• Twitter
  • Facebook
News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Cuba libre

What do you know? I agree with a Democrat:

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama is leaping into the long-running Cuba debate by calling for the U.S. to ease restrictions for Cuban-Americans who want to visit the island or send money home.

Obama's campaign said Monday that, if elected, the Illinois senator would lift restrictions imposed by the Bush administration and allow Cuban-Americans to visit their relatives more frequently, as well as ease limits on the amount of money they can send to their families.

Never mind the gratuitous Bush bashing -- this administration added only incrementally to restrictions that have been in place since Castro took power.

But economic sanctions usually don't make much sense as a foreign-policy strategy, especially when imposed unilaterally:

1. Military action at least targets the military and attendant operations (usually). We fight the people who fight us. Sanctions are specifically targeted at civilians (innocent and otherwise) on the theory that the suffering of the masses will put pressure on those at the top. Where's the moral high ground there?

2. There are frequently unintended consequences. In Cuba's case, we have actually made Castro stronger by giving him a convenient scapegoat (American imperialist swine!)  to blame for the disaster he has made of the country.


A J Bogle
Thu, 08/23/2007 - 10:13am

They have been prediciting Cuba's and Castro's demise since Kennedy was president - and guess what he's still there! I have to agree with Obama as well that clearly unilateral sanctions haven't worked. A normalizing of relations would do more to ease the tenstions than anything else could. Cuba is really a threat to us anymore since they are no longer part of the soviet bloc?? gimme a break. Or we could always give Havanna back to the mob and make it a playgorund for casinos again - that seems to be the solution for everything these days.