Fidel Castro’s Useful Idiot in Chile

Camila Vallejo, Communist Party leader of the student protest movement in Chile, recently visited her hero Fidel Castro in Cuba, inspiring Patricio Fernandez to write (translated by Alberto de la Cruz):

The thing is that what is going on in Cuba is not a joke, Camila, at least for those of us who value freedom. That is why your statements after visiting the island are a grave error. And I say error in your defense. For someone of your generation, without accumulated debts or obligations, you should not be parroting the slogans of your ancestors. The Cuban reality resides in the opposite and wasted myth that some continue to defend, be it out of spurious interests, obstinacy, or simple ignorance.

Prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall, Soviet sympathizers in Western countries inspired hundreds of thousands of followers, too (millions?). Wikipedia defines useful idiot:

In political jargon, useful idiot is a pejorative term used to describe people perceived as propagandists for a cause whose goals they do not understand, who are used cynically by the leaders of the cause.

The term was originally used to describe Soviet sympathizers in Western countries. The implication was that although the people in question naïvely thought of themselves as an ally of the Soviet Union, they were actually held in contempt and were being cynically used. The use of the term in political discourse has since been extended to other propagandists, especially those who are seen to unwittingly support a malignant cause which they naively believe to be a force for good.

Related post:
Does the Chile Economic Model Remain Intact?

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