Despite widespread speculation that Cuban leader Fidel Castro had died recently, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has assured the global community that Castro is, in fact, alive and doing better. Cuban officials, meanwhile, also say Castro is recovering but haven’t said if and when he would return to office.

AP via

Castro also suggested he can’t be bothered to trim his beard and comb his hair so as to appear in official images — possibly explaining why none have been released of late.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, Castro’s close friend and ally, said Friday in Brazil that the Cuban leader “has a little problem but he can live another 100 years with this little problem.”

Castro had “three operations, and he’s 81, imagine that. They changed almost all the blood with transfusions,” Chavez said. “Fidel is alive because he is Fidel.”

Back in Havana, at a separate gathering hours later, Ricardo Alarcon, president of the Cuban parliament, said he had no new information on Castro’s health, but that “I trust Hugo Chavez a lot … he knows what he’s saying.”

Read more


You know the story. Independent journalism is under threat and overshadowed by heavily funded mainstream media. During this holiday season, you can help level the playing field. Become a member.

Your tax-deductible contribution keeps us digging beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that unearth what's really happening- without compromise. Give today to support our courageous, independent journalists.

As always, we wish you truth, reason and the best of the season!