Cuba, Camilo Cienfuegos

Camilo Cienfuegos Living Permanence (+ Video)


By Marta Gómez Ferrals/ ACN.

Highlighted by the 91st anniversary of his birth in Havana, on February 6, 1932, the presence of Commander Camilo Cienfuegos has this time the happy aura that surrounds the heroes when we talk about his advent to the world. It must be so, because the good that made us is so immense, even if his life was cut short by chance, too early for him and for the Homeland. 

The reasons for their permanence are known by Cubans from the root and, however, without being a rite learned by memory, in days like these we like to evoke them and rediscover them in their heroic action and combative patriotism, expressed in actions that today seem legend. And he is proud to see him Hero of Yaguajay, Lord of the Frontline, about to contribute to give the final thrust to the Batista dictatorship in December 1958.

But in his beginnings the invincible young man in the Alon hat and the widest smile in the world deserves an immersion of his fellow countrymen in that now imaginary neighborhood of Lawton, where his family resided, formed by two poor and honest Spanish emigrants who knew how to forge in their children many values and early ideals, always restless and aimed at the search for social justice. 

As a teenager, he participates fully in marches and protests. Already in 1954 he joined the struggle against the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista, so he was recruited by the repressive bodies and was forced to leave the country.

Not only because of this, but also because of his precarious economic situation, at age 21 Camilo decides to emigrate and try his luck in the United States. When he returned to Havana he joined the revolutionary student movement. He was imprisoned and tortured, so he again chose exile.  

Fleeting again through New York he learns of the plans of the young lawyer Fidel Castro, founder of the Revolutionary Movement July 26, who was tenaciously dedicated in Mexico to organizing a libertarian expedition to Cuba.

It was a project just like the star of Camilo Cienfuegos, today we are certain of it, although then everything seemed to move like a chaos or a telluric force.

In the Aztec capital, in September 1956 she contacted the nucleus led by Fidel and enlisted as future crew of the yacht Granma, boat that would finally leave the port of Tuxpan with 82 fighters willing to win or die for the independence of the Homeland.

The transit through a proceloso Caribbean Sea beaten by winter winds, led the expedition to a dangerous landing on the eastern beach of Las Coloradas on December 2, in the middle of a swamp full of sharp vegetable tangle and under the buzz of enemy aircraft to hunt, to prevent their arrival on land.

Then the baptism of fire in Alegría de Pío, on December 5, reaffirmed in Camilo and his companions the decision to be faithful to the cause at the price of life, as its leader had proclaimed.   

From that confrontation the courage was nourished to recompose what was left of the small troop, and soon Camilo stood out with others in the accomplishment of multiple missions under the command of Fidel, Juan Almeida and Ernesto Che Guevara.   

On April 16, 1958, he won the rank of Commander of the Rebel Army, for his courage and courage, and for his ability as a strategist and organizer. It thus contributed to that armed guerrilla force operating as an irreversible reality in the mountains of the Sierra Maestra. It was the lighthouse Cuba needed.    

He soon extended the actions of the column commanded by him, named Antonio Maceo, in areas of the so-called Llanos del Cauto, territory away from the mountain range. 

Such audacity, accompanied by effectiveness and forcefulness in almost all actions, contributed to the tyranny unleashing an offensive against the rebel armies. A tactical move by Camilo led him to return with his men closer to the central command, while the Fidel-led command from La Plata drew the best response against Batista’s forces.     

The rebel impetus then came of age with the so-called offensive, by which on August 18 Commander-in-Chief Fidel Castro ordered the execution of the invasion of the East to the West, as the mambises did in the last War of Independence.     

Camilo would lead Column 2 Antonio Maceo and Che Guevara led Number 8 Ciro Redondo.       

That Cuban of invincible joy fought, with the brave carefree that characterized him, between October and December 1958 in areas as remote and unknown until then as Seibabo, Venegas, Zulueta- on two occasions-, General Carrillo, Jarahueca, Iguará, Meneses, Mayajigua and Yaguajay, in whose headquarters and other dependencies the enemy troops had become strong.

The siege of Yaguajay ended with the triumph of the rebel forces and the people added, after nine days of fierce and even ingenious combat.

That battle, in the former central province of Las Villas, consecrated him as a hero and brilliant tactician in combat, and like that of Guisa, led in the Sierra by Fidel; and that of Santa Clara, by Che, was decisive in the victory of the Rebel Army.     

Feeling lost, dictator Fulgencio Batista flees, not before hatching an infamous plot to prevent the rebel triumph in collusion with the US government. Camilo was ordered to march quickly towards Havana.  There he took the General Staff of tyranny, the Columbia Barracks.       

He was one of the commanders waiting for Fidel and the Freedom Caravan on January 8 in the capital, as was Che and Almeida. During his speech at night, the revolutionary leader demonstrated the trust placed in Camilo with beautiful and simple words, engraved forever in the minds of Cubans. 

The Revolution and its young leaders quickly set to work with all their heart in fulfilling the objectives of the true and radical Revolution announced by Fidel in Santiago de Cuba and the beautiful Moncada Program.

Camilo was one of the most enthusiastic, courageous and beloved executors of complex tasks, unabashedly seduced by his authentic moral values and why not, his fascinating charisma.

His surprise death on 28 October 1959 made his people mourn. It happened in an air disaster over the sea, a few hours after having faced and prevented with fidelity and courage an act of high treason. Assuming the fatal event, there are many ways in which he accompanies us, always from deep inside, trying to cultivate the best that he will give us. (Photo: PL)


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