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Encyclopedia > Cuban Revolution

THE CUBAN REVOLUTION


The Cuban Revolution refers to the revolution that led to the overthrow of General Fulgencio Batista's regime on January 1, 1959 by the 26th of July Movement and other revolutionary elements within the country. The Cuban Revolution also refers to the ongoing implementation of social and economic programs by the new government since the overthrow of the Batista government, including the implementation of Marxist policies. General Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar (pronounced ; January 16, 1901 – August 6, 1973) was a Cuban military officer, dictator and politician. ... is the 1st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1959 (MCMLIX) was a common year starting on Thursday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The 26th of July Movement (Spanish: Movimiento 26 de Julio; M-26-7) was the revolutionary organization planned and led by Fidel Castro that in 1959 overthrew the Fulgencio Batista government in Cuba. ... Marxism is both the theory and the political practice (that is, the praxis) derived from the work of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. ...


Pre-December 1956

Main article: Moncada Barracks

The starting point of the Cuban Revolution is generally accepted to be July 26, 1953, the date on which a group of about one hundred poorly armed guerrillas attacked the Moncada Barracks.[1] Many of them were killed in the battles after the attack or tortured, as was Abel Santamaria. The survivors, among them Fidel Castro and his brother Raúl Castro Ruz, were captured shortly afterwards. In a highly political trial, Fidel Castro spoke for nearly four hours in his defense, ending with the words; "Condemn me, it does not matter. History will absolve me." Fidel Castro was sentenced 15 years in the presidio modelo prison, located on Isla de Pinos; Raúl was sentenced to 13 years. The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ... is the 207th day of the year (208th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Guerrilla redirects here. ... The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ... Abel Santamaria was an important leader in the Cuban Revolutionary movement. ... Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz (born on August 13, 1926) is the current President of Cuba but on indefinite medical hiatus. ... This article is about the Cuban politician. ... History Will Absolve Me (Spanish:La historia me absolverá) is the concluding sentence and subsequent title of a four hour speech made by Fidel Castro on 16 October 1953. ... The Isle of Youth (Spanish: Isla de la Juventud) is the largest island of Cuba after Cuba proper. ...


In 1955, due to pressure from civil leaders, the general opposition, and the Jesuits who had helped educate Fidel Castro, and perhaps because he had known the Castro brothers in their youth, Batista freed all political prisoners, including the Moncada attackers. The Castro brothers went into exile in Mexico, where they gathered more exiled Cubans to fight in the Cuban revolution for the overthrow of Batista. During that period, Castro also met Ernesto "Che" Guevara, who joined their forces. They were trained by Alberto Bayo, a former military leader of the failed "loyalists" in the Spanish Civil War. Ernesto Guevara de la Serna Lynch (May 14, 1928 – October 9, 1967), commonly known as Che Guevara, el Che, or simply Che, was an Argentine Marxist revolutionary, political figure, author, military theorist, and leader of Cuban and internationalist guerrillas. ... Alberto Bayo y Giroud (1892, Camagüey—1967, Havana) was a Cuban military leader of the defeated left-wing Loyalists in the Spanish Civil War. ... Not to be confused with the Spanish Civil War of 1820-1823. ...


The group trained in Mexico under the leadership of Fidel Castro and returned to Cuba in November 1956, on a small yacht named Granma. They hoped their landing in Eastern Cuba would coincide with planned uprisings in the cities and a general strike, coordinated by the llano wing of the 26th of July Movement. It was their intention to launch an armed offensive and swiftly topple the Batista government. Granma is the yacht that was used to transport the fighters of the Cuban Revolution to Cuba in 1956. ... The 26th of July Movement (Spanish: Movimiento 26 de Julio; M-26-7) was the revolutionary organization planned and led by Fidel Castro that in 1959 overthrew the Fulgencio Batista government in Cuba. ...


December 1956 to Mid-1958

The Granma arrived in Cuba on 2 December 1956. It was delayed in route to Cuba, arriving late and at a location further east than was planned. This dashed any hopes for a coordinated attack with the llano wing of the movement. After arriving and exiting the ship, the band of rebels began to make their way into the Sierra Maestra mountains, a range in Southwestern Cuba. Shortly after their trek began, they were attacked by men from the army. Most of the Granma participants were killed in this attack, but a small number, between ten and two dozen, escaped. The survivors were separated from one another, and alone or in small groups, wandered through the mountains, looking for other survivors. Eventually, this small group of persons, which included Fidel Castro, Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara, Juan José Pàjaro, Camilo Cienfuegos, and Raúl Castro, would find one another with the help of peasant sympathizers and would form the core leadership of the guerrilla army. Celia Sanchez and Haydee Santamaria, sister of Abel Santamaria, were two women revolutionaries that assisted Fidel Castro in the mountains. Granma is the yacht that was used to transport the fighters of the Cuban Revolution to Cuba in 1956. ... Sierra Maestra is a mountain range that runs westward across the south of the old Oriente Province from what is now Guantánamo Province to Niquero [1] in southeast Cuba, rising abruptly from the coast. ... Cuban poster showing Camilo Cienfuegos. ... This article is about the Cuban politician. ...


There was another group of revolutionaries, who carried out the most dramatic act of the Revolution since the Moncada Barracks attack of 1953. This second group of revolutionaries were members of the decidedly anticommunist, Student Revolutionary Directorate (RD; Directorio Revolucionario), who in plain daylight and in the middle of Havana traffic stormed the Presidential Palace in an attempt to decapitate the government from the top-- i.e., to assassinate President Fulgencio Batista-- on March 13, 1957.


But it was the RD that was virtually decapitated after this suicidal attack. Jose Antonio Echeverria, student leader of the group, died of gun-shot wounds fighting Batista's forces after seizing a Havana radio station to broadcast the anticipated news of the success of the operation and the death of the dictator. Only a handful of the assailants (and RD leaders) survived, among them Dr. Humberto Castello, who became Inspector General in the Escambray, Comandante Rolando Cubela and Comandante Faure Chomon, the last two, dual leaders of the pro-freedom, 13 of March Movement, in the Escambray Mountains in Las Villas Province. [1] Castro learned of Batista's flight in the morning and immediately started negotiations to take over Santiago de Cuba. On January 2nd, the military commander in the city, Colonel Rubido, ordered his soldiers not to fight and Castro's forces took over the city. The forces of Guevara and Cienfuegos entered Havana at about the same time. They had met no opposition on their journey from Santa Clara to Cuba's capital. Castro himself arrived in Havana on January 8th after a long victory march, his choice of President, Manuel Urrutia Lleó taking up office on the 3rd.[2] Santiago de Cuba is the capital city of Santiago de Cuba Province in the south-eastern area of the island nation of Cuba, some 540 miles (869 km) east south-east of the Cuban capital of Havana. ... Manuel Urrutia Lleó (1901 - 1981) was a Cuban political figure. ...


Post-1959: After the Revolution

Hundreds of suspected Batista-era agents, policemen and soldiers were put on public trial for human rights abuses and war crimes, including murder and torture. Most of those convicted in revolutionary tribunals of political crimes were summarily executed by firing squad, and the rest received long prison sentences. One of the most notorious examples of revolutionary justice was the executions of over 70 captured Batista regime soldiers, directed by Raúl Castro after capturing Santiago. For his part in Havana, Che Guevara was appointed supreme prosecutor in La Cabaña Fortress. This was part of a large-scale attempt by Fidel Castro to cleanse the security forces of Batista loyalists and potential opponents of the new revolutionary regime that could launch a counter-revolution. Others were fortunate to be dismissed from the army and police without prosecution, and some high-ranking officials in the ancien régime were exiled as military attachés.[3] Cuba also nationalized all United States and other foreign-owned property in the nation on August 6, 1960. The United States, in turn, responded by freezing all Cuban assets in the US and tightening the embargo on Cuba, which is still in place after more than 45 years.[4] Santiago de Cuba is the capital city of Santiago de Cuba Province in the south-eastern area of the island nation of Cuba, some 540 miles (869 km) east south-east of the Cuban capital of Havana. ... A Spanish-era military base overlooking Havana harbor. ... Ancien Régime, a French term meaning Former Regime, but rendered in English as Old Rule, Old Order, or simply Old Regime, refers primarily to the aristocratic social and political system established in France under the Valois and Bourbon dynasties. ... is the 218th day of the year (219th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1960 (MCMLX) was a leap year starting on Friday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... The United States embargo against Cuba (described in Cuba as el bloqueo, Spanish for the blockade) is an economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed on Cuba by the United States on February 7, 1962. ...


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The Americans and some of the Cubans were withdrawn by the home companies of the plants for which they worked, or left of their own accord: they found themselves unable to understand the struggle with the United States, unwilling to accept the new way of life that was opening up before them.
When the Cuban revolution was in its infancy, economists in the Soviet bloc were grappling with the aftermath of Stalin's command economy.
The Cuban revolution is a continuing monument to the determination of the Cuban people to choose a socialist model.
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