Thugs attack friends of Cuba

Issue 

Thugs attack friends of Cuba

Right-wing rioters on July 17 attacked members of the US-Cuba Friendshipment as they loaded humanitarian aid destined for Cuba. The attacks occurred during a send-off event in Elizabeth, New Jersey, organised by the Cuban-American Committee of New Jersey.

US-Cuba Friendshipment is an international project of humanitarian aid for Cuba. More than 300 volunteers and 100 trucks form the US, Canada and Mexico will deliver 100 tons of humanitarian aid to churches in Cuba in a direct challenge to the immorality and illegality of the US embargo.

The rioters attacked caravan trucks. Two members on the caravan were severely beaten, including the lawyer for the Cuban-American Committee. The lawyer's attacker was arrested immediately, as was one other rioter. A newspaper reporter was also beaten.

The rioters were reported to be members of two terrorist groups that have been under FBI investigation, Comando L and Alpha 66.

For several days leading up to the attack, a local radio announcer, Miguel Perez, called for opponents of the caravan to disrupt the send-off event with sticks and stones. Perez used racist language to incite the riot.

Members of the Friendshipment succeeded in loading seven trucks with food, medical supplies and other humanitarian aid.

Support has been strong for the Friendshipment throughout the rest of the country. The cities of Pittsburgh, Chicago and Santa Cruz passed resolutions in favour of the caravan. Send-off events in Rochester and Buffalo, New York, raised over $1000 for the effort. Minneapolis sent three school buses that will be donated to churches in Cuba. Large crowds in Seattle and Detroit bade the caravan a safe trip.