If Cubans had just been allowed to freely trade with the U.S. the Castro would have been memories within the space of a few years. Instead, sixty years of sanctions have locked Cuba into a early 1960s time warp and Cuba remains defiantly Cuba. From Kyle Anzalone and Will Porter at libertarianinstitute.org:
Sanctions have quickly become the foreign policy establishment’s favorite tool. Blacklisting governments opposed to the empire’s agenda allows for politicians to look tough on ‘evil regimes’ while stopping short of the type of warfare that is largely opposed by the American people.
US leaders present sanctions as a low-cost option to punish bad actors and give oppressed people a chance to rise up. However, the results are almost always the opposite.
The Cuban embargo presents the best empirical evidence of the failure of sanctions. Though the blockade just celebrated its 60th anniversary, the Castro government remains in power, serving only to increase the country’s poverty, not its freedom. While Joe Biden campaigned on rolling back the Donald Trump-era restrictions on trade and travel to Cuba, he has so far failed to live up to that promise and is likely to pass the blockade onto his successor.
Further, Cuba presents a perfect example of the hypocritical demands Washington attaches to its sanctions. As the US says Cuba must free its people to access the world economy, it continues to run a lawless torture prison on the island, largely filled with innocent Muslims.
Since the Kennedy presidency, sanctions have been wielded against a long list of countries. The US is currently waging ‘maximum pressure’ campaigns against Iran, Venezuela, North Korea, and Syria, a blockade against Yemen and Cuba, a trade war with China, and additional penalties on various people in Russia, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and Africa for assorted infractions of the US-enforced “rules-based international order.” Those policies have seldom had the intended result.
Sanctions hurt the ordinary people of a country, groaning under the oppression of their rulers, whom sanctions don’t hurt. From Fred Reed at unz.com:
If there is any place on this or any other planet that poses less danger to America than Cuba, except Venezuela or maybe some undiscovered tribe in the Brazilian rainforest, I can’t imagine who. There are eleven million Cubans, and all but about five want to work, drink, play with their children, and make phenomenal music that would send the solemn horses’ asses of the thinktanks into therapy. For sixty years the goddam United States has tried to starve them, sanction them, make them as miserable as possible out of a weird sort of Nordic sadism. It is sickening.
Kamala might not stand for it. Of course, standing is not her primary talent.
What does this wind-up political toy know about Cuba? Joe presides, dimly, over a country that for over half a century has done everything it can to ensure the misery of those eleven million innocent people, doing everything it can to make their lives as hard as possible. But Joe, he of the forty-weight sincerity probably learned at Central Casting, feels for the Cuban people. Yes, he does. Where did we get this guy?
Posted in Business, Civil Liberties, Collapse, Economy, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Politics, Trade
Tagged Cuba, Sanctions
The romantic image US leftists have of Cuba is completely belied by the facts. From Guy Millière at gatestoneinstitute.org:
- All available data…show that before Castro took power, Cuba was far from being in a disastrous situation. In 1958, the Cuban income per capita was double that of Spain and Japan. Cuba had more doctors and dentists per capita than Britain. Cuba was second per capita in Latin America in ownership of automobiles and telephones, and first in the number of television sets per inhabitant. Cubans could enter and leave the country freely. Fulgencio Battista was a dictator, but Battista’s dictatorship was so “fierce” that Fidel Castro, arrested in 1953 and sentenced to 15 years in prison for a failed coup d’état was pardoned and released by Battista in 1954. Under his own dictatorship, Castro would not have been so lucky.
- The Cuban economy was rapidly destroyed. All businesses, until recently, have been state-owned. Wages in Cuba are abysmal; the population is effectively destitute. The average monthly salary in 2015 was $18.66. Persecution, imprisonment and torture of anyone who dares to criticize the regime are routine. Hundreds of thousands of Cubans have passed through Cuba’s reeducation camps since 1959. More than 15,000 Cubans have been executed by firing squad. The health system is good for members of the regime and for medical tourists who pay in American dollars, but in a sordid state for ordinary Cubans.
- The Cuban government under Battista was corrupt, but it is difficult to believe that the dignitaries of the Castro regime did not enrich themselves. At the end of his life, Fidel Castro’s fortune was valued at $900 million.
- In “36 hours in Havana”, a report in The New York Times on January 5, 2016, Cuba’s capital city is described as full of “classic American cars and salsa singers” and as “an old city where the old and the modern are in contrast”. The decay of many buildings, the immense poverty of the bulk of the population, the crushing weight of the communist dictatorship are completely left out.
- US Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, himself a refugee from Castro’s Cuba, immediately threatened his fellow Cubans: While everyone, including criminals who have previously been deported, may freely enter the United States through America’s wide-open southern non-border, all Cubans and Haitians fleeing by sea will be returned to their squalor. “The time is never right to attempt migration by sea,” he warned them on July 13. “… Allow me to be clear: If you take to the sea, you will not come to the United States.”
- On July 12, the Cuban regime cut the Cubans’ access to the internet. The regime’s police will therefore able to crush the uprising without one image coming out of Cuba.
|On July 11, demonstrations erupted in the main cities of Cuba. Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets, knowing they risk being brutally arrested, sent to jail, possibly tortured and killed by the police. They reject the communist dictatorship that has oppressed them for 62 years. They shout “Libertad”: freedom. Pictured: Police arrest a demonstrator during a peaceful anti-communist protest in Havana, on July 11, 2021. (Photo by Adalberto Roque/AFP via Getty Images)
Sunday July 11. Demonstrations erupt in the main cities of Cuba. Tens of thousands of people take to the streets. They know they risk being brutally arrested, sent to jail, possibly tortured and killed by the police. They reject the communist dictatorship that has oppressed them for 62 years. They shout “Libertad”: freedom. They hold up Cuban and American flags — once again, the symbol of people who yearn to breathe freely.
Posted in Civil Liberties, Economics, Economy, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Media, Politics, Propaganda
Tagged Communism, Cuba, Cuban protests
Communism apologists have held up the US blockade against Cuba as the cause of its failures for sixty years. From Daniel Lacalle at dlacalle.com:
Cuba is a dictatorship that uses terror and propaganda to repress its people. It locks citizens, strips them of the most basic human rights, silences them, and confronts families using extortion and threats. The regime’s constant practices of illegal detention, the personal ruin of political dissidents, and limitation of fundamental rights have nothing to do with any blockade or embargo but everything to do with the totalitarian communist dictatorship.
All the propaganda that whitewashes the Cuban dictatorship is based on two lies: the inexistent “blockade” and the allegedly excellent “public health”.
Cuba only suffers from one blockade: that of the dictatorship against its people, which limits imports of food, medicine, use of the internet, and freedom to travel. We have seen the evidence this week when the regime has “temporarily lifted” the limitation on imports of food and medicine.
Dismantling the lie of the so-called excellent Cuban public services is easy. You just have to go to Cuba to see it.
The health care system that the regime advertises so much is a failed and dilapidated system that only provides quality service to wealthy foreigners and to the regime’s leaders. Cuba suffers the “most expensive free healthcare in the world,” as they told me in Havana.
The myth of the quality of healthcare has been debunked on several occasions. María Werlau, from the NGO Archivo Cuba Archive, explained that “healthcare in Cuba is terrible for the ordinary citizen. There is an apartheid that favors the ruling elite and foreigners who pay in US dollars”, and it has been shown that “the Cuban health system lacks transparency and capacity ”, its health policies not only have not yielded good results but also limit the basic rights of patients, “it is hardly a model to follow ”(Cuba’s health system: hardly an example to follow Octavio Gómez-Dantés).
Cuba is the US government’s longest running regime change failure. From Ramona Wadi at strategic-culture.org:
The assumption that military intervention would fix Cuba only illustrates how the interests of the Miami dissidents are aligned with those of the U.S.
As protests erupted in Cuba over shortages of basic necessities, the decades-long illegal U.S. blockade on Cuba was no longer a part of mainstream media narratives. In 2020, media focus was on the Cuban contribution to the fight against Covid19 and how, despite the blockade, Cuba had still managed its internationalist approach, while manufacturing its own vaccines. For a brief period, talk about lifting the illegal blockade on Cuba was also part of the international narrative, even as the medical brigades were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Meanwhile, due to the blockade and Covid19, Cuba’s economy contracted further. Unwaveringly, the U.S. government also continued with its funding of anti-governments groups. Only the U.S. intentions are not democratic, despite what mainstream propaganda disseminates.
In April 1960, a memorandum under the heading “The Decline and Fall of Castro” partly stated, “The only foreseeable means of alienating internal support is through disenchantment and disaffection based on economic dissatisfaction and hardship.” Calling for economic deprivation, the memorandum further advocated for action which, “while as adroit and inconspicuous as possible, makes the greatest inroads in denying money and supplies to Cuba, to decrease monetary and real wages, to bring about hunger, desperation and overthrow of government.”
The current Cuban unrest may well not be a purely indigenous phenomenon, rather it’s the outcome of a globalist design to destabilize many governments. From Joaquin Flores at strategic-culture.org:
Today, we are seeing only the start of a fresh wave of global destabilization efforts, never-ending wars, Joaquin Flores writes.
If one believes that the protests in Cuba can be explained within the rubric of 20th century economic systems, and then believes they can go on to extract some great truths about socialism vs. capitalism, then they are misinformed. No, this is about technocracy, color revolution, and forever-war.
The events in Cuba were caused by the staged economic collapse directed by the IMF under the advisement of the World Economic Forum, under the pretext of supply-line stoppages and economic closures to combat Covid-19. The socio-economic strife that such an imposed crisis is known to provoke, is then weaponised to destabilize ‘regimes’ so as to further the hegemonic agenda of the (admittedly divided) oligarchy ruling the global west. We saw this before in 2008 with the crash and crisis, and how this was weaponised to create a destabilization process known as the Arab Spring.
Posted in Civil Liberties, Collapse, Economy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Insurrection, Politics
Tagged Cuba, Economic crashes, IMF, WEF
From The Babylon Bee:
MIAMI, FL—While on his way to a summer sociology course at the University of Miami, local college freshman Eddard Pollyton noticed a Cuban American man sitting on a bench. He took the time to lecture the man, who had escaped socialism on a raft when he was young, on why socialism is actually good and how he knows a lot more about socialism than people from socialist countries.
“Greetings!” Pollyton said. “I’m Eddard, he/him. I see from your skin color—which is the most important thing about you—that you are Cuban. Pretty sad how those Cubans aren’t appreciating the great social programs they have right now, am I right?”
The man stared dumbfounded as the student went on and on about private ownership of the means of production, the plight of the proletariat, and the need for the workers to unite and work for the common good. He explained to the man who had nearly starved to death as a child and only survived because his parents had put him on a raft and dared a dangerous sea voyage across the Gulf of Mexico that Cubans have some of the best healthcare, free food and medicine, and literacy programs in the world.
Finally, the man had heard enough. “Get out of here. You young people have no idea what socialism is like, man.”
“Wait a minute—did you just assume my gender?”
The US has embargoed Cuba for 60 years without changing its regime or system of government. Makes you wonder about the effectiveness of all those other sanctions the government has imposed. From Jacob G. Hornberger at fff.org:
The U.S. embargo on Cuba has been in effect for 60 years. It’s time to end it.
The embargo makes it a criminal offense for any American to spend money in Cuba or to do business in Cuba. If an American travels to Cuba and spends money there or does business there, he is subject to criminal prosecution, conviction, fine, and imprisonment by his own government upon his return to the United States.
The purpose of the embargo is regime change. The idea is to squeeze the Cuban people economically with the aim of causing discontent against Cuba’s communist regime. If the discontent gets significant enough, U.S. officials believe, the population will revolt and re-install a pro-U.S. regime into power.
Where is the morality in targeting the civilian population with death and impoverishment with the aim of achieving a political goal? Isn’t that why we condemn terrorism?
I say “re-install” because Cuba had a pro-U.S. dictator in power before the Cuban revolution installed Fidel Castro into power. The country was ruled by a man named Fulgencio Batista, one of the most brutal and corrupt dictators in the world. U.S. officials didn’t care about his tyranny because he was a pro-U.S. dictator — that is, one who could be counted on to do the bidding of the U.S. government.
But the Cuban people, who were suffering under Batista’s regime, revolted against it. Successfully ousting Batista from power, new Cuban dictator Fidel Castro made it clear that he would be no such puppet. In the eyes of U.S. officials, that made him a threat to “national security.”
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The US government likes enemies lists. The one commonality among its enemies is that they don’t do what the US government wants them to do. From Philip Giraldi at strategic-culture.org:
Many American still long for the good old days when men were still manly and President George W. Bush was able to announce that there was a “new sheriff in town” pledged to wipe terrorism from the face of the earth. “You’re either with us or against us,” he growled and he backed up his warning of lethal retribution with an enemies list that he called the “axis of evil.”
The axis of evil identified in those days in the 2002 State of the Union Address consisted of Iraq, Iran and North Korea. Iraq, which had not yet been invaded and conquered by the American war machine, was number one on the list, with Saddam allegedly brandishing weapons of mass destruction deliverable by the feared transatlantic gliders that could easily strike the United States. Bush explained that “Iraq continues to flaunt its hostility toward America and to support terror. The Iraqi regime has plotted to develop anthrax and nerve gas and nuclear weapons for over a decade. This is a regime that has already used poison gas to murder thousands of its own citizens, leaving the bodies of mothers huddled over their dead children. This is a regime that agreed to international inspections, then kicked out the inspectors. This is a regime that has something to hide from the civilized world.”
North Korea meanwhile was described as “A regime arming with missiles and weapons of mass destruction, while starving its citizens” while Iran “aggressively pursues these weapons and exports terror, while an unelected few repress the Iranian people’s hope for freedom.”
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Posted in Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Governments, History, Imperialism, Media, Politics
Tagged Cuba, Iran, John Bolton, Mike Pompeo, Nicaragua, North Korea, President Trump, US Enemies, Venezuela
Got a cold? Lose your job? Blame the Russians. From Glenn Greenwald at theintercept.com:
NBC NEWS AND MSNBC SPECIALIZE in repeating and disseminating what U.S intelligence officials tell them to say and then calling that servitude “reporting.” Those two networks really are the all-but-official outlets for CIA messaging. And this status has led their brightest on-air stars to broadcast a series of extremely consequential stories that turned out to be humiliatingly wrong.
This stenographic and highly jingoistic practice of mindlessly reciting the whispered claims of anonymous “intelligence officials” is what notoriously led the New York Times and other leading U.S. media outlets to deceive the country into believing Dick Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz’s fairy tales about Iraqi WMDs and Jeffrey Goldberg’s tales about Saddam’s alliance with Al Qaeda.
But while many of those outlets apologized for that behavior and vowed to avoid it in the future, NBC and MSNBC have committed themselves to it with greater vigor than ever, as evidenced by the increasing prominence of their national security reporter Ken Dilanian, whose entire career has been defined by repeating what the CIA tells him to say – and has thus been plagued by one embarrassing false story after the next.