Latin Americans at U.N. slam U.S. priorities in credit crisis

UNITED NATIONS — Without ever pronouncing the two words ''United States," Cuba's First Vice President Jose Ramon Machado Ventura condemned Washington on Wednesday, telling the leaders gathered at the United Nations that the country's quest for fast money at the expense of the poor was to blame for the world crises currently threatening the "existence of mankind.''

Speaking at the U.N.'s 63rd General Assembly, Machado Ventura said Washington's manipulative trade policy stifled growth around the world.

''Fabulous fortunes cannot be wasted while millions are starving and dying of curable diseases,'' Machado Ventura said. ``For a large part of the nonaligned nations, the situation is becoming unsustainable. Our nations have paid and will continue to pay the cost and consequences of the irrationality, wastefulness and speculation of a few countries in the ... north.''

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