US: Illegal to correct Cuban spelling
Declaration of the Cuban Academy of Sciences
9 March 2004
[News item: The U.S. government has announced
that it is illegal to "review, edit, or modify" any scientific
literature from Cuba.]
"...In the twenty first century
science must become a shared asset benefiting all peoples on the
basis of solidarity ... (considering) the importance for scientific
research and education of full and open access to information..."
–from the Declaration on Science and the Use of Scientific Knowledge
of the World Conference on Science, 1999.
The Academy of Sciences
of Cuba, formed by scientists of relevant merits, representing the
national scientific community, denounces to national and international
public opinion a new aggression against Cuba by the present US administration:
The Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Department
of the Treasury of the United States of America made public the
prohibition to review, edit, or modify in US scientific journals,
papers by authors from countries subject to "trade embargoes",
including Cuba. Those who would do so, would have transgressed the
Law of the USA, and could be imposed elevated fines, and even incarceration.
Since the public announcement of this measure,
several US editors have rejected articles presented by Cuban scientists
for publication in specialized journals in the USA. Once again,
the Government of George W. Bush increases its anti Cuba policies
in their wish to satisfy the Cuban-American extreme right of South
Florida, particularly in an electoral year.
The publication of research outcomes is the first
step in the socialization of knowledge, and an indispensable pre-requisite
for the healthy development of science. Only through the free flow
of ideas and knowledge among scientists from all over the world
can science grow and advance for the benefit of all of humankind.
Contrasting with that, the present measures deprive the scientific
communities of the USA, and the world at large, from sharing with
our scientists the well recognized Cuban scientific developments.
The adoption of that decision by the present
government of the USA violates both, the most elementary rights
of scientists in any part of the world, and the USA Constitution
Comparable to the burning of books practiced
by fascist regimes, this absurd measure, which is the expression
of a strengthening of the US blockade, is a reflection of the viciousness
of the present Government of that country, that has not been remiss
to resort to irrational limits in total despise of the most sacred
principles of international law.
This is the same government that, without taking
into account the voice of the scientific community of its own country,
has denied the existence of global warming, has destroyed in savage
military actions many unique pieces of the World heritage, and in
their contempt for any other opinion, has ignored the voice of the
World community of nations.
Cuban scientists denounce with indignation this
measure that affects not only us Cubans, but all of humankind. We
call for our colleagues in the USA to act in solidarity with our
declaration, and to scientists in the rest of the World to condemn
and reject this new absurd aggression.
The Academy of Sciences
9 March 2004.