Saturday, June 7, 2014

"Hard Choices" by Hillary Rodham Clinton: Excerpts about Cuba

"Since 1960, the United States had maintained an embargo against the island in hopes of squeezing Castro from power, but it only succeeded in giving him a foil to blame for Cuba's economic woes. My husband, Bill Clinton, tried to improve relations with Cuba in the 1990s, but the Castro government did not respond to the easing in some sanctions. Nonetheless, Obama was determined to continue the effort”
"It wasn't achieving its goals," she writes, "and it was holding back our broader agenda across Latin America. ... I thought we should shift the onus onto the Castros to explain why they remained undemocratic and abusive."
“In the face of a stone wall from the Castro regime, Pres. Obama and I decided to engage directly with the Cuban people.”
"We believed that the best way to bring change to Cuba would be to expose its people to the values, information and material comforts of the outside world”
“The steps that Obama took, including allowing more travel to the island and increasing the amount of money Cuban-Americans can send back to the island, have had a positive effect”
“I spoke out frequently about Gross' imprisonment and was disappointed that the Castros created new problems by arresting him.”
“Cuba has refused to consider Gross' release until the U.S. frees all of the ‘Cuban Five’ spies who have been imprisoned in the United States. The U.S. has rejected Cuba's demands to link the cases.”
“I suspected that some in Cuba are using the Gross case as an opportunity to put the brakes on any possible rapprochement with the United States and the domestic reforms that would require. If so, it is a double tragedy, consigning millions of Cubans to a kind of continued imprisonment as well."

Links of Interest: