The administration says its move will transform relations with Latin America, but that is naive. Countries that previously demanded an end to U.S. sanctions on Cuba will not now look to Havana for reforms; instead, they will press the Obama administration not to sanction Venezuela. Mr. Obama says normalizing relations will allow the United States to be more effective in promoting political change in Cuba. That is contrary to U.S. experience with Communist regimes such as Vietnam, where normalization has led to no improvements on human rights in two decades. Moreover, nothing in Mr. Obama’s record of lukewarm and inconstant support for democratic change across the globe can give Ms. Sánchez and her fellow freedom fighters confidence in this promise.
The Vietnam outcome is what the Castros are counting on: a flood of U.S. tourists and business investment that will allow the regime to maintain its totalitarian system indefinitely. Mr. Obama may claim that he has dismantled a 50-year-old failed policy; what he has really done is give a 50-year-old failed regime a new lease on life.Note to the Bezos Bugle: You need to know that when you're in sync with shallow-pool inhabitant and Batista legatee Sen. Marco "Glug Glug" Rubio (Tea Party- Cuba Libre) and a shrinking number of octogenarian Batista-campers, you've bottomed out intellectually and morally. In the Bugle's own reporting today, the normalization is getting universal, across-the-spectrum support from Latin American leaders. Seems like recognizing reality and moving forward is greeted more positively outside the editorial board room of the Bezos Bugle. Normalization is also a policy that 66% of the American people (including the vast majority of younger Cuban Americans) supported in a 2009 poll by the, er,
On the other hand, here's what the Miami Herald editorial board had to say:
No one should doubt the historic significance of the president’s decision. It required political courage, representing the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.
The president has made a bet whose ultimate outcome no one can know. “These 50 years have shown that isolation has not worked. It’s time for a new approach,” he said. All who yearn to see freedom in Cuba can only hope this gamble pays off.Unlike the Bezos Bugle's crystal ball certainty that the change in policy will give the Cuban regime "a new lease on life," it seems to us that this courageous move (with the assistance, we continue to note, of Pope Francis I) was inevitable and necessary to improve the lives of millions of Cubans (and Americans) and to free America from its last ossified links to the Cold War.