Fidel Castro’s eldest son, Fidel Ángel Castro Díaz-Balart, committed suicide at the age of 68 on February 1st, 2018.
The man, born to Fidel Castro, Cuban leader and communist revolutionary and his first wife Mirta Diaz-Balart, was getting outpatient care for suffering from depression.
As per the state media of Cuba, the body of Fidel Castro’s eldest son was found on Thursday in Havana.
Granma, Cuba’s official newspaper stated that “Fidel Castro Díaz-Balart, who had been treated by a group of doctors for several months due to deep depression, took his life this morning.”
The suicide came not long after Fidel Castro himself had taken his leave from this world and definitely makes one wonder who was this man beyond just being Fidel Castro’s son.
Who Was Fidel Ángel Castro Díaz-Balart?
After her divorce from Fidel Castro, Balart’s mother, taking the son along with her family, moved to Miami in the United States. However, during Balart’s visit to his father in Cuba as a child, he stayed back there for the rest of his life.
During his time in his father’s regime, Balart studied in the Soviet Union as a nuclear physicist and then was in charge of the nuclear program of Cuba from 1980 to 1992. The program after the Soviet Union’s collapse was suspended. Before his untimely passing, Balart was working as the scientific adviser for the Cuban Council of State along with being the vice president of Cuba’s Academy of Sciences.
After that, he was briefly married to Natasha Smirnova, after meeting her in Russia, and had 3 children- Mirta María Castro Smirnova, Fidel Antonio Castro Smirnova, and José Raúl Castro Smirnova.
Balart later separated from Smirnova and married Cuban María Victoria Barreiro.
Balart was also given the nickname and was popularly known as ‘Little Fidel’ or ‘Fidelito’ due to his stark and eerie resemblance to his father Fidel Castro.
His Relationship With His Father
Certain reports have revealed that while Fidelito was earlier in agreement with his father’s ideals and those of the Cuban Revolution, apparently in recent times, he had grown distant from both.
The firing from his position along with being sidelined from key decision-making processes, especially those concerning energy resources, as stated by sources, could have been places where Fidelito felt dwarfed by his father’s presence.
Jonathan Benjamin-Alvarado, a colleague of Mr. Diaz-Balart, told Reuters that “His ideas for developing renewable energy on the island were not incorporated into state policy.”
“I imagine that was disappointing for him,” added Mr. Benjamin-Alvarado.
What Problem Was He Going Through?
While the Castro family problems were kept quiet from the larger public, news did come out that the eldest son of Fidel Castro was suffering from depression.
Not only that, but the situation was at a level that the late nuclear physicist, first was hospitalized for it and then later continued with his treatment from outside the hospital.
And, these are issues that we are aware of as reported by various news sources, it is possible that Mr. Diaz-Balart was suffering much more than we can ever know.
Do First World Problems Matter?
The suicide of Fidel Ángel Castro Díaz-Balart certainly brings to light an important train of thought which would be whether privileged people’s problems or first world problems as many refer to it as, matter.
For all intents and purposes, Mr. Diaz-Balart had nothing to want for, he was from a powerful family with an internationally known father and had everything he wanted, probably.
However, the man still suffered from depression and as we can see, not everything was right in his life. From allegedly being neglected by his father, to having little to no control in his field, Little Fidel did not exactly lead an easy life.
So one has to think before saying that a privileged person cannot have issues or problems.
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