Obama Man Rules Out End of Blockade

By Circles Robinson

HAVANA, May 8 – The special assistant for Latin America of the president of the United States, Daniel Restrepo, in statements to the press in Washington ruled out that the White House would lift its half-century blockade against Cuba, claiming the government of Raúl Castro has not carried out positive steps regarding the fundamental rights of the Cuban people.

Restrepo recalled that the Barack Obama administration in 2009 lifted the travel restrictions of the Cuban-American community and established talks with Havana on issues such as immigration, reported IPS.

The travel restrictions on Cuban-Americans were an internal US issue as is the still in force travel ban that prohibits ordinary US citizens from visiting Cuba without a special Treasury Dept. license.  The talks on immigration reached no new accords.

Recently US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton poured cold water on any hopes for a thaw in Washington’s half century aggressive policy towards Cuba when she said it was the Cuban government that wants the half-century blockade to continue.

Havana, which has denounced the blockade at every possible international forum, responded by challenging Clinton to lift the unilateral blockade and see what happens.

The considerable money donated to both Democratic and Republican party officials and candidates by Miami exile groups as well as the lucrative business involving hundreds of millions of dollars to carry out the US anti-Cuba policy, leaves many politicians little incentive to achieve a restoration of diplomatic ties and end hostilities began shortly after the 1959 Cuban revolution.


2 thoughts on “Obama Man Rules Out End of Blockade

  • “The considerable money donated to both Democratic and Republican party officials and candidates by Miami exile groups as well as the lucrative business involving hundreds of millions of dollars to carry out the US anti-Cuba policy, leaves many politicians little incentive to achieve a restoration of diplomatic ties and end hostilities began shortly after the 1959 Cuban revolution.”

    This is exactly why the policy is at a standstill and no serious negotiations take place. As long as ignorance and arrogance are the dominant forces at play. The travel and trade restrictions will end when the majority representing this issue politically organize $$$. The Cuban people will benefit from change in their government and political system, but it is one where 50 years of interference have only helped to maintain the status quo. We need new policies of influence on Cuba. It is the only side of the equation that we have any real control over and our policies of interference are a failure.

  • Crap, and you know it. With Alan Gross in prison for allegedly spying and the death of Zapata, Castro has clearly offended the US – and done so deliberately to ensure the continuation of the blockade. Given those two events, there is no way the US can lift the blockade and retain any integrity in its foreign relations with Caribbean nations.
    Much as I cannot stand Hilary Clinton, she’s right – just as others before her have stated it – that without the US as a visible ‘enemy’, the Castro regime would fail because the people would see that it has never served them well. Castro can rant all he wants, challenging the US to lift the blockade, but he knows his bluff will not be called. He’s seen to that.
    Your final paragraph is an insult to any individual who follows this issue, even casually. You do a disservice to the Cuban people as well, who would ultimately benefit from the ending of the Castro regime.

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