This book highlights the legacy of Spanish influence in Cuba during the Cold War to establish a new perspective for analysis of that era, comparing the leaders of those two countries, Francisco Franco (1892–1975) and Fidel Castro (1926–2016). The analysis places at its center Spanish diplomacy, emphasizing bilateral ties and taking into account U.S. diplomacy and public opinion.

Viewed through the lens of the East–West bipolar system, one might question why the Franco regime, which fought against the communists, socialists, and anarchists who comprised the Second Spanish Republic (1931–1939), would maintain diplomatic relations with Castro’s Cuba.

We consider how Cuba and Spain managed to maintain diplomatic relations in spite of various incidents, including the persona non grata status of the Spanish ambassador and the Spanish diplomat-as-CIA agent incident, in light of the political, economic, and spiritual ties between the two nations.