Confusion in Cuba Over Leadership and Future

Jorge Dominguez, a Harvard professor of international relations and a well-known Cuba expert and ABC consultant, said Cubans want a better life without shortages and other hardships, but at the same time appreciate the country's free education and health care.

"The first idea -- more prosperity -- would lead them to support the reform of the economy. And the second -- good schools and good clinics -- would lead to reluctance to too much change," he said during an interview last week.

Ordinary Cubans and international experts seem unsure whether Fidel Castro, Raul Castro or both are running their country, though they agree life has gone on more or less as usual over the last nine months.

Alarcon said Castro had never stopped leading the country.

"He is the leader of the country. You can have a very important responsibility in different manners," he told Woodruff.

But Brian Latell, who tracked the Castro brothers for decades when he worked for the CIA, said in an interview in the United States last week that Raul Castro was running the country.

"I doubt Fidel will ever return to the day to day leadership role that he exercised in the past," Latell said.

Latell, Dominguez, Alarcon and many other Cubans agreed on one thing. With Cuba at a crossroads, the United States has very little influence in the country.

"The Bush administration, the United States, has virtually no influence over the succession," Latell said.

"The United States is on another planet. You have nothing to do with the reality of this planet," Alarcon quipped.

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