The Cuban Embargo: An Economic Sanction that Never Achieved its Goals. Close, But No Cigar.

The Cuban Embargo: An Economic Sanction that Never Achieved its Goals. Close, But No Cigar.

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The Cuban Embargo: An Economic Sanction that Never Achieved its Goals. Close, But No Cigar.

History of Events

Before beginning my paper, I will give a very brief summary of the actions which caused the original embargo against Cuba in 1960 and the actions the US has taken since then. Reviewing this brief timeline will help to examine and critique the reasoning behind the embargo.

In the early 20th century, Cuba was a nation in constant political turmoil ruled by militant dictators. Prior to the elections of 1952, Fulgencio Batista took power of Cuba in a bloodless coup. His rule left the island in discontent and led to many movements to return the country to its constitutional rule of 1940. On January 1st, 1959 Batista and his family fled Cuba. On January 7th, the United States officially recognized a government that Fidel Castro had taken control of with promises of a return to a constitutional government and democratic elections.

Soon, Fidel began nationalizing all private businesses and land. When US refineries refused to refine oil from the Soviet Union, Castro ordered the nationalization of all US businesses on July 5th, 1960. In immediate response, President Dwight Eisenhower cancelled Cuba’s sugar quota on July 6th. On April 16th, 1961 Castro declares Cuba a Socialist state. The very next day, the United States, in a mission codenamed “Bay of Pigs,” backed a failed attempt by Cuban refugees to overthrow Castro. Immediately after this failed coup, the United States began progress in another operation to overthrow the dictator. This was known as Operation Mongoose, which was conceptualized in November 1961. The mission was not immediately carried out, as the military was constantly trying to reasse...


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...he Politics of Passion. University of Texas Press, Austin, TX 2000.

Horowitz, Irving Louis. Searching for the Sould of American Foreign Policy: The Cuban Embargo and the National Interest. Institute for Cuban and Cuban- American Studies Occasional Paper Series. University of Miami, Miami, FL 2000.

Lopez, Juan J. Democracy Delayed. The Case of Castro’s Cuba. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, MD 2002.

Suchlicki, Jaime. The U.S. Embargo of Cuba. Institute for Cuban and Cuban- American Studies Occasional Paper Series. University of Miami, Miami, FL 2000.

Internet References

Embassy of India. Havana, Cuba. Selected Economic Statistics of Cuba. <http://www.indembassyhavana.cu/commercial/cubaecopart3.htm#GDPGrPerCapita> March 11, 2005.

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. < http://apps.fao.org/> March 11, 2005.

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