There are currently protests going on in cuba, there’s protests and there’s counter protests going on in cuba. Uh and joe biden has just released a statement on the protests, so he says we stand with the cuban people and they’re clarion clarion clarion. I i’ve never actually said that word out loud. I don’t think clarion call clarion call for freedom and relief from the tragic grip of the pandemic and from the decades of repression and economic suffering to which they have been subjected by cuba’s authoritarian regime. The cuban people are bravely asserting fundamental and universal rights. Those rights, including the right of peaceful protest and the right to freely determine their own future, must be respected. The united states calls on the cuban regime to hear their people and serve their needs at this vital moment, rather than enriching themselves. Okay, so there’s a lot of stuff to say about this let’s rewind a little bit to the uh obama era, because one of the things that obama did that i put on his list of his best accomplishments is normalizing relations with the cuban government um. You know, i think the iran deal was the correct thing to do. In a sense it was politically brave because obviously the establishment did not want to normalize relations with iran and the neocons who’d been running the government, for so long did not want to do that. So i think it was the right thing to do when it comes to iran make that nuclear agreement, and i think that with cuba, the you know, removing of sanctions and lifting the embargo and normalizing relations.
I think that was absolutely the right thing to do now. Unfortunately, trump came into power and even though he pretended half the time to be like in favor of peace or whatever, he uh put the embargo back in place. So you know he brought us right back to square one and uh. That is a horrendous thing. That trump did. I criticized it at the time i’m criticizing it right now, so joe biden gets into power and listen a lot of people think they they look at biden and they say well, you were part of the obama biden administration. So you’re, probably gon na you know, return to the obama era on this front and go back to what he did turns out. That was incorrect. So get this. The trump administration put 240 sanctions. 240 sanctions on cuba, 240, with the swipe of a pen biden, can remove all of it. It doesn’t have to go through the house. It doesn’t have to go through the senate, with the swipe of a pen. Biden can remove all of those sanctions he didn’t remove them and so now we’re in a position where the country is being just economically starved being blockaded. And yes, of course, people are struggling as a result of that now, that’s not i’m, not absolving uh. You know the cuban government of any wrongs that they’ve done internally and i’m, not saying like all of their domestic policies are correct or whatever i’m, not saying that they don’t have authoritarian aspects of that government, sure they do, but the united states.
We are responsible for what we do. We are responsible for what we do and what we’ve done is embargoed cuba, and so, if you actually cared about the cuban people, what would you do? You would lift the embargo you’d get rid of those 240 sanctions, because the thing that they’re protesting for by the way all of the initial reports, the the initial articles, were very clear. The thing that they’re saying is, we need more food and we need more medicine and medical supplies. It’S. You know, shortages for like syringes for covet vaccines or whatever the united states cannot pretend like. Oh, we feel so bad for the cuban people. We support the cuban people we’re on their side unless and until you lift the embargo. Now, listen if you lift the embargo – and you know all of these immediate problems get resolved because they have access to things that they should have access to. They have more food. They have more medical supplies and things of that nature. If, under that scenario, when we’ve normalized relations with them uh and then you have street protests that are over authoritarian aspects of the cuban government, then i mean listen. I totally get it. You know like it. I don’t live there it’s, not my country, i can’t dictate what they do and i shouldn’t be able to dictate what they do. That’S my standard for every country i’m going to stay out of the internal affairs of other countries but like if we do the right thing that we are responsible for and then they take action and they’re protesting and whatnot, hey man, your country, do whatever you want.
I, like i, get it they’re protesting now i’m, not saying the government should come out and crack down on all of it. Of course, not all i’m saying is it’s incredibly cynical for the united states to pretend, like we care so deeply about the cuban people we’re on your side, when you could immediately resolve the crisis happening now, if you just lift the embargo that’s, it that’s it. So, of course, listen they’re, the again the initial. You know the initial reasons that were given for the protest. We need more food, we need more uh medical supplies and i look at that. I go. Those are perfectly reasonable things to be protesting for without a doubt, then funny enough. The articles changed and evolved and morphed into oh. This is actually they’re they’re protesting for freedom and democracy. Wait. We thought it was very specifically over, like food shortages and medical supply shortages. Now it’s being interpreted by western, the western media as they want freedom and democracy, so they’re taking this moment and they’re trying to transfer it into actually, the entire government should be overthrown. If you don’t see why that’s cynical on the part of the west and on the part of the us government to make that argument, then i don’t know what to tell you. You know i got a bridge to sell you if you don’t realize how cynical that is, because, if we we’re only responsible for what we do, what we’re doing in regards to cuba right now is 240 sanctions.
If we lift those sanctions, it’ll definitely help alleviate the problem. Okay, but there’s the point. Let’S say we lift the sanctions. It’Ll alleviate the immediate problem. Then maybe you don’t have the people in the street and we want the people in the street because we want to destabilize it. We want to overthrow the government because we’d like to have you know somebody like batista back in power, we’d like to have a strong man who is beholden to u.s corporate interests. The real reason we have a beef with cuba is because they threw us out. They threw out our corporations, they nationalized the oil industry which the u.s was controlling. They nationalized it in 1960 and our government has never gotten over that. Our corporations have never gotten over that, so that’s. What this really comes down to for the u.s. We want a u.s puppet government in there to. You know, be beholden to our interests again, if, if they meant any of this talk here about caring about the cuban people, the first thing you do is lift the embargo that’s. The very first thing you do because that would drastically improve the situation, but they don’t want to do it and the reason they don’t want to do. It is because, if you lift the embargo, maybe those people aren’t in the streets and what we want is the people in the streets, because we want to destabilize the government and then overthrow the government.
Okay. Now again, i don’t want anybody to misinterpret what i’m saying as like a defense of the cuban government. You know i don’t want anybody to misinterpret what i’m saying is like i now absolve the cuban government of all of their domestic policies and anything that they’ve done. That’S authoritarian, you know because that’s not the argument that i’m making i’m not absolving them of any of their wrongdoings and we can have a conversation. We could go point for point and issue by issue and policy for policy, and i could tell you where i think the cuban government is right and wrong and what they’re doing internally but that’s not a conversation for us to have right now, because the context matters And the context is biden and the us and many leaders here are cynically weaponizing what’s happening to try to destabilize and overthrow the government, because we have our own motives in wanting to overthrow that government it’s got no it’s, nothing to do with humanitarian concerns for the Cuban people, because again, if you did actually care about the cuban people, you could help fix the situation right now by lifting the embargo and that would in turn, help them get a lot of the supplies and the things that they need. So you could help you could help. In my opinion, what would be ideal? Of course, the thing that would be ideal. Is we lift the sanctions we since we’re responsible for what we do? I would make sure we do the right thing by the cuban people, because i care about their suffering and then once we do that, once we get to that point, you know: do i think cuba should have free and fair elections.
Do i think they should get rid of any? You know authoritarian laws they have um. Do i hope that they’re free and they can have both personal freedom and liberty, but also economic security? Yes, that’s what i want for them. You know i, of course i want that for them, but again their internal workings. It’S, not it’s, not for me to tell them what to do in their own country. They need to determine what they do in their own country. Okay, but all i can tell you is from our perspective from my perspective, from the us’s perspective, we are responsible for the embargo and for those 240 sanctions, and so we should get rid of them right now and that will definitely materially improve the lives of. So many cubans um but again we don’t – want to do that because the u.s views that as then, where we’re helping to prop up the authoritarian government, the communist government that we disagree with the communist government that’s, not allowing us to sort of exploit the region that’s. The way it’s viewed in the u.s, so we cynically keep the embargo in place further hurting them and then turn around and feign like we care so much for the civilians who are being hurt and then we twist it into actually the main reason why everybody is Out there in the streets is they want freedom and democracy, namely they want to be more aligned with the u.
s again and more aligned with u.s interests and have a government that’s friendly to us interests. So all i’m saying is you have to look at this skeptically because to not look at it, skeptically is to be colossally, naive, okay, so again, the main conversation here should be. We are responsible for what we do and if we want to do the right thing, we lift the embargo right now. Okay, outside of that, we can have a long conversation about the cuban government and how they’ve been wrong and what’s off with their domestic policies and what are the authoritarian actions they’ve taken so on and so forth. There’S a lot to criticize there for sure, and we can do that. You know in the name of intellectual honesty. We should do that, but, first and foremost take care of what we are responsible for and what we’re responsible for is the embargo, and we need to get rid of that before we say or do anything critical of the internal workings of cuba. So i see a lot of arguing going on in left circles about this, where some people want to take this instance and use it to flex their intellectual independence and talk about how actually the cuban government is bad and it is wrong and it is authoritarian – and We should talk about that honestly and i see other people who look at this instance and they say forget about any of the problems internally with the cuban government we’re.
We bear a lot of responsibility for this simply because of the embargo, and i see a lot of people making their points, but people feel like they have to pick a side in that argument. You know what i mean they feel like. You know if you’re only focusing on the problems with the cuban government, then you’re like doing the cia’s bidding for them or you’re it’s, like wag, the dog and you’re being duped. You know and then vice versa. People look at everybody making the point on our embargo and they think these are like idiot tanky lefties, who are unwilling to criticize any government that nominally calls themselves socialist or communist, and so you work backwards from the conclusion that socialism or communism is good. Therefore, any government that bears that name is worth defending in everything they do, and so this is only the us’s fault. But honestly, what i see is a lot of people wanted to take a side, and mostly people talking over each other’s heads and not listening to each other and that’s just that’s such a common problem online, but definitely with the online left it’s. I want to talk, and i don’t want to listen and if everybody has that mindset, if i want to talk – and i don’t want to listen, it’s so easy to straw man, people who disagree with you even slightly instead of steel manning everybody and like having a Charitable interpretation of what everybody around you is saying and trying to actually understand where they’re coming from, instead of doing that, everybody’s sort of doing the opposite nowadays, so you know, i think my position on this is clear.
I think it’s sufficiently nuanced. I think it’s correct. Obviously uh, but if history’s taught me anything that won’t uh be received nicely, so it is what it is. But this is the current statement and, first and foremost, most important thing is lift the embargo. And then, if cuba wants to, you know fix their own internal politics and have a more free system and and address any of the shortcomings domestically or get rid of any authoritarian um. You know laws that are in place or actions of the government. I hope they do fix that. I hope they do fix that and there’s a lot to criticize but again we’re responsible for what we do. So we absolutely need to lift that embargo, and until we do that, i want to hear anything from the us government or u.s leaders, because we are at least in part responsible for what’s happening there.