Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Tuesday November 22, 2016
O Canada: Trudeau’s Castro tribute raises eyebrows
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s tribute complimenting Fidel Castro as “remarkable” and a “larger than life leader who served his people” drew criticism and derision.
Commentators viewed Trudeau’s statement as gushing and tone-deaf — one that ignored the Cuban leader’s human rights abuses and record of political oppression. It inspired parody tributes with the hashtag #TrudeauEulogies.
In his statement, Trudeau expressed “deep sorrow” after learning of “the death of Cuba’s longest serving president.”
“Fidel Castro was a larger than life leader who served his people for almost half a century. A legendary revolutionary and orator, Mr. Castro made significant improvements to the education and healthcare of his island nation.”
Fidel Castro greets Justin Trudeau at the former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau’s state funeral on October 3, 2000.
“While a controversial figure, both Mr. Castro’s supporters and detractors recognized his tremendous dedication and love for the Cuban people who had a deep and lasting affection for ‘el Comandante’.”
Trudeau added that his late father, Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau “was very proud to call him a friend.” Castro had been an honorary pallbearer at his father’s funeral.
The statement concluded: “We join the people of Cuba today in mourning the loss of this remarkable leader.”
The prime minister’s statement had Sen. Marco Rubio asking: Is this real?
“If this is a real statement from the PM of Canada it is shameful & embarrassing,” he tweeted. (Source: CNN)