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03/30/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: Walls and Doors — A Good Week for Diplomacy

Last December, when President Obama announced he had reached an agreement with President Raúl Castro to restore diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba, you’d have thought it was a dark day for diplomacy given the reaction of some Senators on Capitol Hill. “I think it stinks,” New Jersey… read more »

03/20/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: Cuba: On Drugs

On Wednesday, Cuba got the results of its annual drug test. It passed. If we had to guess, no one on the island was sweating out the wait for the 2015 edition of the U.S. State Department narcotics control strategy report. But several pro-sanctions hardliners had to be disappointed by… read more »

03/18/2015

NATIONAL JOURNAL: Havana-Bound: Cuba Rapidly Becomes a Favorite Member Destination

The first wave of American tourists hasn’t yet hit the beaches of Havana, but members of Congress are—in record numbers. Even before President Obama’s December announcement of normalization of relations with the country, congressional travel to Cuba had spiked following a 50-plus year standoff between the two countries. A LegiStorm… read more »

03/13/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: If Eight Polls Run Against You, You Run Against Conan

Since December 17, 2014, eight public opinion polls have been released that all show strong public support for President Obama’s decision to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba and his call to end the embargo. That’s got to bother the hardliners who have devoted their careers to punishing Cuba with U.S…. read more »

03/12/2015

SENATOR CLAIRE MCCASKILL: What I Learned in Cuba

Since the U.S. and Cuban governments announced they would begin normalizing relations, there’s been a lot of talk about what that could mean—for the politics of both countries, and for agricultural and job opportunities in Missouri. A lot of that talk has been about the actions of politicians. Presidents Obama… read more »

03/06/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: Breaking News: Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) Facing Federal Corruption Charges

Senator Bob Menendez, shown here on Twitter celebrating National Pancake Day earlier this week, has something a little more serious on his plate this afternoon. CNN is reporting that Menendez, New Jersey’s senior Senator, and the former Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, will face federal criminal corruption charges… read more »

02/27/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: To Cuba and the U.S. — Live Long and Negotiate

When the U.S. and Cuba met in Washington today for their second round of talks on reestablishing diplomatic relations, we were all thinking about Leonard Nimoy. The iconic actor who played Spock in the Star Trek television and movie franchise died today at age 83. In Star Trek VI: The… read more »

02/20/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: It’s time to throw mud and misunderstanding at U.S. travelers to Cuba

As more high-profile delegations from the U.S. Congress and the business community visit Cuba, critics of President Obama’s Cuba opening are ramping up their anti-travel campaign. Those who are doing the work and making the trips know exactly what the hardliner’s intentions are. This weekend in Regla, an Afro-Cuban community… read more »

02/13/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: Valentine’s Day Edition: (Almost) Everyone “HEARTS” Reforms

Two big changes have taken place since President Obama decided to restore diplomatic relations with Cuba and reduce restrictions on the right of Americans to travel and trade with Cuba. In just the last few weeks, the forces of reform have gotten bolder and bigger, while the opponents are looking… read more »

02/06/2015

CUBA CENTRAL Newsblast: Obama’s Policy Reforms: The Congressional Counteract Begins

Opponents of President Obama’s diplomatic opening with Cuba offered a somewhat exotic argument in congressional hearings they staged this week. They said U.S. diplomats engaged in the secret negotiations should have consulted Cuban dissidents who support U.S. sanctions before the U.S. and Cuba agreed to a process for removing them…. read more »