Castro Returns to Airwaves, Alive and Alert
Scoffs at death rumors, cites oil prices, in first video in 3 months
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 22, 2007 6:32 AM CDT
In this photo released by Cuba's National Information Agency (AIN), President Fidel Castro holds up the book "The Age of Turbulence   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – "Here I am," Fidel Castro declared in a video aired yesterday on Cuban television, rebutting persistent rumors that he had died after one of his recent surgeries. Wearing the track suit that's become his uniform since his illness last July, Castro went to great lengths to prove that the video was current, holding up the memoir published last week by Alan Greenspan, and quoting recent oil and currency prices.

Castro spoke slowly and trailed off occasionally, but was alert and cogent, reports the AP. The 81-year-old gave no details about his health, but was voluble on the US's woes in Iraq and the chances of war with Iran. Still, some die-hard skeptics expressed doubts about the interview's authenticity. "We can't trust him," growled one Cuban emigrant in Miami.