Cuba Fidel's Race Against Time

With communism fading in the East bloc, Castro faces his toughest challenge as he clings to his Leninist vision of a socialist state

"Hope?" asks the 60-year-old Fidelista, who fought with Castro's guerrillas in the mountains a generation ago. He flicks on a cheap cigarette lighter and, in its feeble glow, takes stock of his home in Santiago de Cuba, the officially designated "Hero City" of the revolution: no running water, paint peeling off the walls, a wild pig snuffling around the main corridor. "I need a candle to look for hope here.

"There's no future in Cuba," the former captain goes on, speaking softly so his wife won't hear. "If you'd have said that to me in the first ten years of the...

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