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When Castro dies and Cuba lives
By Bruce Walker
Fidel Castro will die soon. On that day, the Cuban people will have hope. On that day, the world will take another step toward freedom. The mythology surrounding Castro in Leftist circles is breathtaking. He is credited with replacing a monster, Fulgencio Batista, but by any measurement Castro was worse than Batista.
Batista was democratically elected as President of Cuba and he lost the next election in 1944, Batista left office (later returning as a political boss.) He was a self-described "progressive socialist" whose 1940 Constitution abolished the death penalty, guaranteed racial and sexual equality, provided guaranteed state employment and free, compulsory public education. Batista legalized the Communist Party and appointed communists as cabinet ministers.
The Left, however, demonizes its own when they become politically inconvenient. Mussolini, for example, began and ended his political career as a committed socialist. Hitler and most of his Nazis believed in social and economic equality, and Nazi economic policies in Germany were indistinguishable from socialist democracies today.
The Party of the People, which governed China before 1949, rejected capitalism, even though its mortal political enemy, Maoist Communism, also rejected capitalism. Evita Peron, weird icon of modern Leftists, adored both Fascism and National Socialism after the Holocaust was known, and supported redistribution of wealth.
Castro, like Evita, was virulently anti-Semitic, enamored with Mussolini, sympathetic to Adolph Hitler, enchanted with Stalinism - and deeply hostile to free enterprise and to America. So naturally, both became icons of America's traitorous Left.
When Castro seized power in Cuba, he took over a nation that had 94 radio stations, 11 television stations, 519 movie theaters and 58 periodicals. Only two nations in the Western Hemisphere – the United States and Argentina - had more radios and television sets than Cuba.
Caloric consumption, literacy rates and infant mortality rates put Cuba far above Mexico, Central America or any of the other Carribean nations. Indeed, Cuba overall had a higher standard of living than any Spanish speaking nation on Earth.
Why does the American Left has such a crush on Castro? Because he, like they, have an inexhaustible hatred of America. This rage will be the undoing of the Left. Cuba, unlike Russia, is close to America. That has made our indigenous Marxists of the Democrat Party too reckless.
When Castro dies, Cuba will move rapidly toward freedom. The robust Cuban community in America can make the rage that the Iraqi people shown toward Saddam Hussein seem gentle by comparison. The world will then see just how awful Castro really was.
This will expose our own American Castro sympathizers to hostile scrutiny much more intense than these traitors have yet experienced. Moreover, the demonstration of how horribly communism and Castro have failed the Cuban people will send shock waves through Mexico, Brazil and the other lands whose leaders say - and whose people actually believe - that Fidel Castro has created a paradise rather than a grand Devil's Island.
When Castro dies, President Bush can travel to Cuba, flanked by Cuban Republicans, and speak in Spanish to the newly liberated former serfs of one of the most savage failures in modern history. Moreover, he can promise much more than just lifting of an economic embargo. He can promise help of every kind, with the specific intention of turning Cuba into an example of what other Latin America nations could be, if the people gave up envy and embraced instead freedom.
Spanish-speaking peoples, like English-speaking peoples, are spread throughout the world. They are not uniformly hostile toward America and its values. It is not accidental that Spain is one of the few nations in Europe which stood beside us in Operation Iraqi Freedom. It is not coincidence that the Philippines is one of our closest allies in the war on terrorism.
When Castro dies, then Cuba will begin its rise to a place among the most prosperous and happy lands on Earth - a sharp contrast to the dreary and graying states of Old Europe or Japan. When Castro dies, everything will change - and all of it for the better. When Castro dies, Cuba lives.
Bruce Walker is a senior writer with Enter Stage Right. He is also a frequent contributor to The Pragmatist and The Common Conservative.
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