29 October 2009

Cuba shame!

Once again the world has condemned the US Trade Embargo against Cuba... once again over only three objections, coming from the US (obviously) as well as their key Caribbean allies Israel and Palau, for a score of 187-3.

You don't have to like the "Communists" to see that the embargo is the main cause of the suffering of the Cuban people. Opinions on Fidel, his government (now his brother's), and Human Rights in Cuba are also, frankly, irrelevant. The US maintains friendly relations with many countries with a worse record, and the new administration is willing to come to the table and have substantial negotiations even with Iran and North Korea. This view - that you catch more flies with honey - is in my view inarguably the correct view and must certainly apply more to Cuba than to Cambodia or Saudi Arabia, say.

To put things in perspective, almost 60,000 Americans were killed in Vietnam through 1975; Bill Clinton normalized diplomatic relations 20 years later in 1995. In Cuba, no major US war was fought and the losses to the US in the Cuban revolution amounted to one puppet dictator and some corporate properties nationalized. After more than 45 years, this insult is still apparently unforgivable. Or perhaps it is the US embargo that is unforgivable.

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