Communist Party of Cuba
- The Communist Party of Cuba (Partito Comunista de Cuba—PCC) has retained single-party control over the Republic of Cuba since the 1959 Cuban Revolution. Between the revolution and 1965, the party was known as the Integrated Revolutionary Organizations, and then the United Party of Cuban Socialist Revolution, both of which contained members of Fidel Castro’s 26th of July Movement. Castro was central throughout this period, establishing himself as the first secretary of the PCC at its very inception, and remaining in charge of the party and state thereafter. In accordance with its professed Marxism–Leninism, the PCC was run by decree from the Politburo and Central Committee, and established strong ties with the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.However, owing to the doctrines of “Castroism,” which in contrast to orthodox Marxism–Leninism did not place primacy on the importance of a vanguard party to lead the revolution, in terms of membership and influence the PCC was the smallest ruling communist party in the world for the first decade of its existence. This lasted until 1975 when the PCC held its maiden party conference, and from then onwards adopted many characteristics of a mass communist party. Party membership was accelerated, and a PCC youth wing similar to the Soviet Komosol instituted. Externally, the party was keen to support other Marxist movements, sending expertise and aid to revolutionary African regimes such as those in Angola and Mozambique, and lending support to the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. The collapse of the Soviet Union left the PCC in something of a quagmire, and the Fourth Party Conference in 1991 saw critical debate between reformists looking to implement free market economic solutions, and traditionalists who feared for the continued survival of the communist regime in Cuba should such reforms be implemented. The result was limited economic reforms and a redefining of the PCC’s status as the “party of the Cuban nation” rather than the “party of the working class.” Threatened by a sudden lack of allies and increased pressure from the United States, at its Fifth Party Conference in 1997 the PCC reaffirmed its adherence to Marxism–Leninism and the maintenance of single-party rule.
Historical dictionary of Marxism. David Walker and Daniel Gray . 2014.
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