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Castro Rise The Power Dr Fidel Castro Ruz became involved with political protests as a young student After Batistas coup in 1952 he went to court and tried to have the Batista dictatorship declared illegal However his attempt to peacefully bring down the Batista government did not work and so in 1953 Castro turned toward violent means On July 26 1953 Castro led a group of men to attack the Moncada military fortress However his little rebellion was immediately crushed by the Batista army In fact the Roman Catholic archbishop of Santiago had to make the government promise that the rebels would live if they would stop fighting and come down from the mountains Sure enough the government kept its promise and Fidel Castro and his followers were sentenced to three years of imprisonment Batista in order to gain some popular support released them after a few months Castros rebellion failed it sparked hopes of revolution everywhere in Cuba After a few years of exile in Mexico Castro and a small band of about eighty-five men returned to Cuba in December of 1956 Many of the men perished during the initial landing but a small group including Fidel Castro and an Argentinian Marxist Ernesto Che Guevara survived and went into the mountains During the next two years Castro and Guevara fought the Batista army continuously in small guerrilla wars They called themselves the Twenty-sixth of July Movement after the earlier unsuccessful raid on the Moncada barracks Their group gained in numbers and popularity among Cubans as the desire for political change in Cuba increased Castro promised sweeping changes including free elections non-corrupt government land improved educational systems jobs and health care for all Castro became sort of like a Robin Hood for Cuba and many flocked to his banner The
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