Castro meets with Soviet President Leonid Brezhenev, left, and Nikita Khrushchev, right, at the latter’s estate near Moscow.
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The son of a wealthy landowner, Fidel Castro turned his back on a life of privilege to lead a left-wing revolution in Cuba that endured for decades and was shaped by his political cunning, keen sense of destiny and boundless ego.Even before leading the 1959 revolution that mainly propelled Cuba toward communism and onto the Cold War stage, Castro saw greatness in himself.Throughout, Castro carried on lecturing Cubans.Cubans, whether for or against him, refer to him simply as "Fidel".The long arm of Castro's government reached deep into Cubans' lives and internal dissent was stifled with the assiduous harassment and jailing of opponents who Castro described as mercenaries working for the United States.
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