Cuba Finally Cut from US Terrorism List

By Circles Robinson

Cuba by night.  Photo: Juan Suarez
Cuba by night. Photo: Juan Suarez

HAVANA TIMES — As requested by US President Obama, the State Department on Friday officially took Cuba off Washington’s list of state sponsors of terrorism, where it has been parked since 1982, reported dpa.

In a press release on Friday the State Department outlined the process involved:

“In December 2014, the President instructed the Secretary of State to immediately launch a review of Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism, and provide a report to him within six months regarding Cuba’s support for international terrorism. On April 8, 2015, the Secretary of State completed that review and recommended to the President that Cuba no longer be designated as a State Sponsor of Terrorism.

“Accordingly, on April 14, the President submitted to Congress the statutorily required report indicating the Administration’s intent to rescind Cuba’s State Sponsor of Terrorism designation, including the certification that Cuba has not provided any support for international terrorism during the previous six-months; and that Cuba has provided assurances that it will not support acts of international terrorism in the future. The 45-day Congressional pre-notification period has expired, and the Secretary of State has made the final decision to rescind Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism, effective today, May 29, 2015.

“The rescission of Cuba’s designation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism reflects our assessment that Cuba meets the statutory criteria for rescission. While the United States has significant concerns and disagreements with a wide range of Cuba’s policies and actions, these fall outside the criteria relevant to the rescission of a State Sponsor of Terrorism designation.”

After removing Cuba, the only countries remaining on the list are Iran, Sudan and Syria.

Cuba is not the first country to be dropped from this list. Washington pulled South Yemen in 1990 when it ceased to exist after unify with neighboring North Yemen, leading to the current Republic of Yemen. Iraq, Libya and North Korea were also removed.

The new normalized status for Cuba moves along the long process for restored relations between the two governments began in December 2014. In the coming weeks, Havana and Washington are expected to host reopened embassies of their respective countries.

44 thoughts on “Cuba Finally Cut from US Terrorism List

  • Israel is a military power. I do not question that they want to control the territories they captured in war. Iran is no Russia that keeps invading its neighbors but it also seeks to project regional power. That is in the nature of states with a powerful military.

  • The dude is intense. Hehehe!

  • You can recite your twisted version of US history all the way back to the pilgrims and it will never justify the problems in Cuba. By the way, if you dislike the US so much and hold such deep admiration for the Castros, why don’t you move?

  • You sound like Griffin’s alter ego! Let’s move forward and not chop off each others heads and allow the Cuban people to get a hold on bettering their lives by moving into the twenty first century. I haven’t even been allowed to freely, on my own without any restrictions to visit this country. I’m not your enemy but I am certainly not a fan of Marxism, as in Venezuela and or Communism!

  • Marti, you have not included Israel which possesses nuclear weapons. I was about to compliment you on your honest statement, but how could you neglect to mention Israel which has been subjugating the Palestinian people. Israel is heavily armed by America to ensure that the Middle Eastleaders are kept in line with American Policies. My friend, why did you not mention Israel? You must be honest with yourself, Iran does not want or wish to invade any country in the Middle East. It arms itself as protection from the American puppets in the Middle East including Israel. How can Israel possess nuclear weapons when it is not signatory to the UN Treaty– The Non Proliferation Treaty, but Iran which is a signatory cannot pursue Nuclear Technology? There goes America again with her Forked Tongued Foreign Policy?

  • LOOK at the shooting down of Black people in the land of the free and the white police getting away scot free. This cannot happen in Cuba. Like the boxer you are, you have bobbed and weaved again. You have not answered my question as to who you really are? I am Working Class, who are you, working class or oligarch? It was Socialists who fought for the introduction of Labour Day and many of them lost their lives in the fight. You must say that it took America many years before it was able to introduce a Labour Day when the rest of the world were enjoying theirs. Did you read the book, “Bury my heart at wounded knee?” It is a sordid tale of how the Land of the free treated the original natives. Isnt it a fact Moses, that America supported the worst dictators in the world? Why does the CIA try to assassinate Leaders who work in the interest of the working class masses of the wolrd? Why do they refer to them as dictators when they supportand back the worst of the worst? There were over two hundred (200) attempts on the life of Fidel alone. It is easy to understand why America supports Terrorists. It is the only country which has assassinated it Presidents, and those like Martin Luther King who was fighting for the Black man to vote in the 1960′ long after America gained her Independence in 1774. How many years that was Moses? Wipe your slate clean of all the atrocities your country has committed and leave the Cuban people who have shown the whole world that they prefer to live under Communism than Cappitalism. Were they not victorious in the Bay of Pigs invasion early in the triumph of the Revoluton? Can you match The Cuban Five Heroes spending sixteen years (16) in American jails to protect their country? Do you need more proof than that to declare to you that the Cubans are content with the system under which they live? You and your friends who long for the Glory Days of Batista will not experience them again. You keep harping about individual freedoms. That has been buried in the interest of all peoples participation in the affairs of the country. You believe that, because Americans will be allowed to visit Cuba that the well educated Cubans will let go of the real bone that they have in their hand and grab at the invisible bone which is only a reflection? THINK AGAIN MY FRIEND!!

  • Moses, China has adopted some Capitalist policies in its industrial advancement but it still maintains its Socialist system, The leaders of China are fully aware of the corrupt nature of The capitalist ideology and have imposed very harsh penalties on anyone who succumbed to its corruption. We have herad and read of managers who have been executed for accepting bribes and other corrupt practices. The Communist Party in China would not sell out its principles by flooding the country with uncontrolled, corrupted and exploitative capitalism.

  • Moses, be like an eagle and soar high. Stop being a yard fowl whibh can scratch the surface, content with what comes out of the earth. The eagle soars high above the earth and the oceans and can determine what will appease its appetite on that day. Fidel Castro and his brother were born into a rich family. Whenever they returned for School holidays, they played with the children of the workers on their parents land; they also held school for them trying to give them the education the system did not provide for children like them. From way back the Castros were touched by the plight of the workers of their family and the deplorarable conditions which existed in their country. Have you ever read the autobiography of Fidel Castro written by an American? Stop berating the leaders of Cuba. This is the difference between Capitalism and Socilism. Capitalism which introduced SLAVERY preys on the sweat, the toil, the loss of lives of the masses, so that they, their families and friends could live in splendour while the masses wriggle in squalor. Socialism comes about by persons who are touched by the plight of their fellowmen and decide to suffer sacrifices and consequences, in order to create a fair and just society where all will live in dignity. Capitalism is an “II” and a “ME” thing. Socialism is an “ALL OF US THING” Bill gates is a mutibillionaire, but, could he be a billionaire by himself? Yes! He came up with an idea, but, could he have executed that idea by himself? What about those who worked with him to bring that reality to fruition? Those who took the notes, those who worked with him in his trials and his failures before he could realize success? What about the people who sell his computers, what about the consumers who buy his computers. Doesn’t all,play a vital part in ensuring that he became as rich as he is today? Do you hear him call names? No! It is all about Capitalist Bill Gates. “I, I And I” Does he pay his workers a wage which would make them live like him? He makes his billions by milking the cheap labour of his workers. With Socialism The idea is used for the advancement of mankind for no man is an island. Everyone of us is a spoke in the wheel of life. Everyone of us plays a very important part in that wheel.

  • Bjmack You have rightly concluded that the Batista era was disastrous, what did you want the new Cuban leaders to follow, the same capitalistic policies of Batista which would have brought the same disaster to the Cuban people? The 1959 Revoluton was to overthrow the Batista regime and introduce a new ideology which would uplift the Cuban people. Be factual man, be factual!! Had the Revolution followed the same path like Batista it would not have brought about any meaningful change, You would not have been criticizing the leaders of Cuba today because it would have been business as usual. It would have been like a recurring decimal. Try dividing 100 by 3. What answer do you get? Isn’t it the same string of three’s? (33333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333) The Cubans have divided 100 by four and have realized a definite answer= 25.

  • Cuba has the right to follow any path it wants. I advocate for ending the embargo and ignoring them. Let them follow their course. State communism has already failed, so they are headed towards a different socialist model that includes a market.

    Socialism comes in many forms. What has failed is the Marx-Lenin state communist model. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the remaing states have all been updating their economic model. Currently not just Cuba, North Korea is also updating it’s model to permit workers to directly control the means of production.

    The U.S. has the worlds strongest military force. Russia and Iran both have a strong military. Since the interest are not aligned, they present a threat and threats are neutralized by great powers. So no, they will not be permitted to put a base on America’s door step.

    Russia has been retaking lands it formally controlled via the Soviet Union. It will be up to the people of those lands to decide if they will accept conquest. Iran also wants to increase it’s regional dominance. Others will not make it eassy. It is a power in it’s own right and may take and hold what it may. Power makes right in the affairs of territorial conquest.

  • There is a Cuban saying that goes around which is “One man’s dream has become the nightmare of the 11 million Cuban citizens.”

  • Parroting the same old recycled Socialist blather does not make your argument stronger. On the contrary, pro-Soviet Union pinheads said exactly the same speech less OWS part. How did that help the Soviet Union? I do believe I have a say in my government. If I join my voice with others all the more. And yes, civic-minded Cubans are afforded an opportunity to participate in the decision-making….as long as what they decide to do agrees with the Castros. Like every kid in America, I learned about the first May Day in high school. So what? The working class has evolved since then and the needs of the working class are different today. Bashing the US is easy. Nowhere is perfect and certainly not the US. But this blog is about Cuba. I want Cubans to decide for themselves what future lies ahead for them. This does not mean going back to the Batista dictatorship. It means an entirely new Cuba based on a free an open society.

  • Do you say that Vietnam AND Cuba are socialist? Where is John Goodrich when you need him? Cuba didn’t choose “Socialism”, the Castros did. Finally, can you name one country where Socialism and totalitarianism don’t go Han in hand?

  • KEC, regarding you giving me a thumbs up on integrity I submit a royal thank you.

  • Marti, you have the gall, the bare face to refer to Russia and Iran as militaristic states? America is the most armed country in the world? Tell me brother, What is America doing all the way in Ukraine which is next to the border with Russia? Present one plausible excuse? Which book are you reading from Marti. The greatest ant of the world today, is the want of men. “Men who are true and honest, Men who are not afraid to call sin by its right name, Men who will stand for the right though the heavens fall.” Do you fit any of these categories, Marti? The whole world or the major part of it has access to the internet; people can look at different sides of the story and analyze and parse events for themselves. People are not fools any more by hearing America’s side only, so, STOP SPEWING OUT YOUR PROPAGANDA. You yourself must do your research, instead of just being brainwashed with the tripe that the multinational media spews out by the pot spoons every second of the clock. The world wants peace. The UN Charter gives each sovereign country member, the right to follow it own path to economic development. If Cuba chooses Communism, it is her right so to do.. America is an assassin assassinating leaders who travel the Socialist path to development. Who has authorized America to topple these Governments? America wants the masses of the world to live in abject poverty and ignorance. Any leader who attempts to save the masses from this fate, becomes an enemy and must be eliminated. The people of Cuba and the other countries which have followed the Socialist pathway to development, have been rescued, for the Castro’s and the Cuban people have shown them the light, and, as long as the people are determined to change the course of thier lives, no military Giant can stop them. Vietnam and Cuba are Beacons OF HOPE FOR THE MASSES OF WORKING CLASS PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD. LONG live Socialism, the only ideology which dignifies the human being and makes him/ her live lke the human beings they were created to be. Dispute my statements Marti. with historical facts and not hysterical assertions!!

  • Moses, what is your interpretation of free and fair elections? Do you, as an intelligent person believe the the little man in America has a say in the rumnning of the country? In Cuba, the people are involved in any making decision affecting the country. There were myriads of meetings with the people about opening up the economy. The population was involved. It is not all Cubans running for elections belong to the Communist Party. The people who live in the municipalities choose their representatives; for every session he attends, he or she has to return to the people to inform them about what is happening. Do you want me to get a copy of the Cuban Constitution so that you can read it for yourself? It seems as if you are hungry for the days of Batista to return’ prior to the Revolution, the masses were voiceless; those same voiceless masses now have voice. Who runs America? The multinationals, the oligarchs, the lobbyists. the Wall street Bandits and robbers. You remember when the people went into the Wall Street Square to demonstrate against the Robbers, did you see how the police attacked them with batons and dogs in the land of the free? The International Labour Organization is headquartered in America, but the same America is not a member because America is a capitalist country and capitalist countries like America are anti-working class and do not join workers Organizations. Go on the Internet and Google “The history of the first May Day March?’ Read it and then return and engage me in conversation. By the way, are you working class or are you an oligarch? Don’t bob and weave like the boxer you are? Answer me the Question truthfully and directly!!

  • Jesus S. Christ, I thought Gus Hall was dead!

  • You really have very little knowledge of Cuban history do you?

  • bjmack, I rate you as a man of integrity and a man of principles, so, what did you expect the Cubans to do if the Batista era was so horrific? It was the political ideology called capitalism which was practised by Bastista who was a dictator working in the interest of the oligarc, oppessing, repressing, exploiting the masses so that the oligarchs could realize humongous profits. Batista, the oppressor and exploiter, was ably supported by America who saw no Human rights violation then. The Cubans lived in abject povert, denied access to proper education, good health and housing. Had the leaders of the 1959 Revolution followed the same ideology as Batista, would the Cubans be as educated and as professional as they are today? Be honest with your self and come straight with me. Has the Revolution brought real positive changes to the lives of the ordinary Cuban? Cuba is the most literate country in the world. The American Press keep referring to the Leaders of Cuba as dictators. If America supported Batista, Papa Doc of Haiti, Pinochet of Chile who slaughtered, murdered,massacred thousands of people, why cant they support the leaders of Cuba who they refer to as Dictators? A dictator is a dictator,is a dictator! The difference is, Batista and those of his ilk, made sure that the citizens stayed in the darkness of ignorance. The leaders of the Revolution took the Cubans out of the darkness of ignorance and brought them into the light of literacy. How can you oppress people when you have librated them with education from kindegarten to university? Tell me bjmack, Tell me? It seems as if you are seething with hatred for the Cuban Leaders for liberating the Cuban people from ignorance. You seem to be one of the oligarchs who are against the working class peoples of the world living like the human beings they were created to be. If this is not true, why would you be so terrbly against the Cuan Revolution? Declare your hand,man. Are you an oligarch or are you working class? America supports the rich and turns a blind eye to the atrocities they inflict on the working class. The Castro’s and those of the same ideology, liberate the working class from the tentacles of the oppressors!!

  • Civil Society is defined as a non government organization that works for the Benoit of society.

    And I would likde you to tell me who is calling for s “Batista” style government….anyone? …Because Cuba is such a failure you need the “boogeyman” of a government gone almost 60 years as an excuse. And as bad as “political” represion may have been under Batista, it was infinitely better than what is found today. Just check out ghd UN statistics. Like one of Castros famous biographers said, “the revolution was born from wealth with a silver spoon in its mouth”

    I as a Cuban morn the loss of what Cuba was, what it could and should have been, lost to the “fever dream” of the Castro’s. He betraid his own people

  • No one is denying how disastrous Batista was. The reality is that for over three decades Cuban citizens have been arrested, beaten and in some cases murdered trying to bring change to Cuba after the revolution. I’m hoping for a major movement, via social media, to implement that positive spirit.

  • Yep China’s using a very BIG hammer in the South China Sea to harmoniously HAMMER their meighbors.

  • You are talking about a Cuba that I am unfamiliar with. I think we only need to look at all those who have risked, and in many instances lost, their lives fleeing the magical place you discribe.
    So I agree….go to Cuba and see for yourself, you’ll be surprised for sure. That doesn’t mean Cubas not a beautiful place, it’s just not the one described above.

  • “Socialism uplifts and dignifies.” Really? Where, other than in your socialist nocturnal fantasies, has this been the case? The USSR, China or Vietnam? The Castros are dictators. They sell medical services like Cuban chulos (pimps) sell companionship. Have you seen the crumbling infrastructure and failing education/health systems in Cuba? Is that how you measure “excellent leadership”? Your comments to this thread reflect a Cuban paradise that no longer exists, if it ever existed at all.

  • Cuban has one of the lowest immigration rates in the world. Who do you think is moving there? American foreign aid is at least 10 times greater than China’s. Again, where are you getting your facts. If by corrupting the people, you mean McDonald’s restaurants, I agree with you. I’m a Burger King man myself.

  • It is a false paradigm to suggest that in the wake of departure of the tyrannical Castro dictatorship that the only other option is the nearly as bad Batista-era regime. You correctly comment that Cubans are relatively well-educated. Why don’t you then believe that, if given the opportunity to hold free and open elections, they would choose a non-Castro, non-Batista democratic system? Civil society, as it relates to Cuba, non-governmental groups organized around common goals or ideas. Presently, these groups are prohibited in Cuba. US influence should help to expand the breadth and resources civil society can bring to bear on government.

  • Moses, here you go again? Funding civil society, who and what is civil society? Is America’s intention is to overthrow the progressive system presently operating in Cuba and replace it with the pre- Batista era when a few ruled the masses who were kept in abject poverty? The people of Cuba are well educated and can think for themselves, so this would be a hard nut to crack. It is high time that America learn to live in peace with other nations regardless of their ideology..

  • My friend you are so correct. It is this expression of superiority that is causing America to be marking time while the rest of the worlf is marching on, seeking means and ways of living peacefully with each other. China is saying, “Come let us sit and hammer our our differences in an harmonious manner, China is going to the third world countries and assissting them in their infrastructural develpment. What is America doing? It is creating tensions all over the world, it is shielding countries like Saudi Arabia and Israel which are committing atrosities against their neighbours. There are tourists from all over the globe who have been visiting Cuba and have been enjoying their stay. Some have even opted to live there. the country is so peaceful and the citizens so friendly, sharing the little they have with you. The Americans want to go and change that, for anywhere they go they corrupt the people.

  • You seem so biased against the leaders of Cuba. If the leaders of the revoluton had walked in the footsteps of Batista whom the Americans suppoted the Average Cuban would not have had access to free education, good health care and proper housing. They would not have been able to despatch doctors to the remotest areas of the world which suffered natural disasters. If the leaders of the country were despots as you claim, America would be supporting them for America has supported the worse of the worst in the world. Capitlism represses; Socialism uplifts and dignifies. How can you educate a man and still repress him when you have opened his mind to think for himself? Be factual man. Erase all that hatred for the leaders of Cuba. They have done an excellent job. You must bear in mind that hatred is a cancer which does more harm to the person in whom it is stored than upon the person on whom it is poured. Go to Cuba and see for yourself. I agree with you that, with the embargo lifted, life will be much better for the average Cuban for they would be able to trade with countries all over the world not necessarily the U.S.

  • Cuba should never have been there at all. I do not understand how America can place Cuba as a State Sponsor of Terrorism when Five Cuban Heroes infiltrated terrorist organizations in America which were planning to carry out terrorist acts on Cuba. The bomber of the Cubana Arline off the course of Barbados is walking the streets of America, a free man. If Luis Posades the terrorist who planted the bombs on the aircraft has not been prosecuted for the crime and is allowed to walk the streets of America a free man, it simply means that America had a hand in the plannong of the terrorist act in which over 70 persons lost their lives. Isn’t America A State Sponsor of terrorism? If America’s hands are so tainted, how dare she point fingers at others?

  • I guess not a single thing amelrodriguez. great uplifting comment!

  • I would like to know how that internet access, tourism and market economy has improved democracy in China and Viet Nam. Internet is severely controlled in these countries and dissidents asking for human rights are thrown in prison. Of course none of these is heavily publicized because of all the money the USA has invested there.

    On the other had, capitalist tourists from Europe, Asia and Canada have been visiting Cuba in hordes fro more than 20 years with no more effect than an increase in prostitution for both sexes. What is so special about the Americans that you are sure our tourists will create the change that other did not?

  • Same old broken Castros. The truth may seem boring to you but your boredom doesn’t make the argument any less true. Try adding the debate instead of your childish potshots.

  • Dream on

  • The record just happens to be factual and correct and that gets up your dripping nose.

  • Same old broken record

  • Agree Marti! Social Media will pave the way for a rapid change from the despots who
    have controlled Cuba for over 50 years. All the more reason to move rapidly and
    enhance communication capabilities, allow the distribution of cell phones and computers via US “gifts” and flood the country with American’s so as to educate
    and eradicate the disastrous ‘system’ that has made Cuba an impoverished
    and sad country. The US needn’t do a thing as the people of Cuba will make
    their decision within their own time frame. I’m still looking at pre-2016.

  • I fully understand your strategy but historically dictatorships have NEVER just faded away without an external force being applied. Ignoring Cuba would simply enrich the Castros who will use this new source of wealth to ramp up repression. As politically incorrect as it may sound, now is not the time to turn off the switch at Radio/TV Marti. On the contrary, now is the time to turn up the volume.

  • I share your sentiment on the need for everyday Cuban’s to gain greater freedom. Quite support will go a lot farther than the current strategy. The best course is to drop embargo and then ignore Cuba. Let it take it’s own course so long as they do not invite militaristic states such as Russia or Iran to deploy weapons against the U.S.

  • Yes, it is time to recognize the progress, if not compete, that Raul Castro Ruiz has made in updating the economic model. The U.S. should drop the heavy handed approach so that focus may turn to the changes Cuba needs to make to liberate the populace from it’s own authoritarian governance. I have every confidence that Cuba can increase individual liberty on matters of every day life without adopting unfettered capitalism.

  • Statement on Cuba’s Removal from the US Terrorist List

    Washington, DC –– The peace group CODEPINK applauds Cuba’s removal from the U.S. State Department’s state sponsors of terrorism list. In addition to the economic embargo imposed
    in 1962, Cuba has unjustly languished on the U.S. State Department’s state-sponsored terror list since 1982—despite posing no threat to the United States’ national security. Today, we are happy to note that this has finally changed.

    The infamous US terror list includes only three other nations: Iran, Sudan, and Syria and curiously omits North Korea. Many people around the world found it hypocritical for the United States to single
    out Cuba while ignoring support for terrorism by U.S. allies such as Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Egypt and Israel, especially since Cuba is known for exporting doctors, musicians, teachers, artists, and dancers — not terrorists. They could also argue that US actions–such as invading Iraq on the basis of lies or killing people by drones with no due process–would merit labeling the US itself as a state sponsor of terror.

    Cuba’s removal from the list will hopefully warm efforts to normalize relations between the two nations. The terrorism designation was Cuba’s primary demand in reestablishing diplomatic ties.
    Serving as a point of contention during diplomatic talks, the dispute has even snarled
    progress towards opening embassies.

    “Hopefully the next step to normalize relations between the US and Cuba will be that the “Interest Sections” in both countries will be turned into embassies,” said Jamila Brown, the director of CODEPINK’s campaign to normalize relations with Cuba. “It will be easier for international banks to do business with Cuba and the staff of the soon-to-be re-minted Cuban Embassy will finally be allowed to bank in the United States instead of having to conduct all their transactions in cash.” She added, “But sadly, not much will change until the economic embargo is lifted. The president himself can make further changes by executive authority, but ultimately the lifting of the embargo must be done by Congress.”

    “The State Department’s removal of Cuba from the state-sponsored terror list is a step in the right direction, but we still have a long road ahead,” said CODEPINK co-founder Medea Benjamin. “As Cuba’s removal from the list opens the pathway to opening embassies, we must now turn to Congress and demand that they further the president’s actions by ending the American travel ban to Cuba and the entire economic embargo.”

  • For many years, Cuba’s inclusion on this list has been difficult to justify. Taking Cuba off this list however should not change US efforts toward a more open and democratic Cuba. It also should not be seen as a victory for those who support the status quo in Cuba. When a US embassy is finally opened in Cuba and the US Senate has confirmed an ambassador, the US should redouble our efforts and the funding to support civil Cuban society.

  • ‘Yup!

  • ’bout time.

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