Fidel Faithful Likely to Keep Power

Cubans unsure if leader's resignation will change anything
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2008 7:19 AM CST
Passing motorists celebrate after it was reported, Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2008 in Miami's Little Havana, that Fidel Castro had resigned as president of Cuba. (AP Photo/J. Pat Carter)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Life went on as normal in Havana after Fidel Castro announced his resignation yesterday, and Cuba experts aren't sure how much real impact his decision will have, the New York Times reports. Cuba's National Assembly is due to choose a new Council of State on Sunday and power is expected to remain in the hands of Castro's inner circle.

Cubans had mixed reactions to Castro's decision, but few were surprised. "Everyone knew he was going to resign," said one woman. "Fidel is an athlete of politics. He knows what he does.” Fidel's brother Raul is expected to be selected as the new president. Analysts say he is more pragmatic than Fidel, although the Bush administration has said it will not negotiate with either Castro brother.