Cuba: Christmas in July

All over Cuba, posters proclaim TEN MILLION IN '70—a reminder that Fidel Castro is counting on an unprecedented harvest of 10 million tons of sugar next year. What makes that goal remarkable is that this year's crop will probably total no more than 4,500,000 tons. Nonetheless, despite drought, shoddy Soviet machinery and Cuba's inefficient armies of "volunteer" cane cutters, the Maximum Leader is confident of success. And why not? To achieve his target, Fidel is stretching the calendar.

In pre-Castro days, the harvest period ran from January to March. As productivity has declined, the cane cutting has become more and...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!