Cuba: How Long Will We Maintain This Absurd Blockade?

by Dan Ehrlich

The Red Nation Menacing the US isn't in Our Backyard
All our Presidents, Democrats and Republicans, since Ronald Reagan have had two things in common, an unwavering loyalty to world market supply side economics and maintaining our absurd blockade against Cuba. Of course the blockade goes back to 1960, enacted shortly after Fidel Castro led a popular communist revolution to power.

On September 2 President Obama, rumored to be a far left liberal, renewed the Cuban blockade for another year. We seem to be alone in the world on this since most other trading nations now deal with Cuba. Yet, Obama's renewing the boycott was an event that went unnoticed by much of the media. Still, it's a key factor in the problems we have long had with our Latin American neighbors....trying to impress our designs on them. But more than this, it's now part of a grand hypocrisy given the changing face of world politics and who are financial masters are.

When Castro overthrew the corrupt American puppet regime of Fuljencio Batista in 1959, President Dwight Eisenhower was outraged that a communist nation would be located 90 miles off our shores. Since the Spanish-American war in 1898, Cuba had been a vassal state of America, and Batista a supporter of that arrangement as well as ties to American mobsters who controlled gambling and vice in the nation.

Being a kid form liberal California during the late 40s and 50s didn't make me any less fearful of the Red Scare that had been drummed into our young minds. And it was this scare that prompted Eisenhower to first propose a blockade...But it really was about the expropriation of American property and Cuba telling its nuevo colonial masters to take a hike. In fact, Castro had hoped for good relations with the US so he could rebuild his country. But, we would never back a Communist...Brutal right wing dictators have long been our favored people.

Later President Kennedy, who fully implemented the blockade, after his failed Bay of Pigs adventure and the ensuing Cuban Missile Crisis, seemed to regret supporting the embargo:

"I believe that there is no country in the world including any and all the countries under colonial domination, where economic colonization, humiliation and exploitation were worse than in Cuba, in part owing to my country’s policies during the Batista regime.

I approved the proclamation which Fidel Castro made in the Sierra Maestra, when he justifiably called for justice and especially yearned to rid Cuba of corruption. I will even go some extent it is as though Batista was the incarnation of a number of sins on the part of the United States. Now we shall have to pay for those sins....” Pres. John Kennedy, shortly before his assassination in 1963. Unfortunately, we never had a chance to see if he would have lifted the Cuban blockade.

Here are two liberal presidents who, by their actions, seem to contradict themselves. Kennedy saying he supported Castro, yet maintained the blockade and Obama trumpeting his lonely voice against the Iraq War, yet continuing our combat mission there two years into his term. Now he's fighting an ever more costly war in Afghanistan..which he said we should have been doing from the start. And of course, there's his renewing the Cuban blockade for another year.

So, as I understand it, we are continuing our blockade against Cuba because it is a repressive communist regime. And since the end of WW2 we find such regimes anathema to our thinking, security and way of life. Yet, in the aftermath of our economic triumph over the axis of evil, the now defunct Soviet Union, we realized that an even more repressive communist regime was taking center stage.

Red China has become red, white and blue China. This brutal, environmentally disastrous and grossly overpopulated nation has become rich off of us. They have stolen our sovereignty and become our economic masters. While we were outspending the Soviets on weapons of mass destruction, the Chinese were outproducing all nations in cheap consumer goods. Where is the outrage from our politicians? What boycotts or trade barriers have we enacted? Why isn't Wal-Mart being picketed?

Yet, 90 miles off Florida, a relatively poor nation of 11.5 million people and thousands of clapped out vintage American cars remains sort of whipping boy for the real Communist menace we can't defeat...a menace that amazingly has become our economic bed partner...dependent on us as we are dependent on it.

Now, Castro is admitting he may have got things wrong, such as his extreme economic model and banning religion. Maybe it's time we should do the same. Such a boycott against an impoverished neighbor is obscene, even more obscene than sucking up to Red China.

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