Thursday, June 04, 2009

Joining the OAS

"I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member"

--Groucho Marx

I recently wrote about the Castro government's latest scathing remarks about the OAS, which I still think is getting too little press in all the hubbub about Cuba's re-entrance into the OAS. But Dan Restrepo, one of Obama's senior advisers on Latin America, makes a good point:

Today has been a historic day for the inter-American system. You’ve seen two things occur in a resolution passed by consensus by the organization, one that leaves without effect the 1962 suspension of the current government of Cuba from participation in the OAS, and second that establishes a path forward that has multiple steps to it, beginning with whether the Cuban Government asks to come back to the organization or not, a question that may be complicated for that government given what it has been saying about the organization in recent weeks and actually throughout the last 40 years...

Indeed, Fidel Castro's response to the decision was to say the OAS was a "Trojan horse" and had no reason to exist.


Benjamin N. Gedan 12:26 PM  

Although I agree with those who regard the debate over Cuba's reentry into the O.A.S. as a distraction from pressing economic development issues in the region, I don't think Cuba's reluctance to reapply makes the issue less relevant.

One of the main reasons that the new United Nations Human Rights Council lacks legitimacy is the seating of notorious human rights violators such as the authoritarian governments of China and Saudi Arabia.

Likewise, the embrace of Cuba by the O.A.S., even if rebuffed, potentially robs the organization of its own credibility as a protector of democratic values.

Greg Weeks 1:06 PM  

Maybe, but the OAS has not said Cuba can come back in without conditions.

Benjamin N. Gedan 2:27 PM  

True, an important distinction, and likely a reason for the less-than enthusiastic response from Havana.

GS,  1:01 PM  

LOL! Groucho Marx was too much.

Anonymous,  3:39 AM  

thanks for the link...

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