This cable details a conversation that took place between Shen Jian and Fidel Castro. They met at the Chinese Embassy in Cuba. Their intentions were for this meeting to remain secret, and have the records of it destroyed. They apparently did not succeed, and this document serves as an important source to describe the Cuban – Chinese relationship in 1961.
The ambassador Shen and Castro spend time congratulating one another on their global successes as forerunners in the fight against imperialism. They refer to each other as friends and discuss their previous trade and commerce agreements, making sure they will be finalized soon. Their amiability serves to show the united anti-imperialist efforts of the Cold War.
Shen: I and my Cuban friends once came to a topic: Is the US more afraid of Cuba, or is Cuba more afraid of the US? Of course, Cuba is also afraid of the US, because the US is as yet a powerful imperialist. But your revolution is advancing to victory and you are happy. And the success and development of the Cuban revolution is bound to push the development of revolution in other Latin American countries. More Latin American countries will march to victory, which means imperialism increasingly approaching its death. Eisenhower and Kennedy both see the Cuba problem as one of their headaches. Judging from the fact that Kennedy [rhetorically] attacked Cuba five times after he assumed office, he is more afraid of Cuba. The US will create some difficulties for Cuba, but the Cuban revolution will receive support from the world. The rapid development of the Cuban revolution accelerates the arrival of the doomsday of imperialism.
Castro: In modern history, the first strike upon the US imperialists was delivered by China.
Shen: Then the second strike to the US imperialists was [from] Cuba.
Castro: (speaking with a smile and gesticulating) our strike is very small but with strength. More powerful strikes will [fall] upon the US imperialists and lead to its downfall.
“Cable from the Chinese Embassy in Cuba, ‘Memorandum of Conversation between China’s Ambassador to Cuba, Shen Jian, and Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro’,” February 11, 1961, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 111-00612-01,4-11. Translated by Zhang Qian. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/115153.