GRANMA: Why is December 2 also a people's day?

Walter Lippmann

Production of oxygen by the FAR for health centers, developed at the San Antonio de los Baños Air Base.
The FAR joins all the battles in the country, such as the confrontation with the COVID-19 pandemic. 
Photo: Endrys Correa Vaillant

The Day of the Revolutionary Armed Forces is a national commemoration with popular roots. On many occasions, especially on key anniversaries, large military parades have been organized in the capital of the country, in the Plaza de la Revolución José Martí.

But most of the time, the festivities have taken place in the military units, where the recounting of the annual achievements of combat preparation and other daily tasks of the troops are made in the presence of the invited population, among them pioneers and students.

On more than one occasion, in the traditional promotion ceremonies held on those days, the officers receive the new epaulets from the hands of close relatives, a right that they have earned through the support they give from their homes.

Why does the celebration take place on December 2? This was explained by Army General Raúl Castro in an interview published in Verde Olivo and in this newspaper on the occasion of the 45th Anniversary of the armed institution. Nobody is better able than he is to give the details. The extensive combat history that led him to become the second chief of the Cuban Revolution places him among the expedition members who arrived, on the same date in 1956, on the shores of Cuba aboard the yacht Granma, after a tense stage of preparation in the Mexican exile.

That day was chosen, Raúl said, because the Rebel Army and its heirs, the Revolutionary Armed Forces, were born.

«Of course, it could be November 30, when the July 26 combatants, wearing olive-green uniforms for the first time, rose up in Santiago de Cuba, a heroic action conceived as an operation to support the disembarkation, which would have to occur simultaneously. But the Granma, overloaded, sailed with less speed than [we had] calculated.

«On December 2, the 82 Granma expedition members under the command of the Chief of the Revolution, stepped on the soil of the Homeland, challenging the might of the enemy who fired air and naval fire against us as soon as it dawned and, from that day on, the fight would be uninterrupted until the victory of January 1, 1959 ».

And he added: "The landing of the Granma marked the restart of the struggle to achieve full independence, in the final stage of this struggle."

Raúl, is a man who loves, studies and constantly references the history of the country. It's a capability that has served him in order to evaluate the will of the people to fight and their ability to survive adversity. He specified in the aforementioned interview that the expedition members of the Granma fulfilled the public promise made from Mexico by Fidel: "In 1956, we will be free or we will be martyrs."

He asserted that they were resuming the unfinished combat in Moncada, where many brothers fell, and argued that they were the armed expedition that Mella and Guiteras had dreamed of to liberate Cuba.

“But even further afield, I have said it once: we followed in the footsteps of Antonio Maceo, Flor, José and twenty other combatants who rammed the bow of the schooner Honor onto Duaba beach, with only eleven rifles, on the first day of April 1895. From Martí, Gómez and “a hand of the brave” who landed in Playitas, eleven days later, in a small boat without a name, which could very well also be called Honor.

"It was the same fight as that of '95 and also that of the previous one, started by Carlos Manuel de Céspedes in '68."

In this assessment, there is total agreement with Commander in Chief Fidel Castro, organizer of the expedition and the Rebel Army, whom, in the report to the First Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba, he defined as "the soul of the Revolution."

«From their victorious weapons, the new homeland emerged free, beautiful, powerful and invincible. His soldiers vindicated the generous blood shed in all the struggles for independence and with their own they cemented the socialist present of Cuba. The weapons seized from the oppressors in an epic struggle, they handed them over to the people and with the people they merged, to be the armed people ever since,” he asserted with total conviction.

The historical analysis of what has happened since then confirms that the current Revolutionary Armed Forces have not deviated one millimeter from that principle despite enemy efforts to break it, as can be seen in the renewed attempts to reverse the course of socialism in Cuba through the application of the procedure manuals on soft strokes or color revolutions.

It has been proven that the "leader" of the alleged illegal march of November 15 traveled to Argentina during 2018, invited by the Center for Democratic Opening in Latin America (Cadal), in order to participate in a seminar coordinated by the project Times changes and the new role of the Armed Forces of Cuba.

Those who seek to surrender sovereignty pour mud on the fidelity of FAR members to the Revolution, which they associate with a mechanical and daily ideological indoctrination, but they do not take into account that if they had been, they would act with fear and would not support or participate. actively in preparing the people for defense.

From the highest-ranking officers to the sergeants and soldiers, they show constant interest in the military training of the members of the Production and Defense Brigades and the Territorial Troop Militias. For these there are weapons and other means kept by the FAR; the one that will not hesitate to put them in the function of the territorial defensive system organized throughout Cuba.

The strategic conception of the War of the entire people, conceived by Fidel, postulates that each Cuban has a place and a means to fight in the event of military aggression led by foreign armies and the acolytes that accompany them.

Return victorious from internationalist missions in Africa, creatively assume combat preparation in times of material limitations, develop tactical procedures that allow opposing forces superior in men and war resources, put science in the function of the modernization of weapons, produce the majority of the food consumed in the military units and the use of companies that provide substantial income to the economy are the fruits of the consciousness born in the daily struggle with fellow civilians.

For these reasons, they joined the COVID-19 confrontation by dedicating full-time military hospitals to the care of serious and critical patients, and did not hesitate to produce medicinal oxygen in air force plants and use their planes and helicopters to take it anywhere in the nation when the country needed it.

That concept of collaboration that guarantees the survival of the Nation will not change. Raúl, in his report to the 8th. Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba, evoking Fidel, reaffirmed that "the Revolutionary Armed Forces, born from the Rebel Army, have not renounced and will not renounce to be the soul of the Revolution forever."

Join to automatically receive all group messages.