Elson Concepción Pérez | [email protected]|Jan 22, 2019 — During January of 1959, Cuba’s nascent revolutionary government fulfilled one its moral commitments: bringing to justice the Batista dictatorship’s murderers, amidst a ferocious media campaign to destroy the Revolution
Today, in 2019, the corporate media is more powerful and the resources available to mount campaigns against Cuba greater, but the purpose of the United States is the same: destroy the Revolution.
During the luminous January of 1959, following the triumph of the Revolution, Cuba’s nascent government was fulfilling one its moral commitments: bringing to justice the terrorists, criminals, and torturers of the Batista dictatorship who had caused the people so much pain and mourning, amidst a ferocious media campaign to discredit the trials, orchestrated by the United States, where many of these murderers had already taken refuge.
Fidel immediately perceived Washington’s objective, thinly veiled behind the lies and manipulation.
First, on January 13, 15, and 16, in public appearances, he recalled how the U.S. press and government had ignored the crimes of the Batista dictatorship and, after the revolutionary victory, denounced measures taken against Batista’s henchmen.
The people, who not only asked for but demanded justice, gathered in front of the Presidential Palace, a million strong. Thus, Operation Truth was launched, with some 380 foreign journalists on hand, plus many diplomats, and other guests.
Fidel addressed the crowd, and asked, “Those who agree that justice should be administered, those who agree that the minions be shot, raise your hands (Unanimously, hands are raised). Gentlemen, representatives of the diplomatic corps, journalists from across the continent, the jury of a million Cubans, of all beliefs and social classes, has voted.”The world recognized this vote as the grand jury of the people, saying yes to revolutionary justice. It was January 21, 1959 and the Revolution had the people’s support.Fidel added: “I do not answer to any Congressman in the United States or any foreign government. I am accountable to the people, first of all, to my people.”He was referring to a group of U.S. Congressmen who opposed – with what right? – the prosecution of Batista’s war criminals and requested that the State Department intervene in the matter.This was the pretext for launching economic sanctions, first the suspension of the sugar quota, then the commercial blockade, and the possibility of sending troops considered.
January 22, in Havana’s Hotel Rivera, Fidel held what he called the world’s largest press conference, Operation Truth, regarding the public trials of Batista’s henchmen. An unrelenting media campaign against Cuba was unleashed by the Associated Press, United Press, Inter-American Press Society, and several Congress members.
Nonetheless, as an article by Juan Marrero noted, upon returning to their countries, many of the journalists who came to Cuba to cover the trials were not allowed to publish their reports, and some became friends of Cuba, although this position would cost them their jobs.