CUBA: Teacher & Pupil

The grand salon of Havana's domed presidential palace was packed to its mirrored walls with sweating, frock-coated diplomats and Cuban officials. From the plaza outside rose the roar of crowds, the snip-snap of firecrackers. Cannon boomed in salute. Carlos Prío Socarrás, 45, was being sworn in as Cuba's 17th President. With a warm abrazo, 61-year-old Professor-President Ramón Grau San Martin turned over his office to one of his favorite pupils, a student leader in the 1933 revolution that first raised Grau to the presidency, and his supporter ever since.

Grau had picked Prío, his former Labor Minister, to succeed him;...

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