Raul Castro "Sparks" at the Funeral for Asela de Los Santos / Juan Juan Almeida

Raúl Castro (younger than now) with Díaz-Canel, Ramón Machado Ventura and Ramiro Valdés (photo: rtve.es)

Juan Juan Almeida, 28 January 2020 — On January 25, Army General Raúl Castro attended the funeral services for Asela de los Santos Tamayo, held in the Pantheon of Veterans at the Colón Cemetery.

In attendance were the most prominent members of Cuba’s political leadership. It was the same on Sunday, December 8, for the funeral of Faure Chomón.

I should clarify that, when I say “the same,” I am referring of course to the presence of the now almost ninety-year-old younger Castro, who could be seen wearing, under his very well-pressed uniform, adult diapers.

The first-secretary of the Cuban Communist Party arrived at the funeral, which was held on January 25, surrounded by bodyguards and wearing, under his brand new green khaki pants, blue diapers. Perhaps owing to their quality, they let out a small stream of excrement that released an unmistakably foul greeting, which led to an avalanche of questions and concerns.

It is widely known that Cubans — regardless of race, creed, or inclinations either sexual or political — take few things seriously. It is understandable then that, when the attendees at the funeral service noticed the stench and realized that the general was “sparking,” there were smiles and audible comments such as, “The old general shit,” or “The first-secretary exploded a mine,” or “The Chinaman* had a stroke.”

At first there was a lot of joking. But later, after the jokes and smiles had died down, almost everyone, including the most jocular attendees, began to ask serious questions: “If he’s like this now, he can’t have much time left, at least not of useful life… What will happen when he’s suddenly no longer around… Who will fill the power vacuum?”

*Translator’s note: Cubans often refer to Raul Castro as “the Chinaman” because of his facial features.