Thursday, September 4, 2008
75th Anniversary of "4th of September 1933"
There were revolutions in Cuba before 1959. Castro's revolution was in fact an anti-revolution, which institutionalized tyranny in our country and closed the recourse to arms as a means of national liberation. The revolution to end all revolutions ended Cuban freedom as well, laid waste to our country and destroyed millions of lives. It is hard to believe today that there was a time when the word "revolution" did not have the ominous connotations that it does today but signified hope, sacrifice and redemption. So great is our repugnance for the word now that it has all but been written out of our history. No one speaks of Martí's Revolution anymore as if to associate him with that concept were somehow to defame him or acquiesce to Castro's characterization of him as the precursor of his anti-Cuban revolution. By ceding to Castro all rights to the use of "revolution" we have deprived ourselves of the most honorable motif in our history and confined it into the hands of one who has used it to pervert our past and deprive us of our future.
Today marks the 75th anniversary of the "4th of September Revolution." It transpired at a crucial crossroads in Cuban history: the forces of fascism, communism and democracy were contending for the soul of the nation after Machado's ouster and a sergeant named Batista decided the contest in favor of democracy. It was a revolution without firing squads; without political prisoners; and without the abridgment of civil or human rights. It returned stability to the nation and inaugurated the most progressive era in Republican history. Nationalistic without being militaristic, it demanded and obtained the abrogation of the Platt Amendment ending Cuba's vassalage to the U.S. and securing its absolute sovereignty. Its social legislation established Cuba in the forefront of the world's most advanced nations and gave Cubans a living standard that surpassed that of most Western industrialized countries. This was not the work of one man but a process that involved different players with conflicting points of view on the commonweal. All coalesced, however, to draft the Constitution of 1940, the synthesis of the achievements of the 1933 Revolution as well as its culmination and conclusion. A revolution that supplants the government has failed as a revolution and will fail as a government. The success of a revolution is judged by its demission not its perpetuation in power.
The 1940 Constitution was and continues to be a source of pride for all Cubans and shall one day be the cornerstone on which a restored Cuban Republic will be erected. In that sense the Revolution of 1933 is more alive today than Castro's Revolution because its roots are in the future whereas the 1959 Revolution is like a mushroom that has no roots and will leave nothing but a stain.