Kathy Sheridan: Michael D got it wrong on Fidel Castro

Our elected leaders should be less effusive about foreign leaders – living or dead

President Michael D Higgins signed the book of condolence for former Cuban leader Fidel Castro at the Cuban Embassy.

On BBC Radio 4 last Sunday morning, the writer Peter Hitchens applied his fly-swatting skills to the Castro headlines. So Castro made revolutions “sexy”, he quoted; ran a country where no one starved, where excellent healthcare was universal and illiteracy was eliminated?

Tell that, he said, to Hugo Matos, a writer who fought alongside Castro but was imprisoned for 20 years for questioning Castro’s political direction and had his genitals punctured during torture. Tell that to the poet Armando Valladares, who was forced to eat the excrement of other prisoners.

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