Cuba’s Fidel Castro, who took power in a 1959 revolution and transformed the country into a communist state while ruling for five decades has died, Cuban television announced on Saturday.
As tributes come flooding in from across the globe, here are some of his more memorable quotes about himself, leadership and Cuba:
- Condemn me. It is of no importance.
History will absolve me.
- I began the revolution with 82 men. If I had to do it again, I would do it with 10 or 15 and absolute faith. It does not matter how small you are if you have faith and a plan of action.
- A revolution is not a bed of roses. A revolution is a struggle between the future and the past.
- I reached the conclusion long ago that the one last sacrifice I must make for (Cuban) public health is to stop smoking. I haven’t really missed it that much.
- I’m not thinking of cutting my beard, because I’m accustomed to my beard and my beard means many things to my country. When we fulfill our promise of good government I will cut my beard.
- I never saw a contradiction between the ideas that sustain me and the ideas of that symbol, of that extraordinary figure [Jesus Christ].
- I’m really happy to reach 80. I never expected it, not least having a neighbour, the greatest power in the world, trying to kill me every day.
- No thieves, no traitors, no interventionists! This time the revolution is for real!
- One of the greatest benefits of the revolution is that even our prostitutes are college graduates.