The Grenada Revolution Online

Bishop Speech - Address by Prime Minister Maurice Bishop on the occasion of a State dinner offered in his honor by Erich Honecker, GDR - 8 June 1982

Esteemed Comrade Honecker:

It is a signal honour, and a great privilege for my delegation and I to be guests in your illustrious country.

I wish to express my deep appreciation, and that of my delegation for the kind invitation extended to us to visit your country and for the very excellent arrangements which have been made for our reception.

We have looked forward with great interest to the realisation of this visit and to see at first hand the process of building the advanced socialist society.

Grenadians have followed with deep admiration the advances made by the working people of your country guided by the Socialist Unity Party of Germany under your firm and committed leadership.

We feel confident that the decisions adopted by the 10th Congress of your Party will be achieved and will serve to further strengthen the World Socialist System and the universal struggle for peace and social progress.

My delegation and I are particularly pleased to be among a people who, since the triumph of socialism, have consistently demonstrated in concrete terms, their deep internationalism.

Your record of solidarity with the oppressed and exploited people of the world; your unfailing support for just causes; for national liberation and revolutionary movements; are fitting tributes to the triumphant road that the free German people under the guidance of your Party, have travelled, since the defeat of fascism.

Our revolutionary process in Grenada is still very young.

In the short space of three (3) years however, we have embarked on the first stage of the path to socialist transformation.

Our Party and the working people of our country, have together begun to forge a new people’s democracy and to set our economy on a non-capitalist path of development in order to disengage from the imperialist domination which we have inherited.

We will continue to pursue a principled policy and will carefully examine all objective and subjective factors in seeking to construct the new democracy for which our people have consistently struggled.

Since the triumph of our Revolution, our Party has further deepened its political and organisational work among the masses, and today new organs of popular democracy enable the Grenadian working people to participate directly in the daily exercise of people’s power.

Mass organisations and co-operatives have grown more than then (10) times since our people’s victory on March 13th, 1979.

Today 8 out of every 10 workers are unionized.

One in every seven farmers now belong to the mass organisation of farmers.

One in every four women is a member of the national Women’s Organisation.

One in every give youths is a member of the National Youth Organisation.

Internationally, the Grenada Revolution has pursued a firm anti-imperialist policy standing side by side with those who oppose colonialism, Zionism, racism, apartheid and fascism in all their manifestations.

At the same time, we maintain a permanent commitment to good neighbourliness, friendship among peoples and the pursuit of peace.

As we meet here today, the very survival of mankind if threatened by the most aggressive imperialist circles.

The ever deepening world capitalist crisis has seen these imperialist circles respond by amassing even more weapons of mass destruction and by threatening ever more forcefully national liberation struggles.

In Europe their neutron bombs, cruise missiles and lunatic concept of limited nuclear war threaten the very survival of civilisation as we know it.

In Africa, Asia and the Middle East, Zionist and racist forces, in close collaboration with imperialism even in the face of the most widespread condemnation continue to murder toe people and ravage the land.

In our own region of Latin America and the Caribbean, military, economic and propaganda aggression are daily employed against the popular forces in the most brutal and vulgar way.

There can be no doubt that in this context the pursuit of peace is the single most important international issue.

This is why it is so urgent that the peace programme put forward at the 26th Consomol Congress by our dear friend and champion of peace, Comrade Leonid Brezhnev, be vigorously pursued. For our part, we have advanced the proposal that the Caribbean Sea be respected as a Zone of Peace, Independence and Development.

We insist that each country should be free to develop its own process in accordance with the wishes of its people.

In recent times, imperialism has also resorted to the use of food and trade as new weapons in their attempts to seek world domination.

All the civilized peoples watch with growing alarm the open threats to blockade, boycott and impose trade and credit sanctions on the socialist and progressive countries.

In our case, they have gone to great lengths to spread the most vile disinformation about our revolutionary process and to attempt to stop development assistance from international agencies.

Their slanderous propaganda has had its effects on our tourist trade and other aspects of our economy.

But imperialism must understand that the Grenadian people have traveled a long road to freedom and will not be intimidated.

They must know too that Grenada is not alone.

Every attack upon us, every act of sabotage or destabilisation strengthen the determination of our people to succeed.

During the coming days, we look forward to sharing and learning from your experiences.

We know that you in the GDR who are at the very frontier of imperialism have successfully battled economic, political and propaganda destabilisation, and have constructed a vibrant socialist democracy.

May the friendship and co-operation between our two Parties, Governments and Peoples grow from strength in the spirit of true internationalism.

Permit me dear Comrade Honecker to raise a toast to the Socialist Unity Party of Germany, to GDR-Grenada Friendship, to world peace and social progress.

Forward Ever, Backward Never!

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