Papal bull in the Plaza de la Revolución

The Catholic Church supported brutal dictatorships in the past, so what right had the Pope to take a swipe at the people of Cuba's benign brand of communism, asks Tom McGurk.

31st March, 2012
Papal bull in the Plaza de la Revolución
'What was once the offshore drug dealer and brothel of the United States has become, instead, an experiment that raises profound questions about justice and society in the developing world.'

It made for a memorable photographic moment, two great icons of the age and now in their final years, staring at the lens - Pope Benedict XVI and former Cuban leader, Fidel Castro. Benedict and Fidel were sitting somewhat self-consciously side by side for the photographer in Havana after the Pontiff had earlier celebrated Mass in Revolution Square, Plaza de la Revolución.

The picture captures a moment resplendent with irony. Fidel fraternising with...

Subscribe from just €1 for the first month!

Exclusive offers:

All Digital Access + eReader



Unlimited Access for 1 Month, €19.99 Monthly thereafter

Get basic

*New subscribers only

You can cancel any time.



€149 For the 1st Year

Unlimited Access for 1 Year

You can cancel any time.




90 Day Pass

You can cancel any time.

2 Yearly



Unlimited Access for 2 Years

You can cancel any time.

Team Pass

Get a Business Account for you and your team

Share this post

Related Stories

The year in review

Legacy Richie Oakley 1 year ago

Newsround: What Thursday’s papers say

Legacy Leanna Byrne 5 years ago

More cycle routes, expansion of Luas to Bray and new bus network proposed

Legacy Digital Desk 5 years ago