The war for Cuban independence that began in February 1895 involved three participants -- Cuba, Spain, and the United States. Each witnessed the events in Cuba from its own historical and national perspective, viewpoints that differed widely and that still color the histories of each nation. To understand the diplomacy of the Spanish-American War, one must appreciate these differing perspectives.
For the leaders of the Cuban revolution, the Grito de Baire that began the struggle in 1895 represented the renewal of a war for independence that had started in 1868. All the leaders had taken part in the earlier Ten Years War, and although they had ended armed struggle in 1878, many had never ceased to dream of Cuban independence. Nevertheless, from 1878 to 1895, changes had taken place in Cuba that affected the renewal of the war. During these years, rationalization of the Cuban sugar industry and the end of its forced labor system altered the fundamental eco­'