HAVANA TIMES, Jan 26 (dpa) — Former Cuban president Fidel Castro blasted the new Spanish government of Mariano Rajoy, just as the island’s official press has done following the case of a prisoner, Wilman Villar Mendoza, who reportedly died after a hunger strike.
In the latest of his “Reflections” articles, published today in the island’s media, Castro harshly accused Spain and the “ramshackle” European Union (EU) of “lying” in order to “attack Cuba.”
Havana authorities steadfastly deny that Villar was a political prisoner and that he died after more than 50 days of fasting, as was reported last week by Cuban dissidents.
Spain — one of the first countries to speak out publicly about the case — has been the particular focus of attack by the Castro regime.
Fidel Castro today repeated the criticism of the new conservative government of the Partido Popular (PP) in Madrid.
“The Spanish government and the shaky European Union, plunged into a profound economic crisis, must know what should guide them,” pointed out the former Cuban president in his writing.
Castro referred directly to the Spanish government that was elected this past November. The PP is traditionally hostile to the Cuban regime. Former conservative president Jose Maria Aznar (in office from 1996-2004) promoted the “common position” of the EU, linking trade relations with Cuba to advances in human rights issues.
“We are not ignorant of the fact that Spain is now being governed by admirers of Franco,” emphasized the historic Cuban leader. In addition to describing Aznar and Rajoy as the “fascist right,” he proceeded to harshly attack the Spanish security forces, and concluded by citing the high rate of unemployment in that European country.
“There is nothing unusual about what the Gestapo police are doing now to the men and women demanding the right to work and bread in the country with the highest unemployment in Europe,” he added.
The 85-year-old Castro, who retired from political life due to health problems, also directed his criticism at the entire European bloc amid their current economic crisis. “First concern yourselves with saving the euro if you can, resolve the chronic unemployment from which young people are increasingly suffering, and respond to the indignados, constantly attacked and beaten by the police.”
The US Republican Party primary elections were also mentioned by Castro. Two of the candidates with the greatest hopes of confronting President Barack Obama in the November election — Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich — attacked Cuba and Fidel Castro in a debate held this past Monday.
Both conservative politicians are seeking to gain voter support from Spanish-speaking voters, who have a deciding vote in the state of Florida, especially the large and influential Cuban-American community based in Miami, a traditional anti-Castro bastion.
The election of a Republican candidate into the US presidency, said Castro briefly in his article, “(is) the greatest competition of idiocy and ignorance that I have ever heard.” The former Cuban president indicated that today (Thursday) he would publish a continuation of that current “Reflection.”
The writing, entitled “The fruit that didn’t fall,” also focuses on details of the struggle against United States “imperialism” after the independence of Cuba, one of Castro’s main banners. The Cuban leader is seen by his supporters as the architect of the island’s emancipation from Washington’s tutelage.