Monday, April 13, 2009


Michael D. Shear reports in The Washington Post that Obama has lifted some restrictions in regard to travelling to Cuba and sending money.

Writes Shear:

"As a candidate, Obama promised to seek closer relations with Cuba, and courted Cuban voters in the key state of Florida. As president, he has signaled that he intends to move toward a greater openness.

"A White House aide said the president believes that democratic change will come to the Cuban nation more quickly if the United States reaches out to the people of Cuba and their relatives in the United States."

Obama is right. But his initial steps call for much more radical change in how the U.S. views Cuba and its political structure. I want to see all U.S. restrictions ended. To boycott Cuba is to hurt the Cuban people, to deny the ordinary Cubano food, medicine and the necessities of life. Boycotts and embargoes never work. They are used to punish political leaders of a country, but the only thing they do is to punish the ordinary citizen.

I call upon Barack Obama, end all embargoes, end all boycotts, stop this silly American ostracization of Cuba. As a genuine step towards this goal, I want to see Obama meet and talk with both Raul and Fidel Castro. Cuba and its leaders are not "enemies." All of the bellicosity emanates from the United States. It is time to begin a new era of friendship and harmony with Cuba and its people.

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