NET Journal
Episode Number
Cuba Today
Producing Organization
National Educational Television and Radio Center
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Episode Description
Filmed during a four-week period in July and August, this program studies Castros Cuba and its daily revolution at first hand. The dramatic event of this period was the meeting of the Organization of Latin American States, bringing together radicals from around the Western Hemisphere for an exercise in revolutionary rhetoric. But the program finds that the revolutionary spirit goes far beyond the OLAS meeting; it permeates the mood of the island, giving the people a constant link with their recent history and helping them to overcome hardships. Here, the nemesis is Yankee imperialism. The cause is communism -- and the encouragement of guerilla warfare throughout the continent. These are the conclusions reached by producer Richard Moore of KQED, San Francisco, whose NET crew was the only documentary unit permitted on the island during the OLAS meeting. In addition to covering OLAS and its speeches by Castro and Cuban President Dorticos, the NET cameras ranged freely from Havana night life, relic of the old days of the American tourist tradeito the state-owned sugar fields. the program visits Santiago, birthplace of the revolution, for a view of La Trocha, the Cuban carnival. (It is at Santiagos Fort Moncada that Castro made his first military thrust on July 26, 1953 -- the 14th anniversary of which was celebrated by OLAS.) The program then visits the Salon de Mai, an international are exhibition sent to Cuba from France coincident with the July 26 celebration. There are also interviews on Cuban culture with poet Pablo Armando Fernandez and novelist Edmundo Desnoes. They discuss the defection of many Cuban intellectuals, their own role in present-day Cuba, and the program of underdevelopment, especially as record in Desnoes book, Inconsolable Memories. This problem is seen as the film crosses Cuba, where sugar cane is more prevalent than houses. The current economic policy of Cuba, pointed toward agriculture, is examined by Carlos Rafael Rodriguez, former head of the ministry for agricultural reform. The film also focuses on the Cuban youth movement. Interviews are conducted with you militants at the Isle of Youth, a former prison where they now receive agricultural training. On the same isle, NET has filmed rehabilitated political prisoners who are now members of the labor forces. A different view is provided by a visit to the Varadero airport, where exiles wait to fly to the United States. At San Andres, the film observes a planned community, reflecting Castros hopes for his proletariat regime. There, infants are placed in state nursery schools, and all services are provided by the state in the attack against underdevelopment. At the opposite end of the island, at Gran Tierra (Oriente Province), a similar plan is inaugurated by Castro, who launches into his favorite topics on camera -- Yankee imperialism, underdevelopment, and the hopes of Cuba. Castro is seen again at the OLAS meeting, addressing an enthusiastic throng of 100,000. Among those present are Stokely Carmichael, former head of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and a delegation from the National Liberation Front of Vietnam. At the conference, NET interviews journalist James Reston of The New York Times and Wilfred Burchette, an Australian whose writings have been outspokenly pro-Hanoi. NET Journal -- Cuba Today (working title) is a production of National Educational Television; producer is Richard Moore of KQED, San Francisco. This runs approximately an hour and was originally recorded in color on film. (Description adapted from documents in the NET Microfiche)
Broadcast Date
Asset type
Event Coverage
Social Issues
Global Affairs
Politics and Government
Media type
Guest: Rodriguez, Carlos Rafael
Interviewee: Reston, James
Interviewee: Fernandez, Pablo Armando
Interviewee: Burchette, Wilfred
Interviewee: Desnoes, Edmundo
Producer: Moore, Richard
Producing Organization: National Educational Television and Radio Center
Speaker: Castro, Fidel
Speaker: Dorticos Torrado, Osvaldo
AAPB Contributor Holdings
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Chicago: “NET Journal; 156; Cuba Today,” 1967-10-09, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed October 28, 2021,
MLA: “NET Journal; 156; Cuba Today.” 1967-10-09. American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. October 28, 2021. <>.
APA: NET Journal; 156; Cuba Today. Boston, MA: American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from