Opinion

Castro brothers’ power changes

When news got out that Fidel Castro was rushed to the hospital and relinquished power to his brother, Defense Minister Raul Castro, at the end of July, people realized the great historical weight the event exerted. Media and citizens in general, especially in South Florida, went into a frenzy, either wildly speculating the future of the island nation and its leader, or flat-out proclaiming the island’s newfound freedom that would come with Fidel’s death.

This reaction, which was essentially a collective sigh of relief for the Cuban community, was indicative of the overly high expectations said community has for the events that will follow this historic change of power. Pundits and community leaders have spoken of a new era of freedom and democracy for Cuba, while others foresee an exodus back to the motherland, and others still look forward, salivating at the thought of being able to buy Cuban cigars in America again.

However, one must be careful to not make a bigger deal out of Castro passing the torch than it actually is. Even though Fidel, who thumbed his nose at the United States and ten presidents throughout his 47-year tenure, is currently out of the picture, there is always the chance he could still recover. Even if he doesn’t, Raul is at least as much of a despot than his brother, as many experts and community leaders have pointed out. He is not likely to stop putting down dissent anytime soon.

And even if Fidel dies and the system collapses under Raul (and assuming a democratic, or at least pro-American government replaces it), the possibility of a mass exodus back to Cuba is still unlikely. The Cuban community in South Florida is very much Americanized, as any expatriate community would become after two generations. News of a new, free Cuba would no doubt be well-received (as evidenced by the scene in Miami that erupted from news that he might be dead), but is unlikely to significantly change much down here.

Looks like the cigar aficionados might have to wait a little longer.

September 12, 2006

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Thursday evening: ▪ UM coach Mark Richt has explained his decisi ...

The Miami Hurricanes had traveled half the field to start the second half when coach Mark Richt enco ...

Jeremiah Payton was one of those prospects the Miami Hurricanes coveted from just about the time he ...

The Miami Hurricanes’ secondary continues to get stronger. Miami, which already holds a pair of comm ...

Mark Richt said he’s spending the bye week evaluating everything about Miami’s offense, a process th ...

University of Miami changes program title of Women’s and Gender Studies to Gender and Sexuality Stud ...

Two families with deep ties to Miami—the Millers and Fains— celebrate two endowed faculty chair appo ...

A fabulous team of staff and volunteers labors long and hard, primed with school spirit, behind the ...

The University of Miami remembers alumnus Erik Hauri—the man who discovered water on the moon. ...

Through an innovative program, Miami Law students are empowering local high schoolers to think like ...

University of Miami head coach Gino DiMare released the Hurricanes' 2019 baseball schedule Thur ...

Senior Dew Weber of the University of Miami golf team continued to march towards her professional go ...

The University of Miami soccer team dropped its ACC road match against NC State, 1-0, Thursday night ...

The University of Miami men's tennis team will take part in the ITA Southeast Regional Champion ...

The University of Miami women's swimming & diving team returns to competition this weekend, ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.