Castro and Us

fidel-castro-26All of leftbook seems to have been posting about Cuba and Castro, and in a really weird way this has served as a pretext for rehashing all kinds of 20th century debates. Nostalgia can be a fun drug, but like all fun drugs, best not to do it too often or let it get too serious.
 
Castro and Cuba were never important to me. Becoming political as an anarchist in the 80s has something to do with this. Not being from an oppressed nation aided by Cuba certainly played a part. Being in canada where honestly besides a smattering of trots the main Cuba supporters always seemed to be nice social democrats or at least people integrated into social democratic structures, definitely was a big factor (no surprise to me that our racist colonialist neoliberalism-with-a-smile PM wrote such a warm tribute to Castro; warmth towards Castro has been in no way confined to “our side” in the society in which i live)
 
Of the states within the world-system, Cuba with Castro may have had the most humane government in the americas. Definitely worth defending against u.s. imperialism, and worth celebrating the fact that out and out invasion and assassination attempts by the u.s. failed.
 
But you’re not defending anything against u.s. imperialism simply by getting mad at other radical leftists who don’t share your position on a revolution that occurred and charted its path in what was essentially a different world, one that no longer exists.
 
In 2016, one’s response to the former head of state’s passing, is not a good basis for choosing friends and enemies, and this would be so even if we weren’t clearly entering a particularly intense and desperate period of struggle.

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