On the last Sunday of the month, April 25, 2021, a group of some 34 cars assembled by the Mitchell Park domes and drove throughout the near southside of Milwaukee, joining for the first time an international campaign of car caravans to end to the 60-year-old US economic blockade of Cuba. Cuban-Americans in Miami began this movement five months ago, demanding an end to the still-continuing restrictions that were severely tightened in recent years, which have made it virtually impossible for them to send remittances to or to see their Cuban relatives. It has since spread to over two dozen cities in the U.S. and Canada; also in Latin America including Cuba, plus in Africa, Europe and Asia.
Prior to the cars hitting the road, Dr. Raul Galvan, who was born in Havana, called for an immediate lifting of these restrictions, noting that the food shortages in Cuba are severe. Another highlight was a message directly from the Wisconsin women in Havana who are receiving free medical education there in return for their promise to work as debt-free doctors in an underserved community back in the United States. Olive Albanese described how they personally witnessed the shortage of medicines and equipment, creating countless hardships needless loss of life. Caravanistas also heard a short appeal from Bruno Rodriguez, Cuba’s foreign minister, who hightlighed the scheduled debate on June 23rd, when the United Nations General Assembly is again expected to overwhelming demand an end to this policy, and he denounced 60 plus years of U.S. policy designed to bring about hunger and desperation among Cuban families.
Susan Ruggles created the above video and a great photo album that you can see here.
The caravan generated strong showings of support from pedestrians who raised their fists and from people in passing cars who honked and waved to the caravanistas. The Wisconsin Coalition to Normalize Relations with Cuba initiated the caravan locally, which will be repeated again next month on the last Sunday, May 30, 2021. It was supported by numerous organizations including Peace Action Wisconsin, Los Brown Berets, and the Party for Socialism and Liberation. To get more details on this and future events, check out our Facebook page by clicking here!