In case you haven’t heard, former Cuban President (dictator) Fidel Castro died last night at age 90. While many proponents of freedom and democracy hoped that this will bring about change for the island nation, world leaders, including our own, are reacting to the death.
There is a decidedly different tone between sitting President Barack Obama’s statement on Castro and President Elect Donald Trump’s statement on his passing.
Here is a the statement from President Obama, as posted on the White House website:
At this time of Fidel Castro’s passing, we extend a hand of friendship to the Cuban people. We know that this moment fills Cubans – in Cuba and in the United States – with powerful emotions, recalling the countless ways in which Fidel Castro altered the course of individual lives, families, and of the Cuban nation. History will record and judge the enormous impact of this singular figure on the people and world around him.
For nearly six decades, the relationship between the United States and Cuba was marked by discord and profound political disagreements. During my presidency, we have worked hard to put the past behind us, pursuing a future in which the relationship between our two countries is defined not by our differences but by the many things that we share as neighbors and friends – bonds of family, culture, commerce, and common humanity. This engagement includes the contributions of Cuban Americans, who have done so much for our country and who care deeply about their loved ones in Cuba.
Today, we offer condolences to Fidel Castro’s family, and our thoughts and prayers are with the Cuban people. In the days ahead, they will recall the past and also look to the future. As they do, the Cuban people must know that they have a friend and partner in the United States of America.
Well, as per his usual style, President-Elect Donald Trump took a more over the top tone with his tone in his statement.
First off, Trump started off by publishing the following tweet after hearing about the dictator’s demise:
Then Trump issued a formal statement condemning both Castro and his reign:
“Today, the world marks the passing of a brutal dictator who oppressed his own people for nearly six decades,” Trump said in his released statement.
“Fidel Castro’s legacy is one of firing squads, theft, unimaginable suffering, poverty and the denial of fundamental human rights,” Trump said.
“While Cuba remains a totalitarian island, it is my hope that today marks a move away from the horrors endured for too long, and toward a future in which the wonderful Cuban people finally live in the freedom they so richly deserve,” Trump said.
“Though the tragedies, deaths and pain caused by Fidel Castro cannot be erased, our administration will do all it can to ensure the Cuban people can finally begin their journey toward prosperity and liberty,” Trump said. “I join the many Cuban Americans who supported me so greatly in the presidential campaign, including the Brigade 2506 Veterans Association that endorsed me, with the hope of one day soon seeing a free Cuba.”
Cuban Americans in Florida are credited with helping Donald Trump win the key swing state over Democratic Presidential Nominee Hillary Clinton.