The definition of insanity
To steal one of the more popular lines used by those opposed to the embargo of Cuba's dictatorship, "the definition of insanity is to do something over and over again and expect a different outcome." It is a concept they seem to have a firm grasp of whenever they are describing their opponents. But this same concept is completely and totally lost on them when they continue to propose a tactic that for decades has not only failed miserably, it has been an economic boon for the Castro regime as well.
Our friend from Capitol Hill Cubans, Mauricio Claver-Carone, has an excellent editorial today in the Washington Times where he provides yet another historical and relevant example of how dialogue and engagement with a brutal totalitarian dictatorship serves only to prop up that dictatorship and provide it with the revenue it needs to continue its repression.
In 1997, Kim Dae-Jung was elected president of South Korea by a new generation of South Koreans who didn't share their grandparents' horrific war experiences and viewed North Korea as a harmless Cold War relic. A year later, Mr. Kim began articulating his sunshine policy of greater political and economic contact between the Koreas to create an atmosphere conducive to change and reform in North Korea. The policy was greeted with great international fanfare. Mr. Kim and North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il held a high-level summit in Pyongyang, initiating high-profile business ventures, and a series of family reunification visits commenced. Kim Dae-Jung was awarded the 2000 Nobel Peace Prize.
Critics, however, were voicing concerns that unconditionally fostering better relations with the North Korean regime while ignoring the repressive, belligerent nature of its dictatorship would prop up Kim Jong-il at a time of economic vulnerability and uncertainty. The Soviet Union, which had been North Korea's main supplier of military and economic aid, had collapsed just years earlier.
Ten years later, the critics have been proved correct. The sunshine policy provided the North Korean regime the wherewithal to become an international nuclear menace while intensifying the brutal oppression of its population.
Nonetheless, there are U.S. politicians and pundits arguing today that it's time for the United States to set aside its policy of isolation and containment toward Cuba and the Castro regime and adopt its own sunshine policy of dialogue and engagement.
These folks who believe that providing a dictatorship with hard currency will eventually lead to its fall are either insane, o lo que son es una pila de descarados!