Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Long ago, Cuba fell into a more or less static condition which the regime persisted in calling, with no irony, "The Revolution." Although not much was happening that could be described as "revolutionary." The past two decades since the collapse of the Soviet Union have been especially tough for Cuba. The Island's obvious market is The United States; for tourism, fine cigars, tropical fruit, culture & music. We've turned elsewhere for these. Although the people of Cuba are indominable, the infrastructure is not. With 11 million citizens in an area the size of Pennsylvania, Cuba ought to be a wealthy nation. Even a wealthy "revolutionary" nation. Fidel Castro has protected his revolution, but he hasn't prepared it for the transition to the post-Fidel era. His kind of regime is no longer viable, & never was economically self-sustaining due mainly to our refusal to do business with Fidel. It's been a sad thing, as we enriched China, opened trade with Vietnam, filled the treasure vaults in the House of Saud, & funded fascist terror regimes in Central America. Fidel accurately refers to his own generation as the "old guard." He was born in 1926, two years younger than George Herbert Walker Bush, five years older than Mikhail Gorbachev. Fidel now hands over power (such as he's willing to give up) to his brother, Raúl, born in 1931. Who takes over after Raúl? Hopefully, the Cuban people.