Dead at last, dead at last. Fidel Castro has shuffled off this mortal coil, at the age of ninety.
... Slavery is what Fidel’s revolution was about. Brooking no dissent, he enslaved a nation in the name of eternal class warfare, creating a new elite dedicated to suppressing their neighbors’ rights. He pitted Cubans against one another, replacing all civil discourse with invective and intimidation.
... Flesh-and-blood Cubans had to be forced to attend his interminable speeches, or, as now, his funeral.
Dissenters were demonized. If you objected to his self-anointing as Maximum Leader or disdained his dystopian vision, two painful choices were open to you. Just two.
You could oppose him. But if you dared, even by murmuring in the dark, you faced imprisonment, torture, or death. Hundreds of thousands of Cubans were brave enough to suffer these consequences, but the world beyond the island’s shores ignored them, even denied their existence.
The other option was to beg for the privilege of banishment. Nearly two million Cubans chose that route, but millions more never got the chance. No one knows how many have died trying to escape by sea without his magnanimous permission.
Fidel portrayed those who fled his dystopia as selfish troglodytes. These nonconformists were vilified not just by Fidel but by all those around the world who believed his lies, including many eminent intellectuals, artists, and journalists in free, affluent nations. Lately, the tyrant even seemed to gain approval from His Holiness, Pope Francis, who paid him a very cordial visit.
... in order to admire Fidel Castro in our day, one has to overlook his human rights abuses or argue that in benighted places such as Cuba “social justice” can be achieved only through repression. One must assume that those victimized by Castro cannot be “victims,” because they lack the feelings, desires, and reasoning capabilities possessed by those who live in the First World.
How else but by such bigoted logic could Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada, propose that a tyrant who impoverished his country and imprisoned, tortured, and executed thousands of his countrymen had displayed a “tremendous dedication and love for the Cuban people”—who in turn “had a deep and lasting affection” for him? Trudeau’s bigotry is subtle but as reprehensible as that of any white supremacist. One must assume that he regards Cubans as inferior to Canadians, for he cannot have been elected Prime Minister of Canada without acknowledging that private property, free speech, elections, labor unions, and a free market economy—all of which are denied to Cubans—are the birthright of every Canadian. If all human beings are equal, then all are entitled to the same rights. This principle, apparently, is lost on Trudeau.
Something very frightening has been made evident in the past few days: the fact that there are many people like Trudeau in this world, who not only are comfortable with the crimes of a cruel despot, but who actually find those crimes praiseworthy.
Fidel’s most amazing triumph was to convince a great number of people around the world that he was a good man, despite all the suffering he inflicted on the people he ruled. Who can measure the suffering he caused? Ask those Cubans whose ranks he has just joined, those thousands he murdered. Ask the thousands who died at sea, trying to escape from him. Ask the dead, yes, if you somehow know how to do so. Ask those hundreds of thousands of Cubans who were crammed into his prisons, and those who were tortured in ways too horrific to imagine, and those who still languish in those dungeons of his. Ask any Cuban who has been forced to attend his interminable speeches, or any Cuban child who has had to spend every summer as a slave in an agricultural labor camp in order to pay for his or her “free” education. Ask any Cuban who has been subjected to an “act of repudiation” by his or her neighbors, or who has in any way run afoul of those other Cubans who run their local Committee for the Defense of the Revolution.
... Fittingly, his arrogant deceitfulness extended past his death. In Havana, tens of thousands of Cubans were forced to trudge to the Plaza of the Revolution, to bow before his ashes. Attendance was mandatory—as it was whenever Fidel needed to be surrounded by a throng of slaves—but the ritual was grotesquely hollow. After they had waited in line for hours, all that those Cubans got to see was a small framed photo of the ex–Maximum Leader and a kitschy display of some of his medals, guarded by four young soldiers. The ashes were not there. They were at the Ministry of the Armed Forces headquarters, accessible only to the top brass of the Castro military junta. For a final time, Fidel had hoodwinked his slaves, and the aging oligarchs gathered around his relics probably laughed.
Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter (Isa 5:20)
The foolish fawning of the progressive liberal elites over Fidel Castro is a stark demonstration of how deep they have fallen into the rabbit-hole. In Aug 2010, Humberto Fontova warned here about the delusions of the Obama administration regarding Castro.
... This is in keeping with the conventional leftist wisdom on Cuba, which holds that engagement is key to softening the attitude of the country's despot, Fidel Castro. In fact, this fetish for engagement with Castro began before he was even in office:
“Me and my staff were all Fidelistas.” (Robert Reynolds, the CIA’s “Caribbean Desk’s specialist on the Cuban Revolution” from 1957-1960.)
“Everyone in the CIA and everyone at State was pro-Castro, except [Republican] Ambassador Earl Smith.” (CIA operative in Santiago Cuba, Robert Weicha.)
Their advice was taken. Thus, January 7, 1959, marks a milestone in U.S. diplomatic history. Never before had the State Department extended diplomatic recognition to a Latin American government as quickly as they bestowed this benediction on the Castro regime that day.
... In July 1960, Castro’s KGB-trained security forces stormed into 5,911 U.S.-owned businesses in Cuba and appropriated them at Soviet gunpoint – $2 billion were heisted from outraged U.S. businessmen and stockholders. Of course, not all Americans surrendered their legal and hard-earned property peacefully. Among those who resisted was Bobby Fuller, whose family farm would contribute to a Soviet-style Kolkhoze, and Howard Anderson, whose profitable Jeep dealership was coveted by Castro’s henchmen. Both U.S. citizens were murdered by Castro and Che’s firing squads.