Operation Carlota, the victory

Cuito Cuanavale marks the turning point in the fight to free the continent and our people from scourge of apartheid.

Nelson Mandela. July 26, 1991
Cuito Cuanavale bridge, place of resistance, and of heroism of Cuban-Angolan troops.

Unique prowess of a small town, with internationalist vocation, to a military power that used powerful forces, modern aircraft, artillery and cutting-edge armored vehicles, but could not occupy the location. The town, then, turned into a symbol of resistence and courage. A PLACE FULL OF HEROISM.

Some 40,000 Cuban and Angolan troops, with over 500 tanks, hundreds of guns and around 1,000 antiaircraft weapons, mainly Cuban antiaircraft weapons, we took out from here, moved bound for Namibia, supported by our aircraft and an advanced airport built in weeks time.

Fidel Castro. July 26, 1991
They are the heroic defendants of Cuito Cunanavale, as it reads in the decoration instituted by the State Council of the Republic of Cuba, and that in those days, in the arena of the fighting actions, both Angolans and Cubans were invested with.
Nelson Mandela and Fidel Castro in havana

In the African history an account before and after Cuito Cuanavale has to be made, for south of Angola, the Cuban-Angolan forces changed the course of developments in southern part of Africa. Neto’s homeland preserves its independence, Namibia reaches this, and apartheid is smashed to smithereens to make a new South-Africa be born.

In the African history there is no other case of a people that have revolted in defense of one of ours.

What country can show a history of higher altruism, except that of Cuba has shown, in its relations with Africa?

From the beginning, the Cuban Revolution has been an inspiration for all the peoples who love freedom.

The Cuban people have a special place in the hearts of African peoples.

he contribution of Cuban internationalists to independence, liberty and justice in Africa has no parallel of its nature of principles and altruism.

Nelson Mandela. July 26, 1991

TRIBUTE TO COMBATANTS DEAD IN BATTLE

December 6, 1989, the remains of the 2,077 Cuban internationalists, dead in battle missions in Africa, are moved back to homeland.

December the 7th, Anniversary of the Titan of Bronze’s Death in Battle, and National Mourning Day, is chosen for the solemn ceremony and to render homage of the whole people to those who, with their blood, made also victory fruitful.

The supreme merit and glory belong to the Cuban people, truly actor of such an epopee, that only history will appraise in its deepest and everlasting transcendence.

Raúl Castro Ruz
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