Background:
The trade and travel embargo with Cuba can trace its origin to 1960 when the US reduced the Cuban import quote of sugar in response to the Cuban government's, headed by Fidel Castro, expropriation of property owned by US companies. The embargo grew to a complete embargo under President Kennedy in 1962 when Cuba aligned itself with the Soviet Union. In the year 2000, some of the restrictions on trade were reduced.
The Embargo Has Failed, It Needs To Be Ended
Main References: Business Week, Offshorewave.com
  • The embargo has been an abject failure. The Castro dictatorship is still in power and the policies that started the embargo have not been changed.
  • The real victims of this policy are the Cuban people who have been isolated from the ideals of democracy and freedom that travel and trade would have promoted.
  • The trade restrictions hurt American businesses because Cuba still can get the products just they are supplied by other countries.
  • It makes no sense to treat Cuba different than we treat other Communist countries such as China and Vietnam which do not have similar trade and travel restrictions.
  • Restoring trade and travel will give the US government added leverage with the Cuban government to address the issues of human rights, capitalism and democracy.
  • The Embargo actually helps keeps the Castro government in power by giving it an evil enemy to blame for all its failings.
  • Normalization of relations would eventually lead to the return of Guantanamo Bay to Cuba and end this reminder of our past colonialism.
  • Establishing relations with Cuba would help reduce the chance of another Cuban Missile Crisis.
  • The flow of boat people would be reduced with improved relations.
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The Restrictions Still Make Sense
Main References: Business Week, Offshorewave.com
  • Ending the the embargo would not solve the Cuban economy or help its people. The real cause of of the misery is the mismanagement caused by the Communist ideology.
  • U.S. tourism will not bring democracy. For years tourists have visited Cuba from democratic countries of Canada, Europe and Latin America without bringing democracy to Cuba.
  • The real beneficiaries would be the government owned businesses if the U.S. lifted the embargo without meaningful changes to Cuba's economic model.
  • Cuba will probably not be able to buy very much from U.S. companies because their state run business have little to sell in exchange.
  • With Cuba's current hostility toward private property, most investors will be very cautious about putting their money at risk in Cuba.
  • Lifting the trade embargo would probably lead to significantly increased drug trafficking through Cuba.
  • Lift of travel restrictions could lead to a massive immigration of Cubans to Florida.
  • Normalization without a resolution of claims for properties expropriated by the Cuban government after the revolution might lead to conflict by returning Cubans intent on reclaiming their property.