Here are the 7 most insane facts about Cuba’s deceased leader, Fidel Castro:
7. ASSASSINATION ATTEMPTS
Castro survived 634 attempts on his life. The assassination plots were mainly mainly orchestrated by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. They involved poison pills, a toxic cigar, exploding mollusks, a chemically tainted diving suit and many many more. The most funny one (which was not actually an assassination attempt) included a powder to make his beard fall out so as to undermine his popularity.
6. LONGEST SPEECH IN HISTORY
Castro’s holds the Guinness Book of Records title for the longest speech ever delivered at the United Nations: 4 hours and 29 minutes, on Sept. 29, 1960. His longest speech on record in Cuba was 7 hours and 10 minutes in 1986 at the III Communist Party Congress in Havana.
5. GIFT TO EASTERN GERMANY
In 1972 we gave as a gift to his then communist allies in East Germany an uninhabited Caribbean island. The island was named Ernst Thälmann Island after the German politician, leader of the German Communist Party.
4. LETTER TO US PRESIDENT F. ROOSEVELT
In 1940, when Castro was a 12-year-old boy, he wrote a letter to President F. Roosevelt requesting a $10 bill to be sent to him because he had never seen one before.
3. CASTRO vs MONOPOLY
When Fidel Castro seized power in Cuba, he immediately ordered all game sets of Monopoly to be destroyed as it was a reminder of Capitalism.
2. THE CIGAR STORY
Castro used to chomp on Cuban cigars but gave them up in 1985. Years later he summed up the harm of smoking tobacco by saying: “The best thing you can do with this box of cigars is give them to your enemy.”
1. THIRD-LONGEST SERVING LEADER
Fidel Castro was the world’s third longest-serving head of state, after the Queen Elizabeth II and the King of Thailand. Up until 2006 he was the longest-serving government leader but his illness forced him to hand over the power to his brother, Raúl Castro.