Fulgencio Batista

President of Cuba, 1940–1944; dictator, 1952-1959 (1901-1973)

Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar (January 16, 1901 – August 6, 1973) was the military leader of Cuba from 1933 to 1940. He was a farm worker from eastern Cuba, and moved to Havana where he became a stenographer and a sergeant in the Army. He became a leader of a group of sergeants who wanted better pay. With others they overthrew President Gerardo Machado in 1933 and Batista ended up commanding the Army.

Fulgencio Batista
Batista in 1938
14th Prime Minister of the Republic of Cuba
In office
March 10, 1952 – January 1, 1959
Prime Minister
Vice PresidentRafael Guas Inclán
Preceded byCarlos Prío Socarrás
Succeeded byAnselmo Alliegro
In office
October 10, 1940 – October 10, 1944
Prime Minister
Vice PresidentGustavo Cuervo Rubio
Preceded byFederico Laredo Brú
Succeeded byRamón Grau
Prime Minister of Cuba
In office
10 March 1952 – 4 April 1952
PresidentHimself
Preceded byÓscar Gans
Succeeded by
  • Vacant (1952‍–‍1955)
  • Jorge García Montes (1955‍–‍1957)
Cuban Senator
In office
June 2, 1948 – March 10, 1952
ConstituencyLas Villas
Personal details
Born
Rubén Zaldívar

(1901-01-16)January 16, 1901
Banes, Cuba
DiedAugust 6, 1973(1973-08-06) (aged 72)
Marbella, Málaga, Spain
Resting placeSaint Isidore Cemetery
Political party
Spouse(s)
Children9
Other namesFulgencio Batista y Zaldívar (full name from 1939)
Military service
AllegianceRepublic of Cuba
Branch/serviceCuban Army
Years of service1921–1940
RankMajor general
Batista's soldiers executing a rebel by firing squad in 1956

In 1940 Batista won election and was President of Cuba until 1944. In 1952 he made his own coup and ruled the country until 1959. His authoritarian government during this time caused opposition despite his attempt to placate critics with a 'show' election in 1954 were he ran without opposition. The opposition included the entire coalition that had overthrown Gerardo Machado.

Fidel Castro's guerrilla movement overthrew Batista. This is known as the Cuban Revolution. Batista fled Cuba on January 1, 1959 and went to the Dominican Republic before moving on to Portugal, and finally to Spain where he died of a heart attack in 1973.

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