When President Obama visited Cuba on March 20, 2016 as the first sitting U.S. president to do so since Calvin Coolidge, he said “Even if we lifted the embargo tomorrow, Cubans would not realize their potential without continued change here in Cuba.” Engaging in the normalization of the ties between U.S. and Cuba, instead of continuing to isolate Cuba, could both provide leverage to improve the human rights campaign and strengthen the relationships between the two nations.
How can President Elect Trump continue to build upon the foundation that President Obama has laid? Firstly, he must take a clear political stance. The conflicting statements he has issued during his campaign, “50 years is enough!” vs promising anti-Castro republicans to reinstate a stricter economic embargo and close the U.S. embassy in Havana, is just the unpredictability that Cubans fear. In order to continue the transition process that the countries have faced regarding their new relationship, both President Elect Trump and President Raul Castro should strive to maintain open communication between Cuba and the United States. This includes keeping the United States embassy in Havana open and officially reaffirming their commitment to open dialogue.
Secondly, the economic sanctions must be repealed. According to...
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...threatened to reverse, but the ones that must be continued to be built upon.
The brief congratulatory message from Cuban President Raul Castro to President Elect Trump seems groundbreaking, as this is his last term in office. Yet, it implies consideration for future dialogue between the nations. The continued dialogue will help solidify President Elect Trump’s political stance and hopefully relieve the fears that many Cubans have of regression. The repeal of the economic embargo would have a positive effect on both economies, and could be used as a bargaining piece to address administrative corruption, focus on human rights violations and increase political freedoms. Therefore, there must be some justice and reparations for the victims, but the United States and Cuba must take care not to cause a second revolution in order to redress the damages of the first.
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