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Old 19-12-2014, 07:34   #31
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

Cuba has more economic - not political - freedom
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Old 19-12-2014, 07:50   #32
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

Change comes slowly. I believe this is the first step.
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Old 19-12-2014, 07:56   #33
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

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Originally Posted by rognvald View Post
The president overstepped Congress.
No, actually he did not overstep anything. Which is why this is mostly a symbolic gesture and very little has actually changed. The embargo is still in place, and Americans still cannot legally travel to Cuba except under specific, approved conditions.

What the President did is only what he is authorized to do. Though he is talking about normalizing relations with Cuba, he has done no such thing. The only thing that has been normalized--the only thing that he CAN normalize--is the narrow field of diplomatic relations. That means we'll have an embassy there, and they'll have an embassy here. We'll talk. That's all. Very little else of any significance has changed.

Further changes will be up to Congress to enact.

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They left businesses, homes, property, and family with the clothes on their backs and were forced to start life anew in a new country and a new language--penniless.
While I have a great deal of sympathy for those who lost everything by fleeing communist Cuba, the fact is that this is hardly anything new. Refugees have been doing exactly the same since the beginning of time. Most of the people who first populated what is now the United States left everything behind to flee some sort of oppression. That is an inevitable consequence of becoming a refugee and fleeing an oppressive regime.

As such, at this point, it is irrelevant. They fled. It's done. If the expat Cubans in America cannot get past this point, and accept the fact that they made a choice to leave their belongings behind, then no progress will ever be made.

Or perhaps I should say, when progress finally is made, it will be made despite them--without their cooperation, and without their involvement. Because eventually progress WILL be made.
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Old 19-12-2014, 08:07   #34
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

For whatever it's worth, The US is not a Democracy. I'm no political scientist so I can't / won't argue the difference, but I have said the pledge of allegiance many times, and have pledged allegiance to the Republic for which it stands, not the Democracy.

The "wall" fell in Europe largely because the East Germans could look over and see how the West Germans lived. I know this as I lived in Germany during that time and talked to a few former East Germans. After awhile, even the staunch Communists wanted a BMW, a nice house and nice new clothes, color TV and Vacations in the South of France.

I have to believe that cruisers visiting Cuba would not be propping up a repressive government, but would be helping to topple it.
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Old 19-12-2014, 08:09   #35
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

Both sides are stubborn. The Castros could end the embargo tomorrow by holding free elections and ending the repression of their citizens. But, it's pretty apparent, that they're not going to do that.

I do admit, without the Castros holding everyone down, and continuing to maintain a failed Communist dictatorship, Cuba would be the premier cruising and tourist destination in this hemisphere.

Until that changes, it doesn't really matter how many cruisers visit there (at least to the average Cuban citizen).

Things didn't really start to get that bad for Cuba (and the Castros) until the fall of the Soviet Union. Up until that point, the Soviets were subsidizing Castro to the tune of about $8 million dollars a day. Once that money dried up, Cuba really fell into even more disrepair, as the Communists had to take an even greater share of the available resources to maintain their Soviet subsidized standard of living.

But, I realize that half of the people reading this are probably scratching their heads and thinking "Who is this Soviet Union of which he speaks?".

Cheaper beer versus Human Rights. Cheaper beer wins out every time.
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Old 19-12-2014, 09:38   #36
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

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While I have a great deal of sympathy for those who lost everything by fleeing communist Cuba, the fact is that this is hardly anything new. Refugees have been doing exactly the same since the beginning of time. Most of the people who first populated what is now the United States left everything behind to flee some sort of oppression. That is an inevitable consequence of becoming a refugee and fleeing an oppressive regime.

As such, at this point, it is irrelevant. They fled. It's done. If the expat Cubans in America cannot get past this point, and accept the fact that they made a choice to leave their belongings behind, then no progress will ever be made.

Or perhaps I should say, when progress finally is made, it will be made despite them--without their cooperation, and without their involvement. Because eventually progress WILL be made.
Except that they didn't "...made a choice to leave their belongings behind..." and instead were told that ALL belongings now belonged to the Castro regime and they owned nothing and if they objected to that their life was in danger. That's what actually happened, which is quite a different thing than just voluntarily turning their backs on their land and homes and businesses they once owned.
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Old 19-12-2014, 09:57   #37
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

There is a lot of precedence though, German Jews, and Palestinians of course are two groups as are a few people in the Balkans and many others I'm sure.

You just can't turn back time un-fortunately, be nice if you could give everything back, but how would you do that?

To not make this a Cuban thing per say, how would you give the Palestinians their land back?
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Old 19-12-2014, 11:01   #38
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

Quite strange to me that I can visit virtually any country on earth, regardless of how poorly they treat their citizens, regardless of what they have done to the US but I cannot go to the beautiful island next door that has done nothing against the US. Did they treat their citizens very poorly 60 years ago - sure but so does many other countries even today. It is not up to the US to IMPOSE our way of life, our system of governace on other countries. I have spent a lot of time in China, all over it and some time in Vietnam and both populations are doing sooooooo much better since the US has instituted normalized relations. The only reason we treat Cuba so poorly is the fear of the Cuba voting block. More than 60% of the US feels this is wrong. I look forward to visiting Cuba as well. I read that the people are very friendly.
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Old 19-12-2014, 11:11   #39
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

Obama's negotiations have already achieved something for the Cuban people - the release of over 50 political prisoners (identified as such by US authorities) from Cuban jails! One can only hope that this is the first step of many towards opening up Cuba for the people of the United States. As has been pointed out by others, the government aside, it is a beautiful country populated for the most part by wonderful, friendly people who deserve better.

Brad
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Old 19-12-2014, 11:18   #40
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
To not make this a Cuban thing per say, how would you give the Palestinians their land back?
Better yet, how would you give the American Indians their land back?

Can't be done.

Okay, maybe it wasn't quite as voluntary as I portrayed it, but it is done. There isn't any way to undo it at this point. It is the very same thing that has happened to countless people before, since the beginning of time, and no doubt will again. Perhaps something could have been done back in the 60s. But nothing was done, it is now almost 60 years later, and it is time to accept it and let it go.

I'm not saying that it is right, just that it is done and can no longer by undone.
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Old 19-12-2014, 11:20   #41
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

Keep dreaming sailors and big thank to Canada for making this happen.
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Old 19-12-2014, 11:35   #42
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

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Originally Posted by Southern Star View Post
Obama's negotiations have already achieved something for the Cuban people - the release of over 50 political prisoners (identified as such by US authorities) from Cuban jails! One can only hope that this is the first step of many towards opening up Cuba for the people of the United States. As has been pointed out by others, the government aside, it is a beautiful country populated for the most part by wonderful, friendly people who deserve better.

Brad
Fifty down, a few thousand to go.

Refworld | Report - Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation

Main thing, is just try not to think about that kind of icky stuff. Ruins the fun.
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Old 19-12-2014, 11:56   #43
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

I had a long reply typed up, but in the fear of dragging this thing down a hole to get it locked, I deleted it, but simply put the boycott hasn't affected a change in government, may well be hurting the common person, and based solely on that, it's time for it to end. It simply hasn't worked.

I believe the average Joe in Cuba will be what affects change there, nothing we (US Government) do or do not do will be as effective as them saying I've had enough
My opinion.

See, I think Tienanmen square did help change things
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Old 19-12-2014, 12:08   #44
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

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There is no way your mates in Miami are getting their land back. That's what this is all about. The wealthy landed families want it all back or no deal. That has been the driving force behind keeping the embargo in place.
Exactly. Some of these were Liddy's Watergate burglars and have been in deep with Republican politics since the Bay of Pigs lunacy. Politicians have to go Kowtow to their special interest to avoid being called "soft on communism".


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Cuba wasn't a democrat paradise before the Castros and it certainly isn't now. It was an effective Plutocracy. It was propped up by US commercial and government interests, along with a fair mount of US mob control. Many of those in control ended leaving for Miami.
In the 50's Cuba was the worst of the worst. The largest class division in the hemisphere. The poor could be treated in any manner, literally Plantation life.

The idea that Castro came along and oppressed the average Cuban is hilarious. Reminds me of the Alabama song;
Somebody told us Wall Street fell
We were so poor that we couldn't tell
The Cuba Libre' crowd is not interested in freeing the average (dirt poor) Cuban, they simply wish to return them to their rightful owner.

Communism is a failed experiment, for reasons stated well in this thread, but if it had not been Harvard man Fidel Castro and Communism, the Cuban Plutocracy was the ripe fruit of their own doing.

My apologies if this straightforward language from someone who was in S Fla at the time collides with popular slogans. Flame away, my hide is so old it doesn't care.



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Old 19-12-2014, 12:16   #45
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Re: US and Cuba to normalize relationship!

In spite of two separate claims, I don't see how living in Florida, which is one of the United States, makes one an expert in the politics of a foreign country.

Wait, wait, wait, I know this one, I know this one!

...it doesn't.
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