannot speak of the anti-colonial struggles in Africa in the second half of the twentieth century without mentioning his mark. And in the case of Cuba, his conceptions and ideas are the foundation of the nation we are today.

We can never speak about Fidel in the past.

Because there are so many reasons to celebrate and feel the healthy pride of having been with him in these years of struggle.

About Fidel, many things are outstanding on which a lot has been spoken and written. I will only refer to some of the qualities that, among many others, have distinguished him and above all, have marked and defined Cuba, its Revolution and its international projection.

Fidel stands, first and foremost, by the strength of his political thinking, which he developed from his youth. Fidel is a prime politician and statesman whose main virtue is to have always maintained a permanent and direct connection with his people, who from his first actions as a fighter and student leader in the early 40s of the last century, confirmed the honesty and firmness of his convictions and recognized him as a leader who always turned words into action.

Fidel is also a military commander with a long range tactical and strategic thinking, equipped with an uncanny ability to discover in time the intentions of adversaries, disrupt their plans and achieve victory. He proved it a thousand times in epics like the Moncada, the liberation war, the confrontation with the actions of the enemies of the revolutionary Cuba and the internationalist military missions.

The peoples of our continent have been able to count on his presence in the battle we still wage for the Latin American and Caribbean unity and integration. Fidel is without doubt one of the highest examples in our time of the ideas unfurled by the Liberators who dreamed of a great and united homeland. Fidel contributed decisively to raise the awareness of Our America.

Fidel is an example of modesty and simplicity; his life and work are a clear expression of Marti's thought that "the entire world's glory fits in a kernel of corn." His unblemished conduct and performance has earned him recognition not only of the Cuban people, but all the decent men and women of the world.

Fidel is also a paradigm of personal example, ethics and moral authority. He never asked anyone to do something he was not willing to do and educated us with his daily performance in the idea that the revolutionary leader must be the most sacrificed, the most devoted, the best worker, always willing to take on the most difficult tasks.

As the voice of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel is also the voice of rebellion, resistance, the poor, the marginalized, and the hope of the peoples of the world for a better future. He turned solidarity with other peoples into an essential quality of the Cuban Revolution, exerted as a way of repaying our debt to humanity, without asking anything in return.

Fidel has taught us and continues to teach us that the struggle for social justice has no borders and that has been one of his greatest contributions as a revolutionary leader and politician: to turn the struggle into a universal cause.

We, Cubans, learned from him that a revolution, to be true, must maintain consistency and firmness on the principles. All our people know it well. And we Cuban diplomats, as part of that people, have always felt healthy pride to defend these ideas and these principles. And there should be no doubt that we will continue to defend them today and in the future, whatever the scenario is.

But perhaps one of the most important qualities that our people has recognized in Fidel is that for more than six decades of work dedicated entirely to his country and to the noblest causes of this world, he has always been in the front line of combat. Many times Cubans have seen Fidel be the first to reach an area where a severe natural disaster occurred and even not infrequently reach a region of our country in the midst of a hurricane and risk his life with others there, to understand the situation and direct the work of mitigation. There was no task of the Revolution in which the ultimate sacrifice and effort was required, in which Fidel was not present and leading his people.

That has also been his performance against the aggression of the enemies of the Revolution and against the subversive actions against our country, not infrequently directed against him; as is well known and has been documented by various sources, Fidel was the subject of more than six hundred assassination attempts and never ceased to be in front of his people, at the forefront, leading the way with his personal conduct.

And as part of that behavior, Fidel is also the most complete expression of perseverance, the conviction of not accepting under any circumstances the defeat and maintaining an unshakable faith in victory. That personal condition of Fidel has become an attribute of all our people and has marked what has been and what it is today the Cuban Revolution, which has firmly resisted almost 60 years of aggression and tight blockade of the United States.

Dear friends:

As we celebrate these 90 years of a life dedicated to his country and to the Great Homeland, it is for all of us who love Fidel an immense satisfaction to know that he is still here with us and that he continues to struggle relentlessly. It is also a pleasure to see that Fidel has been multiplied in his people; a people who continue to work hard to continue to build a prosperous, sustainable and irreversible Socialism. And besides, it is a source of great pride to see that Fidel is no longer ours alone: Fidel is a symbol that has transcended the borders of our small rebellious Island and remains a source of inspiration for people like you who are willing to continue fighting by the noblest ideals of humanity.

Fidel is and will remain to be the model and example for the decent men and women around the globe. All his life's work dedicated to build that better world we believe possible, multiplies in you, in your firm solidarity with Cuba and reaffirms our commitment to be faithful to his legacy.

Let us raise our voices to congratulate our undefeated and eternally young Commander in Chief!

Long live Fidel!

Long live solidarity and brotherhood among peoples!

Long live free Cuba!

Homeland or Death, we shall overcome! 

Thank you. 

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