I am a great admirer of former Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau. His critics sometimes sneered that he was a communist, but I never took that charge seriously. Socialist leanings, to be sure, but communist was an absurd exaggeration.
And yet … Alexandre Trudeau‘s Toronto Star column is sufficiently nauseating to make one wonder. Trudeau is writing in response to the serious illness of Fidel Castro, who was forced to turn power over to his brother temporarily. He gushes Castro’s praises like an adolescent schoolgirl rhapsodizing about her crush:
- He [Castro] is an expert on genetics, on automobile combustion engines, on stock markets. On everything.
Combined with a Herculean physique and extraordinary personal courage, this monumental intellect makes Fidel the giant that he is.
He is something of a superman. …
Fidel may seem an anachronism: a visionary statesman in a world where his kind have long since been replaced by mere managers, a 20th-century icon still present in the 21st century. …
Cubans remain very proud of Castro, even those who don’t share his vision. They know that, among the world’s many peoples, they have the most audacious and brilliant of leaders. They respect his intellectual machismo and rigour. …
Cubans will always feel privileged that they, and they alone, had Fidel.
But perhaps we shouldn’t attribute Alexandre’s delusions to Papa Trudeau’s influence. I’m beginning to think the boys inherited their brains from their mother.1
Colby Cosh rebuts Trudeau and offers a decidedly less flattering assessment of Castro here .
Hat tip for both of the above links, Paul Wells.
1Alexandre’s brother Justin has also turned out something of a disappointment. He once said, “I don’t read newspapers. I don’t watch the news. I figure, if something happens, someone will tell me.” (source)