When Fidel Castro and Che Guevara rode victoriously into Havana sitting atop a tank and smoking cigars, the Cuban masses rejoiced. The banks were immediately nationalized, the casinos were shut down, prostitution was eradicated, and the national resources that had previously been siphoned off by America were now restored to the control of the Cuban populous. Socialism had prevailed. The poor were liberated. The power of the people had overcome the oppression of the American capitalist machine. At least that’s what the people were initially led to believe.
But the socialist revolution quickly turned into a communist nightmare. And it did so almost overnight. Fidel and Che immediately let it be known that they were not at all interested in democratic socialism. Atheistic communism is what they espoused, and Batista’s capitalist backed dictatorship would now be fully and thoroughly replaced by a repressive communist dictatorship. And when those who fought side by side with Fidel and Che - and who suffered and bled for the revolutionary democratic socialist ideal - dared to oppose the hard and drastic communist turn that Fidel and Che took, they were either executed or imprisoned.
Pony-trekking in the Maluti mountains, 1958 - In April 1958 a group of pupils from our School, St Stithians College, went on a camp to Caledonspoort in the Eastern Free State. We were under the supervi...
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