Fidel Castro


On August 13, 1926, Fidel Castro was born in the south-eastern Oriente Province of Cuba. He was the son of a successful sugar planter, Angel Castro. His mother was a servent in his father's home. Castro had eight other siblings and was known as a rebellious, loud, and troublesome child. He said he enjoys fishing, hunting and reading. He was sent to a boarding school were he was teased by his wealthier classmates. Castro is now older and his body is more fragile, but he once stood 6'3" tall. Fidel Castro attended Belen College before enrolling at the University of Havana, where he earned a law degree and graduated.

After Castro graduated, he practiced law briefly, then went on to marry Mirta Diaz-Balart, a wealthy philosophy student with family ties to Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista. They had a son, but after 5 years, the couple divorced. After several years spent in prison and exile (he lived in Mexico and New York City) Castro led an attack on the Moncada barracks on July 26, 1953. The attack put Castro once again in prison, but made himself famous. After his release he trained men in Mexico, then sailed to the tip of Cuba on the Grandma where he landed with around a dozen men. After many successful battles, Castro rode triumphantly into Havana on January 8, 1959. Castro became the Prime Minister of Cuba from 1959 to 1976 and President of Cuba since 1976.

In the video above, Fidel Castro explains his reasoning for his guerrilla military tactics and how they have been used to build Cuba from the ground up. Castro explains the type of men he trained to carry out the tasks he set for them from 2:56 until 4:13 in the video. Everything he said he did was for the good of his people, because he wanted to improve their living conditions. He said that if it were not for his harsh guerrilla tactics, the people of Cuba wouldn't have escaped their poor living conditions. Closer to the end of the video he says why guerrilla tactics are the reason for the successful revolutions in other countries. When I think about other countries worldwide that use guerrilla tactics, I think of African countries, (which he mentioned in the video) which helps to put the violence and harsh tactics into a clearer, modern day understanding. The chilling reality of his ruthless military power was the reason for him defeating Batista and coming to rule as Prime Minister in 1959.


The picture above is my own drawing of Fidel Castro.

Essential Question: Did Fidel Castro's Guerrilla tactics have a greater positive impact on revolutions in countries throughout the world and Cuba or did they have a greater negative impact? Explain.

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