Cubans resist US backed invasion
50 years ago, on April 19th 1961, the workers and peasants of Cuba mobilised to defeat an invasion against their revolution, orchestrated and planned by the US adminstrations of Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy.
(Picture: Cuban militias during Bay of Pigs Invasion)
Approximately 1,300 Cuban exiles- the sons of former landlords, big bankers and the privileged classes- landed at The Bay of Pigs on the southern coast of Cuba. Armed and trained by the US military and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the invasion plan was premised on the belief that the Cuban people would rise in support of the expeditionary force and overthrow the revolutionary government.
Instead of being greeted by the Cuban masses, the invaders were surprised by the determination and commitment of Cubans to take up arms to defeat them. Despite taking heavy losses in the face of US air supremacy, over the course of three days the mercenary army was pushed back by a force of militias- workers and farmers who, the first time in their lives, were fighting for the new rights and social gains won during the course of the revolution. These militias were joined by members of Cuba's Rebel Army- a veteran force forged in the fight to overthrow the repressive regime of ousted Cuban dictator, Fulgencio Batista.
After The Bay of Pigs victory, the Cuban government moved to take steps to extend the gains of the revolution by nationalizing wider sectors of the economy through expropriating capitalist holdings in Cuba. This was the exact opposite of what the US capitalist class wanted, and is testimony to the determination of Cuban workers and peasants to retain their newly won economic and social gains. They proved, in action, that US Imperialism was not an unbeatable force, and could be resisted!
As the Cuban Communist Party holds in 6th Congress to discuss measures that could have a profound impact on the future of the Cuban revolution, many workers and farmers in Cuba will remember the events of 1961 and will remain determined to defend their revolutionary gains in the face of the ongoing world economic capitalist crisis and its undoubted impact inside Cuba.
Martyn Ahmet (TUSC candidate, Brislington East)