Tag Archives: Cuba embargo

U.S. need not continue pointless embargo

The United States embargo against Cuba did not work.

It won’t work in the future.

So, the president of the United States made a calculation: If the sanctions are being enforced by just one nation in the world, ours, what is precisely the point of continuing a policy that the entire rest of the world is ignoring?


Let’s put it another, harsher, way: One definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

OK, our Cuba policy wasn’t exactly insane. It just nutty.

The Cuban people deserve to be free. President Obama has declared his intention to keep applying the pressure on Cuba’s leaders to give Cubans basic human rights that others in civilized nations ought to enjoy. The best way for the United States to apply that pressure is to engage the Cubans directly through diplomatic missions. So, let’s start that project.

Our non-relationship has lasted 50 years. It began when the Cold War was going full bore. That “war” has ended. Cuba is a Third World country that does business with Canada and Mexico, North America’s other two giant nations. It also does business with virtually the entire world.

Only the United States enforces this so-called “embargo.”

It is good that we end it. The sooner the better.

As the president noted, if we can engage nations such as China and Vietnam — two nations we have fought on the battlefield — surely we ought to do the same with Cuba.

Common sense returns to U.S.-Cuba relations

It didn’t work. The United States sought for five decades to punish Cuba because it went from being an old-fashioned autocratic dictatorship to a Marxist tyranny.

The aim was to bring Cuba to its knees and to send a message to its major benefactor — the Soviet Union — that we just wouldn’t tolerate a communist dictatorship at our doorstep.

Well, five-plus decades later, that idiotic non-relationship took a huge step toward its end. President Obama today announced that the United States is going to begin “normalizing” relations with the island nation.


It … is … about … damn … time!

An American aide worker, Alan Gross, who had been imprisoned for five years in Cuba was released today. In exchange, we sent three Cubans back to their homeland. They all had been accused of spying. Gross’s release apparently removed the final impediment to the normalization of relations.

Obama made sense on virtually every point he made this morning in a brief televised announcement.

Cuba poses zero military threat to the United States. The Soviet Union has vanished. Russia’s economy is imploding. The Cuban people remain shackled by the tyranny that governs them, but Obama today insisted today that the Cuban government start loosening the binding that keeps Cubans from expressing themselves freely.

The president noted that the United States is virtually the only nation on Earth that honors the embargo slapped on Cuba in the early 1960s. Yes, Cuba trades with the rest of the world, but its totalitarian government has impeded prosperity from flowing to the people. That, too, should change, Obama said.

The president noted today that Cuba is still governed by someone named “Castro,” but it’s Raul, not Fidel.

He said he called Raul Castro today to tell him of the impending change in the U.S.-Cuba relationship. I’ll presume Fidel’s brother agreed to it.

The question now is whether Congress will agree to legislate an end to the economic embargo. The president can establish diplomatic ties with another nation all by himself, but Congress has to agree to end the embargo, as its enactment was done legislatively.

Here’s hoping the common sense caucus of Congress will agree to what is a profoundly sensible course of action.

Continuing to do the same thing repeatedly while hoping for a different result means it’s time to change what you’re doing. We can continue to have ideological competition between the two countries, but we ought to do so face to face.

Congratulations and thanks, Mr. President, for restoring some sense to our nation’s foreign policy.