An annotated reference list

All political currents in the international socialist movement were and remain challenged by the rise and success of the Cuban Revolution. Some responded positively, others negatively. Some were favorable, others critical, and some responded with a mixture of support and criticism. This is a reference list documenting how some major Trotskyist currents responded to the Cuban Revolution. I'm keeping it up-to-date as best I can. There is no political significance to the order in which the groups and documents are listed below. They were placed their for my working convenience only.

An a writer, student and activist, my individual interest in the Cuban Revolution and its relationship with Trotskyism came about because of the years I spent in the organized Trotskyist movement, 1962-1988. I joined the Young Socialist Alliance, the youth group at the time of the Socialist Workers Party in the United States, because I believed that they were doing the best political work in solidarity with the Cuban Revolution. I left the organized Trotskyist movement in 1988 but retain an interest in Trotsky and Trotskyism and how groups and tendencies from the Trotskyist tradition have grappled with and related to the Cuban Revolution. It hasn't been easy. 

The challenges facing the Cuban Revolution in today's world are ones for which no simple, ready-made solution exists. We can all learn a lot by reading widely, and at the same time critically, from all sources which take the time to look at and study the Cuban experience seriously. This reference page has been prepared to make such research easier for the serious student.

Here the reader will find links to articles by a range of organizations from the Trotskyist tradition giving their positions on Cuba. Most state that they support the Cuban Revolution. Some support the leadership of Fidel Castro and July 26th movement, others are opposed to it. Some favor one or another variant of support to or reform of the Cuban government as it currently exists. Others favor the overthrow of the Cuban government, either as "political revolution", or else they deny that a socialist revolution took place, for one or another reason.

In doing my own work on Cuba I found myself often having to locate the exact political position of the various groups which do or once had called themselves Trotskyist. Now, at least, they're all findable in one location. If any of these links have broken, or you have additional ones to recommend, please send them in for inclusion. Any comments or suggestions for improvement will be appreciated. I hope and trust the reader will find this material of interest.

This will be updated regularly as new information and referrals are received. Recently, more discussion has developed on this topic, so I'm putting recent comments toward the top.

New!  Another overlapping list with many things not here:

Walter Lippmann 
March 2015


Richard Fidler on Che on the Cuban Trotskyists

Walter Lippmann: Celia Hart and Trotskyism

Richard Fidler on the Cuban Trotskyist he met in the 1960s

Zbigniew Kowalewski:
The Alliance of Cuban Trotskyists and Revolutionary Nationalists


Very few theoretical documents by the Socialist Workers Party of the United States are online. The ones given here are early expressions of the party's views on Cuba. The SWP's current views can be located on the website of their newspaper, THE MILITANT and are substantially different from these.

Cubans Oust Batista Dictatorship
by Lillian Kiezel
THE MILITANT, January 12, 1959
This is the first article published after the triumph of the Cuban Revolution. Excerpt:

For the past year Castro has sought in various ways to convince the State Department and plantation owners that he has repudiated the aims announced in 1955 and has no intention of nationalizing industry.

Castro's movement is largely middle class. He is a plantation owner himself. By and large the leadership of this movement, as personified by Provisional President Urrutia, seeks a democratic reform government. It doesn't want a fundamental social and economic change.

However, the State Department and the plantation owners have only recently begun to understand Castro's real intentions.

Cuba at the Crossroads
Editorial, THE MILITANT, January 18, 1960 
The main danger to the Cuban revolution is in its own leadership. The class background of the Castro forces is petty bourgeois. From university circles these revolutionaries moved into rural areas where they gathered strength as guerrilla fighters dedicated to agrarian reform. Their aims were nationalist and equalitarian – independence from foreign domination, and end to government corruption, reduction of special privileges, improvements for the poor.
The more revolutionary-minded elements projected far-reaching reforms, especially against the big landholders. But they procrastinated. And they failed to consider such fundamental measures as nationalization of industry, government monopoly of foreign trade, and the expropriation of the capitalists.
These transitional measures are in the right direction. But they were taken in response to immediate pressures. They were not foreseen, still less included in the program of the Castro leadership which spoke only vaguely of nationalizing the electric and telephone companies. This gives the revolution the appearance of headlessness. How long can this petty-bourgeois government get by in such fashion? At what point will it prove incapable of transcending its petty-bourgeois character?

WALTER LIPPMANN: A note about the above editorial (2005)

JOSEPH HANSEN: The Truth About Cuba (1960)
Generally an excellent overview of Cuba's social and political history, which a few odd comments toward the end, but very worth the time to read thoroughly. Opposes tourism and says that Cuba leaderships weakness was its failure to appeal to the workers of the United States on the basis of socialism.

FARRELL DOBBS on the Cuban Revolution (sound file!)

by Joseph Hansen (1961) transcribed from tape. Hansen was perhaps the best theoretician in the leadership of the Socialist Workers Party. In this class he analyzes the history of Cuban society and its revolutionary experience, and assesses the degree to which it confirms Trotsky's theory of Permanent Revolution. Hansen concludes that it confirms the theory, though an adjustment in sequence was necessary. Excellent class far too complex to be summarized in a single paragraph. This reflects a sharp change from the editorial given above in THE MILITANT the preceding year to a much more enthusiastic approach. in HTML or



JOSEPH HANSEN: CUBA, THE ACID TEST, A Reply to the Ultraleft Sectarians (1962)
One of the great polemics in the history of the Trotskyist movement, responding to sectarians who claimed that a socialist revolution had not taken place in Cuba because its revolution wasn't lead by a Trotskyist party. Very long but invaluable reading. Many of Hansen's writings during the first decades of Cuba's revolution are collected in the book Dynamics of the Cuban Revolution, a very useful collection published in 1978. The first edition was subtitled "A Trotskyist View" while the second was called "A Marxist Appreciation." By that time the SWP had decided not to call itself Trotskyist any longer. (Thanks to Andy Pollack!) or in two-column Word format.

R. VERNON: Why White Radicals are Incapable of Understanding Black Nationalism (1963)
Not primarily about the Cuban Revolution, yet this very lengthy and highly significant document shows how the Cuban Revolution impacted on the Socialist Workers Party in a positive way.

FARRELL DOBBS and JOSEPH HANSEN: Reunification of the Fourth International (1963)

JOSEPH HANSEN: The Test of the Cuban Revolution (1965)

BLAS ROCA: Trotskyist Slanders Cannot Tarnish the Cuban Revolution (1966)

JOSEPH HANSEN: Stalinism or Trotskyism in the Cuban Revolution? (1966)

JOSEPH HANSEN: The OLAS Conference (1967)

JOSEPH HANSEN: Castro's position on Czechoslavakia

JOSEPH HANSEN: Why Castro Ended Up in the Minority in Venezuela (1969)
Takes up the issue of rural guerrila warfare as a political strategy.

JOSEPH HANSEN: The Seven Errors Made by Che Guevara (1969)
Why did Che Guevara's mission to Bolivia fail?

JOSEPH HANSEN INTERVIEW (1978) (scanned image, very slow to open!)
same as above, but edited differently in 2004:  
JOSEPH HANSEN: Introduction to Dynamics of the Cuban Revolution (1978)

José G. Pérez: Cuba in the Twentieth Year of the Revolution (1979)

Adolfo Gilly, Angel Fanjul and José G. Pérez

GEORGE BREITMAN: on the Fourth International and Castroism (1981)
(A minority document with the Socialist Workers Party, highly critical of Cuba, but not calling for political revolution:
The Cuban CP is not and never has been a Leninist party, even though it has revolutionary forces in its leadership and membership. It did not lead the Cuban revolution, being organized six years after that event as a fusion of the Castroist, Stalinist, and other elements. It is patterned after the bureaucratic party structures in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union whose principal function is to keep the ruling stratum in power. It is the only legal party in Cuba today. It includes at least two tendencies—the Castroist, which exercises hegemony, and the Stalinist—whose differences are never openly discussed before the membership. The education of the members is much more influenced by Stalinist ideology than it was in the first years after the revolution. The Cuban CP as a whole should not be confused with its different wings, left or right. ddddddddd

Despite our serious differences with the Castro tendency, we recognize it to be close to ours and have always sought to collaborate with it for common revolutionary objectives.

JACK BARNES: Their Trotsky and Ours (1982) On The Cuban Crisis (1995)
Not yet available online, this is the Socialist Workers Party's formal break with its historical Trotskyist self-description. Published in the magazine New International. The SWP continues to publish Trotsky's writings, but no longer describes itself as Trotskyist. Since 1983, Barnes has been the National Secretary of the Socialist Workers Party.

This is the wing formerly lead by the late Ernest Mandel


On The Cuban Crisis (1995)
The bureaucratic deformations, the repressive practices and Caudillo-like functioning of Castro likewise contributed to the progressive decline of the influence of the revolution. But a country at war, besieged for 35 years, without energy resources could not be a model of socialist democracy. Socialism on a small island was obviously even more impossible than in the Soviet Union. But this doesn’t mean that Castro’s failures absolve him from not answering the imperialist campaign around human rights. He is guilty of not dissociating himself from Stalinism after the fall of the Berlin wall.

Our criticism centers on the absence of political pluralism and the repression of democratic rights, but in no case is it to be confused with those who demand “free” elections (with the Miami-based parties) and the restitution of expropriated property in order to assure the “democratic” victory of the counterrevolution like in Nicaragua. Under the current conditions in Cuba, a counter revolution would involve a civil war.

To demand the respect of democratic rights presupposes a struggle for the unconditional lifting of the US embargo which is the most basic of democratic rights, for the halting of aggression and blackmail without conditions. In this fight we are at the side of the Cuban people and the Castro leadership against imperialism.

But this anti-Imperialist solidarity does in no way involve support of the Castro leadership when it deprives its people of all power to protest and self rule. In the resistance-for the time being silent-of the Cuban people against the bureaucracy, we support all struggles for reforms which involve a perspective of defense of the gains of the revolution. The institutions of popular power (from the local level to the National assembly must be democratized to allow the pluralist expression of different currents, the mass organizations must cease being transmission belts for the party, the factory assemblies must have control over the current economic restructuring.

This is a file of their materials on Cuba.

Michael Lowy: Neither Imitation nor Copy
Che Guevara In Search of a New Socialism (2003)

Interview with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez

Dynamics of World Revolution Today (1963)
This was the programmatic basis for the reunification of most world Trotskyist forces after a ten-year long split, from 1953-1963. It's a completed analysis of virtually every political trend in the world. On Cuba, a key section includes these paragraphs:

The victory in Cuba marked the beginning of a new epoch in the history of the world revolution; for, aside from the Soviet Union, this is the first workers’ state established outside the bounds of the Stalinist apparatus. Such a development, whatever the size of the country involved, was a turning point whose effects have necessarily reverberated on a tremendous scale throughout the whole world Communist movement.

In fact an international Castroist current has appeared inside the world Communist and revolutionary-socialist movement which, as was to be expected, is strongest in the colonial areas, especially Latin America and Africa. It is also noticeable in the other workers’ states. In Algeria the influence of Castroism again testifies to the importance of the Cuban development.

Except in Spain and Portugal, Castroism has not had great impact in Europe. Its influence in other metropolitan centers such as the United States and Japan is likewise limited. One of the reasons for this is that the Cuban leadership has not yet reached an understanding of how it can best facilitate revolutionary rebirth in these areas.

The appearance of more workers’ states through further development of the colonial revolution, particularly in countries like Algeria, would help strengthen and enrich the international current of Castroism, give it longer range perspectives and help bring it closer to understanding the necessity for a new revolutionary Marxist international of mass parties. Fulfillment of this historic possibility depends in part on the role which the Fourth International plays in the colonial revolution and the capacity of sections of the Fourth International to help win fresh victories.

The infusion of Trotskyist concepts in this new Castroist current will also influence the development of a conscious revolutionary leadership, particularly in the workers’ states, will help prevent “Titoist” deviations and better assure the evolution of mass pressure and direct action into the cleansing force of political revolution. The development of the Portuguese and Spanish revolutions, historically possible in a short period, can also give rise to new tendencies of the Castroist type which would help the Cubans and related currents to achieve a fuller understanding of the process of world revolution in its entirety.


A British Trotskyist tendency led by Ted Grant (died, 2006) and Alan Woods
Has published a number of writings by Celia Hart, including an anthology
of her writings (Apuntas Revolucionarias)
Much of their Cuba material can be found:
Their main website is

Perspectives for world capitalism 2012
The collapse of USSR means that there is no longer a powerful Stalinist model with influence and ideological authority. Many people are thinking critically and there are passionate, open debates about what happened in the USSR and drawing conclusions for Cuba. On the other hand, it is clear that elements in the state bureaucracy are going over wholeheartedly to the counter-revolution, and are positioning themselves to reap the benefits from the restoration of capitalism.
The victory of the socialist revolution in Venezuela would be a major step in the direction of breaking the isolation of Cuba in the world capitalist market. But the pro-capitalist sections of the Cuban state bureaucracy, with their narrow nationalist mentality, do not see that the failure to carry out the revolution in Venezuela constitutes a serious threat to the future of the Cuban Revolution. By constantly putting the brakes on the Venezuelan Revolution, they are like a man in a tree sawing off the branch he is sitting on.

Cuba: An interview with Leonardo Padura

Cuban CP congress ratifies economic guidelines
– workers’ control and international socialism absent from discussion

Written by Jorge Martin Tuesday, 07 June 2011 Print

A traveller's notes from Cuba
Written by Patrick Larsen Thursday, 03 March 2011

Cuban communist intellectuals discuss the future of socialism
Written by Alan Woods Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Which way for the Cuban Revolution? - A Contribution to the debate
Written by Frank Josué Solar Cabrales Monday, 25 October 2010

Cuba 50 years later – where is the revolution going? Part One
By Jorge Martin Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Cuba 50 years later – where is the revolution going?
Without any doubt, the Cuban revolution, in its 50th anniversary, is at the crossroads. It is faced with economic and political difficulties, subject to a brutal imperialist blockade, facing the more treacherous attacks of those sections of world capitalism which want an “opening” as a way to restore capitalism. It is also threatened by those within the island who defend a “Chinese way” which in fact leads to capitalism. And there are those who defend the status quo of the bureaucracy which at the end of the day would lead to the collapse of the revolution.

The international context is favourable to the revolution, from the point of view of the class struggle. The revolution is spreading throughout Latin America. The crisis of capitalism (which will also lead to the crisis of the “Chinese model”) discredits the capitalist system in the eyes of millions of workers around the world, and in Cuba itself to those who could have some illusions in it.

In this situation, the enormous political and social reservoir of support the revolution has, if linked to the defence of proletarian internationalism and workers’ democracy, could become a powerful factor in the struggle to defend and spread the conquests of the planned economy and to open a socialist future in Latin America and the world.

In November 2004 they posted a sweeping historical analysis of Cuba in Spanish.

Conference: Trotsky’s Ideas in Venezuela and Cuba (May 29),
Montreal, Canada By In Defence of Marxism Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Where is Cuba Going?
by Jordi Rosich, March 19, 2008 [excerpt]:
What Raul Castro promises and what is expected of him

Since Raul Castro took on more political responsibility in the running of the country as a result of Fidel Castro's illness, he has portrayed an image of himself as being a "pragmatist", more concerned with economic efficiency than politics. This is the first thing that an average Cuban will tell you, particularly taxi drivers and people in a position to rent rooms to foreigners. They tell you that Fidel is more of an "idealist", that he is more concerned with "politics" and "international affairs", while Raul is more sensitive to the "everyday concrete problems of the people".

It is highly significant than in his first speech as President of the country, on February 24, he did not make one single reference to the Venezuelan revolution, whose fate is without a doubt decisive for the Cuban people and their revolution. In this same speech Raul highlighted a number of important political and economic measures. He linked "any changes related to the currency" to the aim that "everyone's living standard corresponds directly to their legally earned incomes, that is, with the importance and quantity of one's labour contribution to society."

More than one hundred attend launch of 'Revolution Betrayed' in Cuba
By In Defence of Marxism Thursday, 21 February 2008

Impressions from Havana
Jorge Martin Thursday, 21 February 2008

Vultures hovering over Cuba after Fidel Castro steps down
By Fred Weston and Alan Woods Wednesday, 20 February 2008
Fidel Castro (by Antônio Milena/ABr)On Tuesday, February 19,
Fidel Castro announced he was resigning his position as President of Cuba.

Cuba y la revolución permanente I
By Jordi Rosich Thursday, 29 November 2007
Cuba y la revolución permanente II
By Jordi Rosich Tuesday, 18 December 2007

Alan Woods: Forty years since the death of Che Guevara – Part One
Alan Woods: Forty years since the death of Che Guevara – Part Two

Official meeting in Caracas commemorates Trotsky’s anniversary

Future of Cuba and Venezuela tied together (December 2006)

The Time is short in Cuba

Preface by Alan Woods (2005) Day School on Latin America (March 9, 2006)
Alan Woods says: “Because of the isolation and the blockade, there are severe economic problems in Cuba. Many people can't make ends meet and have to engage in semi-illegal activities to survive.” Paraphrasing Marx in the German Ideology, he warned that in these conditions of scarcity “all the old crap can revive”, with people seeking a way out on an individual basis, which in effect is the psychological basis for a restoration of capitalism.

How to tackle this? Here Alan repeated what he had said earlier in the meeting about Lenin's four conditions as explained in State and Revolution. The first condition is for free elections for anybody who defends the revolution and the nationalised economy. The second is the right of recall of every official (workers' democracy). Thirdly there should be no standing army but the army of the people and finally everyone should participate in bureaucratic tasks so that if everybody is a bureaucrat, nobody can become a bureaucrat.

NEW Prólogo de Alan Woods a "Rusia: del socialismo real al capitalismo real"
(Spanish. Book published in Cuba. Translation forthcoming.)
Web-posted March 3, 2006 Day School – an important step forward (November 2005)
Very interesting new document in which the tendency explicitly argues against the call for the overthrow of the Cuban government led by Fidel Castro in a political revolution and states its perspective is that of reform. The entire document should be read carefully. It seem to be a big change from past positions in which this tendency specifically called for "political revolution" in Cuba. : They write:
To advocate the overthrow of Castro today would mean the victory of the counter-revolution. All those who advocated such an ultra-left position from afar would be regarded by the majority of Cubans as agents of American imperialism. The vast majority of the audience at the school supported the case for reform in Cuba, and the need to extend the revolution to the rest of Latin America as the only real way forward.

THE CUBAN REVOLUTION: Past, Present and Future (2004)
Web-posted November 26, 2004, this is a 41-page long professionally-produced
analysis spanning Cuban history from the mid-19th Century through the present.

Important excerpts from this 2004 position statement:

Brief summary, table of contents and link to full document:

COMPLETE (Spanish): (41 page pdf)

A British Trotskyist tendency led by Ted Grant and Alan Woods. 
"Executions and Repression: A Class View " (2003)

Only the democratic control and administration of the masses can root out the counter-revolution and the bureaucracy that is the soil on which the counter-revolution can grow. Let us not forget that it was the regime of bureaucratic mismanagement and corruption that led the USSR to collapse and capitalist counter-revolution in 1991. Let our slogan be "Back to Lenin!"
Genuine socialism cannot exist without the granting of basic democratic rights, such as freedom of expression. Marxists have never maintained that the one party monolithic system is a pillar of socialism. In Cuba it would be entirely possible to grant the freedom to organise to any group or party that accepted the nationalization of the means of production. All such tendencies should be allowed. This would not weaken but strengthen the revolution. (English)
This English link no longer works, but the document can be read: in English (in Spanish))

30th anniversary of Che Guevara's death
With all its progressive aspects and despite being a step forward for the masses, the Cuban regime was not socialism. By nationalising the economy, Che and Fidel were putting down the foundation stone of a workers state that should have led to the transition towards this goal. But with the delay of the revolution in Latin America and the advanced countries, the attempt to build socialism in one country lead instead to a closer relationship between the Cuban government and the Kremlin. In 1968 Fidel supported the sending of Russian tanks to Prague, in the 80s the repression in Poland (and more recently the smashing of the Tianamen movement in China), and the USSR policy of opposing the advance of the revolution with the nationalisation of the economy in Chile under Allende and in Nicaragua under the Sandinistas.

Marxists fight to defend Cuba, but at the same time we fight for a political revolution which would allow the workers to take control of the state and struggle for a world revolution. This is the only way to really defend the Cuban revolution. The collapse of Stalinism in Eastern Europe and the steps towards capitalism in Russia are a warning of the catastrophe that would occur for Cuban workers and youth after any attempt to restore capitalism (This original link doesn't work, but the one below does.) 

Marxists fight to defend Cuba, but at the same time we fight for a political revolution which would allow the workers to take control of the state and struggle for a world revolution. This is the only way to really defend the Cuban revolution. The collapse of Stalinism in Eastern Europe and the steps towards capitalism in Russia are a warning of the catastrophe that would occurr for Cuban workers and youth after any attempt to restore capitalism  [This is the youth wing of In Defense of Marxism.] 

The Colonial Revolution and the Deformed Workers States (1978)
"But right from the first day, the Cuban revolution was deformed and distorted. The proletariat never held political power directly as in Russia. The fact that even today probably the decisive bulk of the Cuban people, as the Chinese people too, support the regime at this stage, alters nothing as to its character. Castro's strictures against bureaucracy, like Stalin's, are necessary if he is to preserve the role of 'Bonapartist arbiter' and 'father of the people'.

Marxism and the Struggle Against Imperialism:
Third World in Crisis (1998)
by Ted Grant and Alan Woods
In this document, we read this:
"With the model of Moscow before them, the Cuban leaders manoeuvred to set up a proletarian bonapartist regime."
(NOTE: This URL no longer works, but this page was accessible via Google cache:



Workers International League - Program of the International (1970)
In reality, the army of Castro was gathered together on a bourgeois democratic programme and consisted in the main of agricultural workers, peasants and lumpen proletarian elements. Castro started off as a Bourgeois democrat with the United States as his model society.

At no stage was there workers' democracy in Cuba. The Bonapartism of the regime is embodied in the rule of Castro and the meetings in the Square of the Revolution where the sole contribution of the masses is to say 'Si' to Castro's exhortations. Cuba has remained throughout, a one party state, without soviets and without workers' control of industry or the state.

Consequently, more and more it has become bureaucratised. This was inevitable, given the isolation of the revolution and the way in which the revolution has developed. The workers' militia has been disarmed and differentiation between the bureaucrats - especially the higher bureaucrats - and the working class is steadily developing. The development of a state apparatus above and independent of the masses proceeds apace. Behind the scenes, Castro is attempting to negotiate an agreement with American Imperialism for recognition and aid: and an agreement is probably inevitable in the next period. This will end the 'revolutionary appeals' which Castro directs to Latin America. Cuba, will more and more in the thoughts of its leaders be bounded by the narrow shores of the island in the relations with the nations and classes of the world.

The heroism of Guevara should not blind us to his theoretical bankruptcy. To endeavour to repeat in the countries of Latin America the policies of Castroism in Cuba, is to commit a crime against the international working class.

Same as above, but posted with Cuba sections highlighted:



Trotskyist organization with the "bureaucratic collectivist" analysis. To this group, Cuba is a new form of class society which they call "state capitalist" and one in need of a complete social and political revolution. They often publish writings by Sam Farber, a Cuban exile from the left who seems not to belong to any specific organization, but always opposes the Cuban Revolution, and its leadership, but from the "left".

Where We Stand (excerpt)

We oppose U.S. intervention in Cuba, the Middle East, and elsewhere. We are for self-determination for Puerto Rico.

China and Cuba, like the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc, have nothing to do with socialism. They are state capitalist regimes. We support the struggles of workers in these countries against the bureaucratic ruling class.

Sam Farber: Cuba after Fidel

Sam Farber: reviews Ignacio Ramonet's Cien Horas Con Fidel (July-August 2007)

Walter Lippmann's short note on Farber's review:

Paul D'Amato: Cuba: Image and Reality (2007)

All sincere anti-imperialists should condemn the cruel U.S. economic blockade of Cuba; but we should have no illusions as to what the lifting of that embargo would mean. The proximity of Cuba to the U.S. and the latter’s size and power will lead to the more or less rapid reintegration of Cuba with the U.S. economy. With special rules that allow it to circumvent restrictive laws against trade and investment with Cuba, U.S. agribusiness has exported $1.6 billion in products to Cuba between 2001 and 2005, making Cuba the third largest U.S. food importer in Latin America.72 The Bush administration has also authorized a San Diego company to market three anti-cancer vaccines developed by the Center for Molecular Immunology in Havana.73 A lifting of the embargo would lead not to the flourishing of socialism, by whatever definition. Cuba’s social services—its free health care and educational system especially—would come under threat.

Paul D'Amato: Race and sex in Cuba (2007)

Cuba, Democracy and the Bush Doctrine
by Héctor Reyes EXCERPTS:
But what compels the Castro regime to use these methods in opposing the designs of U.S. imperialism is the hard fact that it is a government not run by its people, not controlled by its workers. This is also why Castro chose to crush the band of dissidents, while their stage manager, James Cason, sips piña coladas in the comfort of his diplomatic residence in Havana.

Cuba is a class society in which class inequality is growing much like in the rest of Latin America–even if some of those who correctly defend its right to self-determination prefer to bury their heads in the sand and refuse to acknowledge it. Revolutionary socialists are not in the business of advising Castro how to rule more or less effectively. FULL: (July-August 2003)
Also: What's Behind Cuba's Crackdown (2003)
Is Castro's Cuba A Socialist Society?
Castro’s Cuba in Perspective (Sam Farber interview, 2004)
What many in the U.S. left fail to understand is that ever since the collapse of the Soviet bloc, Cuba’s importance has dramatically declined in the eyes of Washington. What keeps the issue alive is the electoral weight of the evenly divided state of Florida. As far as the U.S. ruling class is concerned they would end the blockade tomorrow and rush to invest in the island before the Europeans and Canadians had left nothing to invest in.

Sam Farber: Cuba’s likely transition and its politics
ISR Issue 48, July–August 2006
Louis Proyect blog responding to this Sam Farber article:
More Proyect comments criticizing others on Cuba:

Eli Stephens commentary on ISO and Cuba, January 2007:

SOCIALIST ALTERNATIVE (Australian affiliate of US ISO)


Needed for Cuba’s revolution:
a new party to fight for workers’ democracy

Andrea Bauer June 2011

By Susan Williams, M.D., New York City Steven Strauss, M.D., Columbia, Maryland Debbie Brennan, Melbourne, Australia Stephen Durham, New York City March 2010
Over 26 THOUSAND words. More like a book than an article.


The need for an international revolutionary party and Cuba’s role
One of the greatest failures of the PCC leadership has been their refusal to use the authority they achieved as organizers of the first victorious anti-capitalist revolution and workers state in the Western Hemisphere to galvanize the creation of an international party.
"Move toward a revolutionary course!

"All who passionately defend the Cuban Revolution should support those in Cuba who advocate the following: shifting the locus of political power from the bureaucracy to democratic organs of workers’ power; the institution of workers’ control and the right to strike at the point of production, in the factories, service industries and farms; democratization of the army and the right to elect officers; and real autonomy of the mass organizations."
"We also call on the PCC to immediately guarantee full freedom of speech and association to left critics and an end to all forms of political repression against pro-revolutionary, anti-capitalist forces within the regime or the party. The right of PCC members to form tendencies in order to discuss the crucial issues facing the country should also be enacted

Recent developments in Cuba (June 2010)
Reprints from capitalist media with a hostile slant. No comments from FSP itself, but the direction is clear.


Cuba: Economic Crisis and “Market Reforms”
16 September 2011

"Defend the Cuban Revolution"
Despite its heroic achievements, the Cuban workers state has been bureaucratically deformed from its inception with the working class excluded from political power. Cuba is ruled by a Stalinist caste that upholds the nationalist dogma of building “socialism in one country” and opposes the perspective of international proletarian revolution, thus undermining the defense of the Cuban Revolution. Cuba’s situation has become particularly acute since the collapse of the Soviet Union. To avert economic disaster, the Cuban government has increasingly opened the country to imperialist investment and instituted a series of “market reforms.” In the mid 1990s, the regime also legalized the holding and exchange of U.S. currency, a “dollarization” which has led to sharp and growing income differentials hitting women and black Cubans the hardest. As part of our defense of the Cuban Revolution, we fight for a workers political revolution to oust the Stalinist bureaucracy in Havana and establish a regime of workers democracy, based on the power of workers councils, and revolutionary internationalism. FULL ARTICLE:

"Venezuela: Populist Nationalism vs. Proletarian Revolution"
Castro’s July 26 Movement consisted of peasant guerrillas and declassed petty-bourgeois intellectuals who had become estranged from the bourgeoisie and were independent of the proletariat. Under ordinary conditions, the Castroite rebels would have followed in the footsteps of countless similar movements in Latin America, wielding radical-democratic rhetoric to reassert bourgeois control. It was only as a result of exceptional circumstances—the absence of the working class as a contender for power in its own right, hostile imperialist encirclement and the flight of the national bourgeoisie, and a lifeline thrown by the Soviet Union—that Castro’s petty-bourgeois government was able to smash capitalist property relations.

(This group is a split-off from the Spartacist League.)
For Revolutionary Internationalist Defense of Cuba!
The Cuban deformed workers state which was established through the expropriation of the foreign and domestic capitalists in 1960-61 is a state qualitatively similar to that of the bureaucratically degenerated Soviet Union under Stalin and his heirs. The fight to establish genuine soviet rule of workers councils that defend the gains of the revolution and seek to extend them requires a political revolution by the Cuban proletariat against the narrow Castro bureaucracy which grew out of the petty-bourgeois guerrilla army and has monopolized political power ever since.


Defending Cuba and Revolutionary Democracy:
Approaching a Deepening Debate
by Paul Le Blanc

(Too convoluted to summarize briefly beyond saying the author is very critical of Cuba in light of the trials of 1983, but doesn't favor the overthrow of the Cuban government. He's in the Breitmann-Lovell political tradition. Read his 7400 word treatise for yourself.)


Trotskyist organization believing no socialist revolution took place because it wasn't lead by a Trotskyist Party. These are the latter-day descendents of Gerry Healy They say:

In Cuba, power had fallen into the hands of a guerrilla army which was clearly of a petty-bourgeois nationalist character, without any serious ties to the workers. The workers themselves had played no significant role in the formation of the new regime, nor had they established any means of exerting democratic control over the state once it was formed.

To designate such a regime as a "workers state" had immense ramifications. It meant abandoning the entire struggle waged by the Marxist movement for the political and organizational independence of the working class. Instead, it indicated that the path to socialism lay through subordinating the working class to the nationalist leaderships. It would be the Castroites, the guerrilla armies and other nationalists rooted in the petty-bourgeoisie who would lead the socialist revolution, not the working class, educated and organized by parties of the Fourth International. That was the central historical prognosis flowing from the sociological definition of a Cuban workers state put forward by the Pabloites.
The working class had not made the revolution, and it exercised no control over the state apparatus in the revolution's aftermath. But these facts were taken merely as a few more normative criteria the Cuban revolution had failed to meet, demonstrating that progress was still to be made, and that uncritical support was all the more necessary.
Cuban reality was quite different from the rosy scenario painted by Hansen. The Cuban Trotskyists, for example, were ruthlessly repressed, their leaders jailed and their press smashed. The island has long held one of the largest number of political prisoners of any country in the world, not a few of them Castro's former comrades in the July 26 movement.
In reality, Cuba, like so many other oppressed countries in the course of the decades following the Second World War, provided a confirmation of Permanent Revolution, but in the negative. That is, where the working class lacked a revolutionary party, and therefore was incapable of providing leadership to the masses of oppressed, representatives of the national bourgeoisie and the petty-bourgeois nationalists were able to step in and impose their own solution. Nasser, Nehru, Peron, Ben Bella, Sukharno, the Baathists and, in a later period, the Islamic fundamentalists in Iran and the Sandinistas in Nicaragua, were all examples of this process. In virtually all of these cases nationalizations were also carried out. FULL TEXT:

Observations from a visit to Cuba
18 April 2013

Cuba’s Raúl Castro unveils plan for massive job cuts

Castroite purge in Cuba as US slightly eases sanctions

Cuban “reforms” promote private property and social inequality (April 17, 2008)


They no longer define themselves as Trotskyist and left the Fourth International in the early 1980s.
Here are a few excerpts from an extremely interesting and comprehensive analysis of the Cuban Revolution.

1. Four decades after its triumph over the Batista dictatorship, the Cuban Revolution stands out as a critical point of resistance to US imperialism and neo-liberal globalisation. Its continuing survival after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Eastern European socialist bloc is witness to its vitality and profound legitimacy in the eyes of the majority of the Cuban people—it is their revolution. Its refusal to die, despite all forecasts, has exploded the propaganda about Cuba being a simple satellite of the Soviet Union. What Cuba has to say now wins a larger hearing and broader sympathy, such that Washington has to devote more time and effort to its propaganda offensive against the revolution.

16. As far as its single party system is concerned, Cuba takes its stand on any nation’s sovereign right to adopt whatever institutional arrangement most accord with its traditions, while not ruling out changes to that system in the future. However, under present conditions of concentrated imperialist aggression—and especially given outright US support for the “rights” of the former capitalists expropriated by the revolution—the replacement of the Castro leadership of the revolution by another party cannot take the form of the creation of a “healthy workers state” and even less of a “social market economy” run by “third way” social democrats. As matters stand, the only feasible alternative holders of power in Cuba are the corrupt Miami mafia and their US backers. In the words of former Political Bureau member Carlos Aldana: “A party represents an option for power. In our country, there is only one option bidding for power against the Revolution, and that’s the counter-revolution. A multiparty system means legalising what the US hasn’t been able to do with blood and fire; it meöans creating a party of capitalism, representing US interests in Cuba ... If, one day, the objective circumstances change, and a multiparty system no longer necessarily means the appearance of a counter-revolutionary party, then we could take up the conversation again.”

CUBA AS AN ALTERNATIVE (complete book)
An informative compilation on many subjects

Committee for a Workers International (CWI)
(Socialist Party [of the UK])

Peter Taafe - Cuba: Socialism and Democracy (2000)
Presented in the form of a polemic against the Democratic Socialist Party of Australia (DSP), the Socialist Labor Party, is another British Trotskyist group, one which split from the Ted Grant/Alan Woods-led In Defense of Marxiam/Socialist Appeal group: 

Cuba faces a choice of two roads in the next period. The processes of capitalist restoration, could be accelerated, if anything, in the next period with the continuation of the present policies of the Castro government. This scenario could only be definitely averted through the establishment of a genuine regime of workers' democracy, linked to the perspective of carrying the idea of the socialist revolution to Latin America and internationally. Notwithstanding the blandishments of the DSP, this would involve the establishment of genuine workers' councils, locally and nationally, which would have control and management of the economy as a whole. All representatives and officials must be elected, subject to recall by those they represent and receive only the average wage of a skilled worker. In short, Cuba needs a regime of workers' democracy.

Che Guevara - Symbol of Struggle (1997) 

Peter Taafe: Cuba - Can the revolution survive? (January 2005)
Castro tacked and weaved throughout the 1990s to maintain the main elements of his regime, a planned economy allegedly with ‘participatory democracy’. In reality, this ‘democracy’ amounted to, at most, consultation with the masses rather than placing control and management in their hands. At the same time, Castro has flirted with the church, including a visit by the Pope, and has latterly played more to deep-seated Cuban nationalism – including a certain romanticism of the influence of Spain, colonialism, and Cuban culture, even from the era of slavery. Hotels formerly used by gangsters in pre-revolutionary Cuba welcome foreign tourists with photographs of the ‘good old days’ of rampant capitalism.
Cuba must ‘open up’, not to capitalism but to real and genuine workers’ democracy. Already, voices have been raised in Cuba urging the re-examination of Trotsky’s role and his ideas of democratic and liberating socialism as opposed to bureaucratic Stalinism. Celia Hart, a daughter of one of the leaders of the Cuban revolution, has, it seems, come to Trotskyist conclusions and has urged those who stand for the revolution to do likewise. This would mean the ending of the one-party monopoly, fair elections to genuine workers’ councils, with the right of all those – including the Trotskyists – to stand in elections, strict control over incomes, and with the right of recall over all elected officials. If such measures were introduced, this would mark a turning point, not just for Cuba, but for revolutionary struggle everywhere.

Cuba - before and after the revolution (October 2006)

Peter Taafe - Cuba: What will happen after Castro (October 2006)


Principal leader seems to be John Reimann. Appears to be a splitoff form the Socialist World tendency led by Peter Taafe. Couldn't find any specific analysis of Cuba, but one can presume from this:

No better analysis was made of the new phenomenon of what we called proletarian bonapartism. Following events in China, Cuba, and elsewhere, the process of spasmodic leaps towards proletarian bonapartism in the colonial world was reaffirmed in 1974-5 by a wave of such events in Vietnam, Cambodia, Angola, Mozambique, and Ethiopia.

In relation to the Stalinist states, ours was the only tendency to understand and warn in advance that, at least in the USSR and Eastern Europe, the bureaucracy had reached the limits of its capacity to develop society; that it had become not just a relative drag but an absolute brake on further progress. It predicted convulsions. Now that the productive forces were no longer being developed, the working class could no longer tolerate the burden of bureaucratic repression. Few other observers - left or right -had monitored so closely the hidden data of economic wastage or tapering productivity; predicted so presciently the uprisings of the working class which were later to bring down the regimes in East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Romania, etc.; or anticipated the crumbling of the Soviet Union.


U.S. followers of French Trotskyist Pierre Lambert who headed the Organizing Committee for the Reconstruction of the Fourth International (OCRFI). Here's part of their view on Cuba:
Had the emergence of the Castro leadership in Cuba invalidated a founding principle of the FI, according to which the FI's program -- and therefore its organizational expression, the section of the FI -- was imperative in every country? Would Castro promote the extension of the Cuban Revolution to the rest of the world with an orientation rooted in Permanent Revolution? Did Castro advocate the forms of workers' democracy -- soviet democracy -- ushered in by the Russian Revolution of 1917, until the revolution's degeneration under Stalin? Had Castro embraced the FI's historic program?

Alan Benjamin explains their position on political revolution as of July 2008:
Including this:
The traditional position of the OCI was for political revolution. But
with the merger of forces from the USec in 1980-81, the question of
what form the struggle would take to reinstate Cuba into the chain of
revolutionary movements for socialist transformation and to break the
isolation of the revolution was left open. The World Congress that
reproclaimed the Fourth International in 1993 did not take a position
in favor of political revolution, nor did it take a position in
opposition to this slogan.

The Cuban Revolution of 1959-1961 formed the political backdrop in which an unprincipled “reunification” took place between the International Secretariat and the SWP. If you look at the official history of the SWP, you will read that toward the end of the 1950s, there began a political convergence between the SWP leadership, on the one hand, and the central leaders of the International Secretariat in Paris, on the other. This history claims that that the French OCI (the French affiliate of the International Committee previously called the PCI) “turned its back on the Cuban Revolution,” refusing to acknowledge the revolution and the creation of a workers’ state in Cuba. This assertion is simply not true. The OCI hailed the downfall of the Batista dictatorship in Cuba under the impact of the mass revolutionary struggles of the Cuban workers and peasants. It applauded the victorious Cuban Revolution, characterizing it as a decisive blow to U.S. imperialism in its very own backyard.

But this is where the political agreement ended between the OCI and the SWP leadership, which was joined on this score by Mandel-Frank and the IS. The SWP and IS leaderships did more than just support the revolution. The SWP and IS leaders proceeded to characterize Fidel Castro as a “natural Trotskyist” and to explain that the Cuban Revolution, which had overturned capitalist property relations by early 1961, heralded the first non-Stalinist anti-capitalist revolution with a leadership to be emulated. Accordingly, there was no longer any need to build a section of the FI in Cuba.

The OCI rejected this characterization of the leadership of the Cuban Revolution, holding to the formulation in the Transitional Program according to which petty-bourgeois political formations could, under exceptional circumstances, go further in their break with the capitalists than they had initially intended. Though this “paradox” was proving to be more commonplace than expected in the post-war period, the OCI explained, this did not invalidate the central need for sections of the Fourth International in every country, including Cuba. But the debate in the early years of the Cuban Revolution between the SWP and IS leaders, on the one hand, and the French OCI, on the other, was not about the assessment of the various stages reached by the Cuban Revolution. It was not about the imperative need for Trotskyists to be the best defenders of the Cuban Revolution against imperialism; on this there was absolutely no disagreement between the OCI and the SWP.

The debate in the FI was about something far more fundamental: Had the emergence of the Castro leadership in Cuba invalidated a founding principle of the FI, according to which the FI’s program—and therefore its organizational expression, the section of the FI—was imperative in every country? Would Castro promote the extension of the Cuban Revolution to the rest of the world with an orientation rooted in Permanent Revolution? Did Castro advocate the forms of workers’ democracy—soviet democracy—ushered in by the Russian Revolution of 1917, until the revolution’s degeneration under Stalin? Had Castro embraced the FI’s historic program? The SWP and IS leaders basically replied in the affirmative to these questions—and on the basis of this “political convergence” regarding the assessment of the Castro leadership, they began political discussions aimed at a political reunification of the International Secretariat and the International Committee. FULL DOCUMENT - EXTREMELY LONG

Pierre Lambert speaks, 1998 (no mention of Cuba, just their world view expressed):


Cuba's New Economic Reforms (January 2013)
"While the CTC (Cuban Federation of Labor) originally announced the job terminations, the decision was undoubtedly made by the Cuban Communist Party and later approved by the National Assembly of Peoples Power, the formal but not actual governing body of Cuba. However much the Cuban Communist Party seeks out and encourages the input, consultation, and involvement of the trade unions, neighborhood organizations, and other substantial mass organizations, all critical decisions in Cuba are made by the Cuban CP."
"we have not considered the Cuban leadership to be proletarian revolutionaries, that is, based on a consistent program for world socialist revolution and proletarian democracy at home."

Former members of Socialist Workers Party of the United States. Best known leader: Jeff Mackler. Trotskyist group mildly critical of the Cuban Revolution's leadership or policies on some issues. Like some Trotskyists, SA is very hostile to Venezuela's Hugo Chavez. They write:

Cuba's perspective remains as it was from the first days of their revolution-the extension of their socialist revolution to the world. But experience has taught them that their earlier strategy was deeply flawed. And we have every reason to believe that when the unfolding global economic crisis erupts, it will precipitate a pre-revolutionary period of class struggle in the strongholds of world capitalism.
No one can predict what the Cubans, or for that matter any other current in the world working class, will do when world capitalist equilibrium collapses-including the many currents claiming to be Trotskyist or quasi-Trotskyist. In any event, we cannot discount the capacity of the Castroist leadership of the CCP to rise up to meet that fateful challenge to the future of their revolution as well as the very future of the human race.
Cuba's revolutionists of action are fully aware of the responsibility they bear and will think more than twice before moving faster and further than they believe that the current objective relation of class forces will permit.

We should continue to remain in solidarity with the Cuban socialist revolution and in critical support of its Castroist/Guevaraist leadership, which, at almost every key historical juncture, has chosen the road of revolutionary action. (original link)
From Google cache file:

Socialist Action 2005 Political Resolution (Cuba and Venezuela sections highlighted)

Socialist Action articles on Cuba

Former member of the Socialist Workers Party of the United States, its best-known leader is Nat Weinstein. He says:

IN 2002 Weinstein wrote:
The preconditions for socialist revolution are objectively determined. But the matter of effective leadership is a subjective problem. Without the construction of a mass revolutionary workers’ party that has been tested in the class struggle, the conquest of state power by the only revolutionary class in modern society, the proletariat, is exceedingly unlikely. There have been cases where would-be revolutionaries can evolve in the course of the struggle itself into revolutionists that learn from their mistakes and begin to make decisions that lead to successful socialist revolution. And there’s no reason why their evolution into fully developed revolutionary Marxists working toward the goal of world socialist revolution should be excluded.

We think that the current Cuban leadership fits into this category.
We reserve judgment from afar in regard to the Cuban Communist Party’s present policy of outlawing alternative, pro-socialist working-class parties in Cuba.
Cuba’s revolutionary socialist government may not have institutionalized all the forms of workers’ democracy that were in effect in the early Soviet system, we believe the Cuban political, social and economic system to be thoroughly democratic in all other essentials. And we have good reason to expect that whatever errors have been or will be made, the chances are very good for a positive outcome. Besides, what else can anyone be reasonably expected to do in this regard? We certainly do not recommend the call for a political revolution in Cuba.
IN 2005 Weinstein wrote:
The socialist revolution in Cuba is almost as important a conquest for the world working class as the Russian Revolution of October 1917.


"Socialism in One Country" No Answer
Proletarian Revolution No. 39 (Spring 1991)

The Cuban revolution was a tremendous blow against imperialism. But petty-bourgeois nationalism, including the Stalinist variant, offers no way out of the imperial stranglehold. Castro has spent three decades propping up the carcass of Stalinism. Rather than a genuine international revolution, he has always promoted the illusion that real independence can be won without overthrowing imperialism.

Sy Landy, the leader of this group, died in December 2007:

Cuba long ago came up against the limits of what can be accomplished within the framework of nationalist development, especially, of course, if that nation is a small one like Cuba. But these limits hold everywhere. Imperialism still dominates the world today. And one country cannot develop itself, above all it cannot develop an independent industry other than by going through the world market. But it is precisely in that market that the labor of an underdeveloped country is underpriced and that of the industrialized countries is overpriced. Moreover, the wealth that had long been stolen from Cuba and other countries lies in the accounts of the big corporations in the imperialist countries. Cuba has not ever, and still does not gain the full benefit of what it produces. It can only fall further and further behind.
It's true that Castro began to call himself a communist, and gave that label to his revolution – after the USSR intervened in the Cuban situation with economic aid.

And, of course, apologists for the American bourgeoisie were quick to call him that, when they wanted to consign him to limbo – just as some of them at one time called Martin Luther King Jr. or Jane Fonda, "communists."

But the Cuban revolution was never a "communist" revolution, its aim was not the construction of socialist society by the working class and the spread of that revolution to the proletariat around the world.

Its basic aim was always essentially only the independent development of Cuba, using whatever means Cuba's leaders found necessary at any moment to take a small breathing space from the imperialist vise. But the space they gained was ever so small, and in one way or another, whether by the disappearance, "vertically" or "horizontally," of Castro, whether by the Castro regime itself bringing imperialism back in while reducing the standard of living of the population so as to make investment "interesting" from a capitalist standpoint, many of the conquests of the Cuban revolution today stand on the brink of being lost.

The problems of our time cannot be solved in one country alone. They can be addressed only by putting the immense industrial and technological resources of the big imperialist powers at the service of all the people of the world. That is the aim of the proletarian revolution.

The Cuban people, including its leaders have made a fight for 40 years against the domination by imperialism. The nationalist aims of their struggle – real independence, a continuing improvement in the lives of the poor masses – can be realized only through the proletarian revolution, the revolution that is yet to be made.  (Aug 28, 1998)


A talented writer, left the organized Trotskyist movement, formed in 1928, in 1931, claiming to be more revolutionary than its founder. He published an alternative Trotskyist journal until 1937, and a website is devoted to defending his legacy in the new millenium. Still around in the 1960s and beyond, until he died in 1977.
The Perspectives of the Cuban Revolution (January 1962)

Castroism - Deadly Danger to the Cuban Revolution (December 2002)
Moscow's Betrayal of the Cuban Revolution (December 2002)
Does Mexico Need A Fidel Castro? (1961)
Mobilization Against Cuba in Latin America (1961)
What's going on in Cuba (April-September 1960)

This a US organization based on the ideas of the late Argentine Trotskyist Nahuel Moreno. 
No longer in operation as of this writing (October 2007 as I understand its principal leader is now in Argentina.)
It's principal leader today is a man named Carlos Petroni.

The limited gains of the Cuban revolution: independence from the US; public ownership of many of the elements of the economy; universal and free health care and education and housing as a right, not a privilege, as well as elimination of landlordism – among others – are the gains that need to be defended against imperialism and reactionaries, while at the same time Marxists advocate a political revolution – not a social one – in Cuba for the working class and the oppressed to exert direct power through their own institutions and guarantee to stop the retreat of the revolution, now being implemented with the re-introduction of capitalism and class differentiation by Castro’s government.
From our side, we maintain our support for Cuba in the face of any and all US attacks and provocations. We demand the lifting of the embargo, the withdrawal of US troops from Guantanamo and the closing of its terror-and-death camp there for good, and we will certainly defend Cuba against any Imperial military threats or provocations.

But we insist that the best defense of Cuba is for the Cuban working class to forge a democratic workers' republic, based on the rule of their own organizations and not the Stalinist bureaucracy, and to reject the present course towards restoring capitalism in Cuba.

Cuba can and should be better defended and protected by a foreign policy of support and solidarity with the struggling national liberation movements and the left internationally, not by the exchange of political commitments and praise with center-right semi-colonial regimes such as that of Kirchner in Argentina or with the social democrats, who are the political representatives of European imperialism.

Two documents from this tendency whose website no longer exists, saved for reference here:

Gina Alvarez: A Marxist Definition: What is Cuba? (2003)
The Cuba debate: Executions, immigration, embargo,
US provocations and Fidel Castro's political blunders
What's Left?By Sebastian Robles

Nahuel Moreno's unfavorable opinion of Fidel Castro:

United Socialist Workers Party (Brazil)
Today the PSTU is officially committed to a Morenist variety of Trotskyism and is a member of the International Workers' League (Fourth International), a grouping of such organizations.'_Party_(Brazil) 

Olmedo Beluche: What is Cuba Today (2001)

Cuba Under Discussion (2000)

Coordinating Committee for the Refoundation of the Fourth International

Once again, the defense of Cuba by Jorge Altamira (2004)

Cuba has responded to the economic restrictions imposed by Bush with what everything points to as being huge price hikes on the 'free or dollarized markets,' on top of a chronic scarcity of supplies. That is to say that the much touted recovery of the so-called 'special period' has not taken place and that the legalization of the dollar has not served to bring about a reactivation of the economy, but rather to accentuate social inequality and popular discontent. While the administration of the economy continues firmly bureaucratized, there will be no progress and much less a solution. But in order to de-bureaucratize the social administration it is necessary that the workers enjoy complete political liberty to question the leadership bureaucracy and even to remove it. The frequent cases of corruption are a demonstration of the failure of personal power to contain the social aspirations of the bureaucracy. The Cuban regime continues to be bent on trying on the impossible 'Chinese route' or, as consolation, the North Korean, now executing a massive program of "economic liberty."

Fidel Castro in Argentina by Jorge Altamira
Fidel's formulations, which on the one hand denounced the picture of catastrophe in the present situation as a whole and on the other hand advised its being overcome in the framework of the existing social regimes, reflect a general social contradiction: beside the gains of the Cuban revolution, the defeats of the international revolution and, as a result, the isolation of the Cuban revolution as such. They reflect the contradictory character of the Cuban regime, which can still produce the highest levels of education and health, but cannot avoid the resurgence of prostitution; that has as its axis a system of planning which coexists with the looting of state property; which is led by a state bureaucracy controlled by a Council of State and by Fidel Castro himself, which accommodates those in favor of the restoration of capitalism, those in favor of the status quo and those who express revolutionary tendencies.

This contradictory regime found its expression in the recent prison sentences and execution by shooting, decided in summary trials instead of in open people's courts, as occurred during the first year of the revolution, and unjustified, either, by civil war. The death penalty appears in the penal code for aggravated common crimes, which shows the exacerbated political deformation of the Cuban regime and is, by itself, a confession of its contradictory character. That is, the recent repressive measures are, above all, an affirmation of the apparatus of the State in confrontation with society and not by any means as an effective instrument of struggle against imperialism. The Cuban government formulates the possibility of inserting itself in the world economy in terms that do not liquidate national autonomy.

Executions by firing squad in Cuba
A hijacking with no victims does not justify execution, nor does dissidence justify jail. Cuba is not going through a civil war and its government fully exercises political, legal as well as real and effective domination. The Yankee provocation should be confronted politically: throwing out the Yankee representative, denouncing their provocations in all of the international forums, demanding pronouncements from the people's governments and organizations. In Cuba, the Catholic clergy carry out a systematic campaign against the revolution, but suffer no sanctions because they are protected by the accords with the Vatican after the visit, two years ago, of the Pope.

Independently of the actions of some and the opinions of others, the shootings and the abusive prison sentences are equivalent to victimizing the Cuban people for the provocations of imperialism and for the dead end of the Cuban government's own policies.

Raúl is not leftist enough, Trotskyites say; in fact, he may be bowing to
imperialism (July 2010)

What the transfer of power in Cuba means

By: Diego Dalay
Source: La Verdad Obrera N° 198 Friday 4 August 2006
We revolutionary socialists of the PTS clearly reject any attempt by imperialism to take advantage of the situation to expedite a policy favorable to its interests. Faced with any imperialist provocation, we are for the defense of the Cuban revolution. At the same time, the continuation of the Castro-ite bureaucracy, of a "Castroism without Castro" or with his brother, can only weaken the Cuban workers’ state by opening the way for the restorationist forces to grow stronger.

Castro and the Cuban Revolution (2006) (Relies heavily on the work of Farber, Tennant and Dolgoff.)
The transition to a form of state-sponsored form of capitalism in Cuba will be led by the army, joint venture technocrats, and other elements currently in the ruling apparatus. But if the regime is evolving on the “Chinese road” towards a Cuban market economy with “Cuban characteristics”, it also faces obstacles.The Castroites fear a collapse like the Soviet Union and they fear a Tiananmen type incident, where they army represses the people. They will face an emerging right wing neo-liberal opposition, composed of the Christian Democrats in exile and the Catholic church in Cuba, and no doubt backed by the US. They also fear the emergence of a genuine left. We have to help Cuban socialists prepare this socialist alternative.


The Words of a Grass-Eating Lion:
What Fidel Did and did not say in Cordoba.

This Trotskyist-originated group from the tradition of Max Schactman holds the "bureaucratic collectivist" perspective. Thus, they are implacably hostile to the Cuban Revolution and the leadership of Fidel Castro. Here are links to a famous 1980 debate between two leaders of this group and Robin Blackburn who defends Cuba's Revolution:

Chris Harmon: Cuba behind the myths (2006)

The balance sheet of isolation
Castro’s regime over the last 47 years has amounted to a dictatorship by a group who think they understand what the mass of Cuban people really need—a variety of modern ‘enlightened despots’. They sincerely believed at the beginning that they could motivate the people to bring about a completely new society. But the isolation of the revolution meant in practice that Cuba was locked once more in the position of being a commodity producer to other parts of the world system. Maintaining their own control came to mean building up managerial structures that pressured the mass of people to labour to produce the necessary commodities—and the surplus to go into accumulation to keep the cost of producing the commodities competitive. It is an endless struggle to keep ahead of other elements in the world system. Having survived the ‘special period’ of the late 1990s, Cuba was once again affected by the worldwide economic downturn of 2001-02, with a slowing growth rate and accumulating debts. It has to rely heavily on short-term loans to finance imports, chiefly food and fuel. Because of its poor credit rating, an $11 billion hard currency debt, and the risks associated with Cuban investment, interest rates have reportedly been as high as 22 percent.

Critical pro-Cuba comment by Louis Proyect on Chris Harmon 

Sam Farber: The Cuban Army and the “Chinese Road” (September 2006)

Chris Harmon: Down and out in Havana (Socialist Review, July 2002)

Mike Gonzalez: Cuba on my mind (Socialist Review, June 2003)
Socialism without freedom is not worthy of the name.
We can and must denounce Bush and Blair's murderous assault on freedom in Iraq. We have an equal responsibility to expose it in Cuba. We can and must fight imperialism. But if we are to win the wider movement, we must be the unconditional, principled, consistent champions of freedom - not the cheerleaders for a lesser evil.

Mike Gonzalez: From sugar to tourism (Socialist Review, December 2004))
Gott suggests that Castro abandoned the slogans of communism over a decade ago, and took up instead the slogans of the anti-capitalist movement. But democracy, openness and control of power are the central theme of debates within that movement - and until that exists in Cuba, that better world the movement seeks will not arise there.

Cuba, Castro and Socialism
Peter Binns & Mike Gonzalez

Class forces in the Cuban Revolution: 
A reply to Binns and Gonzalez
by Robin Blackburn

Socialist Worker newspaper (UK)
Below: links to their articles on Cuba or:

Left-wing revolutionary opponent of the Cuban Revolution. He doesn't seem to belong to any group, but is often quoted in and writes for the various other left-wing and revolutionary groups who are so leftwing and so revolutionary that they want to overthrow the Cuban government for one or another reason. Many of his articles are available on the internet. He has also written two books on Cuba.

The Resurrection of Che Guevara (New Politics, 1998)
Che Guevara played a key role in inaugurating a tradition of arbitrary administrative, non-judicial detentions, later used in the UMAP camps for the confinement of dissidents and social "deviants": homosexuals, Jehovahs Witnesses, practitioners of secret Afro-Cuban religions such as Abakua, and non-political rebels. In the 80s and 90s this non-judicial, forced confinement was also applied to AIDS victims.
In the last analysis, however, the political question remains: was Che Guevara a friend or foe of emancipatory, liberatory politics? The historical record is clear; Guevaraism is incompatible with the struggle to build an egalitarian and democratic society, a society in which working people decide their own fate without reliance on "well-intentioned saviors."

Revolution and Reaction in Cuba, 1933-1960 (book)
Origins of the Cuban Revolution Reconsidered (book, 2006)



Dissident Cuban Communism 
The Case of Cuban Trotskyism, 1932-1965
by Gary Andrew Tennant
Review of Hidden Pearl of the Caribbean 
by Martin Sullivan: 

Shiny Happy Socialist People: 
A Defense of Revolutionary Cuba 

By Stuart Watkin

Ramon Mercader
The Free

He was released from Mexico City's Lecumberri prison on May 6, 1960 
and moved to Havana, where Fidel Castro's Communist government 
welcomed him. In 1961, he moved to the USSR and was awarded the 
Hero of the Soviet Union medal, one of the country's highest decorations. 
He split time between Cuba and the USSR for the rest of his life, revered 
by the KGB (the successor to the NKVD), and died in Havana in 1978. 

Some commentaries by Cuban scholars

Ariel Dacal Díaz ¿Por qué fracasó el socialismo soviético?

CELIA HART: "Socialism in One Country" and the Cuban Revolution:
Celia Hart: "Socialism in one country" and the Cuban Revolution 

Socialist Action edition, introduction by Jeff Mackler  

CELIA HART: "The Flag of Coyoacan" (December 2003)

CELIA HART: On August 15 We Take The Winter Palace (July 2004)

CELIA HART: "Marginal Notes on the Crime" (August 2004)  English and Spanish

CELIA HART: "The Magnetism of the Permanent Revolution (September 2004)


by Pablo Guadarrama Gonzalez, Marx Ahora #15 (2003) (English)

An Historical Sketch of Marxism in Latin America
by Pablo Guadarrama Gonzalez

by Rafael Soler Martinez
ORIGINS OF TROTSKISM IN CUBA - 2001) (English)     

Unión Soviética: la transición frustrada
Por Ariel Dacal Díaz