The Castro family playground

The folks at Cuban Transition Project at the University of Miami have a handy chart on the shocking extent of Castro family involvement in the Cuban regime. Raúl is just the tip of the iceberg, my friends:

During the past few years family members of both Fidel and Raúl Castro have come to occupy important positions in Cuba's government. This Castro clan represents in addition to the military, the security apparatus and the Communist Party, a significant force in Cuba's political and economic structures.

Here's the list:


Fidel Castro Diaz-Balart

Relationship: Fidel Castro's son

Position: Advisor, Ministry of Basic Industry


Col. Alejandro Raúl Castro Espin

Position: Raúl Castro's son

Position: Chief, Intelligence Information Services, Ministry of the Interior; Coordinator, Intelligence Exchange with China

Jorge Rey/Getty Images

Ramón Castro Ruz

Position: Fidel and Raúl's oldest brother

Position: Advisor, Ministry of Sugar


Dr. Antonio Castro Soto

Position: Fidel Castro's son

Position: Investment Chief, Frank Pais Hospital. Doctor for Cuba's baseball team


Major Raúl Alejandro Rodríguez Castro

Position: Raúl Castro's grandson

Position: Raúl Castro's military guard in charge of his personal security


Deborah Castro Espin

Position: Raúl Castro's daughter

Position: Advisor, Ministry of Education


Mariela Castro Espin

Position: Raúl Castro's daughter

Position: Head, Center for Sexual Education


Marcos Portal León

Position: Married to Raúl Castro's niece

Position: In charge of nickel industry, member of the Central Committee of Cuba's Communist Party


No pictures available:

Col. Luís Alberto Rodríguez López-Calleja, Raúl Castro's son-in-law

Chief Executive Officer of Grupo GAESA (Grupo de Administración de Empresas, S.A.) which supervises military enterprises

Alfonsito Fraga, Related to Raúl Castro

Ministry of Foreign Relations


Is this the end for Musharraf?

Arif Ali/AFP/Getty Images

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf's decision to fire 60 judges last November helped set in motion the political crisis that led to his party's electoral defeat. But since its February victory, Pakistan's ruling coalition has failed to live up to its campaign promise to reinstate the judges -- to the relief of Musharraf, whose reelection might be declared illegal if the old Supreme Court were to return.

Today, a breakthrough was finally made as coalition leaders Nawaz Sharif, of the Pakistani Muslim League-N, and Pakistan People's Party leader (and Benazir Bhutto's widower) Asif Zardari, agreed in Dubai that legislation to reinstate the judges will be brought to Parliament on May 12. The announcement came two days after the coalition's self-imposed deadline for restoring the judges.

Officially, the deadlock was caused by disagreement over whether the reinstatement should be accompanied by constitutional changes, with Zardari was pushing for new rules to prevent the judges from being sacked again in the future. (Unofficially, Zardari didn't want to bring back Musharraf's arch-enemy, former Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammed Chaudhry, for fear that the latter would revive corruption charges that the Musharraf-appointed court had dismissed.)

The agreement appears to be a victory for Sharif, who hopes the speedy reinstatement of the judges will lay the groundwork for Musharraf's ouster. Zardari has a different view -- he says he wants to gradually erode Musharraf's power through legislation, and worries that an injunction against the president will be meaningless if the military doesn't play along. Pakistan may have to wait until after May 12 to see who's right.