BlogCuba – Kevin Aylward

Kevin, owner and proprietor of Wizbang!, has been very busy lately with the 2003 Weblog Awards but he still had the time to join BlogCuba. And what he has to say makes sense, I may have to rethink my views on travelling to the island:

Engagement

Read this, or as much of it as you can stomach. It’s actually humorous in a totally pathetic way.

It’s clear that the 40+ years of embargo as well as the collapse of the Soviet Union have completly marginalized Cuba to the point that the last thing most people can remember about Cuba is that Eli?n Gonz?les got sent home. That controversy started 4 years ago. Unless you live in South Florida you probably haven’t seen any news about Cuba in years.

The point is travel is still officially banned. Given the history of popular and bloodless revolutions in the last decade, perhaps it’s time to look beyond embargo’s and start engaging again.

Castro is not going to live forever, but communist governments have proven that they can only maintain power in the absence of capitalism or socialism. When populations get a taste for freedom they tend to rise up. This is the big danger for China which is struggling to open markets and change from a command to a market economy while keeping the cork on political freedoms.

Cuba is ripe for revolution from within. The greater our engagement the quicker Castro will fall.

Is that what we are doing?

Not exactly, we are limmiting travel even further.

11 thoughts on “BlogCuba – Kevin Aylward”

  1. I want to go, but will not until I’m sure my presence is not somehow supportive of the regime, especially financially. Haven’t canadians and germans been going there for years now? How has their engagement improved anything? Interesting post to discuss. Thanks!

  2. It’s hard to say. What I think we really need is a plan to deal with Cuba post-Castro. He’s got to be pushing 80 years old.

    I guess I’m equally opposed to the kind of wink and nod to the laws on the books that occured under Clinton as well. A ban should be a ban, the change should be made via the legislature not via selective enforcement of laws.

    Perhaps a series of incentives on the books for a free Cuba would help. As in we will do X, Y, and Z when Cuba has free and monitored democratic elections.

    I’m not sure what the “right” answer is, but I’m pretty sure our traditional approach is ripe for review.

  3. BlogCuba Day

    Val Prieto’s Babalu Blog is going BlogCuba today. Val has asked a variety of authors to send him Cuba specific posts. The lead off post is an anti-Castro poster from the sixties. Keep checking back throughout the day as more…

  4. I have always wondered- the assumption is, when Castro dies, the regime will too. Is this wishful thinking? Has he prepared for a successor? What will happen?

  5. Kevin,

    You are right, a plan needs to be made for post-Castro Cuba. Im sure there are quite a few out there. Unfortunately, Im of the belief that when Fidel bites it, it’s gonna be bloody over there.

    Scott,

    If that bearded bastard lives past 80 I will personally go over there and kill him myself.

    Bruce,

    Im sure the regime has a successor in mind, but whoever it is won’t last long. There’s no one with Castro’s saavy or charisma to take el Caballo’s job.

  6. Fidel is well prepared for one million marines coming over el malecon armed to the teeth with M-16s and grenades. What he cannot be prepared for is one million tourists coming ove that same malecon armed only with sun tan lotion and American Express cards.

    The ideas that will come with tourism will kill Fidel more quickly than old age. You are correct. The island is ripe for a revolution, another velvet revolution sparked by interactions between los yaquis chingandos and the Ciban pepople. End the embargo, end Fidel’s excuse for lack of economic and political progress and end Fidel’s dictatorship.

  7. SpotCash I think you’re spot-on.

    BTW – One line in my pos I would have rewritten…

    communist governments have proven that they can only maintain power in the absence of capitalism or socialism.

    I would change the words “capitalism or socialism” to “econmomic freedom”.

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