Last updated on: 4/25/2013 | Author: ProCon.org

Fidel Castro, JD Biography

Title:
Former President and Prime Minister of Cuba
Position:
Con to the question "Should the United States Maintain Its Embargo against Cuba?"
Reasoning:

“We are men of ideas, not fanatics. We have never sowed hatred against the people of the United States despite the aggressions of her government against us. Apart from the moral and political damage that this does, what hurts us the most is the idea that one single American citizen could think that from Cuban territory any harm would be waged against them. Not a single drop of blood has ever fallen anywhere in the world because of any terrorist act introduced from our country. If it weren’t for that absurd and ridiculous embargo, the United States could receive vaccinations and other medical procedures from Cuba that could help save American lives.”

“Castro calls U.S. Terror Claim a ‘Slanderous Lie,'” cnn.com, May 25, 2002

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba, 1961-2011
  • President of Cuba, Dec. 2, 1976-Feb. 19, 2008
  • Commander in Chief, armed forces of Cuba, Jan. 1, 1959-Feb. 19, 2008
  • Secretary-General of the Non-Aligned Movement, 1979-1983 and 2006-2008
  • Prime Minister of Cuba, Feb. 16, 1959-1976
  • Recipient, Lenin Peace Prize, 1961
  • Former lawyer
Education:
  • JD, University of Havana, 1950
Other:
  • Born Aug. 13, 1926
  • Died Nov. 25, 2016
  • Married to Mirta Díaz-Balart (aunt of US Congressmen Lincoln Díaz-Balart (R-FL) and Mario Díaz-Balart (R-FL)), 1948-1955
  • Married to Dalia Soto del Valle, 1980-present
  • Joined a group of political exiles who wanted to overthrow dictatorships in the Caribbean in 1947
  • Led failed revolution against Cuban military dictator Fulgencio Batista on July 26, 1953; Sentenced to 15 years in prison; served two years then released in May 1955
  • Launched another revolution against Batista on Dec. 2, 1956 which succeeded in ousting Cuba’s president on Jan. 1, 1959
  • Seized $1.8 billion of US assets in Cuba between 1959 and 1960
  • Excommunicated from the Roman Catholic Church on Jan. 3, 1962
  • Passed power to brother Raul Castro on a “provisional basis” on July 31, 2006
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should the United States Maintain Its Embargo against Cuba?