Cuba - national flag
Cuba's national flag was created by Cuban exiles in New York in the 1850's and
was officially hoisted for the first time in 1902. The flag is inspired by the
flag of the United States and is called "The Lone Star". The three blue stripes
stand for the provinces of Cuba in the 1850's, the white stripes for the purity
of the revolution, the star of independence in the red triangle for freedom,
equality and brotherhood, and red for the blood, sacrificed by the Cuban
What does the flag of Cuba look like? Follow this link, then you will see
the image in PNG format and flag meaning description about this country.
Cuba - history
On Columbus 's arrival in Cuba on 27 October 1942, the island was inhabited
by three Native American peoples, Ciboney, Arawak, and Taino, who subsisted
mainly on hunting and farming.
In 1511, the Spanish conquest and settlement began under Diego Velázquez,
the island's first governor, and the most important cities were laid out in the
following years. As early as about 1600, the Native American people were
virtually exterminated due to illness, forced labor, and Spanish attacks.
Cuba's economy came early to rest on agriculture with sugar cane as the main
crop followed by coffee and tobacco. From the 1500's. until about the year 1800,
over 100,000 African slaves were introduced. Despite an agreement between
England and Spain to stop the slave trade, during the 1800's. introduced about
half a million more.
Cuba's geographical position and status as a center of shipping between Spain
and its colonies made special in the 1600's. the island to the target of pirate
attacks. In 1762, Havana was attacked and occupied by an English fleet, and
Spain had to relinquish Florida to get the city back.
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In the first half of the 1800's. there was a conspiracy in Cuba against
Spanish supremacy, but it only came to open war in 1868 with the revolt of the
landowner Carlos Manuel de Céspedes (1819-74), which ended ten years later
without result. In 1895, the Second War of Independence began under the
leadership of José Martí, a poet, intellectual and co-founder of the Cuban
Revolutionary Party. He fell in battle the same year, but the war continued, and
Spain made every effort not to lose its last colonies.
In 1898, the United States, which already at that time had significant
economic interests on the island, intervened in the war that ended with Spain's
defeat a few months later. In 1902, Cuba officially gained
independence; However, the United States maintained its economic and political
dominance over the country until 1959.
Among other things. the United States, through the so-called Platt
Amendment formula, was given the right to intervene in the country to "protect
life, property and individual freedom"; however, this right was abolished in
1934. At the same time, a still existing US naval base was established near the
city of Guantánamo in eastern Cuba.
|Heads of State
||Tomás Estrada Palma
||José Miguel Gómez
||Mario García Menocal
||Alfredo Zayas and Alonso
||Gerardo Machado y Morales
||C. Manuel de Céspedes y Ortiz
||Ramón Grau San Martin
||José A. Barnet and Vinagres
||Miguel Mariano Gómez y Arias
||Frederico Laredo Bru
||Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar
||Ramón Grau San Martin
||Carlos Prío Socarrás
||Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar
||Osvaldo Dorticós Torrado
||Fidel Castro Ruz
1925-33 the country was ruled by the dictator Gerardo Machado y Morales
(1871-1939); he was overthrown by a popular uprising with the participation of
the United States as a mediator. A few weeks later, the new president was
deposed in a coup, led by a young non-commissioned officer, Fulgencio
Batista, who soon became the army's commander-in-chief and the country's
"strong man". In 1940-44 he led a coalition government, which even the then
Communist Party participated in. Batista took power again in a bloodless coup on
March 10, 1952, which gave rise to a slowly growing opposition in democratic and
Among his most active opponents was the 25-year-old lawyer Fidel Castro, who
on 26.7.1953 together with approximately 150 others attacked the Moncada barracks in
Santiago as well as another in the town of Bayamo. The operation failed and the
attackers were liquidated or imprisoned. After amnesty and exile in Mexico,
Castro attempted a new military operation in 1956, namely a landing attempt from
the yacht Granma. The action was another failure, but the survivors began a
guerrilla war in the mountains of eastern Cuba. In the cities, Castro received
support from, among others, the students, while the Communist Party and the
other traditional parties remained hesitant. In late 1958, Castro, along with
his brother Raúl and Argentine Ernesto "Che" Guevara, launched the final
On the night of 1.1.1959, Batista fled the country, on 8.1. Castro held his
victory march in Havana, and the revolutionary process was set in motion almost
immediately. It involved land reform, nationalization of both Cuban and foreign
property, wage increases, declines in rents, etc. At the same time, banquets
were held over Batista's men. In 1960-61, a comprehensive literacy campaign was
carried out as the beginning of an education system for the whole
people. Another of the merits of the system was the development of an exemplary
The new government did not immediately confess to socialism, but the radical
change process created an antagonism to the United States. At the same time, an
increasing number of Cubans, especially from the middle and upper classes, chose
to go into exile, mainly in the United States, where Miami quickly became the
economic and political center of the opposition to Castro.
Two of Castro's revolutionary comrades tried to revolt against the
regime. The United States fought the new Cuba economically and
diplomatically; in 1960, import bans for Cuban sugar were introduced, followed
by an actual trade embargo. In 1961, the United States severed diplomatic
relations with Cuba, and in 1962, Cuba was excluded from the Organization of
American States, OAS. The isolation led Cuban leaders to strengthen ties with
the Eastern Bloc, which within a few years took over the traditional role of the
United States as Cuba's most important trading partner. A few non-communist
countries, including Mexico and Spain, maintained ties with Cuba.
On April 16, 1961, Castro declared the country a socialist state. The next
day, the American attack began in Swine Bay; it was rejected and meant a
political and moral victory for Castro. The culmination of the conflict between
the United States and Cuba came with the Cuba crisis in October 1962.
In the early and mid-1960's, Cuba was an international center of
revolutionaries and intellectuals, but especially from 1968, many former
sympathizers began to turn against Castro's regime. His acceptance of the Warsaw
Pact invasion of Prague, the increasing restrictions on personal and artistic
freedom, the creation of "re-education camps" for homosexuals and other
"dissenters" were reasons for this. In 1965, the Revolutionary Unity Party was
renamed the Cuban Communist Party.
The first decade of the revolution was marked by economic chaos and a
shortage of virtually all products due to both the US blockade and economic
policy. From the mid-1970's, a traditional planned economy was pursued in
cooperation with the Soviet Union and COMECON. The economic situation improved
and living standards rose. With the new constitution in 1976, Castro's powers
While Cuban leaders in the 1960's were strongly committed to the revolutionary
movements in Latin America, the 1970's were marked by a growing commitment in
Africa, especially in Angola, to which Cuba sent its first troops in 1976 to
support the MPLA government. The withdrawal of Cuban troops began in 1989.
In the late 1970's, under US President Carter, a certain thawing took place in
relations between Cuba and the United States, which, however, again became very
tense after Ronald Reagan's takeover. In 1980, about 130,000 people left the
country in the largest wave of emigration since the 1960's, but the regime
survived the crisis, and the period from 1980-85 was both economically and
politically one of the most stable after 1959.
From 1985-86, new difficulties were encountered with political and economic
austerity, and contrary to many people's expectations, Castro did not follow the
liberalization tendencies seen in Eastern Europe after Gorbachev's takeover of
the Soviet Union. The final collapse of the Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc
meant that Cuba lost most of its economic livelihood. Imports of oil, food and
consumer goods were drastically reduced and Cuba was thrown into its worst
crisis to date.
During 1993 and 1994, the economy was extensively liberalized. The reforms
led new social inequalities and a sharp rise in crime, begging and
prostitution. Through unofficial negotiations, Cuba has tried to get the United
States to abandon the long blockade in return for economic concessions, but so
far to no avail. Domestically, the government has relaxed its cultural policy
and is showing greater tolerance towards traditionally oppressed groups.
However, there is no indication that Castro is willing to accept any form of
political pluralism. The official Marxist ideology and planned economy, on the
other hand, seem to be increasingly replaced by nationalist and populist
formulations combined with a pragmatic state-controlled capitalism. But the
country's future, both in the short and long term, is still bleak.
The deep crisis that Cuba was thrown into after the dissolution of the
Eastern Bloc from 1989 was turned to cautious economic growth in the second half
of the 1990's, by virtue of an increasing number of foreign tourists. The
U.S. blockade of the country was tightened through the Helms-Burton Act of 1996,
which provided that third-country firms investing in former U.S. property in
Cuba could be brought to justice in the United States. Since then, however,
incumbent presidents have regularly voted against the entry into force of that
part of the law.
In 1999-2000, a seven-month custody battle was fought over the Cuban boy
Elian González (b. 1993), who survived a shipwreck off Florida. Elian's uncle in
the United States lost the case, and Elian was sent home to his father in
Cuba. The Cuban leader, Fidel Castro, skillfully exploited the case,
illustrating the continuing strained relations with the Cuban exiles in the
United States, for propaganda purposes.
The private sector is growing and in 2000 accounted for over 20% of the
economy. The political developments in several Latin American countries since
1999, in particular Hugo Chávez's takeover of oil-rich Venezuela, have brought
Cuba out of part of the political and economic isolation in which it has found
Trade with Europe, Canada, China and Latin America has increased, and in 2004
Cuba switched to using the euro instead of the dollar as an alternative
currency. There is growth in the number of foreign customers in the healthcare
system and in the delivery of healthcare staff in connection with
e.g. international aid workers.
Tourism has been rising since the 1990's, reaching 2.3 million in
2005. visitors from especially Canada and Europe. Since 1996, earnings from
tourism have been higher than from sugar exports, but sugar remains the main
In 2001, shortly before he turned 75, Fidel Castro had a short-lived
discomfort on the podium. The episode prompted him to appoint his brother,
Defense Minister Raúl Castro, as the official successor in an attempt to ensure
the regime continues after his death. New illness at Castro has meant that the
rule of Cuba in 2006 was temporarily handed over to the brother. In February
2008, Fidel Castro proclaimed his resignation for health reasons, prompting Raúl
Castro to become the new president. Under his leadership, there have been
cautious approaches to reform; Among other things, In 2011, it was again allowed
for private individuals to buy and sell properties. Raúl Castro was re-elected
by the National Assembly for his second presidential term in February 2013.
In December 2014, the U.S. Obama administration announced that the United
States would normalize relations with Cuba. An exchange of prisoners took place
between the two countries. Whether the U.S. trade embargo can be eased in the
short term, however, is uncertain, as the conservative-minded U.S. Congress has
been critical of the normalization plans.