Message from Fidel Castro to Nelson Mandela (2010)

MESSAGE TO NELSON MANDELA

Old and prestigious friend, how pleased I am to see you become recognized by all the political institutions of the world as a symbol of freedom, justice and human dignity.

They made you become a forced laborer in the quarries, as they did to Martí when he was 17 years old.
 

I was only in the political prison less than two years, but it was enough time for me to understand the meaning of 27 years in the loneliness of a prison, separated from your family and friends.

In the final years of your martyrdom, your country, under the tyranny of apartheid, was converted, after the Battle of Cuito Cuanavale, into an instrument of war against the Angolan and Cuban internationalist fighters advancing on occupied Namibia. No one could hide from you the news of the solidarity that the people, under your guidance, aroused among all the honest people of the earth.

Then, as now, the enemy was on the verge of a nuclear blow against the troops that, in this case, were advancing against the hateful system of apartheid.

No one was ever able to explain where they came from and when they took away those instruments of death.

You visited our country and supported it, while still not President of South Africa, freely chosen by the people.

Today humanity is threatened by the greatest risk in the entire history of our species.
 
Use all your great moral force to keep South Africa away from U.S. military bases and NATO.

Yesterday’s friends of Apartheid are now cynically competing to feign friendship.
 
For the peoples of Africa to survive the impending nuclear disaster, they will need more than ever, the scientific and technological advances of South Africa.
 
Humanity can still be protected from the crushing blows of the nuclear tragedy that approaches and that of the environment which is already present.

Fraternally,

Fidel Castro Ruz
July 18, 2010
9.03 a.m.

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