Fidel Castro: Bury the Myth With the Ashes / Jeovany Jimenez Vega

Fidel Castro photographed in front of a portrait of José Martí.

Jeovany Jimenez Vega, 25 November 2022 — Now in the middle of my life, a little older, perhaps a little wiser, I reread with new eyes that sight. If it was ever otherwise, I have already forgotten it, but now, with the mists of the past gone, behind those eyes I see only a coward. Much has been written about the traits necessary for someone to impose himself over millions of fellow countrymen who, having had a choice, have ended up fatally following him, only to pay dearly for it later. Rivers of ink have flowed in an attempt to explain what to a large extent continues to be an elusive matter, but in the specific case of Fidel Castro, we Cubans can draw modest conclusions.

Did Fidel Castro prevail because he was the most intelligent? No; pre-revolutionary Cuba was abundant in spirits of the highest caliber that shone at the continental and world level in almost all areas of knowledge and letters — just naming them would make this post endless — without any of them having nested in such a twisted mind. Did he impose himself then because he was the most audacious, perhaps the bravest? It is hard to believe it when it is known that during the Moncada action he did not even have the courage to get out of the car while the advanced group did have enough courage and paid for it with their lives.

If we are going to talk about audacity and daring, Cuban history is rich in examples, and we would not have to go that far and remember the Generalissimo who, fighting in the front line, had two horsed killed in the same battle, since machete in hand, he used to fight hand to hand like any other soldier; or the Bronze Titan who was killed after being shot 27 times.

To speak of daring and courage it would be enough to recall that group of the Directorio with Echevarría at the head executing the most audacious coup of the Cuban Revolution in the heart of bloody Havana where the most rabid dogs of the Batistato [Batista dictatorship] were roaming; that’s what I call having balls and not giving orders from the rear as Fidel Castro always did, posing with his little rifle in the Sierra or later jumping from a tank at Girón in front of Korda’s opportune lens, always after the cease-fire, always so photogenic and so light, so safe.

Did he stay in power for more than half a century because he was a brilliant economist who developed the country? A look at our desolate poverty after 30 years of squandered subsidies is enough as a definitive answer. Or was it thanks to his extraordinary eloquence, facing solid reasons and arguments before a free parliament? Never, not once! Was he ever exposed to a real popular scrutiny, regardless of pressures, where Liborio did not risk his job, the expulsion of a son from the campus “of the revolutionaries” or his own freedom? He never had the guts for so much!

All that unnatural and sickly power was exercised in the most vile way by a coward behind a totalitarianism designed to suit him, and it is here where our questions lead to the simplest answer: It was enough with the mixture of a textbook narcissism, of a total unscrupulousness that allowed him to betray without keeping loyalties and of an ambition without limits, added to a complete disregard for the suffering of others, to explain the success of Fidel Castro, in short, the typical signs of a full-fledged psychopath who arrived at the exact moment to the candid world of the 60’s resulting in that fatal mixture that still keeps alive to some extent the unfounded myth of the bearded avenger.

Does Fidel live? Yes, undoubtedly, as the manager of the incomprehensible hatred that still encourages the imbecile fanatic to perpetrate the repudiation rally ordered by others who fill their pockets in the shadows, the idiot turned into a non-thinking being, into a spearhead that perpetuates his own misery and in spite of everything does not realize that he is only the guardian of the Birán estate.

Yes, Fidel Castro still lives in our ruin, at our empty table, in our prisoners, because each political prisoner is a slap in the face of my people and a knock on the door that reminds every honest man in the world that Cuba lives in a state of disgrace, and that the order of combat heard from the mouth of the clown on duty that glorious July 11, 2021 was actually issued by the same Fidel Castro who, even in death, continues to fuck up our lives.

It has been 6 years since the monster descended into hell, but his legacy, his brutal and nefarious legacy of indignity that buries our rights under a heavy mantra of cynicism and terror, the definitive cardinal signs of the most refined and perfidious dictatorship known to this America of ours, so prodigal in phony tyrants, has been left behind.

Today, Fidel Castro continues to be the unburied corpse that roams the streets of Cuba, contaminating them with the stench of sulfur, and to bury him it will not be enough to grind him up and hide the dust behind the powder that stains the sacred soil of Santa Iphigenia: to definitively bury Fidel Castro it will be necessary to bury along with his ashes his myths, so that one day not far away any Cuban will be able to shout without fear loudly inside and outside Cuba that that man was, above all things a traitor and as such he will be described as such in the books that tomorrow’s children will read in a Cuba without tyrants.

Translated by: Hombre de Paz