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Friday, August 04, 2006

August 4, 1960: Cuba Parallels Continue

"A Western European diplomat in Havana commented recently that 'this little island has created on of the most insoluble foreign policy problems that the United States has had to face' since World War II.

"In the meantime, the possibility that Premier Castro will be removed from leadership for an indefinite period during his recuperation from the pneumonia attack he suffered last month could deeply affect the entire Cuban picture, domestically and internationally.

"...[I]f Major [Raul] Castro, who is Armed Forces Minister, succeeds his brother as Premier even temporarily, as is expected, the whole structure of revolutionary loyalities could be thrown out of balance."

This could be particularly true if the Premier was absent for a long time and if Major Castro and Major [Che] Guevara sought to take advantage of their power to implant still deeper their extreme Left-wing policies....

"Notwithstanding great efforts in recent months to build sympathetic images of the two majors, their personal popularity is limited. They are resented even by some of Premier Castro's closest friends and collaborators, especially since they began moving their own followers into more and more of the regime's key positions."

"...[I]n a recent television speech, Dr. [Fidel] Castro addressed himself with cold contempt to the United States.

"The whole world is turning against you," he said.

-- Tad Szulc, The New York Times, August 4, 1960