Most Albanians view Hoxha’s 40-year rule, when the country was cut off from the world much as North Korea is now and a pervasive secret police clamped down violently on dissent, as a dark period in its history that caused widespread misery and triggered a massive exodus after communism collapsed.
But Nexhmije Hoxha, who was jailed for nine years for embezzlement soon after Albania became the last country to topple communism in 1990, stayed loyal to his memory.
“When the standard of living was compared to the west, it can be considered modest, but there was an egalitarian spirit,” she said in a 2008 interview.
Few would – or do – defend Albania’s lost years on the basis of that headline.
It’s disgusting how many defend Cuba’s on that same basis.