HAVANA TIMES — The Cuban news have been touching on the issue of the US embargo and the re-establishment of relations between Washington and Havana for some time now. The headlines have already become rather monotonous.
What’s very curious for me is the rhetoric used by the local media to address the issue. If there is any real interest in a rapprochement, then such language must be devoid of arrogance. This does not mean, of course, that one should assume a submissive posture if any talks ever came to pass. I don’t know why some of the things Cuban spokespeople have said strike me as rather simplistic and even inflexible.
When interpersonal, group or international relations have been broken off or become hostile and one has the intention, need or desire to fix these, one’s attitude, and therefore the words one uses to re-establish harmony, play a crucial role. If this fails, the alternative is that old saying saying, “begging for change with a shotgun.”
I think it best that I share the journalistic piece that prompted these thoughts.
I was watching the evening news. I don’t often pay much attention to the news, which is perhaps why I didn’t hear who the author of the report was. What I do know is that the report was on the prerogatives Barack Obama has as president, prerogatives that allow him to put an end to US economic embargo on Cuba without consulting Congress or anyone else.
On this one point, the journalist’s arguments could be considered sound. Her remarks began sounding less serious, however, when she added that, in addition, Obama has the power to and should close the Guantanamo Naval Base, take Cuba off the list of countries that sponsor terrorism, extradite the confessed terrorists that live in the United States and free the three Cuban agents who are still imprisoned there.
The tone was one of demand and was accompanied by the word “immediately.” At no point in the report did I hear anything about what changes Cuba was willing to make in the event the US administration wanted to hold talks of any kind.
The piece was laughable. The only thing missing was asking the “age-old enemy” to become Cuba’s main commercial partner. There was no mention of any democratic changes in the country. It would seem as though the United States is the only one that ought to rethink its position vis-à-vis Cuba and that Cuba can demand anything it wishes.
Getting back to popular sayings, I am reminded of the so called “funnel law”: we get the broad end, the others the narrow one. Nothing essential has changed, so, what reconciliation could we possibly hope for?