The relationship among the US and Cuba is in its course to full improvement and complete restoration. Today the US flag flies again on the Cuban sky, at the same time John Kerry, Secretary of State, arrives to Cuba to reopen their diplomatic representation in the island.
John Kerry greets the islanders with a message of optimism and solidarity, with a very promising statement given to Univision recently: “More people will travel. There will be more exchange. More families will be reconnected. And hopefully, the government of Cuba will itself make decisions that will begin to change things.”
Must be said that this moment was certainly led by plenty of good will meetings, most of them arranged by the Vatican, specifically the Pope, Francis 1st.
As the bilateral relations settle, the investors will find their way into Cuba, and plenty of economist and financial analyst outline the fertile land ahead for entrepreneurs, but I can´t help to wonder that we are in front of two different Cubas. One, befriending the US (and all what is involved with the US abroad), and another where Fidel is seen with Maduro and Evo Morales, hanging out, unaware that the “empire” has reopened its franchise right in the heart of Cuba.
As for the island, Cuba will have to reconfigure not only its immigration and economic borders, but its political doors as well. It is well known that the Cuban community living in Florida can’t wait to reclaim what is theirs, and are willing to expand and strengthen their sphere of influence into the island, waiting for the Castro family to weaken.
About Guantanamo Bay, well, the Pope had to be a hell of a negotiator to leave that topic pretty much untouched and barely addressed by the Cubans.
As Huffington Post recently summed up:
- Cuba wants the United States to end its economic embargo of the island, return the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay in eastern Cuba and halt radio and television signals beamed into Cuba.
- The Americans will press Cuba on human rights, the return of fugitives granted asylum and the claims of Americans whose property was nationalized by Fidel Castro’s government.
Overall, this is indeed a historic moment and, as a Mexican columnist wrote today, the “most democratic” country in the world restoring its diplomatic ties with the longest dictatorship in The Americas can´t go unnoticed.
I’ll be going to Cuba this year, late November, with some awesome New Zealand friends, can´t wait to see how this event has evolved. Yet again, as an international relationships and human rights graduate, this is the “What if” that they used to teach us at university, now we are witnessing it.