“In the ambit of global affairs, through word and deed, the Government of Cuba demonstrates its political immaturity. Its economic planners, neophytes. On immigration policy, they are political Neanderthals who use its people as weapons like Hamas and Hezbollah use suicide bombers. At least the latter have a choice…”
Cuban Communist Party elites have recently decreed that, henceforth, the “lumpen” may own a cell phone, enter hotels and beaches that, up until recently only the enlightened foreigners were allowed access, and co-own property with the state. Opponents of U.S.-Cuba policy eagerly cited these decrees as evidence that Raul Castro is different from his brother, Fidel. They rail, U.S. policy needs to change. Cuba is meeting us half-way, we should be magnanimous and reciprocate by easing sanctions.
Cuban Communist Party officials study closely U.S. policy and law. They know that Cuba cannot secure normalization of relations at this juncture because Raul Castro remains the head of the government. Under current law, the U.S. will not recognize a transition government so long as Fidel Castro or Raul Castro are part of the system. So they will tinker at the margin, with tokenism. For as much as they dislike our policy, they have sure bought in to, at a minimum, giving the appearance of hinting that they may comply with it.
In the ambit of global affairs, through word and deed, the Government of Cuba demonstrates its political immaturity. Its economic planners, neophytes. On immigration policy, they are political Neanderthals who use its people as weapons like Hamas and Hezbollah use suicide bombers. At least the latter have a choice. Despite it pronouncements to the contrary, Cuban adventurism in the Western Hemisphere remains and undermining U.S. interests throughout the region its leading foreign policy issue.
The Cuban regime acts more like a foe than it does friend. Stealing and selling U.S. military, economic, and political secrets remains the core of its robust espionage program. As a state sponsor of terrorism since 1984, Cuba continues to earn its designation on the state sponsors of terrorism list. With regards to its past and current chemical and biological weapons program, senior U.S. officials deem it a country of concern. Its cadre of Soviet-trained nuclear scientist have assisted Venezuela, Iran, and others of interest, with nuclear technology-related efforts. It supports terrorist groups throughout the Americas including the FARC in Colombia.
To a large extent, what the Communist Party does in Cuba is of little consequence to the U.S. It is up to the people of Cuba to decide and chart Cuba’s future. Cell phones, hotel and beach access, and property issues are not what drives our policy. These are sub-issues, or should be. As it stands today, Cuba has little to offer us but political headaches and regional instability. The Cuban Communist Party will seek to exploit it in order to consolidate power and we, in turn, should do everything in power to ensure that the latter does not happen. We do not need Cuba, Cuba needs the U.S. If the Cuban regime insists on the hard road, its choice. U.S. taxpayer monies should not be spent, or written off as tax write offs, to underwrite any of it.
Current officials can make this ongoing process smooth, or they can continue to prolong the inevitable. As demonstrated by the recent case of Iraq, Cuban Communist officials will be held to account by the future government of Cuba. The Castro era – both Fidel and Raul – is coming to an end. A future free Cuba will reintegrate in the democratic and free-market system.
At this juncture, rather than heed the advice from opponents of U.S. policy that lobby this town to ease sanctions for the benefit of an already entitlement-rich sector of the U.S. economy, they should take a sober, hard look at the political realities and make realistic choices accordingly. As it stands today, Cuba is of little consequence in the overall scheme of things. In the near term, any appreciable opening of the Cuban system in piecemeal fashion will likely bring instability to the greater Caribbean and the southeastern U.S. For now, we have the Cuban Government where we want them.
We should patiently wait, robustly enforce current laws, and support the forces of freedom, if they so request our assistance. The Cuban people will let the world know when they need assistance to chart its future without the yoke of Communism or Castroism.