Global Market Data
Global News Journal
Pakistan: Now or Never?
Front Row Washington
The Great Debate
Personal Finance Video
Life & Culture
A selection of our best photos from the past 24 hours. Full Article
Knox "crucified" in murder case, lawyer says
Europe again steps back from brink in debt crisis
Perry aides told different stories in lawsuit
Kindle Fire may force Android tablet makers to cut prices
Typhoon Nesat hits China after sweeping past Hong Kong
Particles recorded moving faster than light: CERN
UPDATE 1-Particles found to break speed of light
Herman Cain wins Florida Republican straw poll
Rihanna's "inappropriate" outfit halts music video
Tue, Sep 27 2011
Kindle Fire in Action!
Wed, Sep 28 2011
Listeria outbreak kills 13 Americans
Wed, Sep 28 2011
Fidel Castro lashes out at Obama, U.S. policy
Cuba gives green light to buying, selling cars
Wed, Sep 28 2011
Palestinian crisis looms over U.N. meeting
Thu, Sep 22 2011
Obama tries to derail Palestinian U.N. bid
Wed, Sep 21 2011
Obama seeks to ease doubts on global leadership
Wed, Sep 21 2011
Obama offers $3.6 trillion deficit plan, would up taxes
Mon, Sep 19 2011
Analysis & Opinion
Netanyahu on Obama ties: Under the bus? What bus?
The US elections and pandering to Israel
United Nations »
Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro during a meeting with Cuban and foreign intellectuals visiting Havana's international book fair, February 15, 2011.
Credit: Reuters/Roberto Chile/Cubadebate/Handout
By Jeff Franks
Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:53am EDT
HAVANA (Reuters) - Former Cuban President Fidel Castro lashed out at U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday for suggesting bilateral relations could improve if Cuba became more democratic, and he said the communist nation would not bow to U.S. pressure.
He also said Obama was being "stupid" over the case of five Cuban agents imprisoned for spying in the United States, who Cuba believes have been treated unjustly.
In his latest opinion column published in Cuba's state-run media, Castro said his country, which is in the midst of economic reforms, will change in the future, but not because of pressure from Obama and the United States, its longtime ideological enemy.
"Many things will change in Cuba, but they will change by our own effort and in spite of the United States. Maybe before that empire falls," he wrote.
Obama said on Wednesday the United States was ready to improve relations with Cuba if the communist-led island embraced democracy and gave its people more freedom.
"If we see positive movement then we will respond in a positive way," Obama said.
"How nice! How intelligent!," Castro said. "So much kindness has not permitted him still to understand that 50 years of blockade and of crimes against our homeland have not been able to break our people."
The Cuban government refers to the five-decade-old U.S. trade embargo against the island as the "blockade."
Castro, 85, complained about the treatment of the five Cuban agents imprisoned in the United States since 1998 and in particular one, Rene Gonzalez, who is set to be released next week after serving his sentence.
U.S. prosecutors have insisted that he remain in the United States for three more years on probation, which Cuba considers unfair. Havana has said he faces danger from anti-Castro Cubans if he does not return to Cuba.
"Such is how the empire responds to the growing global call for the freedom of (the agents)," Castro wrote.
"If it were not that way, the empire would cease to be the empire and Obama would cease being stupid."
Castro has written three columns, or "reflections" as he calls them, this week after writing only one all summer.
He said he is working on a project that has taken precedence over the columns, but his long silence prompted a spate of rumors that his health was failing.
Health problems and age forced Castro to formally cede the Cuban presidency to his younger brother Raul Castro in 2008 after ruling Cuba for 49 years.
On Monday, he described Obama's recent speech to the United Nations General Assembly as "gibberish."
(Editing by Pascal Fletcher and Jackie Frank)
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Be the first to comment on reuters.com.
Add yours using the box above.
Social Stream (What's this?)
Back to top
New York Legal
Support & Contact
Advertise With Us
Connect with Reuters
Our Flagship financial information platform incorporating Reuters Insider
An ultra-low latency infrastructure for electronic trading and data distribution
A connected approach to governance, risk and compliance
Our next generation legal research platform
Our global tax workstation
About Thomson Reuters
Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. Nasdaq delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here.