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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Cuba: the Great Dilemma

  Cuban leaders face a dilemma: How to revamp the nation's disastrous economic system without giving over full political control to the people. In other words, how to reform its socialist economy and make it productive, while at the same time retaining enough state control to maintain the centralized authority of Havana in all things political. It's the key to the changes that are happening in Cuba now, and probably the thorniest political process underway in Latin America. This AP story gives some of the background.
  The role of the United States government is central in all this. Washington has been the key bogey-man in Cuban history, attempting over the decades since the Cuban Revolution to undermine the country's leaders, kill them if necessary. How Washington approaches this process now underway on the island is hugely important. To date, the anti-Castro Cuban refugee community in the U.S. has held sway over American policy toward the island government. That should not be allowed to continue.
  As I have said before, the goal should be the full normalization of diplomatic relations between Havana and Washington, with no preconditions on either side. If we can have proper relations with China, why not Cuba, our closest neighbor in the Caribbean? 

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