Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Obligatory Fidel Castro Retires Post

Wait a second. Cuba's Communist?!

Fidel Castro makes his retirement official:

"I am not saying farewell. I want only to fight as a soldier of ideas. I will continue writing under the title 'Reflections of Comrade Fidel.' I will be one more weapon in the arsenal that you can count on. Perhaps my voice will be heard. I will be careful."

Half a century under Fidel Castro. An unbelievable amount of time to rule a country. The longest in the world for a head of government, in fact. But, sadly, all good dictatorships must come to an end. Although Castro hasn't indicated who would follow him as leader, common sense tells us it will be Castro's younger and sprier brother Raul who, at the age of 76, has at least another six months before collapsing himself.

Here's what Bush had to say:

Putting forward the promise of an end to the 46 year blockade of the island nation, the American president pledged that he stood ready to help Cubans realise the "blessings of liberty."

"Eventually this transition ought to lead to free and fair elections, and I mean free and I mean fair, not these kind of staged elections that the Castro brothers try to foist off as being true democracy," he said.

So lets talk numbers. How long are we thinking Communist Cuba can last before folding in on itself without the power of Castro's personality propping it up? Five years? Three? Raul has already hinted at broad-based economic reforms. And we all know what happens when Communist countries get a taste of freedom, don't we?

The world's a slightly better place today than it was yesterday.

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