Friday, August 04, 2006

Castro's Daughter Gets Cuba Beat On CNN

On the one hand, Alina Hernandez, Fidel's estranged daughter, would certainly have some interesting insights into Castro's country, life and times. On the other, it seems impossible that she could be a dispassionate observer, which would be true whether she was estranged or not from her father.

My attitude toward the dictator aside, it makes me a little uncomfortable to see his daughter in this role, especially if "the story" on which her broader observations about Cuba are hung is of a lingering illness leading to death. I mean, there's an "ick" factor there, whether she's unmoved or happens in the end to become distressed. In addition, I question how comfortable other journalists etc. will feel challenging her reporting or impressions, should that become necessary.

Does being estranged from a family member give you more or less standing to comment with authority? Is the answer different if the family member is a famous historical figure?

I sure wish I'd heard the back-and-forth discussion at CNN that led to this hiring decision.