Grenada 1983: Cuban dictator Fidel Castro’s stunning defeat at the hands of the U.S. military

Cuba’s communist dictator Fidel Castro likely never fully recovered from the stunning defeat the U.S. military handed him in Grenada on this day in 1983.

Luis Cino explains in CubaNet (my translation):

Grenada, 1983: Remembering another Castro fiasco

What happened in Grenada after the U.S. invasion on October 25, 1983 was a fiasco for Fidel Castro. Not so much because of the loss by an allied government of a strategic country in the Caribbean, but because of the disaster suffered in the first and only direct military confrontation Castro ever had with U.S. forces.

On the night of October 25, 1983, several hours after the U.S. invasion began, the Castro government put out a dramatic official statement. It stated that the Cubans who were in Grenada involved in the construction of an airport had engaged the 82nd Airborne soldiers and died in combat. The statement concluded by saying each had immolated themselves while wrapped in the Cuban flag.

Instead of ordering Cubans to evacuate or telling them not to get involved in combat, as the U.S. had asked, Fidel Castro ordered the Cubans, the majority of them civilians, to fight and never surrender. Facing a superior force in terms of numbers, weapons, and skill, he basically ordered them to commit mass suicide.

It wasn’t until several days later when Cubans learned how much a fool the regime had made of itself when it assumed Cubans in Grenada had followed Fidel Castro’s orders. Fortunately, they didn’t. They surrendered and instead of 700 dead, there were 25.

Continue reading (in Spanish) HERE.