The Grenada Revolution Online

WHY GRENADA FRIGHTENS THE U.S.
Extracts from speech by Maurice Bishop at the Marcus Garvey Day rally in the Market Square, St. George's, Sunday, 23 August 1981.

Why have they singled out our poor, small country? Why do we stimulate so much fear in the minds of Reagan and his warlords? We have no great industries, no great banks, no gold, no oil, no diamonds, few natural resources. There is one distinguishing feature; we in small, tiny, but free, Grenada led the first socialist revolution in the English-speaking Caribbean. Our revolution has challenged the carefully built-up myth that we are too small, too weak and cowardly to stand up to dictatorship. The Revolution smashed this illusion.

This Revolution is also a big threat being in a Black country because the US holds captive millions of black people in racist bondage. They are afraid that black Americans may find out and be inspired by the Grenada Revolution.

This is a revolution that has set itself a historic task: to build a new society for a new people. The end result is the construction of a new civilisation model. The imperialists understand that the new democratic institutions and people's participation will inspire the masses in other islands to ask: How come little Grenada can create programmes to benefit workers, farmers, youth, women? Such is a dangerous question for imperialism. They understand the significance of us joining and playing a key role in the Non-Aligned Nations Movement. They understand that this Revolution is using the little resources we have for our people's benefit and not for the loupgaroux transnational corporations.

The recession, the economic crisis in the US is forcing them to step up the arms race, hoping that making bombs and armaments will increase industrial activity and restore their super-profits.

That our country is in a 'strategic' location in terms of the oil routes the US depends on is also used as a justification for direct intervention.

The US Administration is getting more frantic and desperate every day that passes because every day our Revolution brings more consolidation, more unity, more organisation, more preparation of our people. Every attempt at counter-revolution inside Grenada has failed miserably. Even on the external front they are failing. Propaganda has limited success, the economic squeeze and the mercenary threats have not intimidated our people. Reactionary leaders are getting less. We are realizing more and more that these attacks are being responded to by our friends, the masses in our sister islands.

The Americans have come to the conclusion that the Revo is so popular and strong that only an armed invasion can turn it back.

The defence of this homeland of ours can only come from us no matter how many friends we have. In the final analysis, it is our responsibility to defend.

We are a small, poor country, and our economy cannot afford to pay more soldiers to join our army . . . . When you are dealing with an armed people, it is hard for them to divide and exploit the weak and faint-hearted. The militia, as a part-time army that works during the day, is a very important advantage in our situation.

Soldiers who invade do not make distinctions between men or women, young or old. Chile has shown us this and El Salvador, and on June 19th, it was women who suffered the most. Seventy out of the 96 injured were women; 30 out of the 35 were hospitalized. While these invaders will firstly try to identify army camps for attack: with the militia, the people are prepared to defend themselves in every village.

It is the duty and the responsibility of all patriots to learn to use weapons, to defend this land of ours. Those who don't use the gun in the militia have other valuable functions to fulfill: security, medics, communications, drivers, cooks, messengers, etc.

We know that other people have traveled the same road as we are today.

Size is not the key factor - the quality of a people's determination, unity, organisation and vigilance are.

Imperialism is not invincible. It has been defeated before. If they have forgotten the lessons of Viet Nam, Angola and Mozambique, we must remember: We in Grenada will teach them again.

We must keep our eyes and ears open for spy flight, warships to the region, counters in the communities. We must be on the look-out for any country in the region who comes up with pretexts.

World public opinion is a very powerful factor these days. Internally, we must unite our friends and families, work hard at building the economy and the mass organisations. Working daily, hourly for the Revo is a key task. All must be involved in Heroes of the Homeland Manoeuvres.

To our friends from the Caribbean, we recognise that we are not an insular revolution. We will always stand firm and principled in our policies and practices.

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