Mr Castro said homosexuals traditionally had been widely discriminated against in Cuba, just as black people and women had been in Cuba and throughout Latin Amercca. Nevertheless, he admitted he didn't pay enough attention to what was going on against the gay community in Cuba.
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In the famous Ramonet biography of Fidel, reviewed at OpEdNews in detail by John Little and myself, Fidel explained that the word "persecution" did not apply to the detaining of male homosexuals during the 1960's. In the Ramonet book, Fidel explained that their incarcerations were more in the nature of protective detentions and were also used to protect straight males with educational deferments from violence by Cuban males in the armed forces who were serving constantly from 1960 onwards in response to American invasion threats. The measure - most vocally opposed by male homosexuals in the United States at the time and even more in the 1970's - was also the subject of scathing movies and international criticism.
Also, in the Ramonet book-interview-biography, Fidel explained that this machoism has been increasingly overcome in the island nation and remains a high priority.