Cuba's Prime Minister, Fidel Castro, told his country on Sunday (26 July) that the blamed his own and other inefficiencies for setbacks to industry and the economy.
Cuba's Prime Minister, Fidel Castro, told his country on Sunday (26 July) that the blamed his own and other inefficiencies for setbacks to industry and the economy. He was speaking to a crowd of 200,000 gathered in Havana's Plaza de la Revolucion on the 17th anniversary of his attack against the regime of former Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista. In a very sombre speech he suggested the country could replace him as leader, if they so wished.
Dr. Castro said the believed one way out of Cuba's problems was for the messes to take a direct role in industrial management and form new groups to co-ordinate the economy. He hinted at further dismissals from his Government to follow the recent replacement of the Ministers of Education and Sugar Production.
The speech also marked the end of a very poor sugar harvest, and after Dr. Castro had detailed setbacks in other fields.... including beef, milk, fertilizer, fuel, tyre, and rubber production...he admitted that this was his responsibility in particular.
The crowd was also told that Cuba had the alternative of a road to counter-revolution, but that "imperialists" should be warned against believing the country could take it. In the next few years, Dr. Castro said, he foresaw hardship and hard work for all Cubans. The situation was likely, he said, to be further aggravated by a population explosion, poor labour resources, and other problems.
Despite Dr. Castro's grim warnings and offer of replacement, the large crowd responded to the speech with prolonged applause.