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Black and white photograph of a man's head and shoulder with red text above and below on a white background
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Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar was elected to the Presidency of Cuba in 1940 on a platform of strengthening labor unions and protecting the free market. He served as President until 1944 where he retired to live in Florida until 1952. In the 1952 Cuban elections Batista returned and tried again to run for the Presidency. However, facing certain defeat Batista led a military coup to overthrow the Democratic government and install himself as Dictator of Cuba, where he ruled with backing from the United States until 1959 when Fidel Castro rose to power.