The relationship between Fidel Castro and the United States has been rather complicated over the years. Although the former Cuban president started out on good terms with the U.S. government when he first gained control of his country in 1959, Castro’s ties with American leaders continued to come undone throughout his tenure, leading to the U.S. embargo on the country, the infamous Bay of Pigs invasion and boatloads of Cuban refugees flocking to the states in fear.
However, the tension between the Castro family and the U.S. was starting to dissipate in recent year as the notorious socialist leader, who died on Friday, changed his tone toward the U.S. President Barak Obama’s decision to ease restrictions on the embargo against Cuba, lifting bans against U.S. travel, commerce and banking in 2014, also helped improve the dynamic between Cuba and the U.S., which might have had a positive influence on Castro’s views on Americans.
Check out some of the things Castro has said regarding the U.S. over the years below:
1. “Someday, the capitalist system will disappear in the United States, because no social class system has been eternal. One day, class societies will disappear.”
2. “North Americans don’t understand... that our country is not just Cuba; our country is also humanity.”
3. “With what morality can the [US] leaders talk of human rights in a country where there are millionaires and beggars, where blacks face discrimination, women are prostituted, and great masses of Chicanos, Puerto Ricans and Latin Americans are deprecated, exploited and humiliated?”
4. “Russia and China know the world’s problems much better than the U.S. because they were obliged to endure the terrible wars imposed on them by fascism’s blind egoism. I have no doubt that they, given their historical traditions and revolutionary experience, will make the greatest effort to avoid war and contribute to the peaceful development of Venezuela, Latin America, Asia and Africa.”
5. “My idea, as the whole world knows, is that the capitalist system now doesn't work either for the United States or the world, driving it from crisis to crisis, which are each time more serious.”
6. “We have the lowest student-teacher ratio and spend five times as much on schools than war - the opposite of what the United States does."
7. "Cuba is not opposed to finding a solution to its historical differences with the United States, but no one should expect Cuba to change its position or yield in its principles. Cuba is and will continue to be socialist. Cuba is and will continue to be a friend of the Soviet Union and of all the socialist states."
8. “I don't think it is so difficult to solve the problems between Cuba and the United States; it all depends on whether there is a dialogue, a discussion, or if the prejudices and hatred of people like the extremists and terrorists from the Cuban community, who try to impose their policies, prevail.”
9. “How can we help President Obama?”