Towards A New Stage in Cuba-U.S. Relations?

Donald Trump made it the leitmotif of his presidency to eliminate all vestige of the Obamani legacy. Thus, after the attempt to end Obamacare, the announcement of the revision of the NAFTA Treaty and the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement against Climate Change, the next step was to undo the diplomatic and commercial advances made with Cuba under the mandate of Barack Obama. Thus, the changes proposed by the Trump administration were intended to increase regulations and supervision to make it difficult for US companies to sign agreements with Cuba as well as for Americans to continue traveling to the country and would be the result of strenuous pressure from prominent Cuban representatives. -Americans Marco Rubio and Mario Díaz-Balart, both Republicans.

For his part, Mike Pence announced the implementation of new measures against two companies that transport Venezuelan crude to Cuba as well as against the 34 vessels that PDVSA uses for this purpose with the avowed objective of causing the “energy asphyxia of Cuba” by means of the amputation of the umbilical cord connecting Venezuela and Cuba following the Kentian theory of the “carrot and stick” exposed by Sherman Kent in his book “Strategic Intelligence for North American World Politics” (1949). In this book, Kent states that

“war is not always conventional: indeed, a large part of warfare, remote and close, has always been carried out with unconventional weapons: […] weapons [. ..] political and economic. The kind of war in which they are […] used (are) political warfare and economic warfare. ”

Following the repressive escalation, the US Treasury Department imposed sanctions on the Cuban state company Cubametales for “its continued importation of Venezuelan crude and support for the Government of the President of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro.”

As a result of this measure, the assets that the company may have under US jurisdiction are frozen and financial transactions with US entities are prohibited since Cubametales would be, according to the US Government, “responsible for guaranteeing total imports and exports of fuels. from and to Cuba ”. The avowed objective was for the island to be doomed to a suffocation of unpredictable results after the collapse of tourism caused by the irruption on the island of the coronavirus pandemic and in the paroxysm of lack of solidarity, the Trump Administration blocked purchases and deliveries masks, lung ventilators and other basic health supplies for the treatment of patients with Covid-19 as the ultimate goal of the Trump Administration would be to achieve a total shortage of oil, food and vital health supplies to shake the current status quo of the Island.

However, after Joe Biden‘s victory at the polls, the Republican establishment will end up accepting the electoral results and will leave Donald Trump abandoned to his fate and at the mercy of the future judicial processes that await him, the Presidential pardon to Trump not being ruled out to exonerate him from possible court charges in exchange for acknowledging his defeat and leaving the White House. Joe Biden in an interview with CBS said that in the event of winning the elections he would resume the policy carried out by Barack Obama towards Cuba, which will translate into a radical change in Cuban-American relations after the progressive cancellation of the anachronistic Blockade against the Island.

Likewise, the Biden Administration will write off Juan Guaidó and given that Maduro plans to appoint a National Electoral Council to suit him for the next legislative elections, the United States will move its pieces to force the exile of the Chavista leadership to Cuba and the subsequent formation of a Transitional Government made up of consensus figures from both the opposition and Chavismo that will have to prepare new Legislative and Presidential Elections for 2021 in the post-Madurist scenario, with Cuba in the process getting the US to suspend the energy blockade on the island.


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Germán Gorraiz López is a political analyst.

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Articles by: Germán Gorraiz López

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