HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Places » International » Latin America (Group) » The Cuban Revolution and ...

Sat Jun 29, 2019, 10:37 PM

The Cuban Revolution and the National Bourgeoisie

JUNE 28, 2019

by CHARLES MCKELVEY



The demand of the Cuban-American Right for full implementation of Title III of the 1996 Helms-Burton Law, announced by the Trump administration on April 17, is rooted in the 1959-1961 conflict between the Cuban Revolution and the Cuban national bourgeoisie; when the Revolution in power, with the overwhelming support of the people, took necessary decisive steps that the national bourgeoisie interpreted as incompatible with its fundamental economic interests.

The relation between the Cuban Revolution and the Cuban national bourgeoisie did not begin as conflictual. Representatives of the national bourgeoisie were allied with revolutionary organizations in an anti-Batista coalition, and lawyers tied to the national bourgeoisie constituted the majority of the ministers of the Revolutionary Government established in early January 1959. These political dynamics reflected, in part, the Revolutionís goals of economic diversification and industrial development, which Fidel Castro conceived as ideally including the national industrial bourgeoisie. Reinforcing this orientation, a liberal sector of the bourgeoisie expressed a desire to develop toward an independent national bourgeoisie. Accordingly, the Revolutionary Government during its first eighteen months took no action against the class interests of the national bourgeoisie.

The first property expropriations were enacted on February 28, 1959. As confiscations of the property of Cuban nationals associated with the Batista regime, they were not directed against the interests of the national bourgeoisie as a class. The Batista dictatorship of 1952 to 1958 was characterized by blatant corruption, repression, and brutality, and the popular thirst for justice could not prudently be ignored by the Revolutionary Government. The confiscated properties were converted into public buildings, such as primary schools, day care centers, medical clinics, multiple housing units, and embassies.

The second act of expropriation was the nationalization of large-scale agricultural lands, making no distinction between foreign-owned and Cuban-owned land. The Agrarian Reform Law of May 17, 1959 adversely affected the interests of foreign capital and the national estate bourgeoisie, but it did not directly affect the interests of the national industrial bourgeoisie. Agrarian Reform was made necessary by a neocolonial situation defined by extensive foreign ownership of land, by concentration of land, and by peasants working on land they did not own. The Law set the maximum quantity of land per proprietor at 406 hectares; and it provided for compensation for expropriated lands in the form of twenty-year bonds, with its value based on what the owners had declared in tax reports. The expropriated land was used to form peasant cooperatives (mostly in sugar) and state-managed agricultural enterprises (mostly in rice and cattle); or it was distributed to peasants, who thus became small independent farmers. The nationalization of agricultural land facilitated a significant increase and diversification in agricultural production, primarily as a result of the cultivation of previously unused land, which had been purchased as financial speculation.

More:
https://www.counterpunch.org/2019/06/28/the-cuban-revolution-and-the-national-bourgeoisie/

0 replies, 361 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Reply to this thread