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Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, – is a history of the Cold War in southern. New Book - Visions of freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Author: Piero Gleijeses Title: Visions of freedom: Havana. Show PDF in full window; ExtractFree; Full Text (HTML)Free;» Full Text (PDF) Free Add to my archive; Download citation; Request Permissions.

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Read "Visions of Freedom Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, " by Piero Gleijeses available from Rakuten ISBN: ; Language: English; Download options: EPUB 2 (Adobe DRM). Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern PIERO GLEIJESES Read Online · Download PDF; Save; Cite this Item. Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, (The New Cold War History) [Piero Gleijeses] on *FREE* Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

It creates a chasm between us and the Cubans we share a past, but we have no shared memories. Her observation is quite accurate: for many Americans Cuba and its role in the world has been defined by the anti-Castro community in Miami, Florida, leaving little room or consideration for events or policies that did not fit squarely with this perception. The US and Cuba, although only 90 miles away from each other remain estranged in our historical and cultural memory. This book offers a thorough review of the events that began in the s and ended in and provides a very clear view of how southern Africa became another stage for Cold War politics. With any scholarly book that is of significant length this book is over pages long I had some concern that the central thesis might be lost in the jumble of names, policies, concepts, battles, etc. This was not the case here. Gleijeses did a superb job researching this book over 10 years , sifting through materials in archives, conducting interviews with participants and examining other primary sources in over 20 different countries.

Thus, as in many imperial ventures, a light commitment by the United States was pushed ever deeper by the encroachment of a rival. In response to the growing threat of Nazi propaganda, the United States created increasingly formal peacetime programs of cultural diplomacy.

With atomic weapons, the destructive potential of open conflict proved too great for either the United States or the USSR to bear. Covert action, including that of the CIA, created in , often tried to substitute for open conflict, but that did not make it peaceful. Through participation in foreign exhibitions, the public efforts of the United States Information Agency, and covert CIA funding of unions, presses, newspapers, radio, films, and intellectuals, the United States tried to present a vision of itself as the global leader in the defense of freedom and democracy.

The region had served its purpose as a supplier of vital materials to the U.

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The Soviet Union lacked detailed information about the region, but it could certainly read a map, and it expected the same. Instead of the economic aid from the United States that Latin American nations had hoped would follow the end of the war, they got security agreements and a treaty of hemispheric mutual defense.

The United States began relying on frequently repressive secret police forces throughout the region to provide it with information about Communist threats. The CIA did parallel work, supporting favored newspapers and organizations like the CCF with a growing presence in the region.

Multiple policy strands coexisted and overlapped: some sought more liberal allies to develop the region, while others thought that dictatorships would make the best partners. For that reason, the history of Latin America has often played an important role as a corrective to more triumphal accounts of U. The historian John Coatsworth has calculated that between and anti-Communist Latin America was more repressive than the Soviet bloc when measured by the numbers of political prisoners, victims of torture, and executions of political dissenters.

Although U. It was not that the United States was universally disliked or unwelcome; there were many who admired its industry, its democracy, or its level of development.

But among intellectuals on the left, for whom anti-imperialism was a major concern, it made anti-Communism an unpopular heritage, sometimes disavowed even by those who seemed to belong.

With that background, the general shape of the Cultural Cold War in Latin America can come into relief. Like its European counterpart, it was based on the debates and practices of the political Left.

At the intersection of world and regional history, Mexico City became a key node in the global debate. In the s and early s these figures and the groups associated with them debated the relationship of the intellectual to revolution, and especially to Communism, in ways that established the fundamental cleavage of the Cultural Cold War: the identification of anti-Communism with artistic independence from state and party.

Mikhail Gorbachev

Naturally, the emergence of the diplomatic Cold War after World War II did have a considerable impact on the way in which the Cultural Cold War was conducted: it would give both foundation and furnishings to a prefabricated structure. The Soviet-aligned WPC held symposia and conferences, organized signature drives, published books and magazines, and inspired artistic production, all with the goal of depicting the United States as the great threat to peace and the Soviet Union as the paladin of justice and the defender of national sovereignty.

The Latin American artists who volunteered for the WPC, such as Pablo Neruda, Jorge Amado, and Diego Rivera, all tried to produce art that conformed to official Soviet socialist realism, as well as to organize support for the Soviet position. For former Communists, Trotskyists, social democrats, liberals, and—perhaps most important—the U.

Generally led by former Communists and dissident Trotskyists, campaigns to counter WPC propaganda emerged everywhere. Across Latin America and elsewhere, people volunteered for the cause, and they often did so by offering their services to the most powerful anti-Soviet ally they could imagine: the government of the United States.

Its first meeting was held in , and if it was not a mirror image of the WPC, it was at least a fun-house reflection. Both groups sought to mobilize cultural production alongside political propaganda—imbuing the former with the spirit of the latter—as part of larger political projects that concealed the interests of the states that made them possible.

In response to the radicalization of the Cuban Revolution in the early s, the CCF sought to reorganize. Rather than present a desiccated and transplanted European anti-Communism, it sought to remake itself for the s on the basis of a sophisticated, cosmopolitan, and scholarly foundation. In Europe the CCF is considered to have been effective in the s and out-of-touch by the s; in Latin America the opposite was true. Latin America became the largest area program of the CCF, and it would be only a slight exaggeration to say that the CCF began life as an organization for combating Communism in Europe and ended it as one for combating the appeal of Castro in Latin America.

After struggling to eliminate reactionary personnel from its national offices, it launched the magazine Mundo Nuevo in , which aimed for engaged dialogue on Cuba and featured a list of authors in its early issues that would define the boom in Latin American letters then under way.

In one way, this proved prescient because it was soon revealed publicly that the CCF and, by extension, Mundo Nuevo, would never have existed without CIA support. This only bolstered the Cuban posture, already hostile to dialogue and criticism, of further justifying political repression within Cuba by associating dissent with U.

Many studies of the Cultural Cold War in Latin America begin with the Cuban Revolution of , at least ten if not forty years too late. They focus on the phenomenon of the Latin American s and especially the writers of the boom generation. Casa was proudly affiliated with the Cuban government, of course, but scholars have debated, in parallel to other conversations about the Cultural Cold War, to what degree Mundo Nuevo was an instrument of U.

Some have focused on the ways in which Mundo Nuevo promoted theories and ideas that were useful to the United States, while others have noted its criticism of U. Two apparently contradictory things are simultaneously true. On the one hand, many intellectuals from Latin America sought ways out of Cold War binaries. On the other, they were also responsible for inviting the Cold War in, hoping to use it to advance their interests.

In much of Europe the Cold War saw the expansion of social democratic governments with robust welfare states, political freedom, and electoral democracy.

Mikhail Gorbachev | SpringerLink

Similar projects were much less successful in Latin America despite or perhaps because of its deeply unequal societies. Why did social democracy not flourish in Latin America?

Why did the effort to define and build a humane socialism in the region fail? Three major arguments have been offered in explanation. One posits that Latin American democracy experienced relatively few gains because of a decision by the Left in the wake of the Cuban Revolution to abandon democracy in favor of Marxist fantasies and the mythology of revolutionary change carried out by small groups of soldiers.

In an environment that was partly their own creation and partly imposed on them, artists and intellectuals formed transnational communities that sought to bring a humane socialism to Latin America, but they repeatedly found that their attempts to formulate solutions were tangled up in the interests of empires.

They sought independence but could not avoid having the problems of their sponsors—whether the CIA, the Soviet Union, or revolutionary Cuba —become their own. Cold War debate tended to reduce front groups to the interests of their sponsors, casting each participant in them as nothing more than a warrior in the service of a foreign empire.

Such legends deny that multiple logics operate wherever collective action is taken. Although inevitably partial, that reasoning captured enough truth to serve as justification for the suppression of dissent supposedly made illegitimate by its foreign nature.

If it is true that responses to war should be proportionate to the threat, it has always been the case that responses to the Cultural Cold War have far exceeded the potential of its works to cause harm.

But the projects of cultural hegemony, even those of the United States, were porous rather than solid. They regularly failed to meet their objectives and sometimes acted in a way that was seemingly indifferent to the interests of empire. The MLN overtook the peace agenda and defended civil liberties in Mexico.

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But if the high tide of the Cultural Cold War had receded by the mids, its watermark remained. Members of these groups framed issues in ways that made it close to impossible to see their patrons in a negative light. Partisans of the Soviet-sponsored WPC had defended as pacific attempts by the Soviet Union to attain its own security, even through violence, but had defined as warmongering similar actions by the United States.

The commitment of Casa-affiliated intellectuals to anti-imperialism and defense of the revolution made criticism of the Cuban government and its widespread violation of human rights next to impossible.

All the fronts unquestionably also provided cover for spies or for the collection of intelligence and could not have existed without the financial backing of their patrons.

For intellectuals engaged in politics, and for the political movements that they supported, there were only troubling options. Communists were repressed, so although their utopias eschewed the traditional freedoms of liberal societies, in the Latin American context, they could sometimes act as the defenders of civil liberties.

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But the Sartrean position, followed by many intellectuals in Latin America, that the everyday violence of society justified retributive violence was plausible and even correct—except that the violence that it inspired rarely solved the problems it intended to and created others besides.

Those who opted for a Camus-like route would find that their moderate socialism could come only via a crooked alliance with the United States, and their reforms would have to be timid, halting, inadequate to the task, and easily appropriated by the Right. They received air support from the airbase at Menongue , including MiG 23s deployed in ground attacks. Throughout the battle, FAPLA had lost dead and wounded, along with 61 tanks, 83 armoured vehicles and 20 rocket launchers. The SADF lost 17 killed and 41 wounded, plus 5 armoured vehicles.

The SADF also captured a highly sophisticated SA-8 anti-aircraft missile system — the first time the weapon had fallen into western hands. The military campaign represented a stunning humiliation for the Soviet Union, its arms and its strategy. The objective was to inflict a crushing blow to the FAPLA, so that they would not consider another offensive in the following year.

The airstrip at Cuito Cuanavale was extensively bombarded, causing the Cubans to withdraw their aircraft to Menongue and to abandon the Cuanavale airstrip.

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Gleijeses deftly funnels the vast reams of information into a very easy-to-read narrative that is not overwhelming with names, dates, etc. Too often, historians fall into the trap of name-dropping, that is, peppering their text with so many names that the reader loses track of who is who, who did what, etc. Gleijeses has an excellent command of his information and expertly controls the pacing of the appearances of so many individuals in this text. With other books, I have often had to go to the index frequently to remember a name, title or some other important attribute of someone who appears in the text because of the plethora of names that emerge as the narrative continues.

This did not happen here. Only a few times, did I have to go to the index to remember who someone was. I only knew about its involvement in Angola because I have lived in Cuba for the last four years.

This book was extremely educational for me.