Fidel Castro Still NOT Dead, Despite Perez Hilton Claims
Fidel Castro is still not dead, despite a series of Perez Hilton stories nine years ago today. Not only did the ill-informed blogger falsely claim the former Cuban leader’s death once, but he came back with three more articles that day which wrongly asserted Castro had died, even scrawling the word “Dead” across the Communist dictator’s head (see right). It was actually Perez’s embarrassingly bad reporting, which was picked up and spread by legions of legitimate outlets, that ultimately inspired us to launch Gossip Cop.
Back on August 24, 2007, Perez blared in his first misfire, “Sources reveal exclusively to PerezHilton.com that U.S. officials will be holding a press conference shortly to announce the death of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.” That was followed up by an equally untrue post that included, “The announcement of Fidel Castro’s death will be made at approximately 4:00 P.M. Eastern, PerezHilton.com has just been updated exclusively.” After already having been disproven at that point, the defiant and discredited blogger blathered in a third article, “We stand by our story 100%. Fidel Castro is dead,” before adding, “The only way the Cuban government can settle this once and for all, though, is to parade him (alive) around Havana this weekend.”
The third time, however, was not a charm. Following a blistering debunking by the Wall Street Journal, Perez maintained, “We still stand by our reporting 110%. Our (government) sources were/are impeccable on this story. Fidel Castro is dead!” He foolishly went on in a fourth erroneous post, “We would LOVE for the Cuban government to prove us wrong, but they won’t. The only way to without a doubt verify that Fidel is still alive is for him to go for a nice stroll around Havana. But it’s not going to happen! NOT going to happen! Dead. Dead. Dead.”
Nearly a decade has passed, and we’re still waiting for that “press conference” by U.S. officials. In the meantime, Castro, who recently turned 90 years, is still alive. It was only Perez who was dead… WRONG.
Sadly, however, Perez’s pattern of publishing falsehoods continues to this today. And because Gossip Cop repeatedly calls out the blogger, he has for years blocked us on Twitter. Still, we often joke in our office that when Castro does eventually die, a clueless Perez will undoubtedly brag that he was the “first to report the death.”