Portal:Cuba
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Portal:Cuba
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Welcome to the Cuba Portal
Bienvenido al Portal de Cuba
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Introduction

Flag of the Republic Of Cuba Coat of arms of the Republic of Cuba
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Cuba ( KEW-b?, Spanish: ['ku?a] ), officially the Republic of Cuba (Spanish: República de Cuba [re'pu?lika ðe 'ku?a] ) is a country comprising the island of Cuba, as well as Isla de la Juventud and several minor archipelagos. Cuba is located in the northern Caribbean where the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean meet. It is east of the Yucatán Peninsula (Mexico), south of both the U.S. state of Florida and the Bahamas, west of Hispaniola, and north of both Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. Havana is the largest city and capital; other major cities include Santiago de Cuba and Camagüey. The official area of the Republic of Cuba is 109,884 square kilometers (42,426 sq mi) (without the territorial waters). The main island of Cuba is the largest island in Cuba and in the Caribbean, with an area of 104,338 square kilometers (40,285 sq mi). Cuba is the second-most populous country in the Caribbean after Haiti, with over 11 million inhabitants.

The territory that is now Cuba was inhabited by the Ciboney Taíno people from the 4th millennium BC until Spanish colonization in the 15th century. From the 15th century, it was a colony of Spain until the Spanish-American War of 1898, when Cuba was occupied by the United States and gained nominal independence as a de facto United States protectorate in 1902. As a fragile republic, in 1940 Cuba attempted to strengthen its democratic system, but mounting political radicalization and social strife culminated in a coup and subsequent dictatorship under Fulgencio Batista in 1952. Open corruption and oppression under Batista's rule led to his ousting in January 1959 by the 26th of July Movement, which afterwards established communist rule under the leadership of Fidel Castro. Since 1965, the state has been governed by the Communist Party of Cuba. The country was a point of contention during the Cold War between the Soviet Union and the United States, and a nuclear war nearly broke out during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. Cuba is one of a few extant Marxist-Leninist socialist states, where the role of the vanguard Communist Party is enshrined in the Constitution. Independent observers have accused the Cuban government of numerous human rights abuses, including short-term arbitrary imprisonment.

Under Castro, Cuba was involved in a broad range of military and humanitarian activities in Guinea-Bissau, Syria, Angola, Algeria, South Yemen, North Vietnam, Laos, Zaire, Iraq, Libya, Zanzibar, Ghana, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Somalia, Ethiopia, Congo-Brazzaville, Sierra Leone, Cape Verde, Nigeria, Benin, Cameroon, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Cuba sent more than 400,000 of its citizens to fight in Angola (1975-91) and defeated South Africa's armed forces in conventional warfare involving tanks, planes, and artillery. Cuban intervention in Angola contributed to the downfall of the apartheid regime in South Africa. (Full article...)
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Foreign tourist days in Cuba, 2010

Tourism in Cuba is an industry that generates over 4.7 million arrivals , and is one of the main sources of revenue for the island. With its favorable climate, beaches, colonial architecture and distinct cultural history, Cuba has long been an attractive destination for tourists. "Cuba treasures 253 protected areas, 257 national monuments, 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, 7 Natural Biosphere Reserves and 13 Fauna Refuge among other non-tourist zones."

Having been Spain's closest colony to the United States until 1898, in the first part of the 20th century Cuba continued to develop with the influence of big investments, the creation of various industries, and growing travel to support mostly US interests and corporations. Its proximity (roughly 90 miles (140 km) from the Florida Keys) and close relationship to the United States also helped Cuba's market economy prosper fairly quickly. As relations between Cuba and the United States deteriorated rapidly after the Cuban Revolution of 1959 and the resulting expropriation and nationalisation of businesses, the island became cut off from its traditional market by an ongoing embargo and a travel ban was imposed on U.S. citizens visiting Cuba. The tourist industry declined to record low levels within two years of Castro's accession to power. Unlike the US, Canada has maintained normal relations with Cuba and Canadians increasingly visited Cuba for vacations. Approximately one third of visitors to Cuba in 2014 were Canadians. The Cuban government has moderated its state ownership policies and allowed for localised and small private business since 1980. It also pursues revitalisation programs aimed at boosting tourism. The United States reestablished diplomatic relations with Cuba in 2015, aka the Cuban Thaw, and the tourism industry has not benefited as much as was predicted from normalised relations with America since President Donald Trump has reinstated most of the pre-Cuban Thaw restrictions. (Full article...)

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The following are images from various Cuba-related articles on Wikipedia.

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El Moro Havanna Cuba.jpg
  • ...that the Cuban night lizard is less than 4 cm long and lives exclusively in the west corner of the southern-most coast of Cuba?
  • ...that Narciso López fled Cuba for New York City in 1848 after a failed attempt to create a revolt among Cuban planters, and attempted three times to raise filibuster expeditions to invade Cuba from the U.S.?

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This is a Good article, an article that meets a core set of high editorial standards.

Anarchism as a social movement in Cuba held great influence with the working classes during the 19th and early 20th century. The movement was particularly strong following the abolition of slavery in 1886, until it was repressed first in 1925 by President Gerardo Machado, and more thoroughly by Fidel Castro's Marxist-Leninist government following the Cuban Revolution in the late 1950s. Cuban anarchism mainly took the form of anarcho-collectivism based on the works of Mikhail Bakunin and, later, anarcho-syndicalism. The Latin American labor movement, and by extension the Cuban labor movement, was at first more influenced by anarchism than Marxism. (Full article...)

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Batista in 1938

Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar (; Spanish: [ful'xensjo ?a'tista i sal'di?a?]; born Rubén Zaldívar, January 16, 1901 - August 6, 1973) was a Cuban military officer and politician who served as the elected President of Cuba from 1940 to 1944 and as its U.S.-backed military dictator from 1952 to 1959, before being overthrown during the Cuban Revolution. Batista initially rose to power as part of the 1933 Revolt of the Sergeants, which overthrew the provisional government of Carlos Manuel de Céspedes y Quesada. He then appointed himself chief of the armed forces, with the rank of colonel and effectively controlled the five-member "pentarchy" that functioned as the collective head of state. He maintained this control through a string of puppet presidents until 1940, when he was himself elected President of Cuba on a populist platform. He then instated the 1940 Constitution of Cuba and served until 1944. After finishing his term, Batista moved to Florida, returning to Cuba to run for president in 1952. Facing certain electoral defeat, he led a military coup against President Carlos Prío Socarrás that pre-empted the election.

Back in power and receiving financial, military and logistical support from the United States government, Batista suspended the 1940 Constitution and revoked most political liberties, including the right to strike. He then aligned with the wealthiest landowners who owned the largest sugar plantations, and presided over a stagnating economy that widened the gap between rich and poor Cubans. Eventually it reached the point where most of the sugar industry was in U.S. hands, and foreigners owned 70% of the arable land. As such, Batista's repressive government then began to systematically profit from the exploitation of Cuba's commercial interests, by negotiating lucrative relationships with both the American Mafia, who controlled the drug, gambling, and prostitution businesses in Havana, and with large U.S.-based multinational companies who were awarded lucrative contracts. To quell the growing discontent amongst the populace--which was subsequently displayed through frequent student riots and demonstrations--Batista established tighter censorship of the media, while also utilizing his Bureau for the Repression of Communist Activities secret police to carry out wide-scale violence, torture and public executions. These murders mounted in 1957, as socialist ideas became more influential. Many people were killed, with estimates ranging from hundreds to about 20,000 people killed. (Full article...)

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Cuba hurricane 1910-10-17 weather map.jpg

The 1910 Cuba hurricane, popularly known as the Cyclone of the Five Days, was an unusual and destructive tropical cyclone that struck Cuba and the United States in October 1910. It formed in the southern Caribbean on October 9 and strengthened as it moved northwestward, becoming a hurricane on October 12. After crossing the western tip of Cuba, it peaked in intensity on October 16, corresponding to Category 4 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. That same day, the hurricane moved in a counterclockwise loop and hit Cuba again. It then tracked toward Florida, landing near Cape Romano. After moving through the state, it hugged the coast of the Southeastern United States on its way out to sea.

Due to its unusual loop, initial reports suggested it was two separate storms that developed and hit land in rapid succession. Its track was subject to much debate at the time; eventually, it was identified as a single storm. Analysis of the event gave a greater understanding of weather systems that took similar paths. (Full article...)

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José Martí speaking about the power of diplomacy over war before the Spanish-American War, 1891

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