Director, Commonwealth Policy Center

Fidel Castro is dead. And surprisingly, many sang his praises. President Jimmy Carter said he "[he] fondly remembered his visits with [Castro] and his love of his country." Con. Barbara Lee (D-Oakland), said “We [should] mourn his loss…. [and she] was very sad for the Cuban people. He led a revolution in Cuba that led to social improvements for his people.” Truth is, Castro was a brutal dictator who stamped out freedom of speech, religion and any political dissent. He imprisoned 100,000 Cubans in his first 30 years and executed nearly 20,000.  1 in 5 Cubans fled the country while he was in power and he turned a productive nation with a high standard of living into a 3rd world economy. If there is anything to appreciate in this news, it is that Cubans will no longer be oppressed by him.