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PARIS, THE NEW NORMAL? — Diana Johnstone files an in-depth report from Paris on the political reaction to the Charlie Hebdo shootings; The Treachery of the Black Political Class: Margaret Kimberley charts the rise and fall of the Congressional Black Caucus; The New Great Game: Pepe Escobar assays the game-changing new alliance between Russia and Turkey; Will the Frackers Go Bust? Joshua Frank reports on how the collapse of global oil prices might spell the end of the fracking frenzy in the Bakken Shale; The Future of the Giraffe: Ecologist Monica Bond reports from Tanzania on the frantic efforts to save one of the world’s most iconic species. Plus: Jeffrey St. Clair on Satire in the Service of Power; Chris Floyd on the Age of Terrorism and Absurdity; Mike Whitney on the Drop Dead Fed; John Wight on the rampant racism of Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper;” John Walsh on Hillary Clinton and Lee Ballinger on the Gift of Anger.
There are Many Questions to be Answered About Obama

Meeting Cristina

by FIDEL CASTRO

We talked for 40 minutes. It was an intense and interesting dialogue; just as I expected. Cristina Fernandez is a person of deep convictions. There was no debate.

When she spoke at the Auditorium of the University of Havana, she was quick to answer the students’ questions showing her talent and her capacity.

The meeting at the Latin American Medical School [ELAM] was moving. The songs played by the peasant students of Guarani descent, with the typical instruments and tunes of that ethnic group, added a special note. She was presented with a doctor’s white coat, which she immediately put on the orange jacket and slacks she was wearing.

She left the ELAM to come meet with me.

As we discussed the United States, I indicated the historical significance it has for Cuba that by noon yesterday we could count 10 Presidents who have led that country through 50 years in which the immense power of that country could not destroy the Cuban Revolution.

I said that I personally do not doubt the honesty of Obama, –the 11th President since January 1st, 1959— as he expresses his ideas, but that his noble intentions notwithstanding there are still many questions to be answered. By way of an example I wondered: How could a wasteful and consumerist system par excellence preserve the environment?

We also discussed many other issues related to international and national politics concerning Cuba and Argentina.

Argentina’s capacity to produce food and industrial products with advanced technology are decisive elements for that country’s development. She mentioned the informatics engineering capacity of countries like India to trade in the world market, which she finds particularly interesting, as it is especially strong in software production.

Cristina is a devoted President who likes to work on a full time basis. However, when she travels to other countries, she protects her right to have a number of hours to adapt and to exercise; and this everyone respects.

FIDEL CASTRO writes a weekly column for Granma.