Promises made during political campaigns don’t appear to have a strong track record of becoming reality. However, with a recent announcement, President Trump is working to change this perception.
In a dramatic policy reversal, President Trump has announced that he is “canceling the last administration’s completely one-sided deal with Cuba.” (via The Washington Examiner)
“It’s hard to think of a policy that makes no sense than the misguided deal by the prior administration with the communist country,” Trump said. “That was a pretty bad deal. Let’s forget about it.” Specifically, Trump is aiming to ensure that financial transactions don’t flow to Cuba’s military and thereby continue to prop up the communist regime.
Senator Marco Rubio, previously at odds with Trump during the campaign, was pleased to see Trump’s actions, describing them as “very appropriate.” In fact, he later went on to explain why the U.S. needs to take tougher measures when dealing with the communist country.
Rubio, who was seen with Trump in Miami, had heavily criticized the Obama administration, stating that it allowed too many concessions, and ultimately only benefitting the country’s military while neglecting the Cuban citizens.
The decision to make the announcement in Miami was a strategic approach — because the promise to tighten our relationship with the communist country was done Florida during the presidential campaign.
But not everyone is supportive of the move. “This is not about the Cuban military, it is about politics, as evidenced by the president’s decision to make this announcement in Miami, and the administration’s unwillingness to make a serious strategic argument for the policy,” remarked Sarah Stephens, the founding executive director of the Centre for Democracy in the Americas. “A majority of Americans, a majority of Cuban Americans, and over 90 per cent of Cubans want the policy of engagement to continue.”
The overall intent, however, is to end the easy flow of U.S. cash to the Cuban military and demand key reforms in the Cuban government. In his interview with Fox News, Senator Rubio stated that the communist country hadn’t had a free democratic election for the past sixty years.
“Democracy and human rights in our region is critical to the United States. In fact every country in the Southern Hemisphere has had free and fair election in the past few decades, except one – Cuba,” said Rubio.
Furthermore, immigrants who come from countries in the Southern Hemisphere travel to the U.S. as a result of its known economic, financial, and political freedom.
Rubio also stated that this this new policy seeks to help existing American airlines that travel to Cuba such as American, Delta, Jet Blue, and Alaska Airlines — and that it would only mean that the airlines be closely monitored. He would rather have American Airlines flying people into Cuba than have them chartering planes that are operated by a pro-Castro operation in the United States.
In order for Cuba to finally embrace change, President Trump and Senator Rubio are willing to play hardball with the communist regime and, eventually, craft a new deal — one that allows the Cuban people to finally experience freedom.