Saturday, August 15, 2015

In Search of Cuba's Freedom.

U.S. Marines raise the U.S. flag over the newly reopened
 embassy in Havana, Cuba.
 Friday, Aug. 14, 2015. U.S. 
It was vary touching for me to see that the United States and Cuba (1)>> FINALLY normalized relations . Just why it took so long is baffling . While our nation played games virtually destroying Cuba ,  our nations leaders have been hypocrites with communism . First we made peace with China , built up it's economy to a standard higher than Cuba's , sharing technology , trade and so on . We have left behind Cuba to sink below poverty . So after 70 years John Kerry, the first US Secretary of State to visit Cuba in such a long time, presided over the ceremony in Havana.In an open letter on Thursday, former Cuban leader Fidel Castro said the US owed Cuba millions of dollars because of its (2)>> 53-year-long embargo.Mr Kerry described the hoisting of the flag as a "historic moment" speaking during the ceremony on Friday. So Kerry says a big whopper that  warned that the US would not stop pressing for political change in Cuba. So why has there been no political change in Cuba ?. Look no further to America . the embargo kept Cuba "hostage" for  no reason .  Secretary Kerry speech reflects for me what we should have done decades ago."We are gathered here because our leaders made a courageous decision to stop being prisoners of history," Secretary of State John Kerry declared. "My friends, it doesn't take a GPS to realize that the road of mutual isolation and estrangement that the United States and Cuba were traveling is not the right one and that the time has come for us to move in a more promising direction," Kerry said. "In the United States, that means recognizing that U.S. policy is not the anvil on which Cuba's future will be forged." For me as a American Cuba was unfairly treated . If the goal is to weaken the Cuban government, the embargo may just have the opposite effect. With sanctions in place, the regime has a convenient scapegoat for all that ails the country. The (##)>> embargo acts as a shield, deflecting the frustrations of the Cuban people away from the Cuban government and towards the US government. It’s the Yankee Imperialist’s fault that you don’t have enough of anything you need; stand firm with your government against their arrogance and intimidation.
A new approach is long overdue. 
Pope Benedict's verdict .
The strongest condemnation of how the United States government treated Cuba has come from the Vatican . The Pope himself.  Back in 2012 , Pope Benedict The Pope made his comments after wrapping up a two-day visit to the island, a trip aimed at bolstering the Catholic Church's ties with Cuba's communist leaders.With president Raul Castro looking on, the Pope said he hoped the "light of the Lord" would help Cubans build a "society of broad vision, renewed and reconciled"."May no one feel excluded from taking up this exciting task because of limitations of his or her basic freedoms," he said.The pontiff also rounded US economic embargo on Cuba, saying such "restrictive economic measures imposed from outside the country unfairly burden its people".The Pope called for greater rights in Cuba, saying he wanted a society in which no-one was denied basic freedoms.This aim was not helped by economic measures which "unfairly burden" Cuba's people, he said.

Embargo costly and ineffective .

Despite this progress, the U.S. spends massive amounts of money trying to keep illicit Cuban goods out of the United States.  At least 10 different agencies are responsible for enforcing different provisions of the embargo, and according to the Government Accountability Office, the U.S. government devotes hundreds of millions of dollars and tens of thousands of man hours to administering the embargo each year. The UN General Assembly delegates have denounced the decades-old economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the United States on Cuba, voting overwhelmingly to adopt the world body’s twentieth consecutive resolution calling for an end to the measures.The resolution – adopted by a recorded vote of 186 in favour to 2 against (United States, Israel), with 3 abstentions (Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Palau) — reaffirmed the sovereign equality of States, non-intervention in their internal affairs and freedom of trade and navigation as paramount to the conduct of international affairs.  In its 28-page submission to the report, the Cuban Government calls the embargo an act of “genocide”, as understood in the Convention for the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, and an act of “economic war” under the terms of the Declaration concerning the laws of naval war, adopted by the Naval Conference of London in 1909.  “Despite the official rhetoric that attempts to convince the international public opinion that the current United States Government has introduced positive policy changes, Cuba is still unable to trade with subsidiaries of United States companies in third countries”, it states.The U. S. government also spends $27 million each year to broadcast Radio and TV Mart, even though the television signal is effectively blocked by the Cuban government. The largely futile propaganda effort has cost U.S. taxpayers half a billion dollars over the last twenty years, according to the Council on Hemispheric Affairs.Beyond the economic costs, the blockade has deprived U.S. citizens of Cuba’s medical breakthroughs. Cuba has developed the first meningitis B vaccine; treatments for the eye disease retinitis pigmentosa; a preservative for un-refrigerated milk; and PPG, a cholesterol-reducing drug gobbled up by foreigners for its side effect: increased sexual potency. And last summer Cuba released CimaVax EGF, the first therapeutic vaccine for lung cancer. The drug triggers an immune response that extends life in lung cancer patients and can ease breathing and restore appetite.The blockade has always cost the United States more, but the gap has widened considerably. By 1992, U.S. businesses had lost over $30 billion in trade over the previous thirty years, according to researchers from Johns Hopkins. At that time, Cuba’s loss for the same period was smaller, but not by much: $28.6 billion, according to Cuba’s Institute of Economic Research. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, Cuba’s diversification and increased trade with other countries has widened the gap between the costs to Cuba and the costs to the United States.

1900 Campaign poster for the
Republican Party depicting American rule in Cuba
(##)>>The embargo was badly conceived. Everyone’s in agreement on that. It’s a policy that has not helped the Cuban people. They live like kings in the Cuban government. They always have. And the Cuban people live like cattle. People who go there say, “They’re so wonderful and joyful in spite of their poverty!”(1)>>  FINALLY .Kerry also played down any concerns about whether the next U.S. president, whoever is elected in November 2016, might roll back or reverse the Obama administration's policy of engaging Cuba. (2)>> For nearly five decades, the U.S. government has continued a failed and inhumane policy toward our island neighbor of Cuba.  WFP's partnerships with the Cuban people have taught us that the U.S. embargo and travel ban toward Cuba In the first quarter of 2015, the number of organizations lobbying the federal government about the Cuban embargo doubled from the previous three months. Senate records show that in the wake of President Obama announcing the normalization of diplomatic relations with Havana, dozens of organizations—ranging from Marriott International to Royal Caribbean Cruises to Major League Baseball—rushed to send representatives to talk to members of Congress about repealing sanctions enacted against Fidel Castro’s communist regime by President Kennedy in 1962.The Cuban embargo was inaugurated by a Kennedy administration executive order in 1960 as a response to the confiscation of American property in Cuba under the newly installed Castro regime.  The current incarnation of the embargo – codified primarily in the Helms-Burton Act – aims at producing free markets and representative democracy in Cuba through economic sanctions, travel restrictions, and international legal penalties.

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