Comrades of the National Directorate of the F.S.L.N.
Cde. Haydée Santamaria
Comrade Members of the Junta of National Reconstruction
Revolutionary people of Nicaragua
At this moment, words cannot adequately express our
appreciation for the great honour you have accorded us by your
visit your country and to address this gathering; nor can words convey
happiness that we feel in actually being here, and in being able to
and salute you on the magnificent success of your revolutionary
dictatorship and imperialism.
The honour bestowed on us is deeper in that today you
the 46th anniversary of the death of your great martyr, father, patriot
revolutionary, Augusto Sandino,
el General de Hombres Libres, victim of a cowardly act of assassination
hideous Somocista dictatorship.
Augusto Sandino’s heroic struggle inspired you, the
Nicaragua, to continue to fight against the Somozas, led by your
vanguard the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (FSLN) until your
ultimate and inevitable triumph in July 1979.
This is the first occasion since your revolutionary
you have the opportunity to honour your revolutionary father Augusto
On this historic occasion, we of the People’s
Government of Grenada and the people of Grenada salute him, and
deep feeling of togetherness and comradeship with you.
Our comradeship is real and deep for several reasons.
In 1979, the people’s revolutions in Nicaragua and
the outstanding events of this hemisphere.
Nineteen-seventy-nine was indeed the Year of the Fall
Dictators worldwide—in Iran, in Uganda, in Kampuchea and Equatorial
And here in the Caribbean—Central American region, the
our two countries, after having endured several decades of the most
corrupt dictatorships, the dictatorships of Somoza and Gairy, our
up to strike heavy blows for freedom against fascism, spawned by
Forty-six years of the towering revolutionary image of
today guides liberated Nicaragua.
For you, the patriots of the land of Sandino, the blood
1934 has been fertilised to realise the flowering of Sandino’s great
Today as we look at this great sea of freedom fighters,
feel the vision of one Latin America of which Sandino was so dear.
We can see the true meaning of the Nicaragua Revolution
liberation of this region.
We can see the link between the Cuban Revolution, the
event in the history of this hemisphere in this century, and your own
Revolution. We can feel today, the vast potential for the liberation of
We recall with pride that on June 23, 1979, only a few
the announcement of the formation of your Provisional Junta, that our
was the second one in the world, after the Republic of Panama, to
your Junta as the legitimate Government of Nicaragua.
Since then, with a token and symbolic contribution from
very limited resources, we have sought to demonstrate solidarity with
the gigantic task of economic reconstruction of your country, ravaged
by the long years of corrupt dictatorship as by the war of national
Our comradeship runs deep because of the similarities
experiences of imperialism and dictatorship.
In Grenada, which is a small island of just over 200
sq. km. and
110,000 people, we endured three centuries of colonialism and almost
decades of the dictatorship of Eric Gairy.
Between then, by 1979, imperialism and Gairyism had
plundered our economy leaving it in a state of ruin.
Unemployment had reached 50 per cent; for the masses of
population, there were very low levels of nutrition, health, housing
the vital requirements of a decent life for our people.
In the midst of all this suffering, Gairy and a small
parasitic businessmen, monopolised the importation of vital food
making large profits off our working people.
The dictator himself ran a string of night clubs and
which were supplied by produce stolen from Government-owned estates.
The dictatorship also made alliances with international
and fascist countries both for illicit enrichment and for the expansion
Most notorious of all were the close links formed
and the murderous, fascist Pinochet regime in Chile.
The Pinochet regime undertook to train and supply
so-called “Defence force”, a gang of thugs trained to murder, brutalise
generally repress our Party and our supporters in Grenada at that time.
Members of this “Defence Force” were sent to Chile for
while Pinochet sent to Grenada a military training ship, “La
well as arms and ammunition.
But, like you, we never surrendered. With each blow the
struck, our determination stiffened; our people mobilised themselves,
heart from your struggle, from the struggle of the people of Iran, from
historic struggles of the great people and parties of Cuba and Vietnam.
Then victory came, as it had to, in March 13, 1979. Our
Revolutionary Army quickly dissipated Gairy’s brutal army of thugs, and
short time we had full control of the country, backed by the
of our population.
The People’s Revolutionary Government assumed full
transform our people, our economy, our whole way of life.
The best news we had, shortly afterwards, was of your
after a long bloody struggle in which so many thousands of your
sisters died; so many permanently maimed; so many becoming refugees in
own country or abroad. We mourned the loss of those who died and felt
suffering of the injured and destitute.
For both our revolutions, 1979 was the “Year of
for you, 1980 is “El año de la Alfabetización”, just like for us 1980 is the “Year of Education and Production.”
Now, to redeem the sufferings of your people and ours,
a better life in freedom for our own populations and for their
face two monumental and related tasks: first, the consolidation of our
Revolution and the security of our countries against
plots both internal and external, and secondly, the task of national
reconstruction—to guild our economic sectors, our infrastructure, our
services, to provide real benefits to the masses in our country.
We are also aware of the imperialist intrigues against
Revolution, first to keep Somoza in power, then to maintain Somocismo
We recall that these manoeuvres were stemmed by your
firmness, determination and clarity that only you, the brave people of
Nicaragua, could determine your own future.
Your heroic stance was backed by the solidarity of
government and forces within the region, culminating with the OAS
calling for an end to the Somoza regime and rejecting efforts to
so-called OAS Peace-Keeping Force, thus showing that the lessons of the
Dominican Republic of 1965 had been learnt.
Imperialism had to beat a hasty retreat because of the
and total solidarity shown by progressive and democratic governments’
movements, and people of the region with your heroic revolution.
That solidarity demonstrated once again the historic
truth that a
united, conscious and determined people can never be defeated.
Like you, our second major task is one of national
reconstruction. The most fundamental of these tasks is the development
productive sectors—the main ones being agriculture, agro-processing,
The substantial reduction of unemployment rests mainly
expansion of these sectors.
Tied to the expansion of production is the improvement
quality of life of our peoples—in their levels of health, in the
quality of their housing, water supplies, sewerage facilities; in their
education improvement, involving the removal of illiteracy, the
of educational opportunities, and the acquisition of all the technical
scientific skills we need to develop our country.
These basic improvements will provide us with the
launch a full programme of transformation, including providing for the
our elderly—the grandmothers and grandfathers—and our very young, the
with guaranteed food supplies, day care centres, and more.
The success of our Revolution cannot be an isolated
very world-wide nature of imperialism attests to the need for
solidarity among oppressed peoples everywhere.
Hence one of our first major acts of international
policy was to
join the Non-Aligned Movement [NAM].
This great body, began as a bulwark in the struggle
colonialism, today upholds the major principles of our international
resolute opposition to imperialism, colonialism and neo-colonialism,
rejection of fascism and Zionism;
rejection of all imperialist military blocks; full support for peaceful
co-existence of states; and the endorsement of the principles and aims
détente and, in
particular, the world disarmament and hence for SALT II.
We condemn colonialism or racism, wherever they attempt
on, hence our unflagging support for our brother people of Zimbabwe,
and South Africa.
The freedom-loving people of Zimbabwe are in particular
the support and solidarity of this historic rally in Managua today.
The people of Zimbabwe are today says away from
inalienable right of self-determination, their right to be free and not
to colonialism and racism in their own land.
But days could easily become months or years if the
colonialists and imperialists have their way.
We must stop their sinister plan to reverse the
Zimbabwe by their intimidation, by their continuing murders of the
fighters, by their shameless use of racist South African troops, by
assassination attempts on the lives of Comrade Mugabe and other leaders
Only our international solidarity and effort can now
racists from re-installing Ian Smith and the puppet Muzorewa
Let our voices from this rally go forth to the racists
imperialists today. Hands off Zimbabwe. Let the peoples’ demand for
independence, freedom and majority rule win.
Long live the freedom-loving people of Zimbabwe!
We fully endorse the rights of all peoples to
national independence and sovereignty; hence our recognition of the
Front as the legitimate government and representative of the people of
We resolutely support the people of Palestine in their
struggles against Zionism, imperialism and now capitulationism by Egypt.
Our resolve to stand up to imperialism wherever it
rears its ugly
head was recently exhibited in the case of the struggle of the people
Afghanistan in the face of imperialist machinations to turn back the
people’s revolution. We were only one of two countries in this
vote against the recent Western inspired resolution in the United
The views of our enemies on this question are of no
us. But to our friends who have raised questions with us about how we
our Afghanistan vote to our stance on non-alignment we say the
Non-alignment to us is a positive concept embodying
positive principles. As we see it, our first duty as a young
country that believes in non-alignment is always to support the further
development of the world revolutionary process, always to take
positions of principle, regardless of how others might interpret or
misinterpret our position, and regardless of what retaliatory actions
imperialism might contemplate as a result.
Our international principles have a special meaning for
relations with our neighbours in the Caribbean-American region.
We of the New World were the early creations and
imperialism and colonialism, and their tool of physical and
emasculation and racism.
Imperialism not only exploited us: it divided us into
languages and cultures in an attempt to reproduce European chauvinism
hostilities in this hemisphere.
For centuries our peoples were fed with the propaganda
were French or Spanish or English or Dutch and more recently American;
destinies lay with continue subjugation to our respective colonial
Europe and more recently U.S.A.
Today, however, Caribbean and America peoples are for
self-determination and genuine independence; notwithstanding, on one
irreversible anti-colonialist and anti-imperialist struggle.
We will win and progress together—imperialism will
divide and rule over us. That common struggle must rid our region of
colonialism. We stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Puerto
the rest of the Caribbean in their struggle for self-determination and
There is no better occasion than this rally to restate
continued firm solidarity with the patriots of Puerto Rico in their
liberate their country from the grips of imperialism.
Reduced to second-class citizens, the people of Puerto
not free to move in their own country.
They still see large “Out of Bounds” signs on Vieques
and other parts of their beloved homeland.
They still see their people jailed for preserving the
rejecting illegal military escalation in their homeland and fighting
But the release of the heroic “Puerto Rican Four”,
Lolita Lebrón and the freedom fighters, has given new meaning to the struggle.
Today, the people of Puerto Rico are more united than
draw closer to their independence.
Our common struggle must free the region of all
attempts to seize
territory from other peoples. Right here in Central America, the
Guatemalan dictatorship aims to deny the people of Belize their
territory, thus delaying their just right to independence and full
control over all their present land.
We recognise at the same time the just claims of
access to the sea.
The success of our revolutions, particularly of our
transformation, calls for greater and greater cooperation among our
and peoples in many areas of economic and technical cooperation.
Concrete measures for cooperation in these fields can
our revolutions and our democracies, deepen our friendship, stem the
imperialism and bring real benefits to our peoples.
But these benefits can only come if we are allowed,
to build our own process in our own way and free from all forms of
pressures and interferences.
On this historic occasion therefore, Grenada would like
restate our position on certain fundamental issues affecting the
conduct of external
powers in their relation with our region.
We believe it is essential to the peaceful and
development of our peoples and region for the following principles, at
minimum, to be firmly upheld, promoted and respected.
1. The recent resolution passed at the OAS General
meeting in La Paz, Bolivia, in October 1979, declaring that Latin
the Caribbean region should be recognised as a Zone of Peace must be
Military task forces and air and sea patrols of the
be outlawed. All military bases and installations must be removed from
territories of Latin American countries that do not want them.
The people of the region must be free of aggressive
harassment by any military power.
There must be an end to the Monroe Doctrine, and all
doctrines aimed at perpetuating hegemonism, interventionism and
Likewise, there must be an end to all attempts to use
so-called peace-keeping apparatus of the OAS to intervene militarily in
region to roll back progressive movement.
All genuine regional attempts at resolving regional
disputes must be accepted, respected, encouraged and supported.
2. The right of self-determination for all peoples must
and respected in practice.
As we speak here, here are still 25 territories being
colonial subjugation by the British, French, Dutch and Americans,
that region still has a long way to go to achieve political, far less
This massive, humiliating and debilitating insult to
represented by the continuing presence of so many colonies, must be
3. The principle of ideological pluralism must be
practice. The peoples of the region must be allowed to build their own
processes, in their own way, free from outside interference, free from
forms of pressure, free from the threat of use of force, free from
intimidation, undue influence, duress and bullying.
There must be no more invasions, no more landings by
more gunboats, no more Bay of Pigs, no more slaughters and
overthrowings of our
Sandinos, Allendes, Juan Bosch, Arbenzs.
There must be an end to the financing, supporting and
of mercenaries. There must be an end to the use of other countries as a
sanctuary base and theatre of continuous subversive activities for
There must be an end to propaganda, economic and
destabilisation; an end to blockades, assassinations and politics of
and divide and rule.
4. There must be an end to the arming and financing of
counterrevolutionaries and anti-popular anti-democratic or
There must be an end to the manipulation of regional
tensions for electoral purposes.
There must be a firm commitment to the ideals of
world peace. Imperialism must no longer be allowed to hold back forces
to undertake new forms and processes; to achieve structural
build new ways of life, to construct new civilisations for their people.
5. There must be respect for the sovereignty, legal
territorial integrity of our countries. Our relations must be
the fundamental principle of mutual equality, regardless of size of
size of population or extent of resources.
We must be seen and recognised for what we are—big
revolutionaries in small countries.
Sandino was a big revolutionary; Fidel is a big
the leaders of the Sandinista Revolution are big revolutionaries, and
we of the
progressive Third World will produce many, many more big
6. Each of our countries must be free to join whatever
international organisations we want and to create any regional and
groups which are in the best interests of our peoples.
Our fundamental right to join with all other exploited
of the world to form organisations, to press for a New International
Order [NIEO] to bring greater social and economic justice to the poor of the world,
Aid with political strings or unreasonable conditions
creating economic hardships on the people or consolidating or
rule of the minority and the trans-national corporations, or holding
internal political processes working in the interests of the people
be banned forever.
We call on all popular, democratic and patriotic forces
region to join together to fight for these principles so as to ensure
an end to
the continued colonialist, neo-colonialist and imperialist domination
exploitation of the region.
We owe it to our peoples, our countries, our region and
to band together to fight in a firm and principled manner for the
of these noble objectives.
The alternative is continued exploitation, continued
continued indignity, continued loss of pride, continued enuchisation,
Our Revolution is for peace, justice and social
food, for shelter, clothing, adequate health care, and creative
recreational facilities for our people.
We base our struggles on international brotherhood
anti-imperialist people. Among these your people have an honoured place.
So now, we look forward to March when esteemed members
government will come to our country to join with us in the first
celebration of our Revolution.
Every Grenadian will be looking forward to the presence
country of our beloved comrades from Nicaragua, because every patriotic
Grenadian wants to be a Sandinista.
And Every Grenadian will look forward to the day, let
us hope not
too far away, when other members of the leadership of the Junta will be
join us for an official state visit.
We have come to your country filled with expectations.
seen the evidence of the devastation, the bombs, the fury, the
the vicious Somoza tyranny.
We can now better understand the extent of the work of
reconstruction that lies before you. But we have also felt the warmth,
vigour, the hope and confidence of your people; we have seen the
beauty and the courage of your youth and young women as they proudly
arms that will defend your country from all forms of external
internal counter-revolutionary manoeuvres.
And we know that your Revolution is safe, sound and
will go forward to greater and greater victories.
We are truly proud of the extraordinary achievements
made by your Revolution after only seven months.
We are very conscious of the fact that internal
counter-revolutionary elements backed, supported, encouraged and
external forces will do all in their power to destabilise your
to roll back your revolutionary process.
But we are confident that your people will deal with
will bring the full weight of your Revolution to bear on them.
And you can be confident that in our people in Grenada
and in our
Revolution, you will always have a most consistent and sincere friend;
reliable ally that will make any sacrifices to ensure that your
on and is not defeated.
On this historic occasion, we salute the memory of your
revolutionary father, Comrade Augusto Sandino; we salute you, the brave
government and people of Nicaragua.
We thank you, the people of Nicaragua, for your
courage, for your exemplary spirit, for your revolutionary
your lasting example to our region and the world.
Down with imperialism!
Down with colonialism!
Down with neo-colonialism!
Down with racism!
Down with Fascism!
Long live the fighting example, the noble spirit and
revolutionary courage of Sandino!
Long live the vanguard and progressive role of the
Sandinista de Liberatión Nacional!
Long live the Junta de Gobierno de Reconstruccion
Long live the just struggle of the liberated people of
for peace, genuine independence and social progress!
Long live Grenada-Nicaragua friendship, solidarity and
Long live the revolutionary government and people of
Long live the heroic struggles of the freedom-loving
Latin America and the Caribbean for their liberation and an end to
Long live the forces of progress internationally!
Long live the international solidarity of working
Forward ever! Backwards never!