Publish Date: Jan. 26, 1959
Cover Story: The Vengeful Visionary
How TIME Covered the News: Fidel Castro was called a “visionary” for leading the Cuban Revolution which ousted dictator Fulgencio Batista and ended the corruption of the latter’s cronyist, pro-U.S. regime. But the Communist rule that followed would vex Washington for decades to come.
“Fidel Castro himself is egotistic, impulsive, immature, disorganized. A spellbinding romantic, he can talk spontaneously for as much as five hours without strain. He hates desks—behind which he may have to sit to run Cuba. He sleeps irregularly or forgets to sleep, living on euphoria. He has always been late for everything, whether leading a combat patrol or speaking last week to the Havana Rotary Club, where a blue-ribbon audience waited 4¾ hours for his arrival.”