The Truth about Cuba

By Elio Delgado Legon

Cartoon from 2012 criticizing the Obama administration for maintaining the 1962 embargo on Cuba.  From:

HAVANA TIMES – The first truth some people want to ignore is that the Cuban people led a revolution with rifle in hand, to overthrow a bloody dictatorship and its military machine, which was supported in both economic and military terms by the United States. We can’t forget that the bombs that fell on farmers’ homes in the Sierra Maestra had the inscription “Made in USA”.

You also can’t forget that this revolution continues the independence struggle that began with Carlos Manuel de Cespedes in 1868, and was picked back up by Jose Marti in 1895, which was thwarted by US intervention at the time.

This last stage of the Cuban Revolution, which ended in victory on January 1, 1959, saw every Cuban taking part, except for those who were accomplices of the dictatorship and its crimes, as expected, and left the country after the Revolution’s triumph. This was how politicking and the fight between political parties for power, not to benefit the people but to fill their own bank accounts abroad (in the US preferably), ended.

Being a people’s revolution for the people, for real this time, defending the interests of the working class, anyone who opposed the Revolution and wanted it to return to its pre-1959 state, was considered a counter-revolutionary.

Some of these figures and their bosses in the north thought that the label “counter-revolutionary” was too harsh, so they invented a softer term “dissident”, as if it were any different.

I’ve said it before, the political parties running for elections wiped themselves out, nobody dissolved or banned them. The Cuban people eliminated the possibility of creating electoral parties when they drafted and voted in the 1976 Constitution and ratified the 2019 Constitution, since the Communist Party isn’t an electoral organization.

The Revolution has always done and does what it needs to do to change everything that needs to be changed, and the first thing that needed changing was the country’s political system, which gave rise to these rivalries for power which were so detrimental to the population.

For example, the capitalist system that ruled in Cuba since 1902 until 1958, wasn’t able to improve the poverty most of the population lived in, especially in rural areas. It didn’t take charge of education, healthcare, culture, sports… anything that would benefit the working class. At the end of the day, they only ruled so that the rich could become even richer.

This is why I am outraged when I hear some of these people say that Fidel Castro was a dictator, that Raul Castro was a dictator and that our current president, Miguel Diaz-Canel, is also a dictator. In the hopes of defaming the Revolution and echoing the words of their bosses in the north, these people quite possibly have no idea what a real dictatorship is, and there have been many, not only in Cuba, but in all of Latin America, backed by the US government, which has always stood out for supporting the most ignoble causes in the world.

I am also outraged when some economists, who believe they know everything and begin to give their recommendations on how to improve the Cuban economy, talk about reinstating capitalism in Cuba.

However, none of them speaks about the harm the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed on us by the US government for almost 60 years. A real economic war, persecuting Cuba’s foreign trade operations, making it hard for us to be paid for our exports sometimes, because banks don’t want to risk being fined by the US. This is the main truth that affects the Cuban economy, which some people still insist on ignoring.

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Elio Delgado Legon

Elio Delgado-Legon: I am a Cuban who has lived for 80 years, therefore I know full well how life was before the revolution, having experienced it directly and indirectly. As a result, it hurts me to read so many aspersions cast upon a government that fights tooth and nail to provide us a better life. If it hasn’t fully been able to do so, this is because of the many obstacles that have been put in its way.

Elio Delgado Legon has 246 posts and counting. See all posts by Elio Delgado Legon

11 thoughts on “The Truth about Cuba

  • Actually, it was raul who pushed his brother toward Communism. Raul had ties with the pre-1959 Cuban communist party, and also with the USSR, connections which enabled Cuba’s slide toward Soviet control.

  • It has been sixty years since the revolution. When can you face reality and stop blaming the embargo for food rationing, decaying cities and poverty. The system has failed. Elio may have lived eighty years but he has learned very little. All you have to do is open your eyes.


  • Prior to 1959, Cuba did have weak political parties. However, after the ascension to power of “El Lider Maximo”, those political parties, movements, etc. were all dissolved or absorbed into the PSP (now the PCC).

    The PCC has an absolute monopoly on political parties in Cuba. Don’t expect this situation to change at all, at least until Raul finally goes.

  • It is incredible how people dont know what they are talking about this gut Leon who writes the article says that the cuban people fought an armed war against a bloody tiranny. But he doesnt say it was helped by the american left and that we Cubans would of prefer the first tiranny against the one comunists have led for over 60 years. More bloody than the one before and destructive and mean. They completely destroyed the economy and our cities look worst than the worst in third world countries millions have fled the country looking for better life. There never have been a real embargo. They can trade with anyone in the world including USA. The real embargo is the one the cuban goverment has impose to their people with their socialist policies.

  • Ok here goes. We were in the coffee bizz since 1843. In 1900 my grandfather n his brother took over the roasting plant. On April 20th 1961 my father was executed by firing squad while most educated white people were in Miami. I agree w the article but as modern technology has advanced eventually the rural areas would have progressed. I would have been one of the do called Capitalists that made it my mission to better the country. Lift the Embargo Now. They have no food or medicine. The situation is DESPERPATE and the only change will be the mighty DOLLAR!

  • “I’ve said it before, the political parties running for elections wiped themselves out, nobody dissolved or banned them.”
    False alternative political parties are banned.

    It’s an obvious communist dictatorship in Cuba.
    Same junk rehashed, time for freedom in Cuba.

  • I think Che had too much influence on Fidel and that pushed him too far to the left.
    Make no mistake however Cuba is a dictatorship and the people know that.
    The US bullys Cuba because it is small. You don’t see themnbullying China with embargos and they have a Dictator for life.

  • Unfortunately Elio is correct about the USA supporting ignoble causes.
    However under trump they have now reached a new low. He has just backstabbed the USA’s Kurdish allies and gift wrapped their hard won territory and presented it to his buddies in Turkey and Russia.
    Trump really does look increasingly like Putin’s number one gimp.
    It is a shame to see the USA on the slide in this way but one can be sure that at some point they will turn over this black page in their history.
    Cuba will ride out this phase as they always do. But when the USA does get past the trump era, will they join the civilised world and commence normal relations with Cuba ?
    The good President Obama was a civilising influence in this regard. Hopefully they can get another normal person in the White House sooner rather than later……..

  • The author is clearly a member of the PCC, and has nothing new to say, other than the standard PCC line of confrontational garbage and blaming everything on an ineffectual “embargo”.

    Following the Revolution, Castro never held elections promised by him, and dissolved the legislature until long after the PCC had been made the only legal party.

    Of course Fidel had an explanation for this: elections and parliaments were unnecessary, since all the decisions were made by the “masses” shouting out at the Plaza de la Revolucion.

    Popular support for the Revolution began evaporating on an almost daily basis, almost right from January 1, 1959, onwards!

  • The US has been aiming to control and profit from this jewel of a country for hundreds of years. I wish they would butt out and let Cubans thrive on their own non-Capitalist , life affirming , art embracing, humanistic terms. The latest embargoes on these beautiful people sickens me.

  • Except for the part about Fidel, Raul and Diaz-Canel not being Dictators, most of what Elio writes in this article is true. What he has left out is what is telling. He fails to mention the cruelty of the Castro regime which replaced the brutality of the Batista regime. He also does not mention the overt outlawing of political parties other than the PCC. Finally, he seems to overlook Fidel’s decision to default on hundreds of millions of dollars of foreign debt. That could be the real reason Cuba continues to suffer a lack of foreign exchange. But other than these issues, not bad this time.

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