Partial Building Collapses in Havana after Heavy Rains
HAVANA TIMES (dpa) — The Cuban capital suffered several partial building collapses in recent days due to heavy rains that hit the city at the end of last week, informed the official media on Monday.
No deaths or injuries were recorded, said the official newspaper “Granma”, noting that the affected individuals “were moved to safe places.”
The authorities still do not have the total number of homes affected. The cases occurred in the central municipalities of Centro Habana, Old Havana, Diez de Octubre and Marianao, according to reports.
Due to the poor state of many buildings, heavy rains and storms often cause partial or total collapses in the Cuban capital.
Havana also suffered flooding in several coastal areas in recent days. The tide flooded streets in the districts of Miramar and Plaza.
There was also flooding in streets adjacent to the Malecón seawall in Centro Habana and Old Havana, as well as in the low-lying areas of Cojimar and Guanabo, in the eastern part of the city.
7 thoughts on “Partial Building Collapses in Havana after Heavy Rains”
“Toppling dictatorships hasn’t turned out so well for the US recently.”
You have a point there.
However, I would argue that it was precisely because of Obama’s policies that Russia was confident they could annex parts of Ukraine without US interference. No US President would have gone to war with Russia over Ukraine, but Obama’s passive posture told Putin he could get away with it. As Putin’s Foreign Secretary said after meeting Obama in 2009, “We can steal this guys pants”, a Russian expression indicating they knew they’re dealing with a fool.
The collapse of Syria into civil was was a direct consequence of Obama’s Middle East policy. Obama cut off funding for Syrian democracy groups, saying it was “unhelpful”. He & Hillary praised Assad as a “reformer” even while his security forces were murdering pro-democracy protestors in Damascus. Obama had the absurd notion that he could coax Syria away from Iran’s influence by restoring diplomatic relations with Damascus, stopping the UN probe into the assassination of Lebanese leader Hariri (ordered by Syria), and promising Assad that the US would get Israel to give back the Golan Heights. Nothing of the sort resulted and US influence in the region is at it’s lowest ever. Pretending Assad was a reformer didn’t make him one. Likewise, Obama can call Raul Castro is a reformer (which he has done) but won’t make him into one either.
It is a measure of how detached from reality the Obama Administration and it’s supporters are that they point to Syria and claim it’s a success!
ISIS rose from the remnants of the Saddam regime. They were able to do this because Obama insisted on puling out all US troops as quickly as possible. Before you tell me that was Bush’s policy, (which would negate Obama getting credit, btw), the plan hammered out by Obama’s predecessor including keeping 10,000 US troops in Iraq for training & back up to the Iraqi army. Obama pulled the out too, against the advice of his own top generals. Obama also insisted the Iraqi presidency go to a Shia closely aligned with Iran. The Kurds, Saudis & Jordanians all warned Obama against this step. As a result, the Sunnis population lost faith in a united Iraq and turned their support to ISIS.
Oh, and if you haven’t noticed, the US is at war against ISIS. The USAF is flying missions against ISIS, Special Forces are there too, and the Sec Def Ashton Carter just announced that they will be sending regular US troops back to Iraq.
Toppling dictatorships hasn’t turned out so well for the US recently. Leaving the Castros in power may not be such a bad idea until the US can be sure that what comes after them is friendly to US interests. Keep in mind that Russia, and to a lesser extent, China both have substantial footholds in Cuba. You, of all people, know the difference between closing the prison in GITMO and handing over the naval base to the Castros. Obama may very well close the prison before he leaves. That was his campaign promise from 2008. But there is a snowball’s chance in Hell that the naval base will close anytime soon. That’s what the Castros really want. But every time a Russian navy vessel makes port in Cuba to resupply, and enjoy a little R&R, the chances of closing the naval base get slimmer and slimmer. History will be very kind to Obama. He kept us out of at least 3 wars. Ukraine, Syria and ISIS. On just that basis alone, he can rest on his laurels.
Two things you missed:
1. Obama hasn’t handed over Guantanamo …YET! Obama has promised to use his questionably constitutional executive authority to do plenty.
2. The Castro regime is still in power. They don’t need a lot of money to stay in power. They will get just enough from increased tourism, a handful of joint ventures, and most importantly, & access to US markets for Cuban products.
You make the point that this won’t be enough to fix everything that’s wrong in Cuba, to rebuild the infrastructure and to rase the standard of living of the average Cuban. So what? Who says the Castro regime want to do all that? They don’t need to do that to stay in power. They would rather rule in a shithole than lose power in a prosperous Cuba.
The current migration crisis was engineered to pressure the US to end the Cuban Adjustment Act. So far, it seems to be working, as a growing number of pundits & pols are demanding just that. Obama will use an EO to do that.
About Obama’s legacy, in which he gets to take credit for normalizing relations with Cuba… are you sure giving a blood thirsty dictatorship a lifeline is the sort of legacy Obama wants to embrace?
OK, I realize millions of clueless liberals might think it’s a cool thing to have their college kids visit Havana or Varadero for March break, returning home with the cigars, rum and Che t-shirts. But keeping the Castro regime in power is NOT a positive legacy for Obama. It will be yet another foreign policy disaster Obama has wrought, in the nexus between his idealists progressive ideology, his diplomatic incompetence & his colossal egotism.
Not every concession. The US embargo, Guantanamo, and remunerations remain outstanding, likely for a very long time to come. On the other hand, at the risk of sounding like I am apologizing or supporting a policy that I do not agree with, what Obama has done has given corporate America and elsewhere the green light to do business with Cuba….proceed at your own risks. And despite the visiting politicians and trade groups, very, very few deals have been inked. He and the Hollywood elite have made Cuba the “IN” place to visit in 2016. The increased tourism will bring hard currency, but nowhere near enough to make a difference. Oh yea, he hoisted the US flag. There is still no ambassador and the USINT office is relatively unchanged. My point Griffin, is that despite the hype, there has been no land rush to Cuba. I am hoping that Obama’s candy store has just about run out of goodies for the Castros until the Castros respond in kind. In the meantime, Obama takes credit for normalizing relations in Cuba and Cubans continue to leave the island in record numbers. Where am I missing something?
Let’s agree the jury is still out on the outcome of Obama’s opening to Cuba.
So far he has handed the Castro’s every concession they have demanded, while getting next to nothing in return. Certainly, the Cuban people have suffered for it. Political repression is way up, over 8000 political arrests in 2015. Religious persecution has increased, with over 2000 churches (mostly Protestant) shuttered. Irregular emigration has almost doubled, with 45,000 Cubans escaping to the US. That’s on top of the 20,000 who received legal immigration visas.
Meanwhile, the increase in remittances and tourism has benefited the Castro regime. European & US firms are being courted for investments in joint ventures with the Cuban military owned monopolies. As NJ Marti observed, below, “This President is about as good as it gets for them as a partner.”
Sadly, that is so true. Raul cannot imagine his luck!
A President Rubio will bad news for the Castros, but he will be very good for Cuba, as he will insist on humans rights on the island and liberty for the Cuban people.
Obama’s hand has not been fully accepted. This President is about as good as it gets for them as a parter. Time is running out, they should show some gratitude. Even a Clinton should worry them as she will not have the fortitude that Obama has shown in his second term. Her campaign showing cracks that could open door to one of the sons of Cuba, Cruz or Rubio. Neither will be easy to work with for Cuba.
The Castro dictatorship is literally crumbling to pieces. As their Venezuelan nurse maid collapses, the Castro oligarchy is facing a triple-threat nation killer. (1) record outmigration of Cuba’s best and brightest (2) aging population and low birthrate (3) and as this post points out, crumbling infrastructure. Obama’s gestures toward normalizing relations will secure his legacy of opening the door to Cuba while at the same time doing very little to stall, let alone reverse, Cuba’s slide into the abyss where former socialist countries have gone. It’s a master stroke for Obama and too little too late for the Castros.
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