Shortly before it been held in Havana the Sixth Summit of the Non -Aligned and Cuba became President of the Movement to the next meeting, held in New Delhi, capital of India, in 1983, when Fidel Castro handed the mandate to Prime Minister of the country, Indira Gandhi.
Nineteen years before Fidel had established a record at the UN, where he gave a very long speech on September 26, 1960. This time read the text of his speech, which occupied three pages of Granma newspaper the next day, and the length in time of its intervention – two hours and five minutes – was due largely to the repeated applause of those who filled the great hall of the General Assembly.
I remember the first applauses , very long , occurred when Fidel referred to the Palestinian issue , ” Stripped of their land , expelled from their homeland , scattered around the world , hunted and killed , the heroic Palestinians are an impressive example of self-denial and patriotism and are the living symbol of the greatest crime of our time. “
From there the audience vibrated with each of Fidel´s statements, and applause came not only from countries that had diplomatic relations with Cuba, but other governments which at that time had not formalized links with our nation.
The second interruption by applause came when Fidel referred to the colonial status of Puerto Rico , and then when he alluded to the issues of illegal U.S base at Guantanamo , the neocolonial system , arms race , external debt , the prospect of a world without capitalism , poverty , malnutrition , disease , illiteracy and when demanded support for the development of poor countries.
The auditorium was shaken by Fidel’s memorable phrase: “I speak on behalf of children in the world do not have a piece of bread, l speak for patients who do not have medicine, I speak on behalf of those who are been denied the right to life and human dignity “.
And like today, Fidel warned in the UN 34 years ago that “the clash of arms, the threatening language of arrogance on the international scene must cease. We must stop the illusion that the world’s problems can be solved with nuclear weapons. Bombs may kill the hungry, the sick, the ignorant, but cannot kill hunger, disease, ignorance ” or ” cannot kill the righteous rebellion of the people” .
Fidel ‘s speech , to be contained forever in the history of the UN , ended with most of the audience stood up and applauded his last exhortation : ” Say goodbye to consecrate weapons and civilized manner most pressing problems of our age. That is the responsibility and duty holiest of all the statesmen of the world. That is also the indispensable premise of human survival. “
And one of the statesmen who stood up and went to meet Fidel to give you a hug , in a clear breach of UN protocol , was the young Prime Minister of Granada , Maurice Bishop , whom I interviewed shortly after the reception held at the headquarters of the Mission of Cuba in New York at Lexington and 38. Streets.
That night also interviewed for Cuban television Secretary General of the UN Kurt Waldheim, and Fidel Castro, who remind the time since his first appearance at the General Assembly in 1960, immediately retorted: “I feel younger.”
There were eight minutes of dialogue with New York statesman left a message that retains full force and asked questions that are unanswered.
Translated by: Daysi Olano