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Digital Archive International History Declassified

November 08, 1962

CABLE FROM THE CHINESE EMBASSY IN CUBA, 'REPORT ON THE EXPERIENCE OF THE SOVIET NATIONAL DAY RECEPTION'

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    A report describing the Soviet National Day in Cuba by the Chinese Embassy. They describe the day as cordial and reference many forms of Cuban-Chinese-Soviet cultural relations.
    "Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Cuba, 'Report on the Experience of the Soviet National Day Reception'," November 08, 1962, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 111-00601-05, 11-12. Translated by Zhang Qian. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115102
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Foreign Ministry,

A brief report of what [we] heard from yesterday’s Soviet national day reception is as follows:

1) Judging from the conversation between Cuban leaders and [Anastas] Mikoyan, [their] relationship remains strained. Mikoyan proposed a toast, “Khrushchev said, ‘In our grandsons’ generation, the US will be socialist.’ I say, our sons’ generation will be.” Fidel [Castro] replied, “No matter which generation, in a nutshell, [the US] will become socialist.” The Soviet ambassador [Aleksandr Alekseyev] suggested a toast to a notable power, [Emilio] Aragonés’ party, which was answered back by Raúl [Castro], “This has nothing to do with Aragonés.” Mikoyan said, “The party of Cuba is an interesting party. It’s the only [party] in the world in which the old and the new are married to each other, being more than a simple mingling but a fusion. It [therefore] has more vitality, and [set] an example for Latin America.” [Mikoyan] added, “You should work hard, otherwise we will criticize [you].” Raúl responded, “We [follow the] Leninist approach of party-building: not only do [we] listen to party members, [we] also listen to the masses of workers and farmers.” Mikoyan said, “What I meant was criticisms between fraternal parties, friendly and comradely, in order to remove shortcomings.”

2) [Ernesto “Che”] Guevara told Charge d’Affaires Huang that it was busy now and that at this moment [they] always had to grind their machetes for sugarcane-cutting. [Guevara] requested the charge d’affaires bring back the Ambassador [Shen Jian] earlier [from China], for there were lots of things to do. Fidel’s aide, Maj. Aisikaluona [sic] told us, “Chairman Mao is not only the leader of the Chinese people, he is also the leader of all oppressed peoples in the world. Let Chinese brothers and sisters know that if it emerges that Cuba has to fight alone, it will fight US aggression firmly to the end. Now there are people who describe a country, which has merely striven to defend itself, as a warmonger, because we did not approve people who violate Marxist-Leninist principles. Weapons all could be manipulated, but individuals with pride could not be manipulated.”

3) After the president and prime minister left, Mikoyan spoke to Raúl [Castro], “There are always some disagreements [between socialist countries], like between brothers or between husband and wife, which are family affairs with solidarity being the basic.” [Mikoyan] then initiated a toast to solidarity. [Emilio] Aragonés was also present, but kept silent. Mikoyan gave a good many compliments to Vilma [Espin] (wife of Raúl). It appeared that they had worked hard on Mr. and Mrs. Castro.

Towards us all walks of the Cuban society were cordial and friendly. [They] thanked [us] for our country’s great support, yet with no exception did not touch on the topic of the Cuban-Soviet meeting.

Embassy in Cuba

8 November 1962