Friday, December 20, 2013

The Handshake

It may have been somewhat perfunctory when President Obama shook the hand of Cuba's President Raoul Castro, but it has been criticized. Few people remember that Bill Clinton once shook the hand of Fidel Castro, without any significant developments in the strained relationship. I have long been a critic of "Gitmo" - not just of the prison, but also of the whole idea of maintaining an unneeded naval base on Cuban soil. This may have made some sense early in the 20th century, and a modest rental was originally paid. For many years now, the Cubans have declined to accept the rent. How would we feel if a perennially hostile nation maintained the base at Miami beach? I see no reason for us to continue the embargo on trade with Cuba in any form. I understand the vocal chorus from the original middle class Cuban immigrants in Florida who oppose any resumption of normal relations with Cuba, but I believe that it is time for a change.

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