Fidel Castro
Fidel Castro

Fidel Castro, the Cuban revolutionary leader who built a communist state on the doorstep of the United States and for five decades defied US efforts to topple him, died on Friday. He was 90.

“The commander in chief of the Cuban revolution died at 22:29 hours this evening,” his brother, President Raul Castro, his brother, announced with a shaking voice on national television.

He ended the announcement by shouting the revolutionary slogan: “Towards victory, always!”

Castro had been in poor health since an intestinal ailment nearly killed him in 2006.

His brother said the revolutionary leader’s remains would be cremated early on Saturday, “in compliance with his expressed will.”

The bearded Fidel Castro took power in a 1959 revolution and ruled Cuba for 49 years with a mix of charisma and iron will, creating a one-party state and becoming a central figure in the Cold War.

At home, he swept away capitalism and won support for bringing schools and hospitals to the poor. But he also created legions of enemies and critics, concentrated among Cuban exiles in Miami who fled his rule and saw him as a ruthless tyrant.

In the end it was not the efforts of Washington and Cuban exiles nor the collapse of Soviet communism that ended his rule. Instead, illness forced him to cede power to his younger brother Raul Castro, provisionally in 2006 and definitively in 2008.

He was demonised by the United States and its allies but admired by many leftists around the world, especially socialist revolutionaries in Latin America and Africa.

Transforming Cuba from a playground for rich Americans into a symbol of resistance to Washington, Castro outlasted nine U.S. presidents in power.

He fended off a CIA-backed invasion at the Bay of Pigs in 1961 as well as countless assassination attempts.

His alliance with Moscow helped trigger the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, a 13-day showdown with the United States that brought the world the closest it has been to nuclear war.

Wearing green military fatigues and chomping on cigars for many of his years in power, Castro was famous for long, fist-pounding speeches filled with blistering rhetoric, often aimed at the United States.

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39 COMMENTS

  1. Friend to the castaways, leader of free thought – champion of an admired literacy rate and healthcare unparalleled! Go well comandante, you have run your race and fulfilled humanity’s pledge to bridge the gap that only oppressors could use in a negative way. Muchas gracias!

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    • Fidel Castro was a revolutionary who initially brought good things to Cuba and then became a dictator. It’s important to recognize both.

      Thanks

      BB2014

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    • You hear just now! That president Edgar lungu wants to go and attend the funeral!!!!,,,,, this funeral, is for ba mudala ba kaunda,,,, stay home Edgar and work

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    • @Ndobo, this is genuine trip for Edgar, and KK. unfortunately they will be 90 people from Zambia. Cuba has helped Zambia all.

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  2. Fidel Castro’s every policy kept his people in poverty.
    All due to his hate of capitalism.
    Not a wise man.

    Thanks

    BB2014

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    • Sadly, many people like Mushota are brain-washed with western propaganda. Cubans are poor because of the US imposed trade sanctions. In spite of that, the World Health Organisation ranks the Cuban healthcare system among the best in the world. Cubans live as long as Americans. So this proves that they are not poor.

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    • @Mushota, apapena wanyela kumwela. Kabimba must be so furious about your comment.
      this year you have been more romantic, but insulting Fidel is way out of respect.

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  3. He was a dictator who Survived 638 assassination attempts.

    He brainwashed most African leaders and ofcourse including yourself who idolised hour president.

    Cuba still doesn’t have internet if at all. We went there in 2009 on holiday and speaking to taxi drivers he was never really liked.

    If his brother didn’t succeed him, he would have rotted in jail. Contrary to what is reported – he was a fascist, dictator scum who influenced Mugabe, Nyerere, ghadaffi.

    Thanks

    BB2014

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  4. So far President Edgar Lungu is proving to be even more revolutionary and greater than Gaddafi, Castro and others. Zambia shall be great.

    Vote Mr Kudos 2016 Most Popular Revolutionary Radical Blogger.

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  5. Iwe cukala, Fidel Castro is a hero, stupid lyobe. Why the hell you dont see that America is state democratic dictatorship or staye dictatorship democracy? Look how at how they force matters on small states! I so glad America is crumbling that stiff naked fool.

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  6. You can call him all the ghastly names you read in Western media but I as an Black African and a Pan African have great respect for this man, there is absolutely no foreign leader no foreign leader who has helped Africans like the Great Fidel Castrol to fight colonialism, imperialism both in military, technical and medical support….in return for nothing but our freedom.
    I remember of a time when we had Doctors from Cuba…only an African who does not know self would condemn him even a compromised Western puppet like Mandela when he was president blatantly refused to speak ill of the great man.

    Go well Fidel!!

    Viva La Revolución!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  7. The Juhari window gives us four sides of a person. Some will only see good in a person while others will only know his bad side and Castro is no different.

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    • If you are neighbors with one of the most corrupt regimes in history which was openly training terrorists to take Castrol and his regime out you would see things differently.

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    • jay jay. l haven’t given my opinion because I don’t believe in judging people after they have died.

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  8. Well said @Ndanje Khakis #9. What is indisputable is how, despite the crippling sanctions, literacy in Cuba is at an admirable 98% (vis. the education revolution), natural disasters claim a near zero-casualty because of their admirable preparedness, healthcare is incomparable even to the so-called NHS in the UK. Even their rather anachronistic agricultural system has still delivered. There is controversy around his treatment of HIV/AIDS patients, political dissidents and stranglehold on citizen travel. African nations were liberated largely because of the likes of Cuba and Russia, among other left-leaning nations. Those of us who have visited and stayed in Cuba know the critique from a first-hand point of view rather than a rhetorical one as I suspect from most comments.

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  9. On his tombstone, they should simply encrypt:-

    “HERE LIES A PARADOX OF A MAN”

    A liberator and then Dictator. He had some of the traits of Nelson Madiba Mandela RSA, e.g. in spite of his German roots, he was NOT a racist. He also had some of the traits of late Kim Jong-il (North Korea), e.g. He ruled as a DICTATOR for 49 years, only to handover to his relative. This is the legacy he leaves behind.

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  10. End of an era. I’m sure Mumembe is pounding his chest crying like a wet baby because his hero has gone. Indeed farewell comandante..!

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  11. The former dictator dies at 90 years having retired in 2008. He is a better dictator than Edward’s mentor across the river in Zimbabwe. The man is turning 93 years next year and he promises to rule Zimbabwe from the grave. The man has no shame and thought of handling over power to somebody younger. Zimbabweans are cursed people and with Mugabe at the helm they are doomed. Left alone Edward will do the same in Zambia. U can see Edward’s dictatorial tendencies. Closing the media, violation of human rights, electoral theft etc.What happened in Munali and Lusaka Central Constituencies clearly shows Edward did not win the 2016 elections and neither did he meet the 50%+ 1 vote threshold. No doubt Edward is an illegitimate President of Zambia and until the Petetion is heard Zambians should…

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  12. Hasta la victoria siempre! . The Cuban forces clobbered the South African army in Angola and changed the political fortunes for Angola. Namibia and indeed South Africa. Farewell Comandante!

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  13. When Africa especially South Africa and Angola needed liberation, God sent Cuba and Russia. Travel well old man. Grey hair is a sign of a righteous life lived.

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    • KK condemned the Cuban Russian “interference ” in Angola…Quote ” they let the tiger out through the front door only to allow the cubs through the front door “…..Portugal out …Cuba in.

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    • As students then we supported the Neto aligned faction while the UNIP government favored the Savimbi group – hence KK’s stance. hehehe…

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  14. One of the greatest figures of the 20th Century has passed on!

    If breaking some eggs means freeing and defending more than 5 African states, providing free medical care to his Cuban country men, sending thousands of medical doctors to African countries, providing free training to African students studying medicine and other programs, funding and supporting several African liberation movements, fighting against imperialism and defeating the racist Apartheid regime in South Africa during the Angolan civil war then let the eggs be broken! Castro was a legend!

    RIP Commandante!

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  15. no amount of words will ever be enough to describe the political colossus that was Fidel, no doubt the most successful third world leader.

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  16. No matter what the USA says of Castro , i know he was a deep friend of Africa and he helped against apartheid and other injustices.Africa adores you Fidel.

    Go well commandante Fidel Castro ,Africa is grateful to you for your help,your love and the exemplary medical+ educational pillars you left for Cuba.

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  17. An old cockroach like Mugabe should never be uttered in the same sentence as the likes of Castro or super Ken! Where Castro’s revolution sought equal distribution of wealth and may have acted harshly it was for the wider good, Mugabe has acted harshly for his own personal fortune and benefits.
    Mugabe is and will always be a traitor to the real revolution of equal distribution of wealth to all black Africans regardless of political leaning and he should be ashamed of making the great Shona people beggars in South Africa.

    As Bob Marley said “soon we’ll find out who the real revolutionary is”.. Mugabe is a false-fake revolutionary!

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  18. chairman Mao was quick to send congratulations when Trump was elected president elect he addressed select provincial leaders and told them nothing new as always since the loss….anyway that’s a story for another day we wish Fidel Castro and family Gods grace and mercifulness they mourn this loss no one is a saint we have a good an bad side to us but at the end of the day we answer to God and no one else mhsrip…2021 Zambia Forward under new leadership

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  19. Go well Fidel, the son of many soils. We salute you and praise God for a creation such as yours. MYSRIP.

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  20. Fidel is a legend. A comrade who helped African countries through very tough times. Yes he did some bad things but not worse than what evil America has done all over the world. Only those who have no information admire America.I hope that one day the stupid CIA will tell us how much they were involved in the death of Lumumba.Go well comrade. They tried to kill you too but they failed.

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  21. I see that you do not allow any negative comments about Castro. This is the same type of freedom expression enjoyed by Cubans under communism. Well done moderator.

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