The Cuban Revolution

The Cuban Revolution The Cuban Revolution Final Draft The Cuban Revolution was in various ways different from the American Revolution and in other ways similar to it at because it had the same purpose and it also succeeded. Therefore, it can be rightfully said that the Cuban Revolution is an example, among others, of revolutions following the steps and ways (set of guidelines) of the American Revolution, which led it to be a victorious one. It could also be said that this revolution also offered a number of contrasts to the American Revolution, thus making it clear that the American Revolution was a very unique and special kind of revolution that can never be exactly repeated by any other nation. One main similarity between the Cuban and the American Revolution is that they both held the same purpose, which was to overthrow the current abusive government and establish a new one that would serve the people rightfully and advance social and economic justice in the nation. Abuses of Batista’s regime began on the same day that he came into power, when he suspended the constitution, dissolved the congress and instituted a provisional government, promising elections the following year.

After crushing an uprising by a young lawyer, Fidel Castro, on July 26, 1953, the regime seemed secure and when the political situation had been calmed, the Batista government announced that elections were to be held on the fall of 1954.* That year Grau San Martin, Batista’s opponent, withdrew from the campaign just before the election because he claimed that his supporters had been terrorized. Thus, Batista was reelected without any opposition since he brutally suppressed political opposition and let his people live in appalling poverty. He crushed worker, peasant, and student opposition. Between 1952 and 1959, 20,000 Cubans were assassinated by Batista’s henchmen. * The bodies of those assassinated were often dumped in public places with their eyes gouged out to intimidate the rest of the population; sending a message that any kind of opposition would not be tolerated at all. The Cuban economy under Batista’s government brought little wealth to the Cuban people, 50% of who did not have electricity; 40% were illiterate and 95% of the children living in rural areas suffered from poverty-related diseases. * Before the 1953 uprising, Fidel Castro had written a pamphlet denouncing Batista as a tyrant and calling on young Cubans to be prepared to sacrifice their lives in a fight for freedom. Castro’s friends distributed the pamphlet throughout Havana, and many of them within the Ortodoxo party began to conspire with him to overthrow Batista.

Castro continued violently denouncing the Batista government and encouraging armed rebellion through articles in the underground newspaper, El Acusador (The Accuser), of which he was political editor. During the summer of 1952, Castro had begun to turn his network of friends into a revolutionary movement. In several cities and villages, Castro’s friends organized military training units; each composed of ten revolutionaries and their leader. The leaders answered directly to Castro. Almost all of those who joined this young military force were between the ages of eighteen and twenty-two. This organization of Castro’s was kept secret as he established contacts with other revolutionary leaders throughout Cuba.

However, in July 26 (1953), the storming of the Moncada Barracks by 150 young rebels led by Castro ended up in failure with most of them being killed and those eventually captured were put on trial. Castro was given a separate trial on October 16, at which he gave an emotional and eloquent two-hour speech denouncing tyrants such as Batista and claiming that the rebels’ cause would one be victorious. Marta Rojas, a young editor at the time and later the editor of the Cuban government’s official newspaper Granma, transcribed Castor’s closing statement of his speech in court, which would become famous to all Cubans: I know that jail will be as hard as it has ever been; but I do not fear this, as I do not fear the fury of the miserable tyrant who snuffed out the life of seventy brothers of mine. Condemn me, it does not matter. History will absolve me! The entire statement, reproduced in several forms and distributed widely throughout Cuba, became the most important summary of the goals of the Cuban Revolution, and the base on which the July 26th Movement (method to overthrow Batista through armed revolutionary struggle, commemorating the 1953 uprising) grew. While in prison, Castro read much of the great literature of the world, including the works of great political philosophers such as Thomas Jefferson.

Castro had become a nationally recognized figure, and his July 26th movement became one of the most important parts of Cuba’s still-fractured surge toward revolution. After his release in amnesty on May 7, 1955, Castro and his friends established a secret network of revolutionaries in the cities and countryside throughout Cuba. He also established dictatorial control of all the activities of his movement. He then went into voluntary exile in Mexico, where he established contact with other Cuban exiles opposed to Batista and began planning his return to Cuba with an armed force. Camilio Cienfuegos and Ernesto Guevara Lynch (Che) were two important individuals who became important to Castro’s success.

Guevara, like Castro, was an idealist who blamed Western imperialism for most of the problems of the world. Fidel Castro and Che Guevara were both willing to use any means necessary to destroy the corrupt government of Batista’s regime. Another similarity was obvious in the way that the Cuban Revolution was fought, their military tactics, which was mainly guerrilla warfare. This form of fighting was first made famous during the American Revolution, when the American revolutionaries attacked the British army in skirmishes and small bands using techniques such as surprise attacks. Likewise, Castro, along with other rebel leaders, formed small groups of followers and supporters to fight off and weaken the large government forces. In a similar way, the American and the Cuban Revolution involved warfare against the much larger forces of the enemy government that was to be defeated in the end. Castro’s widespread attention gained through the press brought his July 26th Movement large numbers of new recruits in 1957 and 1958, including intellectuals and members of the middle class in the cities of Cuba. His name became known throughout the United States and was associated with democratic revolution against a corrupt dictatorship, thus winning worldwide sympathy for him and his guerrillas. As anti-government activity increased in Cuba, Batista reacted with even more repressive policies, which in turn drove more and more Cubans from Batista’s regime into the ranks of the revolutionaries.

Beginning in 1958, guerrillas led by Castro pushed down from their hideouts in the mountains and established permanent bases in the lowlands near cities. Meanwhile in the cities, members of the July 26th Movement carried out a general strike which Castro had previously called for. This attempt to entangle the nation’s economy, nevertheless, failed and Batista soon after launched a major military offensive against Castro’s guerrillas as his last resort in May. However, in spite of the overwhelming superiority in size of Batista’s army, his hired troops were no match for Castro’s guerrilla’s who were fighting for a significant cause; their liberty and rights. By August, Batista’s army had virtually been defeated as the troops were surrounded in cities. Without U.S.

support, Batista fled to the Dominican Republic on January 1st, 1959. The war was over and the Cuban Revolution had succeeded. One mayor difference between these two revolutions was that the war or battles that took place in the American Revolution were all fought in the United States. Great Britain had to send its forces across the Atlantic Ocean to fight the rebels while the revolutionaries never did attack Britain itself and instead fought a defensive war. The rebels in the Cuban Revolution, on the other hand, fought an offensive war as they attacked and seized military installations and other government posts within Cuba.

So after having listed a number of important similarities and differences of the Cuban and American Revolution, it would be factual to say that the Cuban Revolution had initially followed important tactics used in the American Revolution to defeat the enemy, and thus they were able to seize victory like the Americans did. However, they were also different in the sense that the revolutionary war the Cuban rebels fought, under the leadership of Fidel Castro, was in a totally different atmosphere. Unlike the Americans who threw out the British authority in America without having to overthrow the government in Britain, the Cuban rebels’ cause was to overthrow the existing government completely and replace it with a new one. However, even though these differences are what separate the American and the Cuban Revolution today, they both send out the same message throughout the world: that no abusive government today will be tolerated by its people because they have witnessed the examples of the great nations today and thus, are bound and have the complete right to revolt and overthrow that government by any means possible in order to have their natural rights and liberties that are due to them. History Essays.