Fidel Castro - A Conversation With Barbara Walters

Walters reflected on some of the most memorable moments from her meetings with the former Cuban leader.
8:55 | 11/26/16

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Transcript for Fidel Castro - A Conversation With Barbara Walters
No American journalists has come closer to Fidel Castro and our very own Barbara Walters. She interviewed the Cuban dictator twice in her career. Sat down with her to talk about her time to the Castro and what it took to get that first psychotic interview. 1970s. You sit down the first American journalists to sit down with Fidel Castro he had a. A beautiful. You have translated in name one need to I was with him at all time. And he talked and talked and talked. For hours this interview hours. This was that they get to vote gets right that among the most important figures on earth to talk to. How to get. I had gone to Cuba. When I was working for another net play. And met him very briefly I will let the whole bunch of reporters. And said to him then. Would you Dooling interview. Took as many years. To actually get. From man who likes to talk who does that very few interviews when he finally sat down. It was for me memorable and and to a large degree because we crossed the band pics together. Is it true that we haven't pressed Americans to cross the Bay of Pigs in sixteen years after I remember. Credit bank bullish or sense of the we are feeling has today's much bigger than he actually is than lose a big bear and that I think was all continue to farm I shouldn't say always. The last time my son whom he was not he was wearing a business suit you to me that he was almost unrecognizable. Because he loved walking around in his khaki. You from. He wise funny. Hat and the truly loved him. We travel throughout the country throughout this they had master and mock rooms where he had been. And who Miller when he was trying to take over from accused of trying to. That vision into eastern who has a dictated. And can the word charismatic was made him do you would've liked him I would've liked them then you have to stop this thing. Just a minute this is a man who does not believe in freedom of the press you tell me. Does not believe in democracy is we know democracy. Had political truces. But when you're whipped him. He was. Forceful. Charming fourth come. How did you balance that that notion that that certainly charming. But knowing what he was capable of knowing this is a man as you know despise. Certainly by generations of Cuban Americans in this country despise quietly in corners of his own country. When I came home by the way I knew he was despise that I realized. When I got threatening letters from himself and for a very short time had bodies from my family because it was such. And Tom of these Steelers. Such anger tuition you know when you do an interview you have to. Yet in that position and whether it's Fidel Castro. I don't know Yasser Arafat. By don't have food who. And yet not that when you're in a cannot that a judge then yelling get your questions and said and the way to do it for me. Is true. Counter attack may be but but not to challenge does this and this is not a why did you how come we have I didn't do that. When when your country and my country had normal relations place. It means. He's been dipping them. I believe that that depends on the goodwill or parts. He mentioned it in them and I believe that it also depends. O time. I understand that you haven't known in Spanish on your wall at home from Fidel Castro from may twentieth 1977. And one between 9 AM in the morning. And it says from Barbara as a remembrance of the most difficult interview that's headed all the days of my life I was us of the. That's way below if left and because I was I want to ask them questions she did so few interviews. That affected people. I was able to ask him his feelings about democracy language. As I know didn't. Does not see this as we do but I also asked some personal questions which she doesn't like and doesn't usually respond to. I don't know that much about him I asked if he was married I kept pushing it he kept saying why do you wanna know I'm Russian people and another. If people thinks I'm running things you gotta love it but don't ask what is the importance of my being married or not. And who cares whether I married amount. And he finally said. What we translated to be formally. Known. We hear he has something like five children and hearings has triplets is grandchildren. But as a person. We know very I can't understand it in you bet that day with him you went to several locations. Well what we did not say was travel through the mountains through this again western mountains with him. As he drove his own gee if I sat next to him who would. His gun in my lap I have widening it is Alan why Myra and that and hard candies because he would stop along the way to children. And he would give them hard candies. He did not like the personification. He's there are no pictures. Out of Castro as you go along the way you know it's not. They're not. The way it is for example when I went to Beijing and you saw pictures of my on this I'm going back Cheshire Saddam Hussein Saddam Hussein who do not see this he didn't he does not. He did he did not want it to be one man but. Obviously everybody knew what is it is that modesty because it the perception of him is big ego. I think campus pond of a whole business about this is for the country this is not the man but you know. He's just I never sent to him how come there are no pictures but there was none has personality. So you you you do this long interview with Fidel Castro and everywhere he wanted to be paid. Not this could run away finish this. And this thing he said okay you should pay mansion partially fail he said because not produced as he negotiated with the Cuban television. To do this interview. At first they went and a great deal of mining Castro himself. Brought them down to size and to tell you tradition payment we said we're not gonna pay him as a producer. This abomination paying me you know as an interview I'm such an affect goods. I mean you could do this with him you know and finally we said well will pay you as a drive. We didn't five dollars and an onside. At Empresa strange trip because so listeners. And good humor. And afterwards she took us inside majors grilled cheese sandwiches. By the way the next time I saw him which is here in this country when he was visiting. He had grilled lobsters us. So I mean that there was a strange kind of you know good natured and that we have to say though I sounds this was and then there was and may have until. You know this minute. And about that strange usually it's much room as you know my truck cut guys. As you pushed him and we know you pushed. Did you see some of that it engaged some of the that the darker side of the death. You do when you talk to him about freedom of the press you do when you talk to him about democracy and his eyes now. And semi to have democracy has not yours. And who did cannot and self socialism. You cannot take apart our system. He put up additional but you'll if you ask us if but a paper could appear here against socialism I can say honestly know it. It can not be. He sees the toughness of the man. And we might not live to see political prisoners. And he would turn the tables and talk about own. Discrimination. And then you that discussion. You talk to us you begin the second time in 2002. Nearly thirty years later how holly change. While Fisher body wasn't wearing a uniform. And I said to him and all these years I've gotten blonde you've gotten gray hat. Adolescent as important an interview I didn't think it was exciting and in Japan because a lot of happened and we've learned a great deal on my. That we hadn't known so I mean I've been trying to do an interview with him since I'm in mountain. And for a man who likes to talk because Castro would talk from. I mean the original interview that we did ran five hours and they ran all of it became.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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