Cuba and the Campaign to end the State Sponsors of Terrorism List“Iran and Cuba, in cooperation with each other, can bring America to its knees.” … “The U.S. regime is very weak, and we are witnessing this weakness from close up.” – Fidel Castro, University of Tehran, Iran May 10, 2001 quoted in the Agence France Presse
“Our positions, versions, interpretations are alike, very close. We have been good friends, we are and will be, and we will be together forever. Long live Cuba! – Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Havana, Cuba, January 12, 2012
There is a campaign underway not only to take Cuba off the list of state sponsors of terrorism but to do away with the list altogether. Ignoring the Castro regime’s long history of not only sponsoring and training terrorists, but also engaging in terrorism, the drive has been on for years to remove this dictatorship from the list. However, the end goal is not Cuba but getting rid of the list of state sponsors of terrorism itself.
Business interests in the United States have a long history of hostility to unilateral sanctions against regimes engaged in behaviors that Americans find reprehensible. Since 1997 they have joined together in USA Engage to target policymakers, opinion leaders and shape public opinion in order not only to gut and end sanctions against rogue regimes but to also prevent individual victims from taking human rights abusers to court under the Alien Tort Statute.
Stripping states and local governments of their moral authority
Corporate America has also been successful through the courts at eliminating long held rights of states and localities to decide whether or not they want to trade with a country engaged in despicable practices. The anti-apartheid campaign that began at the local and state level with divestment campaigns in the 1970s would not survive legal challenges today. Since 2000 with the Supreme Court decision citing the supremacy clause in Crosby versus National Foreign Trade Council relations or trade with a foreign country are governed by the federal government. State and local governments can no longer place their own sanctions on foreign regimes unless it is in accordance with federal government policy. In 2000 the Supreme Court forced Massachusetts to do business with companies that had done business with the military junta in Burma. According to constitutional scholar Sanford Levinson in the Fordham Law Review the Crosby decision compels state and local governments to cooperate with evil.
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