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What constraints does President Obamaface in opening up relations with the Cuba of the Castro Brothers?
What constraints does President Obama face in opening up relations with the Cuba of the Castro brothers?
The US Policy towards Cuba since 1961 has been one of diplomatic and economic isolation, making relations between the nations virtually non-existent. The economic embargo placed on Cuba in 1962, limiting political andcommercial relations with Cuba. After the Cuban Revolution, with overthrew the previous US-backed goverment led by Fulgenico batista, Fidel Castro came in power in Cuba. Now, the socialist revolutionary leader has officially resigned in 2008. Though he still holds the reigns of political power, most of the powers has been delegated to his brother, Raúl Castro, now Second Secretary of the CommunistParty. This has opened up debate about the renewing of relations with the United States, in particular the ineffectively strict embargo placed upon Cuba. According to the United States Senator, Senior Richard Lugar, it is time to ‘re-evaluate a complex relationship marked by misunderstanding, suspicions and open hostility.’(Young 2009) This paper thus attempts to identify the constraints PresidentObama faces in opening up relations with the Cuba of the Castro brothers, specifically to ideological, social and political differences, the economy and Cuba’s International Affairs with the growing southern-American powers and China.
The importance of having political and economic influence over Cuba has always been important to The United States, mainly because of Cuba’s geographicalpositioning, being just 90 miles away from the coast of Florida.
During the Cold War of 1945 – 1991, whilst the world’s two superpowers, the US and USSR continuously attempted to extend their ideology with threats and propaganda, and with the Soviet Union’s presence in Cuba, it was inevitable that Cuba would be used as counter-intelligence between the East and West. The Cuban Missiles Crisis provedto be just that as the world stood on the brink of another world war. Soviets had placed missiles on the island. What intensified the situation was that just 3 years prior to that, Fidel Castro had openly revealed the Cuban Revolution of 1959 to be a socialist one. Cuba was not now just a geographical threat, but geopolitical one. Cuba’s difference in ideology has been one of the US’s majorconcerns.
In opening up relations with Cuba, the United States will have to be willing to accept that the Communist regime. Despite its negatives it has endured in Cuba since the Revolution of 1959. The embargo placed on Cuba since 1962 has attempted to create opposition towards the Cuban government and its ideology. However, it has created more hostility towards the United States and thegovernment as from the embargo and throughout the 90’s, the US broadcasted a lot of anti-Cuba propaganda Will the US be willing to create relations with a nation of Communist ideology? For the moment, whilst still in power, Fidel Castro’s role in society means that he is able to dominate the political system and though major errors have taken place with this type of government, it remains unchanged.Castro has made it clear that he does not intend to leave Cuba’s socialist system nor embrace capitalism. But what if the ideology never changes and US access to the island is hindered because of it, will the US still be ready for opening relations?
Another factor to consider is the amount of exiled Cuban-Americans, mainly based in southern Florida, whose Anti-Castro political ideology has...