“Globalization is an objective reality underlining the fact that we are all passengers on the same vessel, that is, this planet where we all live. But passengers on this vessel are travelling in very different conditions.
Trifling minorities are travelling in luxurious cabins furnished with the Internet, cell phones and access to global communication networks. They enjoy a nutritious, abundant and balanced diet as well as clean water supplies. They have access to sophisticated medical care and to culture.
Overwhelming and hurting majorities are travelling in conditions that resemble the terrible slave trade from Africa to America in our colonial past. That is, 85% of the passengers on this ship are crowded together in its dirty hold suffering hunger, diseases and helplessness. Obviously, this vessel is carrying too much injustice to remain afloat.”
– Fidel Castro
Don’t get me wrong, there were some classic Castro moments in this little speech; “The wealthy nations can afford to pay any price for the energy they waste to sustain
luxurious consumption levels and destroy the environment.” for example. But, there were some concepts that really rang true:
“In the hands of the rich countries, world trade is an instrument of domination.”
“A special and differentiated treatment to poor countries has been considered not as an
elementary act of justice and a necessity that cannot be ignored but as a temporary act of
…and so forth.
Still, I found myself questioning every fact and statistic he presented, looking for footnotes [and discounting assertions in their absence] and frankly wondering if I would be doing the same if it wasn’t Castro I was reading.