Fidel Castro remains one of the most despicable human beings on Earth. Though he is no longer the official despot-in-charge of the nation of Cuba, he remains both the greatest symbol and the ultimate cause of his country's decline. As the father of the deprecated nation of Cuba, any comment from him remains as notable to Cubans as would a comment from George Washington be to an American. However, unlike Washington, Castro fathered a dictatorship with Communist trappings, and he subjugated the very people he swore to liberate.
His recent rant against closer ties between America and Cuba shows that even in advanced age and failing health, his number one concern for Cuba remains his anti-Western beliefs. He desires conflict, acrimony, and continued struggle against America, and perhaps in doing so he feels a youthful surge brought on by remembrances of revolutionary days long past. In truth, the world continued to spin after the Cuban Revolution and it continued to spin after he stepped down from his post as leader of the island, but he sees not the world's progress, but a continuance of the world as it was when he was in his prime. In his mind America is still the enemy, the Missiles of October are coming back, and the Bay of Pigs is to be defended again. Damn that John F. Kennedy!
Fidel Castro thus exemplifies two of man's less-desirable tendencies: the refusal of change and the acceptance of failure. The world changed, he failed his country, and Obama has proceeded without the consent of the former leader, as is correct. Fidel is an echo of the past. Obama and Raoul Castro are opening a door to Cuba's future. I can only hope their door leads to a future Cuba far removed from Fidel's concept of a better nation.
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