Castro Interview

D OC donaloc at
Wed Jan 29 05:42:58 MST 2003

[ URL substituted for full text. ]

I tried to find this on the web. My apologies if it is available
somewhere as it is long.

NBC's Andrea Mitchell talks to Fidel Castro about his
44 years as leader of Cuba.

By Andrea Mitchell

HAVANA, Cuba, Jan. 23 - Cuba's absolute authority is
Fidel Castro, chief of the Armed Forces, head of the
ruling Communist Party and president of the island
nation just 90 miles from American shores. At 76,
Castro is the world's longest- serving government
leader. Cubans simply know him as "Fidel" or "El
Comandante" - The Commander. And, he's just as defiant
as when he first seized power in 1959.

AS HIS REVOLUTION turned 44, Castro gave a series of
exclusive interviews to Andrea Mitchell, chief NBC
News foreign affairs correspondent. Over the course of
two days, Castro talked about his revolution, human
rights, the global war on terrorism, Saddam Hussein,
the U.S. embargo and much more. Here are highlights
from those 20 hours of conversation.

MITCHELL: We've spoken at length during our meetings
about the situation in Cuba, the economic and social
changes, the educational system, your health system,
and I want to return to some of those issues tonight.
But first I wanted to start with some issues of great
urgency to the American people: the possibility of war
with Iraq. What do you think the impact of a future
war with Iraq would be on your need for oil and the
obvious fact that oil prices would rise? What would be
the impact of a war with Iraq on Cuba?

CASTRO: The impact is already being felt. The threat
of war has already had a significant impact on many
countries, including Cuba. Specifically, it has
increased oil prices, very high for months now. That
damages the economies of many countries around the
world. It damages the world economy, except of course
those countries earning huge revenues from their oil
exports. Add to this the political situation in
Venezuela. The conflict there has increased (oil)
prices. So, everything impacts the
existing situation. This is the kind of economic
situation that has emerged.

full interview at:

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