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Cuba's dictatorship is about the same age as those in the Middle East and North Africa, and it's an economic disaster. But when Fidel Castro's old cronies got a new lease on leadership last week, the next generation did not rise up in protest. We find out why. Also, NATO strikes directly at Libya's Gadhafi, and gold and silver as hedges against the dollar.

Banner image: Former Cuban president Fidel Castro (L) listens to his brother Raul, Cuban President and new First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, during the final session of the 6th Cuban Communist Party Congress, on April 19, 2011 at the Convention Palace in Havana. Photo: Adalberto Roque/AFP/Getty Images

Without Fidel

Ann Louise Bardach

Making News NATO Strikes Directly at Gadhafi 7 MIN, 49 SEC

After two strikes on Moammar Gadhafi's headquarters in three days, Libya claims NATO is trying to assassinate its leader. NATO has confirmed the strikes, saying that the target was "a communications headquarters used to coordinate attacks on the civilian population." Harriet Sherwood is in Tripoli for the Guardian in Britain.

Harriet Sherwood, Guardian (@harrietsherwood)


David Wallechinsky

Main Topic Cuba: A Country for Old Men 35 MIN, 33 SEC

Like other dictatorships, the leaders of Cuba face a new generation impatient for less repression and economic freedom. But computers, cell phones, Facebook and Twitter are in short supply in Cuba, as is information about what's happening elsewhere in the world. In 2008, Raul Castro took the Presidency of Cuba from his ailing brother, Fidel. Prior to last week's first Communist Party Central Committee meeting in 14 years, Raul promised economic reforms and what he called csystematic rejuvenation" of Party leadership. But Fidel Castro's chosen successors are as old as he is. What do they mean by economic "modernization?"  Is democracy on their radar screen?  What's President Obama's view of the US embargo?

Ann Louise Bardach, journalist and author (@albardach)
Mauricio Claver-Carone, Cuba Democracy Advocates
Ted Piccone, Brookings Institution (@piccone_ted)
David Wallechinsky, International Society of Olympics Historians (@westwood1sports)

Reporter's Notebook Gold and Silver Prices Near Record Highs 8 MIN, 14 SEC

The big banks for precious metals have been meeting daily to set prices since 1897.  Now, gold has set an all-time record of $1518.20 an ounce, and silver's approaching the so-called "psychological barrier" of $50 an ounce. Both approached record highs today and then dropped off a bit as the dollar increased in value. Peter Coy is Economics Editor for Bloomberg BusinessWeek.

Peter Coy, Bloomberg BusinessWeek

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