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Latin American Dictators: Batista Essay

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Updated: Sep 25th, 2021


In 1940 the Constitution of 1940 was maintained by all the political spheres of the entailed country the Popular Socialist Party happens, in its instance one of those more progressive of the world. starts then a time of administrations’ democratic sequence that would last 12 years, a period that was featured partly by the triumphing political bribery and the gangsters of political court, the financial system of the island, nevertheless, improves.

March 10, 1952, Batista makes a military blow in opposition to Prío Socarrás’s government, violating the legitimate structure. He gets the support of military forces and is announced, president. The US recognizes this government. Nevertheless, the blow was bloodless, the students start protests.

In 1953, lawyer Fidel Castro leads an attack against the barracks Moncada of the city Santiago de Cuba, about 900 kilometers to the east of Havana, with losses on both sides. Castro is arrested and sentenced to 15 years of prison. In 1955 the insurgents, entailing Castro, were amnestied. In December of 1956, Castro leads a landing of the insurgent army of the Movement 26 of Julio coming from Mexico. The guerilla struggle starts in the Sierra Maestra’s mountains, and also in cities, particularly in Havana and Santiago de Cuba. In 1958 the United States stops military help to Batista’s government that has already derived in a bloody dictatorship that follows and murderous adversaries without adjustment to law. (Bengelsdorf, Carollee, 2004)

At the end of the fifties,’ the North American capital is the largest in the financial system of Cuba and it controls:

  • 90% of the mining production.
  • 80% of the public services.
  • 50% of the railroads.
  • 40% of the production of sugar.
  • 25% of the bank deposits.

This capital assessment led to enormous poverty of the Cuban citizens, as American investors in Latin America never cared of the workers, but only of the profits.


Batista’s possibility to sit on the president’s chair happened in 1940. Sustained by a coalition of other parties, and by the Communists, he overcame his old opponent Grau San Martín in the first presidential election under a new Cuban constitution. Throughout his presidency, trade contacts with the U.S. augmented, and a series of war taxes were inflicted on the Cuban inhabitants. In 1944, Grau San Martín was elected president, and Batista was made to give up the presidency. (Thomas, 1987)

On March 10, 1952, almost twenty years after the rebellion of the Sergeants, Batista took over the administration once more, this time opposing elected Cuban president Carlos Prío Socorras. The coup took place three months previous to the upcoming votes during which he was sure to be defeated. Also running in that votes was a young, vigorous lawyer Fidel Castro. On March 27 Batista’s administration was formally recognized by U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower.

Soon after this recognition, Batista stated that nevertheless, he was totally loyal to Cuba’s constitution of 1940, legitimate guarantees would have to be provisionally postponed, as well as the freedom to strike. In April Batista announced a new constitutional standard of 275 articles, stating that the democratic and progressive spirit’ of the 1940 Constitution was kept in the new regulation.

Batista opened the way for wide gaming business in Havana, and he rearranged the Cuban state so that he and his political appointees could crop the nation’s resources. He stated that his administration would match any hotel investment over $1 million, which would entail a casino certification, and Lansky turned to be the center of the whole Cuban gaming process. (Laska, 2005)

Under Batista, Cuba turned to be profitable for American industry and organized crime. Havana was regarded as the “Latin Las Vegas,” a playing field of choice for affluent gamblers, and very little was said about the democratic system or the rights of the Cuban citizens. Opposition was speedily and violently squashed, and lots started fearing the new government.

Due to the Batista regime’s over art and literature, the free spirit of those artists located them in opposition to the government. Lots of writers who felt these restraints on their work chose to expel over towing the “official line” of the administration. These constraints on simple freedoms created revolutionaries out of otherwise average citizens.

End of the dictatorship epoch

Castro was lucky. Batista, whose government was coming under fire for its cruelty, guaranteed amnesty to lots of political captives to “court public opinion and recover his dictator’s figure”. It was a strategic error that permitted Castro to escape to Mexico to plan and arrange the revolt.

In Mexico, Castro attained partial support of former Mexican and Cuban Leftist leaders, Lázaro Cárdenas and Carlos Prío Socarrás. He came back to Cuba in 1956 with Raúl and Ernesto “Che” Guevara as heads of the 86-member “26th of July” revolutionary group. The assault was supposed to be part of an anti-Batista revolt. When the expected radical uprising failed to expand, Castro and his surviving radicals fled to the Sierra Maestra mountains to rearrange and create a base for customary guerrilla warfare against the Batista’s government.

Staying in the mountains Castro achieved “international status overnight” and Batista was located on the suspicious by a series of New York Times’ publishing. The articles appeared in 1957 when Batista was asserting Castro was dead and the revolution destroyed. The promotion did what Castro had anticipated. It assisted erode Batista’s foreign maintenance. It also offered new hope to Cuban Leftists and helped Castro engage new warriors. As he created his revolutionary army, Castro moved to usual guerrilla warfare, one that depended upon the maintenance of the country’s people for survival, protection, and intelligence.

The revolution attained new hope in 1958 when the U.S. administration placed a restriction on arms deliveries to Batista powers and the Catholic bishops published a pastoral letter calling for an “administration of nationwide unity.” Nevertheless, when an arranged general strike failed to appear, Castro modified his tactics to that of conventional guerrilla struggle.

Batista called voting for November 1958 in the last attempt to conciliate his adversaries. The voters desisted and the U.S. maintenance diminished. After his crush, Batista did not plan to ride out a losing matter. On the last day of December 1958, Batista assigned a descendant and exiled himself to the Dominican Republic. The move wedged the rebels by revelation but on January 1, 1959, on Castro’s orders, Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos entered led the insurgents into Havana. Castro did not enter Havana until January 7, after he had turned to be a worldwide, revolutionary idol. (Leonard, 2003)


Bengelsdorf, Carollee. The Problem of Democracy in Cuba: Between Vision and Reality. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.

Laska, Vera. “Martinez-Fernandez, Luis, D.H. Figueredo, Louis A. Parez, Jr., and Luis Gonzalez, Eds. Encyclopedia of Cuba: People, History, Culture.” International Social Science Review 80.3-4 (2005): 178.

Leonard, Thomas M. “State and Revolution in Cuba: Mass Mobilization and Political Change, 1920-1940.” The Historian 65.4 (2003): 1018.

Thomas, Hugh. “Cuba: the United States and Batista, 1952-58.” World Affairs 149.4 (1987): 169-175.

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