By S. Ramachandran
‘I think that a man should not live beyond the age when he begins to deteriorate, when the flame that lighted the brightest moment of his life has weakened’ said Fidel.
Fidel cannot die by his own words. He never deteriorated or weakened.
‘A revolution is a struggle to the death between the future and the past’ and he ‘died’ between the ‘Cuban past’ and Trumps’ & Modi’s present without leading further struggle to the future.
He said, ‘I never saw a contradiction between the ideas that sustain me and the ideas of that symbol, of that extraordinary figure, Jesus Christ’. Wait, he is not that religious, but philosophical, perhaps humorous!. When I was a young boy, my father taught me that to be a good Catholic, I had to confess at church if I ever had impure thoughts about a girl. That very evening, I had to rush to confess my sin. And the next night, and the next. After a week, I decided religion wasn't for me, he added.
But, may be a surprise for some, he is ‘philosophical & value based’. ‘I am not attached to anything. I am attached to what it feels it's my duty, to do my duty. I think that I will die with the boots on’. ‘Values are what constitute true quality of life, the supreme quality of life, above food, shelter and clothing, quality of life lies in knowledge, in culture’.
The far-sight of a visionary who said his country is heaven, in the spiritual sense. How many other leaders of how many countries proudly declare so.
‘This truth should be taught to every human being -- that the immortal values of the spirit are above physical life. What sense does life have without these values? What then is it to live? Those who understand this and generously sacrifice their physical life for the sake of good and justice -- how can they die? God is the supreme idea of goodness and justice.’
Contradict this with his relentless attack on capitalism. ‘They talk about the failure of socialism but where is the success of capitalism..? My idea is that the capitalist system now doesn't work either for the United States or the world, driving it from crisis to crisis, which are each time more serious’.
‘If there ever was in the history of humanity an enemy who was truly universal, an enemy whose acts and moves trouble the entire world, threaten the entire world, attack the entire world in any way or another, that real and really universal enemy is precisely Yankee imperialism’.
‘The ever more sophisticated weapons piling up in the arsenals of the wealthiest and the mightiest can kill the illiterate, the ill, the poor and the hungry, but they cannot kill ignorance, illness, poverty or hunger’.
‘A large percentage of those living in developed societies are told what brand of soda they should drink, what cigarettes they should smoke, what clothes and shoes they should wear, what they should eat and what brand of food they should buy. Their political ideas are supplied in the same way. Every year a trillion dollars is spent on advertising’.