The Nationalist Spirit
Cubans are an intensely passionate and patriotic people united by love of country. Cubans are nationalists before they are socialists or even incipient capitalists. The revolutionary government has engaged in consciousness-raising on a national scale, instilling in Cubans that they can have pride as a nation. Primary school children not only lisp loyalty to the flag daily at school, they recite their willingness to die for it.
Cubans had not expected socialism from the Revolution, but those who could accept it did so not simply because so many benefited from the social mobility the Revolution had brought but because, as Maurice Halperin suggests, “it came with nationalism; that is, an assertion of economic and political independence from the United States, the goal of Cuban patriots for a half century.” This provides Cubans with a different perspective and viewpoint on history.
© Christopher P. Baker from Moon Cuba, 5th Edition