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Fidel Castro: Gloria Estefan says his symbolic death offers renewed hope

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Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images; ADALBERTO ROQUE/AFP/Getty Images

Fidel Castro’s death at the age of 90 prompted mixed reactions throughout the world, and Cuba-born singer Gloria Estefan is taking a more hopeful tone. 

“Although the death of a human being is rarely cause for celebration, it is the symbolic death of the destructive ideologies that he espoused that, I believe, is filling the Cuban exile community with renewed hope and a relief that has been long in coming,” she wrote in a statement posted to Instagram

Estefan was born in Havana and later fled Cuba to the U.S. as a toddler with her family when Castro rose to power. Her father, José Manuel Fajardo, was recruited by the 2506 Brigade, a CIA-funded group of Cuban refugees who were part of the failed Bay of Pigs invasion that would have restored U.S. interest to the island if successful. 

“Although the grip of Castro’s regime will not loosen overnight,” Estefan continued, “the demise of a leader that oversaw the annihilation of those with an opposing view, the indiscriminate jailing of innocents, the separation of families, the censure of his people’s freedom to speak, state sanctioned terrorism and the economic destruction of a once thriving & successful country, can only lead to positive change for the Cuban people and our world.” 

She added, “May freedom continue to ring in the United States, my beautiful adopted country and may the hope for freedom be inspired and renewed in the heart of every Cuban in my homeland and throughout the world.” 

Although the death of a human being is rarely cause for celebration, it is the symbolic death of the destructive ideologies that he espoused that, I believe, is filling the Cuban exile community with renewed hope and a relief that has been long in coming. And although the grip of Castro's regime will not loosen overnight, the demise of a leader that oversaw the annihilation of those with an opposing view, the indiscriminate jailing of innocents, the separation of families, the censure of his people's freedom to speak, state sanctioned terrorism and the economic destruction of a once thriving & successful country, can only lead to positive change for the Cuban people and our world. May freedom continue to ring in the United States, my beautiful adopted country, and may the hope for freedom be inspired and renewed in the heart of every Cuban in my homeland and throughout the world. 🇨🇺🇺🇸 Aunque la muerte de un ser humano es raramente causa para celebrar, es la muerte simbólica de las ideologías destructivas que el patrocinó que, en mi opinión, están llenando al exilio Cubano de esperanza renovada y un alivio que ha tardado mucho en llegar. Y aunque el agarre del régimen Castrista no se aflojara de un día para otro, el deceso de un líder que supervisó el aniquilamiento de aquellos con puntos de vistas opuestos al suyo, el encarcelamiento de inocentes, la separación de familias, la censura de la libertad de expresión, el esparcimiento de terrorismo sancionado por su gobierno y la destrucción económica de un país exitoso que prosperaba, solo puede llevar a cambios positivos para el pueblo Cubano y el mundo. Que la libertad siga viva en los Estados Unidos, mi bello país adoptivo, y que la esperanza para la libertad crezca y se renueve en los corazones de cada Cubano en mi tierra natal y a través del mundo.🇨🇺🇺🇸

A post shared by Gloria Estefan (@gloriaestefan) on

 

President Barack Obama extended “a hand of friendship to the Cuban people” in a statement following Castro’s death on Friday, while President-elect Donald Trump had a brief declarative tweet before his lengthier response referred to Castro as “a brutal dictator.” 

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