Obama, Cuba and the OAS

Great editorial at the Washington Times on the upcoming Summit of the Americas and why Cuba shouldnt be allowed into the OAS:

…allowing Cuba’s regime into the OAS would be destructive to the increasingly weakened Inter-American Democratic Charter and the OAS itself. Including the Cuban regime in the summit process would reverse a long-standing policy against dictatorships, rooted in the region’s history and agreed to by all leaders (including Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez) at the 2001 Quebec City Summit of the Americas.

The impetus to admit Cuba coincides with Mr. Chavez’s efforts to erode the importance of the OAS, the Democratic Charter and the summit process. Mr. Chavez has repeatedly denigrated the OAS and its secretary-general, threatened to withdraw and openly used other regional forums to undermine the OAS and the summits.

From a practical perspective, Cuba’s entry would create an opening to overturn well-established consensus on a range of issues, from democratic governance and human rights to security cooperation and property rights. This would suit Mr. Chavez and his allies just fine because Cuba’s totalitarian nature would set a new low for the hemisphere – a standard they certainly could meet. Other fragile democracies need not worry about respecting civil and political rights.

Read the whole thing, right here.

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