Thinking About Cuba

On Cuba, I am extremely conflicted.

I have told the story before of sitting in a dark hotel bar in the basement of a hotel in Samarkand, Uzbekistan with Ray Cline, who was the Number Two at the CIA for decades, and asking him, “Who killed JFK?”

He said, “I don’t know, but if you had asked everyone on the plane carrying the president’s body back to Washington, everyone would have agreed that it was Fidel Castro.”

Unfortunately, the actions taken by US administrations against Cuba have punished its citizens, not the Castro brothers. The citizens have accepted, even supported the regime despite their physical deprivations, which is blamed on the US embargo despite the fact that just about every other advance nation trades with Cuba, including Canada.

No, the Cuban people suffer because of their government, but they are too proud (and too cowed) to demand a change. Perhaps, what I call the Helsinki Effect — the access that the Russians in St. Petersburg had to western TV, and the impact that had on all of Russia — can have a similar impact on Cuba.

Many people alive today do not carry the enmity toward Castro that some of us do. The Castro brothers still rule a police state, complete with political prisoners, and Cuba has become seriously weakened from its abject state by the crashing price of oil which is given to Cuba by an equally crashing Venezuela.

Perhaps a strong bargain can now be driven — except that the Obama administration has not historically been a good negotiator.


4 Responses

  1. Sorry, but I believe that the CIA helped the Mob killed JFK. The mob got JFK elected and brother Bobby tried to put them all in jail.

  2. Allan,

    I don’t have a problem normalizing relations with Cuba because when we gave Elian Gonzalez back, we essentially quit. It just took another eighteen years to make it official. My reason for being okay with normalizing relations is that we don’t follow the same hard core policy with Russia, China, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, and all of the Middle Eastern nations who govern their population with a dictator, police state mentality. I just don’t see a good reason to maintain the embargo. The reason of just because that is what we always did isn’t enough.

    On the case of JFK, it has never been proven that they were involved. A very convincing case can be made that LBJ had the Present killed. We should either produce the evidence and if Cuba did it, then we should attack them and finish this thing. If they didn’t, then we need to normalize relations and move on.

  3. What’s the quid pro quo for normalizing relations with the Castro Brothers? Feeling good about ourselves for being nice to Cuber after all these years ain’t it. So what is it?

    We should simply let the Castros die — maybe facilitate that? — and the Cubans will take care of things. The current regime doesn’t have an (effective) friend anywhere. They need foreign assistance and it’s drying up. Let it run its course.

    Btw, regarding who killed JFK, I’m with Hillary … What difference, at this time, does it make?

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