Take NBC’s Andrea Mitchell: “Fidel Castro is old-fashioned, courtly–even paternal, a thoroughly fascinating figure!”
Take Dan Rather: “Fidel Castro could have been Cuba’s Elvis!”
Take Barbara Walters: "Castro's personal magnetism is still powerful, his presence is still commanding. Cuba has very high literacy, and Castro has brought great health care to his country."
Take CNN founder, Ted Turner: “Fidel Castro is one helluva guy!”
Taken Colin Powell while serving as Sec. of State under George Bush. “Fidel Castro has done some good things for Cuba.”
But actions speak louder than words. So take Rep.Charles Rangel who during a thundering ovation in the mass-murderers honor in Harlem’s Abyssianaian Baptist Chruch in 1995 and between deafening chants of, FIDEL!---FI-DEL!--VIVA-FI-DEL!", and with Congressperson Maxine Waters looking on in rapture, waddled up to the podium beside the terrorist who had almost incinerated them all and-- oomph!--engulfed him in a mighty bear hug.
The mass-torturer who tortured the longest suffering black political prisoners in modern history finally caught his breath, smiled and returned the Black senator's passionate abrazo.
Take Time Magazine in January of 1996 when they hailed Fidel Castro as "The Toast of Manhattan!" The title referred to Castro's reception by Manhattan's beautiful people on the terrorist/torturer’s visit to New York in 1996.
"The Hottest Ticket in Manhattan!" also read a Newsweek story that week, referring to the social swirl that engulfed Castro in New York by the media luminaries who barely escaped nuclear incineration by his hand. These included Peter Jennings, Tina Brown, Bernard Shaw, Mike Wallace, Barbara Walters, among many, many others. Fox News David Asman, then with the Wall Street Journal and obviously smitten, approached the man who came within a whisker of incinerating him and smilingly asked for Castro’s autograph.
In fact, all in attendance clamored for autographs and photo ops of the Stalinist who craved to nuke and entomb them. Diane Sawyer was so overcome in the mass-murderers presence that she rushed up, broke into that toothy smile of hers, wrapped her arms around Castro and smooched him warmly on the cheek.
"You people are the cream of the crop!" beamed the mass-murderer to the smiling throng that surrounded him.
"Hear, hear!" chirped the delighted guests while tinkling their wine glasses in appreciation and glee.
In fact in an interview with Men’s Journal back in 2008 Ozzie Guillen had spoken fondly of Fidel Castro: "Everywhere he (Fidel Castro) goes, they roll out the red carpet. I don’t admire his philosophy; I admire him."
But Guillen was then in Chicago, managing the White Sox. Same Ozzie Guillen, same Fidel Castro, similar comment—but much different ticket-buyers.
Humberto Fontova holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from Tulane University and is the author of four books including his latest, The Longest Romance; The Mainstream Media and Fidel Castro. For more information and for video clips of his Television and college speaking appearances please visit www.hfontova.com.