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January 28, 2020

A matter of principle

Opinion

January 28, 2020

Think tanks in the United States and Cuban researchers agree on one thing: the policy of more sanctions and the extension of the US blockade will not change the socialist course of Cuba.

In the case of the island, punishment produces the exact opposite of weakness. It has been that way for more than 60 years and nothing indicates that it will change, just because Donald Trump wants to win Florida in 2020 and satisfy the Cuban-American right by raising his fist against the government of Miguel Díaz-Canel.

The resumption by the Trump administration of the hegemonic presumption that contemplates punishment and hostile policies will not change Cuban policy. On the contrary, it will again polarize foreign relations with other countries, both inside and outside the Western Hemisphere, while negatively affecting jobs in both the United States and Cuba, concludes a study just published by US lawyer Bruce Zagaris for the Center for Freedom and Prosperity, where he addresses the excessive use of sanctions by the US government and how they produce unintended consequences.

One of the most informed analysts on relations between the two countries, Cuban Jesus Arboleya, acknowledges that successive administrations in the White House have not succeeded in making the Cuban revolution yield or betray its principles, and will not do so now in the face of Washington’s decision to insist on conditions for Cuba’s relationship with Venezuela.

In spite of the deployment of forces carried out,” Arboleya states, “neither the intelligent power of Obama nor the ‘counter-intelligence’ of Trump have achieved the purpose of altering Cuba’s alliance with Venezuela and, much less, defeating their respective revolutionary processes. This calls into question the real capacity of the United States to do so.”

It would add an additional reason exposed by Arboleya. The US government has already gone through similar situations of blackmail and conditioning of the island, and it failed miserably. For example, the government of Gerald Ford put an end to clandestine talks with Fidel Castro’s envoys to normalize relations, when it became known that Cuban troops were confronting the racist South Africans, then allies of the United States.

Nelson Mandela would remember learning of the Cuban victory in Angola while he was imprisoned on Robben Island, “I was in prison when I first heard of the massive aid that Cuban internationalist forces were giving to the people of Angola. … In African history, there is no other case of a people that has risen up in defense of one of our own.”

Excerpted from: ‘Cuba: a Matter of Principle’. Counterpunch.org

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