In the era that we live in, characterized by increasing attacks against poor and working people both at home and abroad by colonial powers like the U.S., European Union and Canada, it is important to recognize the opportunity for fightback and victory against these attacks. From July 1st to July 2nd, 2012 people in Vancouver, Canada had such an opportunity and won a important victory, not only against the cruel and inhumane U.S. blockade against Cuba, but also in defense of the democratic rights of people in Canada and the U.S. to organize and protest against U.S.-led policies creating devastation all over the world.
The victory of Occupy Border outlined below shows to everyone fighting for a better world that victory for oppressed people is possible. When the U.S. government and border officials decided to enforce the U.S. blockade, stopping a truck of humanitarian aid destined for Cuba from entering the U.S., they did not know that Cuba solidarity activists on both sides of the U.S./Canada border would fight back. They did not expect that for 24hrs people of all ages and backgrounds would unite in protest and occupy the border. When at 2pm on July 2nd, the humanitarian aid crossed the border into the U.S. and began it's journey to Cuba on the 23rd Pastors for Peace Caravan it was clear that the U.S. government had not planned to be defeated, but they were.
Printed below are the documents of this victory. The first piece is the press release sent by the BC Aid Network for Cuba (BCANC) and Vancouver Communities in Solidarity with Cuba (VCSC), the groups of Occupy Border, sent the morning of July 2nd, the second day of protest. This press release, was an important component of the victory, which elevated public awareness of the struggle at the border in BC, Canada and around the world as it was propagated through blogs, websites and e-mail lists in the U.S., Canada, Latin America and world-wide. The following piece is the statement released by BCANC and VCSC on July 6th that presents the time-line of the victory and an analysis of it's development. This statement was sent to social justice and Cuba solidarity activists all over the world, and it is an important document to read to understand the important components and lessons of this victory as we prepare for more fightback.
The victory of Occupy Border set a precedent for the entire Caravan, fueled by the excitement and determination generated at the BC/Washington border as it travelled to over 80 cities in the United States and Canada. On July 19th, over 100 tons of humanitarian aid, including the aid collected in British Columbia, along with Caravanistas, successfully crossed the U.S. border into Mexico and broke the U.S. blockade against Cuba.
We encourage all people interested in building a better world to learn from this victory and join with us in organizing against the criminal U.S. blockade against Cuba. It is only with fightback that we will win!
For more info and to get involved-
British Columbia Aid Network for Cuba (BCANC): www.bcanc.org
Vancouver Communities in Solidarity with Cuba (VCSC): www.vancubasolidarity.com
Pastors for Peace and the Caravan to Cuba: www.pastorsforpeace.org
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