Cuba Criticizes Kill Castro Game

"Black Ops" lets players target Communist leader

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    In this photo released on Monday, Aug. 24, 2009, by the Cuban official newspaper Granma, Cuba's leader Fidel Castro gestures during a meeting with Venezuelan students in Havana, Saturday, Aug. 22, 2009. (AP Photo/Alex Castro, Granma)

    Assassinating Fidel Castro was a very real proposition in the 1960s, became a joke to the Communist leader in the late 1990s, and is now a game in 2010.

    And Cuba's not happy about it.

    State-run media denounced video game makers Activision Blizzard Inc.'s "Call of Duty: Black Ops" Wednesday, for an option in the game that lets players target a young Castro for assassination.

    An article posted on Cubadebate, a state-run news website, said the game attempts to legitimize murder in the name of entertainment.

    "This new video game is doubly perverse," the article reads. "On the one hand, it glorifies the illegal assassination attempts the United States government planned against the Cuban leader...and on the other, it stimulates sociopathic attitudes in North American children and adolescents."

    The Castro level of the game takes place in the 1960s, as the player shoots their way through the streets of Havana in a mission to bring down El Jefe before the Bay of Pigs Invasion and Cuban Missile Crisis.

    Like the CIA's alleged real-life efforts to kill Castro, the player fails and actually kills a body double and is sent to a Siberian prison. Cubadebate's article even poked fun at the botched attempts.

    "What the United States couldn't accomplish in more than 50 years, they are now trying to do virtually," the article reads.

    The game, which also pits players against Cold War-era enemies like the Soviet Union and Vietnam, went on sale Tuesday and is being sold only to those 17 and older.

    While Cuba says Castro, now 84, has survived over 600 attempts on his life, the number could be quite less, like in the dozens. Assassination tries by the U.S. have allegedly included attempts to poison everything from his cigars to his pen and even a milkshake.

    "I think I hold the dubious record of having been the target of more assassination attempts than any politician, in any country, in any era," Castro said in a July 1998 speech, drawing laughter from the crowd. "The day I die, nobody will believe it."