Friday, December 19, 2014

Jeff Flake: Obama "Was Right To Begin the Process of Normalizing Relations with Cuba"

Posted By on Fri, Dec 19, 2014 at 12:30 PM

Many congressional Republicans were quick to condemn the Obama administration’s move to establish diplomatic relations with Cuba and push to end the half-century of economic sanctions imposed on the tiny communist island. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, for example, wrote in the Wall Street Journal that Obama’s announcement “giving the Castro regime diplomatic legitimacy and access to American dollars isn’t just bad for the oppressed Cuban people, or for the millions who live in exile and lost everything at the hands of the dictatorship. Mr. Obama’s new Cuba policy is a victory for oppressive governments the world over and will have real, negative consequences for the American people.”

And Arizona Sen. John McCain, in a joint statement with his pal Lindsey Graham, said the move was "about the appeasement of autocratic dictators, thugs, and adversaries, diminishing America’s influence in the world."

“We agree with President Obama that he is writing new chapters in American foreign policy," the two senators said in a joint statement. "Unfortunately, today’s chapter, like the others before it, is one of America and the values we stand for in retreat and decline."

But Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, who has long argued for better relations with Cuba, supported Obama’s decision.

“I don't often agree with President Obama, but he was right to begin the process of normalizing relations with Cuba,” Flake said in a prepared statement. “For over 50 years, the policy of isolating Cuba has failed to achieve any democratic reforms. It has, however, succeeded in giving the Castros a convenient excuse for the failures of socialism.”

Flake added that the decision was “about freedom. Engagement isn't going to turn Cuba into a model democracy overnight, but as we've seen around the world, it will certainly be an improvement over the status quo. Government control over the island will be lessened by increased American contact and commerce, and these changes will provide a boost to those who will actually make change in Cuba—the Cubans themselves.”

Speaking of Cuba: Tucson author Tom Miller this week found his book, Trading with the Enemy: A Yankee Travels Through Casto’s Cuba, named as one of the best books on Cuba by The New York Times and the Daily Beast.

“Miller’s fun and engaging story of his eight months on the island introduces readers to the country’s intellectual elite, criminals, and ordinary citizens,” wrote William O’Connor on the Beast website. “National jokes about Castro, food, and the embargo are shared as he tells the story of the people on receiving end of the U.S. and Cuba’s policies. It also focuses on some of the nation’s success, such as its health care.”

Tags: , , , , , ,

Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

Previously in the Range

More by Jim Nintzel

Today | Thu | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue
Hypnotic Clean Comedy of Jim Kellner

Hypnotic Clean Comedy of Jim Kellner @ Coyote Trail Stage

Fri., Dec. 14, 7:30-9 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

Staff Pick

Hypnotic Clean Comedy of Jim Kellner

Drawing on his background in stand-up comedy, Jim's comedy hypnosis show has become a wildly successful evening… More

@ Coyote Trail Stage Fri., Dec. 14, 7:30-9 p.m. 8000 N. Silverbell Road

» More Picks

Submit an Event Listing

Popular Content

  1. In The Flesh: The Juilliard String Quartet Bears Gifts (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. Things To Buy for Those Parents You Don't Like Very Much (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. In Memoriam | Chris Burroughs (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. Adoptable Pet: Hazelnut Needs a Home (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. The Age of Online Shopping Could Mark the Beginning of "Retail Apocalypse" (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

© 2018 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation