Foreign Policy Blogs

Cuba

On Fidel’s 87th, Talking Time

On Fidel’s 87th, Talking Time

On Tuesday, Fidel Castro turned 87. The milepost is particularly significant for someone whose death has been foretold a thousand times: I recall the account of a journalist who carried a constantly re-drafted Fidel Castro obituary around with him for years, …

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Cuba Focuses on Cuba (and U.S. on U.S.)

Cuba Focuses on Cuba (and U.S. on U.S.)

Pamela K. Starr of the Pacific Council looks toward the future of Cuba and of the relationship between Washington and Havana in a new report, just released yesterday.
I’ll say it again: Cuba is on a trajectory to becoming something very different — …

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Cuba and the power of resolver

Cuba and the power of resolver

I returned recently from several weeks in Cuba spent at a fascinating time. The Cuban government is in the middle of a gradual series of economic reforms that amount to an overhaul of the inefficient, troubled Cuban economy. The current centrally managed system is becoming one that allows for more …

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Cuba’s Little Bird Flies Free

Cuba’s Little Bird Flies Free


Freedom is fundamentally the possibility of standing on a street corner and shouting “There is no freedom here!” — Yoani Sanchez
Cuban dissident Yoani Sanchez is fond of comparing Cubans to little birds in a cage – captives who are given free education, food, and …

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Finish line in sight for post-Castro Cuba

Finish line in sight for post-Castro Cuba


After 54 years of leadership by one Castro brother or the other, current Cuban President Raúl Castro announced on Sunday that his current five-year term would be his last — …

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The Long Road Back

The Long Road Back


My mother was born in Havana on December 11, 1953, into a solidly middle-class Cuban family. After years of self-driven study and hard work, my grandfather Celestino had been able to launch a successful car import business that allowed him and my …

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Cuba, Chavez, and the Turn of the New Year

Cuba, Chavez, and the Turn of the New Year


Fidel Castro’s long-declining health and the high average age of his successors are well-worn topics in Cuba discussions. As we turn the page on 2012, Cuba watchers and Cubans alike are now discussing the health of the leader of a different country: …

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What lies ahead: Cuba and Obama’s second term

What lies ahead: Cuba and Obama’s second term


In the recent U.S. election, Cuban-Americans voted for President Obama in record numbers, reflecting in a most convincing way the demographic shift that we have already been watching for years: newer immigrants and younger Cuban-Americans do not prioritize a hard-line U.S. policy …

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… And here comes the political reform

… And here comes the political reform


This morning Cubans awoke to learn in the daily Granma newspaper that after years of discussion and rumors, the carta blanca policy that requires Cubans to receive permission to travel from Cuba for any length …

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Assessing trajectory: How’s it going in Cuba?

Assessing trajectory: How’s it going in Cuba?


Perhaps the biggest underlying tension among Cuba watchers is on the issue of whether things (policies) on the island are changing for the better, or whether they remain upsettingly the same as they have for half of a century. A comprehensive view, …

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Paul Ryan on Cuba (but does it matter?)

Paul Ryan on Cuba (but does it matter?)


Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will spend this weekend campaigning in Florida, long a power player in the realm of swing states. Representative Ryan’s success there will depend mainly upon his appeal …

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‘Roberto’ and Other Tales of the Cuban Economy

‘Roberto’ and Other Tales of the Cuban Economy


Ask a self-employed Cuban how she came to possess the goods she is selling, and she might tell you that they came from “Roberto.”
The euphemism indicates that the goods are stolen, and given the scarcity of many products and the unreliability of …

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Mariela’s U.S. Visit Continues

Mariela’s U.S. Visit Continues


Mariela Castro’s U.S. tour continued this week with a visit to the United Nations, a meeting at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, and a public presentation at the New York Public Library. The East Coast stopover followed a busy …

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Travel permissions and visas confound, as usual

Travel permissions and visas confound, as usual


Mariela Castro, the daughter of Cuban President Raúl Castro, will be in California this week. Traveling on a U.S. visa to attend a conference of the Latin American Studies Association (LASA), she appears to have made it through the same State Department …

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Is it true? Has nothing changed?

Is it true? Has nothing changed?


The award-winning Cuban blogger and writer Yoani Sanchez published an op-ed today in The New York Times called “The Dream of Leaving Cuba,” in which she describes the inability of many Cubans to …

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