Trump Administration continues its attack on Cuba


 

Old American car drives near the Cuban telecommunications company ETECSA building in Havana, on February 28, 2019. – The European Union as well as Cuba faces a nervous wait as the countdown to US President Donald Trump’s March 17 deadline to activate sanctions against the Caribbean island nation approaches. Trump has broken with two decades of precedence in threatening to activate the Title III of the Helms-Burton Act, which extended the US embargo to apply to foreign companies trading with Cuba. (Photo by YAMIL LAGE / AFP) (Photo credit should read YAMIL LAGE/AFP/Getty Images)

On March 4th, Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo announced the United States has suspended Title III of the 1996 Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) against Cuba.

The move is another twist of the administration’s zeal to thwart any progress made by the Obama administration regarding rebuilding relations between the two countries.

Ironically, Title III had been waived by presidents since 1996 and had been renewed consistently until the announcement by Pompeo.  The act essentially allows Cubans who fled the country and landed in the United States following the 1959 revolution to sue in an attempt to reclaim land and property which was claimed by the government.  Whether they will be successful in court is undefined at this time.

 

While the move appears pretty straight-forward, many international experts have a different perspective.  Cuba is the largest country in the Caribbean and known for its independence and endurance.   In addition to being an ally to communist regimes, they have been a big supporter of Venezuela and their support of the Maduro government.

The 1959 Revolution resulted in those not supporting the new regime to flee leaving  property and other assets which the government used to rebuild the country.  No doubt the issue is controversial and bitter feelings still exist from those who were exiled.  However, some view the Trump Administration’s action as basic retaliation for the country supporting someone in another country who they do not support.  As mentioned Pompeo indicated the move will be revisited in 30 days.

Like many things with this administration, it is unclear how many lawsuits may be brought or their probability of success.

New Travel to Cuba Guidelines Announced


[Washington, D.C.] Updated regulations for U.S. citizens traveling to Cuba to be effective Thursday, November 9, 2017

** It is important to note that those who have already made legitimate travel arrangements prior to November 9th, and fall within the categories of travel will not be negatively impacted by the updated regulations.

The Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is amending the Cuban Assets Control Regulations to implement the National Security Presidential Memorandum (NSPM), “Strengthening the Policy of the United States Toward Cuba,” signed by the President on June 16, 2017. These amendments implement changes to the authorizations for travel to Cuba and related transactions and restrict certain financial transactions. These
amendments also implement certain technical and conforming changes.

 

Click here for the FAQ’s on the updated guidelines.

Part of the irritation for many who applauded the Obama administration’s common sense approach of offering hope in establishing communication with Cuba, is to see Donald Trump and his administration hell-bent on trying to dismantle anything viewed positively by Obama, with very little regard to the desires of the american people.

“I think overall it’s certainly a step backwards.  It’s bad for U.S. companies. It’s bad for U.S. travelers.” Collin Laverty, president of Cuba Educational Travel