Focus Point - CastroCommentary by Pete du Pont
July 23, 2001
I'm Pete du Pont with the National Center for Policy Analysis. One of the more repellent spectacles of the last couple of weeks was Fidel Castro's unveiling of the Elian Gonzales Museum. It's a fabrication dedicated to twisting the history of the cuban kid's sojourn in the U.S. into a triumph of communist doctrine.
The new statue of Elian reminds one of something to be found in a junk dealer's back yard in St. Petersburg. The spirit it embodies -- that of a brainwashed kid being squeezed by a ruthless dictatorship -- is dismally predictable.
But what was most evident was the strangeness of Castro himself. News reports noted he spoke for two hours to a crowd of children, perhaps the last group likely to take this tottering political relic seriously. He has enslaved an entire people for more than a generation, and these kids, many Elian's age, will have to rebuild Cuba. One wonders how quickly their rebirth in the 21st century will follow the passing of this communist fossil of the 20th.
Those are my ideas, and at the NCPA we know that ideas can change the world. I'm Pete du Pont. Next time congress and health.