Where the Hell Is Fidel? - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Where the Hell Is Fidel?

Somehow, ingeniously, Fidel Castro went from first to second fiddle without a jarring chord, so brother Raul was in charge long enough during Fidel’s lifetime, enabling Fidel to achieve interment without event. Now the nine-day period of official mourning is at an end, and the Bay of Pigs flows uninterrupted. For a loudmouth Fidel went quietly into the bad night.

Cuban government honchos claim that Castro is dead, although I am not sure just how they can tell. In any case, they have buried something… something other than the hatchet in any case. In my hometown of Miami, the revelers have been filling the streets with light and sound deep into the night. Castro passed his jubilee in power, but the powerful jubilation arrived only upon his demise.

In stark contrast to the Cuban expatriates and their unprompted, unfeigned wishes of good riddance, television coverage in Miami adopted a strategy of balanced coverage. It worked like this: They showed a local scene of celebration, and they balanced it with some cerebration of their own. Could it be, they asked, that Castro was really so bad a guy as his exiles claim? Was he not more successful than the great United States of America in bringing universal health care to his populace? These questions are left to linger in the air, challenging the audience to transcend the shallowness of the man in the street.

Indeed, this claim that the United States lagged behind in health care is of the specious species. The fact is that Uncle Sam was decades ahead of Castro in instituting unlimited access to health care for all… the prisoners in our jails. Fidel merely expanded on our system by turning the entire country into a prison camp.

Which of course puts the lie to President Obama and his move to try a new path, which he expressed as a change in “our relationship with the people of Cuba.” Wrong! Cutting a new deal with the warden does not create a new relationship with the inmates.

Well, PETA is not taken in by this kind of thing, and they are prepared to throw proverbial fake blood on rhetorical fur coats in an effort to put Cuba in its place… which, unfortunately is near Florida. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals? No, not that PETA; they do not concern themselves over the unethical treatment of humans. I mean the new PETA: the President-Elect Trump Administration. Donald Trump was not diplomatic in his response to the expiration of the former Ill Commandante.

Does this presage a new United States policy toward Cuba, at long last? Fifty-five years of revolution should be enough for anybody. It is not merely that roués too decadent for Miami need a discreet playground. It is not merely that the United States has a strategic interest in eliminating hostile nuisance states from its proximity. The entire existence of a totalitarian backwater in our backyard belies our promise of freedom and progress for humanity. If a tinpot tyrant can run a private Devil’s Island right off our coast, what does that say to countries around the globe relying on us to guarantee their freedom?

There may be a host of ways to challenge the Khaki-clad kakistocrats of the island Paradise-turned-Hades, but the one I like best is to pull the ultimate Trumpian irony. Even as we build the wall, and Mexico pays, we should open our border to Cuban escapees, and Raul will pay. No more repatriating. From now on, if you can get on a raft, you no longer need to beat the Coast Guard to our shoreline. We will admit anyone who makes it, provisionally, on the understanding they return when their homeland goes democratic.

As for the late Fidel, there are no violins where he is, only the tortured screams of the damned. He should feel right at home.

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