Fidel Castro accused U.S. President George W. Bush on Friday of plotting with Miami exiles to kill him as part of his administration's hardening policies against the communist-run island.
''We know that Mr. Bush has committed himself to the mafia ... to assassinate me,'' the Cuban president said, using the term commonly employed here to describe anti-Castro Cuban Americans.
Castro's comments came at the end of a 5 ½ hour speech that began Thursday night and continued into early Friday at the closing of a conference bringing together activists across the region who oppose the Free Trade Area of the Americas.
The Cuban leader didn't back up his accusations with specific details.
Of course he didn't back up the accusation with specifics. There's about as much chance of Bush ordering Castro's death as there is of me being elected President. Maybe less. (I am, after all, a natural-born citizen.)
This brings me back to an old theme of mine. We've now started down the path of removing tyrants on general principle. Where do we draw the line? Do we only remove those tyrants that we think cause a danger to ourselves? Or do we just do that first before we start going after them all?
We've now gone half-way across the world to overthrow a tyrant and free his people. Meanwhile, there's been one on our doorstep for 40 years and we've never given more than token efforts toward getting rid of him. How, exactly, do we justify our inaction?