Adiós Fidel. Hola Sanity!
By Luis F. Brizuela Cruz
Another madman is dead.
Fidel Castro, the totalitarian ruler of Cuba -camouflaged for over half a century und…er the self-adjudicated labels of Prime Minister, President and Commander in Chief -has died at the age of 90. Way past the conventional scripts of history -a history that Castro himself once pointed would “absolve” him- lays one of the most horrific and complex genocides ever experienced by any human conglomerate.
The numerical death and torture tolls of Castro’s infamy may fall short of the overwhelming statistics attributed to figures like Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot and Hitler, even in proportion to the population of the enslaved Caribbean island that Fidel Castro converted into a Machiavellian experiment with consequences of infinite manifestations. Yet, the ongoing sequels of moral, emotional, spiritual and material damage caused by the Castro regime can possibly have a greater impact and over the course of more generations than the atrocities committed by some of Castro’s infamous homologues. For in most of the other cases cited, there was a horrific ending to the madness, defined by either victory or successful permutation, at times even lifting the victimized group to the dawn of new beginnings. In Castro’s legacy, forever mystifying and inconclusive, the afflicted subject and its descendants seem to be destined to live in the limbo of a stigmatic horror without ending. Such is the idiosyncrasy of Castro’s résumé. Such is the enigmatic nature of the road ahead for Cubans, in the diaspora but mostly inside the sequestered island; as one culture with abysmal differences between two versions of itself searches for the most elementary of all human endeavors: sanity.
Castro’s primordial ability to dismember the Cuban population, to turn brother against brother, children against their parents by way of Marxist-Leninist indoctrination may have caused irreversible damage to the Cuban culture. His chameleonic manipulation of friends and foes, always in pursuit of his own self-enrichment -even utilizing the US embargo as a catalyst for an anti-American sentiment in the island, while becoming one of the wealthiest heads of state in the world- classifies him as one of the most sadistic and insensitive creatures to ever have walked the earth. Meanwhile, a nation searches for the prospect of a future for which its people are completely unprepared.
With a certain satire, spike and sarcasm, some have recently come to me and have asked me: “what are you Cubans going to talk about now that Castro is dead?” There is so much to still talk about, so much to reflect on, and so much to grieve for. There is a once upon a time amazing culture in absolute need of reconstruction. In the meantime, in a more tangible context possibly more comprehensible to the human mind, from the depths of the Florida Strait perhaps the victims in the flesh of Castro’s horror are finding some closure at last with his death.