Fidel Castro Goes Live With Warning of Nuclear Holocaust

U.S., Iran headed for war unless world intervenes, Castro says.

ByABC News
August 7, 2010, 8:28 PM

HAVANA, Cuba, Aug. 7, 2010— -- Former Cuban President Fidel Castro warned today of imminent nuclear war and said the world's fate was in President Barack Obama's hands, as he addressed the Cuban National Assembly for the first time since taking ill four years ago.

Castro said the most recent U.N. sanctions on Iran will trigger a nuclear holocaust if the United States inspects the country's ships come September, as called for in the June resolution.

Only world pressure on Obama can avert the conflagration that will bring all major economies to a standstill, he said.

"In this critical situation President Barack Obama is the one who will have to give the order for this so-often announced and proclaimed attack," Castro said, calling on world leaders to weigh in with the U.S. president before it's too late.

Castro, who turns 84 next week, wore a green military shirt, spoke in a clear and strong voice, though aides had to help him walk slowly on and off the stage.

The televised appearance before parliament, the diplomatic corps and journalists marked the first time Cubans and the world had a live look at the bearded, iconic figure since he underwent surgery in July 2006 and then suffered complications.

The speech lasted 11 minutes, not hours, and after an hour of back and forth with deputies he tired and the special session ended.

Since his illness, Castro had met with occasional guests, written numerous essays mainly on international affairs and had only been seen in occasional photographs and video clips until last month.

The leader of Cuba's revolution, who retains his parliament seat and the post of first secretary of the Communist Party, emerged in July from seclusion, pitching his dire news to small gatherings of Cuban economists, diplomats, war veterans, intellectuals and artists, his activities taped and then repeatedly broadcast by state-run media.