Brilliance from The London Times
"I have no clue how to weigh up the supposed evils of Batista versus the supposed evils of Castro; and I hear, but can't evaluate, the anti-Castro stuff on the web. The Huffington Post has its own special Cuba page, which is worth a look.
I was won over by the statistics for the improvements in health care post up iin Havana's Museum of the Revolution."
"Mary Beard is a wickedly subversive (emphasis by intransigent poster) commentator on both the modern and the ancient world. She is a professor in classics at Cambridge and classics editor of the TLS." says her London Times Bio
Right! Gurgling over Cuba's fabulous health care is so "wickedly subversive" for a College professor!
Note that for Cuba data the good professor recommends the Huffington Post. So why am I not surprised such reading would leave the good professor "ambivalent" between Batista (when Cuba had more doctors and dentists per-capita than Britain, a higher standard of living than Ireland and net immigration) and Castro (when...well....) and that such a source would also render the good professor completely credulous regarding the health care marvels advertised in Havana's Museo de la Revolucion?
Folks keep in mind the London Times is regarded as one of the world's most prestigious newspapers. And this is hardly their first "ambivalence" regarding Fidel Castro's achievements.
Their earlier ambivalence was treated intransigently here:
"During the 1980s," continues the London Times editorial, "one could still argue that Castro's dictatorship was preferable to its US-backed counterparts in Chile, Argentina, Nicaragua or El Salvador, which went one step farther by murdering thousands of their citizens."
Here one blinks, looks again – and gapes. Forget for a second that none of those regimes abolished private property, free travel, free speech. None abolished free enterprise and mandated food rations for its subjects. None set up government snitch groups on every city block. Forget that far from being "US-backed counterparts," Pinochet's Chile and Somoza's Nicaragua had economic sanctions slapped on them by Jimmy Carter. Forget the peripheral ignorance; let's look at the central stupidity.
You long to believe otherwise, you grope for an extenuation, you hope you misread – but it's inescapable: The editorial staff of the world's most prestigious newspaper is unaware that Castro's regime killed people.
Update - Monday August 30, 2010 by Val Prieto, founder and editor, Babalú Blog:
Welcome London Times readers. My response to Ms. Beard's comments about this web site on her latest piece about her short sojourn in Cuba can be found right here.