- The Washington Times - Friday, September 10, 2010

The American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg recently asked Cuban leader Fidel Castro whether the Cuban economic and political system was worth exporting. Mr. Castro’s answer was, “The Cuban model doesn’t even work for us anymore.”

It is about time a dictator admitted the failure of socialism, as the fact has been self-evident even to the strongest advocates of the system for more 20 years. In his book “The World Was Going Our Way: The KGB and the Battle for the Third World,” Christopher Andrew relates an event from the meeting of intelligence services friendly to the Soviet Union:

“At the final meeting of Soviet-bloc intelligence services (also attended by Cuba, Mongolia and Vietnam) in East Berlin in 1988, the speeches included examples of black humor unthinkable before. One delegation leader asked the question, ‘What is socialism?’ - then gave the politically incorrect answer: ‘The most difficult and tortuous way to progress from capitalism to capitalism.’ “

How tragic that the Democratic leadership and many Republicans cannot come to the same conclusion.

NOLAN NELSON

Eugene, Ore.