List of Tables
List of Figures



I. The Cuban Revolution 1959-61
Misery and Imperialist Super-Exploitation before the Cuban Revolution in 1959
Revolutionary Upheavals and Treacherous Stalinists
The Petty-Bourgeois Castroite Movimiento 26 de Julio
Background of Cuba’s Liquidation of Capitalism
i) The Cuban Working Class as an Active Force in the Revolution
ii) Aggression of US imperialism
iii) Support and Alignment with the Stalinist Soviet Bureaucracy
Cuba’s Bureaucratic Social Revolution towards a Stalinist Degenerated Workers State
The Cuban Working Class and Its Political Expropriation by the Castroite Stalinists

II. Stalinism, Permanent Revolution and Capitalist Restoration in the Light of Marxist Theory
i) Trotsky’s Theory of the Permanent Revolution
ii) The Nature of the Stalinist Bureaucracy in a Degenerated Workers State
iii) Trotsky’s Program of Political Revolution against the Stalinist Dictatorship
iv) The Program of Political Revolution against the Castroite/Stalinist Regime in Cuba
v) Stalinism and the Restoration of Capitalism

III. Capitalist Restoration in Cuba: How it Took Place
Social Gains of the Revolution in Danger
Many Roads Lead to Capitalist Restoration
Crossing the Rubicon in Cuba: The 2010/11 Reforms

Implementing the Law of Value in State-Owned Enterprises: Restructuring and Mass Lay-Offs
Promoting Capitalism in the Agrarian Sector
Promoting a Private Capitalist Sector
Helping to Strengthen the Formation of a Domestic Capitalist Class of Private Property Owners
Cutting Back the Social Benefits to Create an Industrial Reserve Army of Labor
Women Particularly Affected by Capitalist Restoration
Opening the Economy for Imperialist Capital
Semi-Colonial Cuba to Get on Imperialist China’s Bandwagon
Keeping the Authoritarian Rule of the Stalinist PCC
Excurse: A Short Note on Cuba and the Maccabiah Games

IV. The Program for Socialist Revolution in Cuba
Defend the Social Achievements!
Down with the Castroite dictatorship! Democracy for the working class and the popular masses!
Down with US Embargo! Defend Cuba against US imperialism and the Gusanos!
Expropriate and Expel the Chinese Imperialists!
A Program for Workers Power!
Internationalization of the Revolution!
For a Revolutionary Party! For the Fifth Workers International!

V. Summary

Map of Cuba
About the Author
RCIT: What We Stand For


List of Tables

Table 1: Cuba: The Private Sector in Agriculture 1961
Table 2: Composition of the 100-member Central Committee of the Cuban Communist Party in 1965 
Table 3: Gross Fixed Capital Formation in Cuba, 2002-2010
Table 4: Availability of Basic Goods and Services per Capita - Cuba 1958-1978
Table 5: Private Sector Share in GDP and Employment in Eastern Europe and the Former USSR 1991-2002
Table 6: China: Employment by Ownership in Selected Years 1980-2000
Table 7: China: GDP by Ownership in Selected Years 1980-2000
Table 8: China: State Share of Gross Industrial Output Value, 1991-1999
Table 9: Workers Employed in the Entire Economy, and the Private and Cooperative Sectors, 2008-2011
Table 10: More Entrepreneurs in the Workforce 
Table 11: Cuba’s Creditors, 2008 and 2010
Table 12: Foreign Investment Inflows to Cuba, 1993-2001
Table 13: FDI flows in Cuba, 2006-2011
Table 14: FDI Flows as a Percentage of Gross Fixed Capital Formation 2006-2010


List of Figures

Figure 1: Cuban Domestic Industrial Output 1989-2010
Figure 2: Cuban Sugar Production, Area under Cultivation, and Yield 
Figure 3: Capital Formation in China: 1978-2007
Figure 4: Cuba: Self-Employment Licenses Granted 1989-2012 
Figure 5: Cuba: Self-Employment as Percent of Total Employment 1970-2011


In The Great Robbery of the South Michael Pröbsting analyses the super-exploitation and oppression of the semi-colonial world (often referred to as the “Third World”) by the imperialist powers and monopolies. He shows that the relationship between the small minority of rich capitalist countries and the huge majority of mankind living in the semi-colonial world forms one of the most important elements of the imperialist world system we are living in.


The Great Robbery of the South shows that the past decades have been a complete confirmation of the validity of Lenin’s theory of imperialism and its programmatic conclusions.


The Great Robbery of the South demonstrates the important changes in the relationship between the imperialist and the semi-colonial countries. Using comprehensive material (including 139 Tables and Figures), Michael Pröbsting elaborates that never before has such a big share of the world capitalist value been produced in the South. Never before haven the imperialist monopolies been so dependent on the super-exploitation of the semi-colonial world. Never before has migrant labor from the semi-colonial world played such a significant role for the capitalist value production in the imperialist countries. Never before has the huge majority of the world working class lived in the South – outside of the old imperialist metropolises.


In The Great Robbery of the South Michael Pröbsting argues that a correct understanding of the nature of imperialism as well as of the program of permanent revolution which includes the tactics of consistent anti-imperialism is essential for anyone who wants to change the world and bring about a socialist future.


Das Buch The Great Robbery of the South behandelt die Überausbeutung und Unterdrückung der halb-kolonialen Welt (der sogenannten III. Welt) durch die imperialistischen Monopole und Staaten.


Der Autor, Michael Pröbsting, analysiert diese imperialistische Überausbeutung auf der Grundlage der marxistischen Theorie sowie umfangreicher wirtschafts- und sozialwissenschaftlicher Daten.


Er zeigt auf, dass noch niemals zuvor ein solch hoher Anteil der weltweiten kapitalistischen Produktion im Süden stattfand. Er legt dar, dass noch nie zuvor die Konzerne und die westliche imperialistische Welt so abhängig von der Ausbeutung des Südens war. Pröbsting weist darüber hinaus nach, dass Migrantinnen und Migranten einen noch nie dagewesenen hohen Anteil an den Lohnabhängigen im Westen ausmachen.


Erstmals in der Geschichte der modernen Menschheit lebt die große Mehrheit der Arbeiterklasse im Süden.


Pröbsting, der Internationaler Sekretär der Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT) ist, tritt für einen konsequenten Antiimperialismus als Teil einer sozialistischen Perspektive ein.


Das Buch ist in englischer Sprache verfaßt und wurde von der RCIT veröffentlicht.




In Cuba‘s Revolution Sold Out? Michael Pröbsting analyses the character of the Cuban Revolution 1959-61, its bureaucratic degeneration, and the recent march of the Castro leadership towards capitalism.


The author demonstrates how the Cuban Revolution, despite the initial modest intentions of its leaders, was spurred forward to more radical policies by grass roots struggles of Cuban workers and peasants. In fact, the very abolishment of capitalism by the Cuban regime was no part of the original game plan of either Castro’s Movimiento 26 de Julio or of the official Cuban communist party (PSP), but rather was a product of precisely such pressures from below.


Cuba‘s Revolution Sold Out? describes in detail how a number of relatively recent political, economic, and social measures were purposely taken by the Cuban government to open the road back to capitalism. Pröbsting elaborates the key role of the world’s new great imperialist power, China, in Cuba’s state policy as exemplified in the June 2011 Sino-Cuban agreement for a first Five-Year Plan of cooperation between these two states.


Cuba‘s Revolution Sold Out? examines these developments from the viewpoint of Marxist theory, the nature of the ruling bureaucracy in Stalinist states, and the process of restoration of capitalism under such regimes.


In conclusion, the book proposes a socialist program for political and social revolution in Cuba to halt the advance of capitalism and to eradicate the country’s bureaucratic dictatorship.




Michael Pröbsting has been a revolutionary activist for the past 30 years. He has written many articles and pamphlets in both German and English, and has authored or contributed to books on Rosa Luxemburg (1999), the World Economy (2008), Migration (2010), and the Arab Revolution (2011). His latest book, The Great Robbery of the South (published in 2013), analyses the super-exploitation and oppression of the semi-colonial world (often referred to as the “Third World”) by the imperialist powers and monopolies. Pröbstingis the International Secretary of the Revolutionary Communist International Tendency.