OTTAWA, November 29, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has admitted Fidel Castro was a “dictator” but didn't distance himself from his laudatory statement on the deceased Cuban despot that sparked international outrage and mockery over the weekend.
Trudeau admitted Sunday that Castro, who died November 25 at age 90, was a “dictator” but stood by his Saturday statement that “Cuba’s longest-serving president” was a “larger than life leader” and a “legendary revolutionary and orator.”
“The fact is Fidel Castro had a deep and lasting impact on the Cuban people. He certainly was a polarizing figure and there certainly were concerns around human rights. That's something that I'm open about and that I've highlighted,” Trudeau said Sunday, according to the CBC.
“But on the passing of his death, I expressed a statement that highlighted the deep connection between the people of Canada and the people of Cuba.”
Trudeau’s remarks didn’t surprise Campaign Life Coalition president Jim Hughes, even though he was “embarrassed as a Canadian to have the prime minister come out with his effusive, appalling comments praising this dictator.”
For one thing, Trudeau has a known penchant for dictatorships, Hughes told LifeSiteNews, noting that long before his October 2015 election, the Liberal prime minister “had great praise for China and its communist dictatorship.”
Indeed, as Liberal leader in 2013, Trudeau noted he has “a level of admiration I actually have for China, because their basic dictatorship is allowing them to actually turn their economy around on a dime and say we need to go green, we need to start, you know, investing in solar.”
Trudeau’s own autocratic tendencies were evident in May 2014 when he banned anyone with pro-life convictions from running in the Liberal Party.
The prime minister’s controversial statement on Castro also alluded to his family’s connection with the dictator, who lead the overthrow of the Batista regime in 1959.
His father, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, visited Cuba as prime minister in 1976, during which time he hugged the Marxist dictator and gave a cry of “Vive Castro!” at a public event, which was broadcast around the world.
Margaret Trudeau told the National Post in 2013 that she found Castro to be “a very warm and charming man” who “cuddled” her four-month-old son Michel, and who later invited the youngest Trudeau to attend “pioneer camp” in Cuba as a 7-year-old.
Castro, who suppressed opposition to his regime by executing and jailing dissenters and strictly controlling the media, cried when he heard of Michel Trudeau’s 1998 death in an avalanche, she recalled.
The Cuban dictator attended Pierre Elliott Trudeau’s funeral in 2000, at which the eldest Trudeau son gave the eulogy that is said to have launched his political career.
“I know my father was very proud to call him a friend and I had the opportunity to meet Fidel when my father passed away,” Trudeau noted in his Saturday statement.
Trudeau appears to follow in his father’s footsteps in his admiration for authoritarian and brutal regimes.
Pierre Trudeau “seemed to have the mind of a dictator, not a democrat,” wrote Link Byfield in a 2000 Globe and Mail.
“He was fascinated by the cold-blooded determination of the Chinese Communists. He was once overheard by reporters remarking to Fidel Castro how much quicker and easier it would be to run things the Cuban way.”
Indeed, Trudeau’s statement on Castro is more in the vein of Russian leader Vladimir Putin, who praised Castro’s “free and independent Cuba” as an “inspirational example” around the world, as reported in The Independent.
“He embodied the high ideals of a politician, citizen and patriot, truly convinced of the cause to which he devoted his entire life,” Putin said.
Likewise, Chinese President Xi Jinping stated, “Comrade Castro will live forever.”
In contrast, US president-elect Donald Trump noted in a statement that “the world marks the passing of a brutal dictator who oppressed his own people for nearly six decades. Fidel Castro's legacy is one of firing squads, theft, unimaginable suffering, poverty and the denial of fundamental human rights.”
Trudeau’s statement evoked anger, incredulity as well as satirical tweets, in which the names of brutal leaders as Pol Pot, Nero, and Mussolini were substituted for Castro’s in the hashtag #trudeaueulogies.
But CLC’s Hughes says Trudeau won’t apologize because he wrote “what he believes, just like he believes abortion is a charter right.”
Trudeau is an abortion extremist who vowed to increase abortion access within Canada and worldwide, Hughes pointed out.
“What in heaven’s name have the people of Canada done to the rest of us by electing somebody like this?” he said, adding Christians who reflexively voted Liberal in the October 2015 election that brought Trudeau a majority government essentially “have the blood of the babies on their hands.”
For details on the victims of the Cuban regime, visit Cuba Archive Truth and Memory Project.