Fidel Castro Is Dead rumors are about as common as rain clouds over a South Florida sky. It's happened so many times, people hear news of his demise and their reaction is mainly, meh.
And, with Cuba's state-run news being so paranoid about the rest of the world having any clue that their leader may be near death, reports refuting Castro's demise are constantly flying from the island nation.
Pffft. Whaaa?? Fidel's fine. Really! Sure, he looks emaciated and boney, has waxy pale skin and is slowly morphing into the Crypt Keeper, but that's just because he's so filled with vigor! No corpses to see here. Move along... move along...
Well now, according to the Miami Herald and, apparently, a doctor with first-hand knowledge, not only has Castro suffered a stroke, he's in a near vegetative state.
The doctor, a Venezuelan physician named Jose Marquina, lives in Naples and claims that his sources say Fidel is "very close to a neurovegetative state."
Castro is in his home in El Laguito, Havana, receiving constant and specialized medical care, Marquina said. The idea of the Cuban authorities and Castro's family is to maintain him alive and far from public view, the doctor said.
'He could last weeks like that, but what I can say is that we'll never again see him in public,' said Marquina in a telephone interview from Naples.
Other possible clues that Fidel has either kicked the bucket or is near doing so: Has hasn't been seen in public since March when Pope Benedict XVI visited Cuba. He's also stopped writing his weekly "Reflections" opinion columns, and he didn't come out and offer Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez any public congratulations on his recent re-election, which is weird because those two are serious Commie bros. Also, Fidel hasn't hosted George Costanza in a while. So, there's that.
Dr. Marquina says Chavez flew to Cuba this week to check on the severity of Castro's health.
So, is Fidel Castro dead? Not dead? Mostly dead?
We'll just have to wait and see. Again.