Cuban leader Fidel Castro doesn’t have all that much to say these days about the U.S., but he did have some reflections to make on Obama’s now famous speech in Cairo. On the one hand, he admits that Obama isn’t the babbling idiot that former president George W. Bush was with regard to speechmaking, but when it comes to the content of said speech, he differs in opinion. In his weekly column “Reflexiones”, Castro says:
“If you take into account how long the speech was, without even using notes, the number of pauses isn’t important if compared to his predecessor (George Bush), who made mistakes at every paragraph. He has a great ability to communicate. However, the policies that the U.S. has followed for the past 7 decades is “in contradiction” with his words, since it was a history of “interventions” and “wars”, said Castro.
He expressed that although Obama started his speech saying that no nation has the right to impose its system or its form of governance on any other, he quickly contradicted himself “with a declaration of faith that makes the United States the supreme judge of democratic values and human rights.”
This doesn’t sound familiar to me. Does anyone know statement Castro is referring to here?
The fact is Castro does have a point. America has a way of wandering into countries or regions and telling people how to run their societies when the U.S. has a history of not following its own rhetoric…to say the very least.
We don’t hear a lot from good old Fidel Castro, but when we do, it’s always something interesting. Take this piece of new: the Mexican government is angry because the Cuban leader is accusing them of keeping the 411 about the swine flu epidemic under wraps so as not to mess up Obama’s visit to Mexico. In a piece published in Cuba’s Granma newspaper, Fidel says that because of this deception, Cubans are now paying the priceas citizens there were infected:
Today the presence of the H1N1 flu virus was detected in Cuba. The carrier is a young Mexican citizen who studies medicine in our country. The only thing that can be confirmed is that it didn’t come from the CIA, it came from Mexico [...]
The Mexican authorities did not inform the world of the presence of the virus while awaiting Obama’s visit, and now they are threatening us with suspending that of President Calderón, previously suspended for other, understandable reasons unconnected to the epidemic.
Mexico is emphatically denying this accusation, and Mexican president Felipe Calderon shot back yesterday that he “acted with determination, with promptness and with one single priority, which is and will always be to protect the health and the life of Mexicans.”
On the other hand, the Mexican Secretary for Foreign Relations (SRE) says that Castro’s accusations are making things a bit, well, weird for the relations between the two countries. Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, SRE, says that the declarations “make bilateral relations awkward”.
Fidel Castro said Tuesday that President Obama “misinterpreted” his brother Raul’s sentiments toward the United States and bristled at any suggestion Cuba should free political prisoners or reduce official fees on money sent to the island from the U.S.
Raul Castro touched off a whirlwind of speculation that the U.S. and Cuba could be headed toward a thaw in nearly a half-century of chilly relations last week, when he said Cuban leaders would be willing to sit down with their U.S. counterparts and discuss “everything,” including human rights, freedom of the press and expression, and political prisoners on the island.
I can’t help it, I must say that it amuses me to think of the trouble that Raul must be in right now. How badly did he screw that whole thing up? We can blame it on “misinterpretation,” but you know Fidel is threatening to keep him hidden in an attic room somewhere now.
I don’t think anybody really knows what to do with Obama’s extended hand rhetoric. Chavez is shaking hands with Obama, Raul is offering to talk, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is talking to resident flake, George Stephanopoulos… Obama is making world leaders look like total assholes if they don’t also extend a hand–but hell, who really wants to extend a hand when you can be a macho anti-U.S. crusader?
It will be interesting to see what happens in the upcoming years when the newness of Obama rhetoric wears off.
Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro is like the chupacabra. A few people have claimed to have seen him pero no one is really sure if he’s real, as in really still alive. Among the most recent to visit with the ailing Castro were three members of the Congressional Black Caucus who were in Cuba for a historic meeting.
The meetings were the highest-ranking US-Cuba meetings since former president Jimmy Carter visited Fidel Castro in Havana in 2002.
Castro “was very engaging, very energetic, (and) discussed a wide range of issues,” said Rep. Barbara Lee. Rep. Laura Richardson observed that Castro “looked directly into our eyes, quite aware of what was happening, and said to us ‘how can we help President Obama?’”
Could change really be coming with the Obama administration, especially in terms of U.S. – Cuba relations? Fidel Castro and his hermano, the actual president of Cuba Raul Castro seem to think so.
Obama took alot of heat during his presidential campaign for saying that he would be wiling to sit down with so-called “enemy” Latin American countries, namely Cuba and Venezuela.
“With Obama, talks could happen anywhere he wants,” Fidel Castro, America’s longtime Cold War enemy, wrote in the latest of a series of columns he has published in state-run media since falling ill in 2006.
“He should remember the carrot-and-stick approach will not work with our country,” Castro wrote of Obama. “The sovereign rights of the Cuban people are not negotiable.”
In the book, Fidel develops three central ideas: one, the characterization and development of the deceased FARC chief, the evolution of the guerrilla movement and his role in the complex Colombian political framework; secondly, the incidence of the oligarchic power, its instruments of exploitation and repression and its alliance with U.S. imperialism in the genesis of and constant exercise of violence; and thirdly, the real nature of Cuba’s links with the Latin American revolutionary movements and its long and sustained contribution to the search for a just, realistic and humanitarian solution to the armed conflict that is bleeding Colombia.
In spite of the death wishes of many a Cuban exile and speculation that he has been dead for some time now, new images and words keep coming from Cuban leader Fidel Castro. The latest picture is dated October 20th and features Fidel being visited by the second in power of the Russian Orthodox Church, Kiril Gundajaev. Castro hasn’t appeared in public since July 2006. His words, however have never stopped.
Fidel Castro has won the South African Ubuntu award for his contributions to “humankind beyond boundaries.”
Castro won the award “for the role he played in the Cuban revolution and worldwide contribution to the struggle for an alternative, just and humane society,” the statement said.
According to our research on the award, which was first given in 2006 to Nelson Mandela, there seems to be little relation to the award and the current realities of Cuba, rather it seems to be focused on Cuba and Castro’s international work, specifically African liberation struggles.