The bitter fruits of appeasement
Appeasing totalitarian tyrants has a long losing track record
While reading the September 15, 2011 New York Times article on what Governor Richardson and the Obama Administration were willing to offer the dictatorship in Cuba in order to obtain the release of American hostage Alan Gross, I had a sense of deja vu. The Administration dangled several offers to the Castro regime and made a unilateral concession:
- Take Cuba off the list of state sponsors of terrorism.
- Waive probation for one of five Cuban agents convicted of espionage in the United States that planned at least one terrorist attack in the United States and provided intelligence that led to the downing of two US civilian planes over international airspace on February 24, 1996 killing four.
- Cuba democracy programs would no longer be about promoting democracy but “building civil society.”
- The White House and Senator John Kerry pushed to unilaterally cut money for the democracy programs and freeze their funding.
Now that these offers have failed, another is floated:
- Get the European Union to changes its common policy limiting relations with Cuba because of human rights concerns.
This policy approach has been tried before in Cuba, North Korea, Libya, China, the Soviet Union, and Nazi Germany with disastrous results. Historian Paul Kennedy has described “as the policy of settling international quarrels by admitting and satisfying grievances through rational negotiation and compromise, thereby avoiding the resort to an armed conflict which would be expensive, bloody, and possibly dangerous.”
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