When studying the Cold War Era, students often focus on the struggle ...
When studying the Cold War Era, students often focus on the struggle between the United States and the U.S.S.R. However, as these two powers competed for political, military, and ideological supremacy, the conflict transcended borders to encompass countries and peoples around the world. Indeed, as the Iron Curtain descended in Europe, Latin American countries such as Cuba, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and El Salvador became very real and fertile battlegrounds for the struggle between communism and capitalism. The primary source materials presented here use the example of Cuba to underscore the deep-rooted mistrust and resentment on both sides of the Latin America--U.S. conflict and demonstrate how both the U.S. and U.S.S.R. took advantage of long-standing rivalries and frustrations in the region to advance their own agendas. While the Kennan Memorandum unveils American prejudice and patronization towards Latin America and its peoples generally, the revolutionary fervor found in the words of Carlos Puebla's En Eso Llego Fidel and Alberto Korda's iconic image of Che Guevara convey the dissatisfaction and anger many Cubans felt towards America and the status quo. When considered together, these resources reveal the dynamic and turbulent relationship between the U.S. and an influential Latin American nation during this time, and demonstrate the emotions and ideologies that almost turned the Cold War "hot."