Santa Barbara- S County

Carpinteria Journalist reflects on Fidel Castro's death

Journalist reflects on Castro's death

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Award winning journalist and Carpinteria resident Ann Louise Bardach is in high demand after the death of Fidel Castro.

Media outlets from around the globe want Bardach's perspective on the Communist leader's legacy.

Bardach interviewed Castro in Cuba in 1993 and again the following year.

"At one point he said to me, 'We decided to talk to you because we realized you would never leave this island if we did not,'"Bardach said. "So that began the famous Vanity Fair Fidel Castro interview which began after midnight and ended after three."

The interview covered a wide variety of topics, including Castro's fears about the United States, and then President Bill Clinton.

"It's a cliché to say Fidel Castro was charismatic," Bardach said. "He was more courtly. He was very aware that he was talking to a national news magazine."

Bardach said the big question on everyone's minds now is what President-elect Donald Trump will do with
efforts taken by President Barack Obama to normalize relations between the US and Cuba.

"The short answer is nothing. He's going to do some fireworks," Bardach said. "He will try to get himself a hotel and leverage his prestige and put in a Trump hotel. Little does he know that these partnerships with the Cuban government are rarely lucrative unless you are the Cuban government," Bardach said.

In the wake of Castro's death, Bardach believes not much will change inside the country as Castro's brother Raul is firmly in power.

"The Castro's are a dynasty. The Castro family have imprints in every part of the Cuban government," Bardach said. "They are here for at least another generation."

Bardach has written four books on Castro and Cuba. 

To learn more about her work, click here.

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