Sunday, March 09, 2008

George Will on Cuba policy

George Will has written a column on Cuba, which shows relatively little understanding about Cuba itself, but which nonetheless argues for an end to the embargo. Therefore it is notable as another example of Republicans jumping ship on Cuba policy.

The thrust of the article is not to assume that capitalism will bring democracy to Cuba, by comparing it to China. We could, of course, argue all day about the relationship between capitalism and democracy (or polyarchy) but the fact is that Cuba is not much like China, politically, geographically, etc. I am a comparativist, but superficial comparisons (i.e. both countries were “communist” so political outcomes should be more or less the same) sometime obscure more than they reveal.

He also cites a history of Cuba “blaming” the United States, and before it Spain, for Cuban problems. It’s true—you should really blame yourself for colonial rule, slash and burn control tactics, then the U.S. writing itself into your constitution, then periodically occupying you before it stopped and just funded a dictator instead.

But what did I expect from George Will? He did, however, say the embargo is an utterly failed policy, and on that point he’s correct.


Anonymous,  6:51 PM  

Honestly, has he ever even heard of the Platt Amendment? You don't need to be a Castro supporter to be offended by that/

As for constitution's hell, I'd be thrilled if they went back to the 1940 Constitution.

Bosque 10:59 PM  

Probably the same type of deal the US is trying to get in Iraq ... a Platt Amendment.

Anyhow, its no surprise to read information that shows a lack of knowledge about some different country, most of these "experts" have never been to the country they are writing about; definitely not in the past five decades.

Interesting read none-the-less.

Paul 9:32 AM  

Whatever sins the US committed in the past, Castro is to blame for the destruction of the Cuban economy since 1959, and for the island prison he created. He blames us now for a "blockade" that is nothing more than a partial embargo on trade. Before the embargo, he blamed us for too much trade; exploiting Cuban resources and economic imperialism.

Greg Weeks 9:46 AM  

The Spain reference was particularly bad, since it seemed to suggest historical knowledge while showing none.

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