Castro Rise To Power Essay

Fidel Castro’s Rise to Power Through is “History Will Absolve Me” Speech Part A: Plan of Investigation With 1950’s Cuba in distress, Fidel Castro was able to swiftly consolidate power. Focusing on the events of 1952 to 1959 when Castro obtained the position of the Prime Minister of Cuba, this investigation will examine- how did Fidel Castro’s “History will absolve me” speech provided the morale to his rise to power in 1950’s Cuba? His defense speech during his trial for the 26 th of July Movement called History Will Absolve Me and Fidel Castro: Rebel, Liberator, or Dictator by Jules Dubois will serve as the two main sources alongside many academic sources. Through his speech, Castro became a household name in Cuba, giving him the recognition he needed to gain presidential power. Due to the positive Cubans response to his speech, Castro gained the support he needed in order to overthrow Batista’s regime. The famous “History Will Absolve Me” speech delivered by Castro was an important asset to his rise to power in 1950’s Cuba. Part B: Summary of Evidence In order to understand in impact the speech had only the Cubans, it is important to understand the situation in Cuba at the time leading up to Castro assuming power. • Fulgencio Batista was Cuba’s premier political leader from 1933 to 1958 exercising presidential power except between 1944 to 1952. 1 • Batista had been feared and not loved by the Cubans. 2 • On September 4, 1933 and March 10, 1952, Batista rose to power as a usurper in Cuba and both times he claimed that his predecessors were even worse. He led a corrupt and unprofessional regime. 3 1 H.E. Chehabi and Juan J. Linz, Sultanic Regimes (Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 1998), 113. 2 Carlos Alberto Montaner, Journey to the Heart of Cuba: Life as Fidel Castro (New York: Algora Publishing, 2001), 48. 3 H.E. Chehabi and Juan J. Linz, Sultanic Regimes (Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 1998), 113-114.


Word count: Li Chun Ho (Alvin)Date: 18/01/2011 IB History HLEssay Question: Compare and contrast the rise to power of two rulers of single party states.2was of corruption. The difference of the crises meant that they had a different target audience. Thisis also an oppournity to point out that Hitler did not have the privilege to enjoy the middle class andrepeatedly failed to receive education, it is strange that Castro developed communist values whenhe was considered to be in the upper middle class, being a lawyer and living in relatively goodstandards compared to Hitler. Because of this, Hitler and Castro had differences in their targetaudience. Hitler aimed to influence all forms of German society while Castro aimed at the lower andmiddle classes and obviously received no support from the higher upper classes that benefited fromcorruption, underground casinos, cronyism and nepotism. In addition to their means of not onlyexploiting the media, there were differences of Hitler and Castro on religion. Hitler accepted andallowed the freedom of religion as long as they were in support of the best interests of Germany,while Castro, who was born a Roman Catholic, later disagreed with religion and excommunicated bythe Pope after he cracked down on Catholic churches in Cuba in 1962. While Hitler extended hispropaganda to include the use of churches, Castro did the opposite. However as we later find out,Castro also benefited from the use of mass media.Moving forward, both Hitler and Castro attempted to gain power through unjustified means.However, to Castro, it can be seen to be justified because he had no choice other than the use of violent revolution to oust Batista.

Although Hitler’s ladder to

the Fuehrer was an exception whichwould be discussed later, his extensive use of the SS and the SA to beat up the opposition as far as to

also ban communists from entering the Parliament to vote, Castro’s army of guerrillas were

portrayed of similar responsibilities. Castro trained his men in the outskirts of Mexico, while Hitlerlater on had every single SA troop personally pledging their alliance to him. Both were successive increating a powerful and influential army of them. Furthermore, both leaders raised and receivedfunds. Hitler received funding from fellow Nazi supporters while Castro got his funds from sourcesoverseas, such as from fellow Cubans living in American societies. In addition, both of them obtainedpower without too much violence. For Hitler, his ascension to Chancellor and then to Fuehrer werethrough non-violent methods.

Hindenburg’s approval to nominate Hitler in a coalition government

followed by the Enabling act did not involve much violence apart from the destruction of theReichstag building. Likewise,


overthrow attempt did not involve much bloodshed as Batistasimply left the island along with his corrupted aides and friends, leaving behind his army who mostly

defected to Castro’s side due to their good conditions of being detained and offered

positions in thearmy. In addition, it appears that by the time both leaders reached to the top of ladder to head thestate both had relatively no enemies left.The differences between their accessions to power are the justification and the legality of their

methods. Hitler’s methods by reaching Fuhrer were through legal processes, first, selected as the

chancellor of a coalition government by Hindenburg after being advised by Von Papen, and thenthrough the Enabling Act, allowed himself to pass any regulations without the approval of parliament. This was different with Castro, who ultimately led an armed revolution which led to the

fleeing of Batista. It is also important to note Castro’s successes here involved the exaggeration of 

the mass media to make the opposition believe of their imminent and destructive power.Furthermore, the dealing of their enemies is varied. Hitler, who wanted to set a good example of hisarmy, led a quick purging in June 1934 of the leaders of the SA, 400 of them as he believed they did

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