Why Batista was overthrown but the Castros remain (by H.L. Mencken, 1930)


“It is a law of political revolution that the actual upset of a government is always preceded by concessions to the malcontent party. There has never been a successful revolution out of the clear sky. Always the doomed despot has prepared for it by making concessions to his enemies….what protects a despot so long as he lays about him boldly, is the fact that very few men, even among rebels, have any appreciable courage…they seldom attack a power that can really hurt them, and is willing and eager to do so. But the moment that power shows any sign of fading into weakness, they become very daring and are hot for defying it. Next to outright abdication, the chief sign of such weakness, at least to most men, is a readiness to compromise.” (H.L. Mencken, The Baltimore Sun, Dec. 22, 1930)