Can someone explain to me why Trump is pushing this latest policy with Cuba?

Only thing I can think of is that he has to show he can be better than Obama, so get rid of this Obama policy, then put in his own. But honestly, I don't even really want to believe that, I just can't think of anything else other than ignorance on part of the POTUS.

Otherwise, I always thought that the best way to "cure" communism was to introduce capitalism to show the people that it is superior. 

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The argument being made, as far as I can tell - is that many of the recent changes don't do much to help the cuban people, and just help the Cuban military and Castro family. 

What is unclear is whether anything Trump does will change that scenario meaningfully, and whether rolling back the business and tourism changes will actually do more harm. The data seems mixed. 

Personally, it just seems to me like an "anything Obama did, I must undo" mentality - which is basically what he ran on. But it seems short-sighted at best. 

Liam hit it. Trump outlined it in his speech. I know I'm the only one around here who bothers to listen to him, but the decision revolved around: fair and free elections, release of political prisoners, reduction of crony capitalism. Meanwhile he's going to keep the embassy there so they can work on the political process.

Politically he's probably trying to gain some favors with the shitheads in the GOP. And, of course Florida in 2020.

I'm not trying to be argumentative or imply a point or anything along these lines. These are genuine questions:

If that's Trump's actual position regarding Cuba, why doesn't he downgrade relations with other countries that fit the same description? I'm not saying that his reasoning in wrong but it certainly seems to be inconsistent since I can think of a handful of countries of the top of my head that the USA considers good buddies even though crony capitalism, sketchy elections and imprisoning dissenters is status quo.

That was my thinking. Why is he singling out Cuba of all nations. Of course there is the conspiracy garbage on how this will help his hotels gain a stronger foothold. Don't buy that.

It's Rubio's, and that faction of the GOP, position. I don't think Trump actually cares and would more than welcome a new trading partner.

So it's personal for Rubio, then?

Yeah. Rubio talked at length before Trump's speech about how Trump kept asking him what to do about Cuba. That was probably the only thing during Rubio's campaign he was actually passionate about.

Interesting. The Cuban-Americans I've met were generally quite passionately anti-Castro regime. The Cubans I've met elsewhere in the world (including in Cuba) were generally much less passionate about it. They were more along the lines of "Yeah, a lot of shit is fucked and needs to change but it's not that bad." For example, my wife's (Canadian) friend married a Cuban and even though he got permanent residence in Canada and qualifies for citizenship he is completely uninterested in permanently relocating to Canada. He's been here for extended periods of time, he's worked here, he knows that it's a permanent option, but he prefers to stay in Cuba. (And he's just a regular shmoe; he's not part of the elite or political class.) Anyway, long story short, American Cubans seem a lot angrier and more passionate about the issue than most other Cubans I've met.

American Cubans are generally either political enemies, or come from families of political enemies.

That's the impression I got. Either that or the former owners (and/or their descendants) of lands and businesses that got nationalized and therefore de facto political enemies. AKA the beneficiaries and/or supporters and/or turners of blind eyes to the previous dictator that Castro overthrew.

On that note, it's interesting that Cuba is demonized by the USA for it's sketchy elections, crony capitalism and treatment of political dissenters. Not only because other countries fit that bill but remain valued friends, but because the previous dictator of Cuba and his regime (the one overthrown by Castro and co.) were guilty of the same but had the benefit of explicit American support.

So, again, there are questions about consistency to ponder in this whole affair.

It's all about who's friendly to us.

Based on what I know about Cuba, which is admittedly not that much, I'd just say that my impression is that Cuba is very open to friendliness and that objections are coming from the US side of the discussion rather than the Cuban side.


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