On July 26, 1953, a small army of brave and righteous youthful Cubans took the Moncada Barracks in Santiago City by storm. Even though it was a failed attack against the then-dictator named Fulgencio Batista, the world cannot help but mark it as a special day in history.

It all started with Batista taking power forcefully in 1933. At first, he did not declare himself president until 1940 through an organized coup d’état. His corrupt and dictatorship leadership style angered a group of Cuban men and women under the leadership of Fidel Castro Ruz, which led to the Moncada Barracks attack. Their primary goal was to catch the military barracks unawares, confiscate the arms and recruit the army to fight against Batista’s regime, which was only 16 months old.

Fidel’s Speech

Unfortunately, Batista got wind of Castro’s plans and organized to kill about 70 of the captives. Fortunately, Castro and his brother Raul escaped death, but they got rewarded with a jail term of 13 years. The remaining uprising members were either tortured to death or taken to prison without going through a trial.

The Moncada barracks attack was not the only thing that made the world remember Fidel’s outwitting skills. It was his History will Absolve Me speech during his trial that portrayed his legal cognitive power. Before his sentencing, he talked about how Batista’s corrupt regime and unjust legal procedures affected the country’s integrity. Then, he went on about the need for Cubans to oppose unfairness and regain what rightfully belongs to them. Finally, he declared that history would absolve him, which is why everyone across the globe remembers him.

The Aftermath

The wrongful conviction of Fidel and his uprising members created a public outcry. It was obvious that most people were tired of Batista’s rule as a president. This led to an early release of Fidel and his brother Raul. Together, they migrated to Mexico to organize for a second coup d’état, which still failed. 

Today, the July 26, 1953 movement has brought great socialist reforms to Cubans, including quality-assured education for Cuban and international youth known as the Isle of Youth.