The Minnesota Daily
August 16, 2006
A pro-Castro revolutionary spirit is high in Cuba while others celebrate in the United States.
The Cuban revolution will not end simply because this charismatic leader ceases to serve as the standing political leader. In fact, the theory that Cuba will succumb to capitalism simply because Castro no longer is leading the state assumes that the past few decades were merely the success of a powerful personality cult. This assumption denies the objective factors that led to Cuba's revolution.
The fact that Cuba was able to move past the collapse of the Soviet Union, as well as the harsh moment in history known as the Special Period, conveys that revolutionary sentiment is alive and strong. If Cubans were able to survive those times, they can certainly go on if they lose Castro.
The U.S. government has other plans. The July report reflects the ignorance within the state department regarding politics in other countries. The document assumes Castro is the crux of this movement. The Cuban revolution did not belong to Castro; it belongs to the Cuban people, and where they take the country is up to the citizens of that state. Cuban politics should not be the state of affairs of the U.S. government, especially given the track of failure this country has had in transporting "democracy."
The report expresses the desires of the U.S. government to "assist" and "facilitate" this transition period. It includes measures to block succession, and oddly, a secret annexed portion that perhaps discusses how this succession shall be carried out. The reality stands that given the exhaustion of resources in various other wars, the United States can only plot and dream about invading Cuba. But to put things into perspective, how would Americans feel if one of its leaders fell ill and another country sat plotting for regime change?
It is inappropriate that many in this country find the state of Castro's health a celebratory moment. There will be a heavy grieving period in Cuba if something should happen to Castro. Beyond the economic sanctions and shaky United States-Cuba relations, mocking another person's misfortune is offensive, especially when it's clear this man is loved by many in Cuba.