The Guardian puts suicide hotlines up for its readers bereaved over the death of Castro junior

Buying wholesale into the Cuban state media claim that Fidel Castro's eldest son committed suicide based on clinical depression, The Guardian put up suicide hotlines in its news write-up. They knew how much its readers identify with the Castros, and considered this a death in the family. The British lefty paper actually posted this notice at the bottom of its story about the demise of 68-year-old Fidelito Castro:

• In the UK the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123. In the US, the National SuicidePrevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255. In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is on 13 11 14. Other international suicide helplines can be found at

Is The Guardian trying to tell us that its readers might be so bereaved about the loss of another Castro that some might take their own lives? Is it saying this story is really all about the pitfalls of untreated depression leading to suicide, despite the vaunted Castrocare system, which failed to prevent it, as if that is what really happened in Havana? It's baffling that they think suicide hotlines or any self-help advice widely available only in the West (and certainly not Cuba) belongs in what will likely end up as a story about a Jacobean power struggle in the Cuban communist ruling class.

Castro junior was the son of a billionaire dictator, living a playboy's life, partying it up in plutocrat luxury...while his nation starved.

But of course, those are the people they identify with, Cuba's rulers, a suicide in the family of Castro is a suicide in the entire Guardian family.

Not to be outdone, the BBC managed to rival The Guardian for the same sort of personifying identification with the Castroite princeling who partied with Paris Hilton and Obama-era celebrities:

Fidelito, according to the vaunted British broadcaster, committed suicide all right -- over not being able to get enough green energy to Cuba.

His ideas for developing renewable energy on the island were not incorporated into state policy, an academic colleague, Jonathan Benjamin-Alvarado, told Reuters.

"I imagine that was disappointing for him," Mr Benjamin-Alvarado said.

Instead of this being a self-help issue as the Guardian concludes, it's a social justice issue, a quest to stop global warming, a green issue over saving the planet, according to the boobs at the Beeb.

The real problem here with this sort of coverage and speculation is that the news claim comes from Cuba's communist state-owned press. It's an organ not famous for its honesty. This story isn't about suicide, and it isn't about green energy, it's about who rules Cuba. Fidelito Castro Diaz-Balart, who supposedly took his own life, was part of the upper 0.0001% crust of Cuban society, and was last seen partying it up with caviar and canapes among the other Cuban elite as Hurricane Irma ravaged Havana. He and the others were contenders for who would rule Cuba in the wake of his uncle's death.

Babalu traced his whereabouts during the storm in this translated article here:

While the settlers of Gibara suffered the desperate anguish of the terror of the floods and the exasperating cut of light, within the charming building of Baroque architecture located in the old part of Havana, “the Crowning princes” of the dynasty Castro, Alejandro, Nilsa and Mariela Castro Spin (Raúl’s children); together with Antonio, Alexis, Alex and Ángel Castro Soto del Valle, as well as Fidel Castro Díaz-Balart (Hijos de Fidel), enjoyed the freshness of very well prepared mojitos and the delightful delight of a canapé of caviar, squid and salmon with raspberry marmalade that on a thin layer of crustless bread enlivened the debut ceremony and farewell to the presentation of a couple of books titled “Fidel Castro and the United States” and “Raúl Castro and our America.”

Against this backdrop, it needs to be understood that a major succession battle is going on in Cuba, with dictator Raul Castro, Fidelito's uncle, rescinding his vow to resign in February, supposedly over Hurricane Irma, as if the canape partiers of Havana actually cared about whether Cubans have their houses rebuilt, their water turned back on, or their electricity restored. He promised to resign, his coevals positioned themselves for the kill in the wake of it to take over, the long knives were out, and casualties were the consequences.

It would be very easy for the Castroite press, which never reports a significant death without a long delay, to cover it up and call it suicide.

As Babalu's Carlos Eire aptly put it:

Think Game of Thrones.  Think Sopranos.  Think Godfather….

As for Fidelito: who can imagine what it was like to have Fidel for a father and Raul for an uncle?

Fidel kidnapped him at a young age, after he divorced his mother.  And that was just at the beginning of a very miserable life.

Miserable it must have been, yes, but he did live like the prince he was, along with all the other princes and princesses of the Castro dynasty.

The BBC notes that no one had ever thought Fidelito had been depressed up until now:

As the personal lives of members of the Castro family are generally kept away from the public eye, almost no-one will have known he suffered mental health issues prior to the announcement of his death.

Which rather supports the idea that this might not have been suicide, but homicide.

But Guardian readers will be looking inward, with the smarter of them wondering to themselves why Castrocare couldn't save him.


If you experience technical problems, please write to