Monday, January 19, 2015

Rumors of Fidel's Death ... But would anything Change There if True?

Still grab from a video taken on Jan. 8, 2014 of former 
Cuban president Fidel Castro arriving for the inauguration 
of the nonprofit cultural centre Kcho Romerillo, Laboratory
 for Art in Havana.
The latest "Fidel Castro is dead" rumors that roared through Cuba over the past week appear, like many before them, to have been proven false.
The rumors are nothing new for Castro, who's 88, has undergone multiple surgeries and hasn't been seen in public in over a year. The most recent flurry seems to have been sparked by the death of the son of a Kenyan opposition leader named Fidel Castro Odinga, and wasn't quashed until Argentine soccer legend Diego Maradona said he had received a letter from the still-living communist revolutionary.
But the timing of the debunked rumor serves as a reminder that Fidel Castro's death will have a far different meaning today than it would have just a few years ago.
When Castro dies, Cuban natives who have been waiting for so long for the day will rejoice. Some will uncork decades-old bottles of champagne they've been saving for the occasion. Local governments in South Florida have plans in place for dealing with the spontaneous street parades expected throughout the region.
But after the party is over and the smoke from the fireworks has cleared, what's left behind in Cuba will be pretty much the same.
It was once thought that the death of Castro, whose charisma and leadership were key to maintaining power on the island for all these years, would lead to a chaotic collapse of the communist regime. But a combination of the illness that led him to hand over power to his younger brother, Raúl Castro, in 2008 and the surprise breakthrough in diplomatic relations with the United States announced last month have created an environment where the regime could carry on with minimal disruption.
Read the rest of the story HERE.

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