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The US Should End the Cuban Embargo | The Nation

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Katrina vanden Heuvel

Katrina vanden Heuvel

Politics, current affairs and riffs and reflections on the news.

The US Should End the Cuban Embargo


A barber works in his shop in Havana. Cuba has turned over hundreds of state-run barber shops to empoyees across the country. (Reuters/Desmond Boylan)

Editor’s Note: Each week we cross-post an excerpt from Katrina vanden Heuvel’s column at the WashingtonPost.com. Read the full text of Katrina’s column here

Is there a greater example of utter folly than America’s superannuated policy toward Cuba? During more than 50 years corrupted by covert actions, economic sabotage, travel bans and unending embargo, the United States managed to make Castro and Cuba an international symbol of proud independence. Intent on isolating Cuba, Washington has succeeded only in isolating itself in its own hemisphere. Intent on displacing Fidel Castro, the US enmity only added to his nationalist credentials.

A recent visit reveals a Cuba that is already beginning a new, post-Castro era. That only highlights the inanity of the continuing U.S. embargo, a cruel relic of a Cold War era that is long gone.

Cuba is beginning a new experiment, driven by necessity, of trying to build its own version of market socialism in one country. Just as populist movements in the hemisphere looked to Castro and Cuba for inspiration, now Cuba is learning from its allies as it cautiously seeks to open up its economy.

Editor’s Note: Each week we cross-post an excerpt from Katrina vanden Heuvel’s column at the WashingtonPost.com. Read the full text of Katrina’s column here

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