|Some of the activists killed by the Castro regime during the Obama Administration|
Obama Cuba Policy: The third Time repeating and doubling down on failure
On December 17, 2014 President Obama made a general observation in his statement on changing U.S. Cuba policy: "I do not believe we can keep doing the same thing for over five decades and expect a different result." The president should have looked back to the previous two attempts to normalize relations with the Castro dictatorship in the 1970s and 1990s to understand that Cuba policy has not been static over the past five decades. Understanding the reasons for the policy he has sought to replace may have saved lives.
The Carter Administration was the first to lift the travel ban and hold high-level negotiations with the Cuban dictatorship, and both sides opened Interest Sections in their respective capitals between 1977 and 1981. Then from 1981 to 1982, the Castro regime executed approximately 80 prisoners, which was a marked escalation when compared to 1976. Furthermore, during the Carter presidency, Fidel Castro took steps that resulted in the violent deaths of US citizens.
|Mariel followed President Carter's efforts at normalization with Castro|
The Clinton Administration in 1994 initiated regular contacts between the U.S. and Cuban military that included joint military exercises at the Guantanamo Naval base. Despite this improvement of relations the 1990s saw some brutal massacres of Cubans that are rightly remembered such as the July 13, 1994 "13 de Marzo" tugboat massacre and the February 24, 1996 Brothers to the Rescue shoot down. The shoot down involved two planes blown to bits over international airspace by Cuban MiGs killing three American citizens and a Cuban resident who were engaged in the search and rescue of Cuban rafters.
|Balsero crisis 1994|
The Obama Administration beginning in 2009 loosened sanctions on the Castro regime. On his watch concluding on December 17, 2014 the Obama administration freed all five members of the WASP spy networ, including Gerardo Hernandez -- who was serving two life sentences, one of them for conspiracy to murder four members of Brothers to the Rescue murdered during the previous attempt at normalizing relations during the Clinton Administration. They de-linked the pursuit of full diplomatic relations from the rise in human rights violations in Cuba and in the region by Cuban state security. The Obama administration has doubled down in concessions even were the Clinton administration did not ignoring the Castro regime's continuing sponsorship of terrorism and smuggling of weapons to sanctioned countries in order to take Cuba off the list of state sponsors of terrorism. President Obama is following through on his pledge made at the State of the Union to work for the lifting of economic sanctions on the dictatorship. On his watch human rights are worsening with an escalation in arbitrary detentions, violence against activists and prominent opposition leaders who would have been critical for a democratic transition killed in what appear to have been state security operations.
|Cuban migration crisis in 2015|
|Cuban terrorist spy who conspired to murder these four freed by Obama Administration|