Cuba Brief History

By | November 1, 2021

According to Areacodesexplorer, Cuba is despite its unacceptable political system, its great poverty and worn environment, and in many places beautiful nature, a country well worth visiting

Many Cubans live in very cramped conditions and struggle hard for their daily existence. The scarce financial resources force many women to prostitute themselves despite the fact that prostitution is officially banned. Begging is everywhere. Technically, the country, especially in rural areas, is in many cases poorly developed and you often see crews pulled by large oxen or farmers plowing with the help of oxen.

Despite their difficult situation, the Cubans manage to be happy and friendly. In their smiling faces, however, one often sees sad and dejected eyes. Several Cubans I met said, “You see our smiling faces, but not our sad interiors.” I wish these friendly people a much better life than they currently have.

Long before I visited Cuba, I wondered how Swedes can defend the policies pursued by Fidel Castro and other leading Cuban politicians. Even less do I understand this after my visit. Those who in Sweden claim that there is democracy and that the Cubans are well, I wonder which Cuba they met?

My almost four-week visit to Cuba, far beyond the protected hotel areas of charter tourism, was an eventful and eventful journey. I met many ordinary Cubans in cities and in the countryside, walked, cycled and enjoyed the rhythmic and beautiful Cuban music on hot tropical nights, and of course all the beautiful old cars that rolled all over Cuba.

During my tour I visited, among others, Havana, Baracoa, Santiago de Cuba, Trinidad, Camaguey, Cienfuegos, Santa Clara, Vinales and Pinar del Rio.

Cuba history in brief

Cuba history, older

before 1492, Cuba was inhabited by the Indian peoples Siboney, Arawak and Taino.

Siboney and Arawak were nomadic people, hunters and gatherers, while Taino also engaged in agriculture and grew, among other things, corn, beans, squash, peanuts, palm lilies and tobacco. Scientists believe that these Native American tribes originally came from Central America


On October 29, Christopher Columbus landed in Cuba, believed to be outside today’s city of Baracoa. He reported that the Indians were peaceful and friendly


Spaniard Diego Velásquez begins the conquest of Cuba. Now it turns out that the Cuban Indians are anything but peaceful


The Cuban Indians resist Spanish colonization, killing one of their chiefs, Hatuey

1512 Cuba’s first city is founded, Baracoa

1514 Founded the cities of Havana, Trinidad and Sancti Spiritus

1555 Havana is looted and burned by French buccaneers

1607 Havana becomes the capital of the country

1762 The British attack and occupy Havana

1830 Cuba passes Haiti as the world’s largest sugar producer

1837 The first railway line is inaugurated, starting in Havana

1868 A revolt begins in October under Céspedes

1886 Slavery is formally abolished

1895 – 98

José Marti leads the uprising against the Spaniards. However, he falls in his first battle against the Spaniards on May 19 and becomes a national hero

1899 The American occupation begins

Cuba history, modern

1902 Cuba becomes formally independent. The country’s first president will be Tomás Estrada Palma

1902 – 1906

Was Tomás Estrada Palma Cuba’s president


An association of students and the military overthrew dictator Gerardo Machado.


In January, Army Sergeant Fulgencio Batista seized power with US support. To begin with, many in the middle class supported him, but Batista’s rule was also marked by terror and corruption.

1940 – 44 Fulgencio Batista is president

1952 Batista regains power through a military coup


On July 26, the Moncada Barracks in Santiago is attacked by a group of insurgents led by Fidel Castro. The attack fails and Castro is sentenced to 15 years in prison


Castro is released on May 15 and goes into exile to Mexico. There he built the July 26 movement, which got its name after the failed attack on Moncada

1956 – 58

In December, Castro returned to Cuba with about eighty rebels, who had received military training in Mexico, in the motorboat Granma, which thus became legendary. Batista was prepared for Castro’s arrival and most of the force was killed or captured. Brothers Fidel and Raúl Castro, Che Guevara and a small group of rebels managed to escape into the Sierra Maestra mountains from where they start a guerrilla war against the regime

1958 Santa Clara falls on December 31 and Batista escapes.


Fidel Castro enters Santiago on January 1 and then in Cienfuegos
Fidel Castro enters Havana on January 8


The nationalization of many foreign-owned industries brought the regime into conflict with powerful American interests and therefore the United States imposed a ban on imports of Cuban sugar and banned all trade with Cuba with the exception of food and medicine.


In December, Castro openly supported Marxism-Leninism. At that time, the free elections he had promised when he came to power were long overdue, branded as “counter-revolutionary”. Castro was attracted to the Soviet variant of socialism. In
foreign policy, the Soviet Union served as a counterweight to the United States. The US government in turn supported Cuban exiles who attacked the regime in Cuba. This policy culminated in a failed invasion of Cuban exiles in the Bay of Pigs in southern Cuba in April


In February, the United States imposed a complete trade embargo on the country
Cuba was expelled from the United States Cooperation Organization (OAS)
. The United States responded with a sea blockade of Cuba. After 13 days of war of nerves, Moscow agreed to dismantle the ramps. This was one of the most serious international crises after World War II

1966 – 1970

Certain elements of Maoism were introduced into Cuban politics and the countryside was favored at the expense of the cities. In addition, progress was made in the social field with improvements in education and healthcare

1967 Che Guevara is shot dead in Bolivia. The body is taken to Cuba

1975 The first congress of the Cuban Communist Party

1980 Emigrates 125,000 Cubans


The fall of communism in Eastern Europe did not affect Cuba’s development. Castro called Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev’s reform policy “counter-revolutionary” and said that nothing would divert Cuba from the socialist path, which hit Cubans hard. During the years 1989 to 1992, food imports more than halved and living standards fell. Many Cubans were forced to live on the brink of starvation
Political purges are being carried out. A group of officers is accused of drug smuggling via Cuba to the United States. General Arnaldo Ochoa and three other officers are executed. Through the execution of Arnaldo Ochoa, Castro got rid of a popular revolutionary hero who could threaten his position.


Five dissidents from the Association for the Free Arts entered the Czechoslovak embassy in Havana and requested asylum, which resulted in a wave of intrusions into various foreign embassies and diplomatic crises arose between the countries. Spain called home its ambassador and withdrew all aid to Cuba. The crisis was called off when all asylum seekers gave up


The Soviet Union withdraws troops and technicians


All ships trading with Cuba were banned from entering US ports. US policy was sharply criticized by both the EU and the UN General Assembly.
Local elections were held in December. Unofficial reports indicated that between one-fifth and one-quarter of all votes cast were blank or invalid, a sign that dissatisfaction among Cubans was widespread.


In February, the first direct elections were held to the National Assembly and to the country’s 14 provincial assemblies. The official turnout was 98.8 percent and 87.3 percent voted for all 589 candidates on the list for the National Assembly. More than 500,000 voters showed their dissatisfaction by voting blank


The further deteriorating economic conditions in August led to riots on the streets of Havana. Clashes took place between police and protesters who tried to force a ferry to steer towards the United States. The incident was the starting shot for a wave of refugees to the United States, when nearly 30,000 Cubans left the country on rickety rafts and boats


Fidel Castro visits Pope John Paul III in the Vatican
The US blockade on Cuba has intensified after two US civilian planes were shot down by Cuban fighter jets and four crew members were killed. The purpose of the overflight was to spread leaflets with Castro-hostile propaganda


Pope John Paul III visits Cuba

Cuba Brief History