[Marxism] Chinese think tank on Cuba: "U.S. must rethink its policies toward Cuba"

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sat Jun 7 09:51:02 MDT 2008


Walter advised us to read:

>ASIA TIMES
>May 31, 2008
>
>The makings of a China-Latin love affair
>By William Ratliff
>
>http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/JE31Ad01.html

I often wonder if Walter reads some of the stuff he crossposts here, 
especially the more obnoxious items like Ratliff's, a fellow at the 
Hoover Institute. If he read this item and thinks it is of 
inspirational value, that's all the more regrettable.

Ratliff:
Yet in the words of Mao Xianglin, an ILAS Cuba specialist, "Socialist 
Cuba can catch up with and surpass others only by moving rapidly to 
break out of its intellectual straitjacket and intensifying its 
reforms". Venezuela's Hugo Chavez has tried without success to get 
China to join an anti-American front. Though it is exploring oil and 
other matters, on balance China has more to lose than gain from 
Venezuela's efforts to destabilize the region and promote economic 
ideas that will certainly only make countries poorer and more unstable.

Comment:
Despite all the efforts by some to paint China as pro-socialist and 
anti-imperialist, it is pretty obvious from the above that it is not. 
When people advise Cuba to "break out of its intellectual 
straitjacket" and intensify its reforms, you can read through the 
double-talk and understand what it means: put an end to that 
socialist foolishness. And Chavez "has tried without success to get 
China to join an anti-American front." I wonder what the full story 
is on that. He must have asked them to offer some concrete resistance 
to the Empire. Good luck.

Ratliff:
Word has seeped out of Washington that at the Shannon meetings in 
2006 the Chinese promised not to meddle in Latin politics. Last year 
the author asked a top Chinese Communist Party (CCP) official working 
in international affairs if China wanted to get involved changing 
political systems in Latin America. He said "No. Why should we? We 
are perfectly happy with a system controlled by elites that keeps 
real popular involvement to a minimum, so long as they do not crash 
and continue to enforce the agreements made with us."

Comment:
Let me repeat this with emphasis, even though I hate to use 
upper-case. Here it is appropriate. A top CCP official believes: WE 
ARE PERFECTLY HAPPY WITH A SYSTEM CONTROLLED BY ELITES THAT KEEPS 
REAL POPULAR INVOLVEMENT TO A MINIMUM, SO LONG AS THEY DO NOT CRASH 
AND CONTINUE TO ENFORCE THE AGREEMENTS MADE WITH US.

Ratliff:
The challenges for Latin American countries in the years ahead 
include investing the profits from China trade and FDI, and using the 
inspiration of the Chinese example, to lay a long-term foundation for 
national well-being, cultivating whatever traditional cultural and 
civic values do not prevent the development of broadly based economic 
progress. This will mean both rejecting the temptations of hopeless 
and disruptive Chavista populism and carrying out more than 
half-hearted reforms, both changes that would also benefit China and 
the United States.

Comment:
You'll note that Ratliff sees the US and China as having mutual 
interests in Latin America: rejecting Chavista populism and carrying 
out ore than half-hearted reforms. In other words, neoliberalism full 
steam ahead.

Ratliff:
China needs to reduce logistical problems of long distances, perhaps 
in part by more joint Latin ventures for the United States and Latin 
markets, cultivate greater common cultural ground, not least by 
increasing cultural institutes, and the like. Assuming the 
continuation of something like China's current development 
trajectory, and a lasting major US role in the Western Hemisphere, 
the two large nations could work together to promote a more stable 
and prosperous region that would benefit themselves and Latin 
Americans as well.

Comment:
What a joke. A more stable and prosperous region will only come about 
by adopting the very Chavista reforms that this Hoover Institute creep rejects.

Dr William Ratliff is a fellow at Stanford University's Hoover 
Institution and an adjunct fellow at the Independent Institute.  





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