The Cuba debate


What is your opinion about the Cuban Embargo?

What do you think should happen in the future?

What would you like to see happen?

What do you want to know about the Cuban Embargo?

Here are some items that I found on the internet.   

Can you give one viewpoint CON and one viewpoint PRO the Embargo?

FOR and AGAINST.   Send your comments to

My friend Mario took this photo from Finca Vigia (the Hemingway house) looking north at Havana.

· The Cuban trade embargo is senseless and counterproductive.

The current trade embargo on Cuba is a relic of the Cold War, which is long since over. Continuing it serves no rational foreign policy goal. Communism is a mostly-dead ideology, and there's no reason that simply trading with a Communist country would validate that ideology. Fidel Castro is not Saddam Hussein, and the country currently poses no threat.

Posted By: EqualClaud72

· Trade and good relations will help the Cubans break free of communism

China has shown that we can have peaceful and beneficial relations with a communist state. We have not become more communist in the process, they have become more capitalist. The same would be true for Cuba.

Posted By: Anonymous

· The Cuban embargo has not been helping American interest for a while now, and it's time for America to stop ignoring Cuba.

The Cuban embargo is way too old to still be in effect. If it was going to do any good, it would have done so from the start, and not dragged on decades later, with the Cuban government no closer to giving in to American demands. Because it has gone on so long with no real effect, I say drop the embargo. If the Cuban government remains a problem, something more drastic has to be done.

Posted By: H_Baird

· Yes, because Cuba poses no threat to our country.

If we lifted the trade embargo in Cuba, in my opinion, it would show good faith to the people of Cuba. After all, we need to look at the situation in that country, and think about the people. It's not the people we have a problem with, it is the government. The people have no say-so, and they are only used as pawns. The ones who suffer in that country from the embargo are the children. If we lifted the embargo, I feel, over time, the people would slowly realize that they are not being treated right by their government, and they may one day step up and say this is enough. Only then, do I think they can change the way their own government is running their country.

Posted By: SlipArnal

· In the spirit of global equality, yes, the U.S. needs to remove the Cuban embargo and make equal rights to all.

I think that the embargo is very outdated and it is time to provide Cuba with the same opportunities as every other country. If the world is going to come together as one some day, things such as this need to be changed as soon as possible in order to promote unity.

Posted By: 54mIsdead

· I believe that the United States should lift the Cuban trade embargo as it is a human rights violation.

While there have been some easing of the restrictions surrounding the trade embargo which now allows for more interaction between people in Cuba and on the outside, there continues to be an adverse health impact on the residents of Cuba especially on the children. Because of the embargo, children are not being given adequate treatment for diseases such as HIV/AIDs, etc. It is for this reason that I am against the Cuban Trade Embargo. I do not believe that the desire to punish a country that is considered to be an enemy is enough justification for unnecessarily harming young people.

Posted By: SportyHart

· A lot has changed since 1959 and the US should lift the Cuban trade embargo.

I understand why the Cuban trade embargo was enacted but I believe it is time to lift the embargo. Cuba has learned to live with the embargo. They have found trade and investors in other countries. They get a lot of supplies for Brazil and Canada. With the state of the economy in the United States, I believe it would be beneficial to lift the embargo.

Posted By: SleekTom

· Yes, this has gone on for way too long.

The United States should lift the trade embargo and try to establish relations with Cuba again. This is a neighboring island country, and we should be friendly with Cuba. This has gone on far too long, and we should try to have some kind of a positive relationship with Cuba. This country shouldn't have neighbors who are friendly with our enemies. We need to step up and open up the borders, so to speak.

Posted By: PinkMych

· It doesn't help us or Cuba.

There are Canadian jokes about Cuba being a great place to vacation because there are no Americans. Europeans visit Cuba often. Cuba does suffer from the embargo, since their relatives in Florida cannot easily send money or relief supplies. However, Cuba's trade with South America, Europe, Mexico and even Canada continues unimpeded. The United States embargo does affect their economy, but the results are far less than the effect of forty years of communism.

Posted By: Pir4And

· The Cuban trade embargo should be lifted because it hurts the local Cuban population, and it failed to topple the regime.

The Cuban trade embargo was enacted to suppress or devastate the local (Cuban) economy for the purpose of eventually overthrowing the regime. This strategy has never worked. This concept of containment and isolation has only strengthened the resolve of the Cuban government. Although it is common knowledge that Cuban citizens who attempted to leave the country were tortured or harshly mistreated, it is important to explore the possibility of opening a new chapter in our relations with this country for their sake. The current Cuban president seems more flexible in dealing with us and is making friendly overtures, which could very well be a good time to reexamine our diplomatic ties and set a series of preconditions that they need to meet in order for us to negotiate with them. These conditions could be the release of political prisoners, allowing UN Human rights workers into the country, adopting democratic ideals, holding free and fair elections, and compensating millions of oppressed families who lost loved ones under questionable circumstances in the last forty years.

Posted By: I3nnJan

· The embargo was created in October 1960, is a ghost from the past.

The trade embargo with Cuba is a ghost still haunting the United States, Cuba and the world from the early years of the Cold War. Nowadays, the majority of the Americans want to get the embargo lifted and agree with Obama's efforts in that direction.

Posted By: AdityaF

· Cuba can develop only when the ban imposed is released.

USA should give time for them to reform themselves. Instead of banning them, they should teach them what is right, etc.

Posted By: ladamir

· The United States should continue the Cuban trade embargo, since nothing has changed in Cuba, in regards to its attitude towards our country.

One of the ways the United States shows its opinion of political practices in other countries is through trade embargoes. We established one against Cuba, many years ago, in protest of their treatment of their own citizens, and nothing has changed in that country to warrant a change in our policy.

Posted By: ColossalJeramy56

Castro is still in power in Cuba, and we have fought and had hostilities towards him for many years.

If you recall the events in the early 1960's, when the United States of America was almost incinerated by a nuclear bomb by Castro's regime, then you would agree that free trade sanctions should not be lifted with Cuba. They're our enemies, and have been for many years, even to this day. We should not trust them.

Posted By: ShutDana69


· They'll walk all over us

We can't let the Cubans think they can do whatever they want with no consequences. We need to remember why that embargo is there in the first place. We can't let them take advantage of us again.

Posted By: Anonymous

Other opinions

Easing Cuban embargo: pros/cons

Mon, 2010-03-22 09:17

Delta Farm Press

David Bennett

David Bennett, Farm Press Editorial Staff

A March hearing on HR 4645 — which would ease travel and sales of U.S. products into Cuba — contained several lengthy, noteworthy exchanges between Republicans on the House Agriculture Committee. While most of the committee expressed interest in allowing expanded U.S. sales, there was no such agreement with regard to travel.

For more on the bill, see Bill would loosen Cuba trade embargo.

Pass the legislation

Offering a spirited defense of the legislation and a review of recent history regarding U.S./Cuba relations, Kansas Rep. Jerry Moran said in July of 2000, he offered an amendment on the House floor “that would prohibit the use of money in an appropriation bill from being used to enforce sanctions for food, agriculture products and medicine in a sale to Cuba.”

Despite facing daunting odds, the bill passed 301 to 116. Congress, after decades of an embargo against Cuba, decided it was time to change tactics.

“In Kansas, we’ll try something once,” continued Moran, a Republican. “If it doesn’t work, we’ll probably try it again. We might even try it a third. But after about 40 years, Kansans would decide ‘let’s try something different. If our goal is to try and change the leadership of Cuba, let’s do something different.’

“I admit my interest in this was very provincial — it was about Kansas farmers. How do we get another market in a difficult economy to sell our products?

“As a result, the Trade Sanctions and Reform Export Act of 2000 became law. We were doing just fine until 2005 when the Treasury Department decided to change the regulations and say that cash in advance no longer meant — as it does every place else — when the ship arrives in Havana. (The change) meant when the ship leaves the United States. So, we said … the Cubans had to pay that much earlier…

“They also restricted the use of a U.S. bank and Cuba had to go to a third party bank in a foreign country and get a letter of credit. That increased the cost of doing business with the United States.

“As a result, after the 2005 change in regulations, we lost 20 to 30 percent of our exports. Year after year, I’ve offered the amendment to the appropriation bill that says ‘no money can be spent in this appropriation bill to enforce the (2005) regulations that make no sense.’ That amendment has passed time and time again … most recently last year. … The controversy that sometimes surrounds this issue is pretty limited when it comes to the agricultural side of what we’re doing…

“We became seen by Cubans as an unreliable selling partner — again, not a trading partner but a selling partner — and still sold $708 million worth of agricultural commodities to Cuba in 2008. They import rice from Vietnam and China if they aren’t buying it from us…

“When we don’t sell to Cuba, it’s a unilateral sanction. All we’re doing is restricting our ability for our farmers and agribusinesses to conduct business in Cuba. France, Argentina and Canada love our embargo. They love the fact that we’ve restricted the market because they fill it in.

“If you’re interested in whether the Cuban people get the food, that isn’t in this bill. We can’t necessarily affect that — when we don’t sell to them, someone else does. Those decisions are already made … whether or not we agree to take (Cuban) cash.

“We deal with communist countries on an ongoing basis in a trading relationship in which we offer credit. Who is the United States’ biggest creditor? China! And yet we’re nervous about selling for cash, up front, agricultural commodities, food and medicine to a country 90 miles off our shore. What a double standard we’ve created in this country.

“In Kansas, today, we wouldn’t object to selling Boeing aircraft to China. Yet, we worry about whether or not to sell wheat to Cuba. I don’t understand how we got ourselves in this position.”

Not so fast

Opposite Moran in the debate, Iowa Rep. Steve King said he once held similar beliefs about opening trade with Cuba. Then, in the 1990s, he traveled to the island nation and came back with a changed mind.

“I took the initiative to go on a trip to Cuba. … I wanted to personally ratify my opinion we should open up trade with Cuba…

“We spent our days being handled by Castro’s minders, going from place to place listening to people in gray smocks answer questions that were translated from English into Spanish that weren’t the questions we were asking.”

King and a fellow legislator “went off on our own. An individual approached us along Havana harbor and became our guide for three days. We went all over island. He was a communist, a Marxist, and was a proud Cuban. He was a Cuban historian. Through those long days, I learned some things despite his intent to give us a three-day commercial.

“Two things stood out that I can’t get past.

“One is when Castro nationalized property — in 1963, I think — 25 percent of the deeds were in the hands of Americans. Americans are the only ones not to be compensated for that real estate. They hold the deeds today.

“If there was to be investments of Americans into Cuba … I can’t imagine Castro doing anything except selling that real property that belongs to Americans back to other Americans to pit them against each other.”

Second, “it was a surprise to me that, at that time, the exchange of the peso to the dollar was 21 to one. One would think Americans trading in Cuba, tourists going to Cuba, would give the Cubans an opportunity to make some money and maybe lift them up economically. But what really happens … is Cubans could earn dollars and hold them. But they couldn’t spend (the dollars) unless they went to a ‘dollar store’ where an American dollar was worth one peso, not 21. Castro was picking up the 20 peso vigorish … and that was going, and still goes, into his treasury to fund … his brutal communist dictatorship.

“Those are two points I couldn’t get past. I couldn’t find a way to rationalize that…

“We’ve invested nearly half a century into waiting out the biological solution in Cuba. … I’m more patient than the witnesses before us. I’m willing to wait out this biological solution…

“I’d say Castro has been an exporter of his Marxist ideology in the Western hemisphere. That changes the argument on whether we allow trade into China or Iran. … (Cuba) is our back door.

“I’m not opposed to getting food to Cubans. If we do something, I’d hope we limit our endeavor to getting food to Cubans rather than inadvertently propping up a communist regime.”


What kind of teacher would I be if I let another class pass witout asking, "What is your opinion about the Embargo?

I would be a lazy, short-sighted teacher.