A Look Back at Cuba in 1898 – The Year 1898: The Spanish-American War (Hispanic Division, Library of Congress)
Cuba had been a colony from 1492 until 1898, when the United States seized control of the country as a result of the Spanish–American War. Many Cubans have ancestors that can trace their lineage back to Spain. Around the years 1820–1825, a large number of Spaniards fled the first Spanish Civil War and settled in Cuba and other nations.
However, there were only two urgent grounds for going to war: America’s backing for the continuous fight by Cuban and Filipino people against Spanish control and the mystery explosion that occurred in Havana Harbor aboard the battleship USS Maine, which sparked the conflict.
After returning to Cuba, Castro played a pivotal part in the Cuban Revolution by commanding the Movement against Batista’s soldiers in the Sierra Maestra, which was a major battle in the guerrilla struggle that followed. Following Batista’s defeat in 1959, Castro ascended to the position of prime minister of Cuba, assuming military and political authority.
After being colonized by Spain since the 15th century, it became an American protectorate during the Spanish–American War of 1898. After being conquered by the United States, Cuba acquired nominal independence as a de facto protectorate of the United States in 1902.
Because of the United States’ success in the war, the Spanish were forced to surrender their claims to Cuba and to give sovereignty over Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines to the United States in a peace treaty that was signed in 1815. During the battle, the United States also annexed the autonomous state of Hawaii from the United Kingdom.
United States troops entered Cuba in 1898 to defend American interests and revenge the destruction of the USS Maine, which had blown up in the Havana harbor the year before.
Cuba, the largest island in the West Indies and the most populous country in the region, has frequently been criticized for its volatile political past. A number of causes have combined to make the island country one of the poorest countries on the planet, with a considerable section of the people living in poverty as a result of a combination of circumstances.
Because of his upbringing, Castro chose to fight for the downfall of Fulgencio Batista’s military dictatorship by creating “The Movement,” an anti-Batista paramilitary group. In July 1953, they attempted a failed attack on the Moncada Barracks, during which several militants were murdered and Castro was apprehended, but were unsuccessful.
The security bridge built by Batista in an attempt to quiet political opponents proved to be fairly inadequate. As a young lawyer and activist in the months following the March 1952 revolution, Fidel Castro petitioned for Batista’s removal from power, accusing him of corruption and despotism. Castro was successful in his efforts.
Prior to the advent of the Genoese explorer Christopher Columbus in 1492, the island of Cuba was populated by a number of different Amerindian tribes, including the Taino. Following his arrival in Cuba as part of a Spanish expedition, Spain captured the island and installed Spanish administrators in the capital city of Havana.
The Marxist–Leninist leader Fidel Castro was passionate about transforming Cuba and the rest of the world from a capitalism system in which people control the means of production to a socialist system in which the means of production are owned by the workers.