News / Culture, Remezcla

Highlights from Fidel Castro's Essay

Fidel Castro released an editorial yesterday that’s really difficult to track down because apparently no English language news outlet in the States is interested in linking to it. Which, I guess, is predictable, but whatever – I do this crap so you don’t have to. The reason this particular editorial is making waves is because it levels direct criticism not only at the United States, but at the current field of Republican presidential candidates. He takes a long walk to get there, and he goes off on a number of tangents, but I thought, for the sake of my dear Remezcla readers, I’d post the excerpts that are most going to piss people off and make the news, along with my inadequate attempts at translation.

You’re welcome.

First, after a lengthy Cuban history lesson, Castro gives us this bit, the part that’s already being excerpted.

“Debo señalar según cuentan todos, que la selección de un candidato republicano para aspirar a la presidencia de ese globalizado y abarcador imperio, es a su vez, -lo digo en serio- la mayor competencia de idioteces e ignorancia que se ha escuchado nunca. Como tengo cosas que hacer, no puedo dedicarle tiempo al asunto. De sobra sabía que sería así.”

“I should indicate that according to everyone, choosing a Republican candidate for the presidency of this globalized and all-encompassing Empire is right now – and I mean this seriously – the biggest competition of idiocy and ignorance I’ve ever heard. Since I have things to do, I can’t spend time on this matter. It’s more than enough just knowing that.”

In discussing charges that Cuban prisoners such as Wilman Villar, who reportedly died after an extended hunger strike, are treated abominally, Castro says of the US prison system:

“Más valdría realmente que el Gobierno español, dadas sus excelentes relaciones con Washington, viaje a Estados Unidos y se informe de lo que ocurre en las cárceles yankis, la conducta despiadada que aplica a los millones de presos, la política que se practica con la silla eléctrica y los horrores que se cometen con los detenidos en las cárceles y los que protestan en las calles.”

“It would actually be more valuable if the Spanish government, given their excellent relations with Washington, traveled to the United States and discovered what happens in Yankee prisons, the cruel conduct applied to millions of prisoners, the politics practices with the electric chair and the horrors they commit with those detained in prisons and those that protest in the streets.”

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Continuing to speak about Spain’s government, Castro writes.

“No ignoramos que ahora en España gobiernan los admiradores de Franco, quien envió a miembros de la División Azul junto a las SS y las SA nazis para matar soviéticos. Casi 50 mil de ellos participaron en la cruenta agresión. En la operación más cruel y dolorosa de aquella guerra: el cerco de Leningrado, donde murieron un millón de ciudadanos rusos, la División Azul formó parte de las fuerzas que trataron de estrangular a la heroica ciudad. El pueblo ruso no perdonará nunca aquel horrendo crimen.”

“We do not ignore that now, in Spain, Franco’s admirers govern,[Franco,] who sent members of the División Azul to the SS and the SA Nazis to kill Soviets. Nearly 50 thousand of them participated in the cruel aggression. In the cruelest and most painful operation of that war: the siege of Leningrad, where a million Russian citizens died, the División Azul formed part of the forces that tried to strangle the heroic city. The Russian people will never forgive this horrendous crime.”

After criticizing the news media for their role in the evils he sees in the world, and the Bush administrations efforts in the Middle East and, supposedly, his plans for Cuba, Castro concludes:

“Bush y sus estupideces imperaron durante 8 años y la Revolución Cubana ha perdurado ya más de medio siglo. La fruta madura no ha caído en el seno del imperio. Cuba no será una fuerza más con la que el imperio se extienda sobre los pueblos de América. La sangre de Martí no se habrá derramado en vano.”

“Bush and his stupidities prevailed for 8 years and the Cuban Revolution has endured more than a half century. The ripe fruit has not fallen to the bosom of empire. Cuba will not be one more force with which the empire extends itself across the American people. Martí’s blood will not have been spilled in vain.”

So there you have it. Seriously, read the whole thing, but these are the parts you’re going to see on the news. I promise.