Fidel Castro led Cuba, a caribbean island, for over 50 years. He died on 25 November 2016 aged 90. With his beard, his uniform and his cigars, he is known the world over as El Comandante, the commandant.
So why is Fidel Castro, the leader of a poor, small island so famous?
Before becoming head of Cuba, Fidel Castro led a revolution to make his country independent. He sent away the Americans who had settled on the island to exploit the wealth. Castro then set up a political regime, communism, where the state controlled and possessed everything: the fields, factories... The Americans, who opposed communism, did not like being defied by the small island of Cuba, just 90 miles off Florida. So they banned the buying and selling of goods between Cuba and the United States. Helped by his powerful ally, Russia, Fidel Castro stood up to the american giant, and in many countries, he became a symbol of resistance. Yet his choices plunged the people of Cuba into deep poverty. Many opponents were imprisoned or obliged to flee. Fidel Castro handed over power to his brother Raul in 2008, but life in Cuba is still very difficult. In spite of that, thousands of Cubans attended El Comandante’s farewell ceremony, unlike most foreign heads of state.