Bid farewell to Fidel Castro. The 90-year-old former
despot president of Cuba passed away on Friday after several years of poor health.
According to Wikipedia, Fidel’s revolutionary group aided in overthrowing Cuban president Fulgencio Batista during the Cuban Revolution in 1959, which was when he assumed military and political power as Prime Minister. Fidel then turned Cuba Communist.
Castro converted Cuba into a one-party socialist state under Communist Party rule, the first in the Western Hemisphere. Policies introducing central economic planning and expanding healthcare and education were accompanied by state control of the press and the suppression of internal dissent.
Obviously, Fidel wasn’t exactly honey bunny of the world, at least as far as the US was concerned. As the New York Times described him:
Mr. Castro brought the Cold War to the Western Hemisphere, bedeviled 11 American presidents and briefly pushed the world to the brink of nuclear war.
About that Cold War: West Coast deal:
The United States opposed Castro’s government, and unsuccessfully attempted to remove him by assassination, economic blockade, and counter-revolution, including the Bay of Pigs Invasion of 1961. Countering these threats, Castro formed an alliance with the Soviet Union.
That was when Fidel let the (then) U.S.S.R. set up some some missiles on their beach. Missiles pointed at the US! You might know it better by its historical name – The Cuban Missile Crisis.
In response to U.S. nuclear missiles in Turkey, and perceived U.S. threats against Cuba, Castro allowed the Soviets to place nuclear weapons on Cuba, sparking the Cuban Missile Crisis—a defining incident of the Cold War—in 1962.
Shit was tense! Florida could have been melted! I would interject an opinion (or lack therof) of Florida melting here but this is a dlisted obit. Life went on and Cuba remained under Communist rule. In February of 2008, Fidel turned over the presidency to his brother Raúl Castro.
Describing his brother as “not substitutable”, Raúl proposed that Fidel continue to be consulted on matters of great importance, a motion unanimously approved by the 597 National Assembly members
Fidel was lauded by some countries.
Castro was decorated with various international awards, and was lauded as a champion of socialism, and anti-imperialism, whose revolutionary regime secured Cuba’s independence.
And wasn’t by this one.
Conversely, critics in the United States alleged that he was a dictator whose administration oversaw human-rights abuses in Cuba.
Because I’m vapid as hell, only two things come to mind when I think of Fidel Castro. One was the RIDICULOUS assassination plots that the CIA came up with for him back in the day.
Seven plots against Castro that the CIA actually considered. 1. Use agents in Cuba to spread rumors that the second coming of Christ is imminent and that Castro is the anti-Christ. 2. Surprise him at the beach with an exploding conch shell. 3. Put thallium salts in his shoes or cigars during an appearance on “The David Susskind show,” to make his beard and hair fall out. 4. Put itching powder in his scuba suit and LSD in his mouthpiece so he would be driven crazy and drown 5. Offer him exploding cigars designed to blow his head off. 6. Shoot him with a TV camera that has a machine gun inside. 7. Spray his broadcasting studio with hallucinogens.
That was pre-Trump, by the way.