Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello has invoked the ire of the internet following an Instagram post which appeared to glorify the life and times of former Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. Morello has since expanded on the initial post, responding to the criticism he’s received.
Castro, a revolutionary leader, passed away at the weekend, leaving a clear divide between those who supported his methods and those who didn’t.
Morello, who as guitarist for Audioslave is one of the few musicians to have ever toured Cuba, posted a simple image of the late dictator with the caption, “In Cuba Audioslave visited former country club turned free school for gifted musicians” followed by the hashtags #RIPFidel and #Vivalarevolucion.
The post was met with a volley of disapproval and straight up discontent, which is understandable considering the heated debate surrounding the way in which Castro will be remembered.
@tmorello ignorant. How do you preach freedom of speech and say rip to a tyrant who would jail you for life for just speaking bad about him?
— Andy (@camarlins) November 26, 2016
@tmorello And let's remember all the good things Hitler did, like advancements in science. Sure, he murdered millions, but hey…right?
— Cardkillah (@Cardkillah) November 26, 2016
Since the backlash, Morella has cleared things up somewhat, explaining that while he doesn’t agree with everything Castro did during his time on power, “There is ample reason why he is vilified in the US and yet remains a huge hero throughout the Third World.”
Morello continues to list off some of Castro’s victories which transcend political and revolutionary rhetoric, including “defying Yankee imperialism for 50 years, instituting the best healthcare, child immunisation”, concluding, “It is no surprise that millions will mourn his passing.”
Tom Morello and his various outfits are synonymous with cultural and political revolution, name-checking Che Guevera regularly in interviews. So, it should come as no surprise that the rocker feels this way towards one of the most famous revolutionaries of all time.
Catch Morello’s controversial posts and some online reactions, below.
— Tom Morello (@tmorello) November 26, 2016
"With what morality can the US leaders talk of human rights in a country where there are millionaires and beggars, where blacks face discrimination and great masses of Chicanos, Puerto Ricans and Latin Americans are deprecated, exploited and humiliated?"-Fidel. While I don't agree with all that Fidel Castro did there is ample reason why he is vilified in the US and yet remains a huge hero throughout the Third World. By defying Yankee imperialism for 50 years, instituting the best healthcare, child immunization and literacy systems in the Western Hemisphere (surpassing the US and Canada), exporting doctors to countries in need all over the globe (the Bush administration turned down his offer to send medical teams to New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina), and being an unrepentant advocate of the poor and exploited it is no surprise that millions will mourn his passing. Audioslave was the first US rock band to ever play in Cuba and that experience will be one I will always treasure, especially the trip we took to a former country club of the wealthy that had been turned into a free college for gifted musicians. #vivalarevolucion #RIPFidel
— Detroit Sports Doc (@LARedWing) November 27, 2016