Embargo? What about the $7 Billion that the Castro Dictatorship Expropriated!

(My new American Thinker post)

We hear that it’s time to lift the Cuban embargo. However, lifting the embargo means nothing unless you are willing to talk about the $7 billion that the Castro regime expropriated in violation of property rights and the rule of law.

According to Leon Neyhakh, we must address the issue of the property before we allow investors to bail out the Castro regime:

“Today, the nearly 6,000 property claims filed in the wake of the Cuban revolution almost never come up as a significant sticking point in discussions of a prospective Cuban-American thaw.

But they remain active – and more to the point, the federal law that lays out the conditions of a possible reconciliation with Cuba, the 1996 Helms-Burton Act, says they have to be resolved.

According to that statute, said Michael Kelly, a professor of international law at Creighton University in Nebraska, settling the certified property claims “is one of the first dominoes that has to fall in a whole series of dominoes for the embargo to be lifted.”

Another point is that much of this “expropriated property” was Cuban, such as the Cuban-owned bank that my father worked in.

It was “Banco Continental Cubano”, a bank formed by Cuban investors in the early 1940s. My father joined this bank as a management trainee and then rose to a branch manager position before the communist takeover.

Who is going to compensate the Cubans who owned this bank?

There are thousands of Cubans in the U.S. who lost businesses and investments after the communist takeover.

Two of these “investors” were my mother’s late uncles, a couple of Spaniards who landed in Cuba in the 1920s. They worked very hard, owned various businesses and had everything “nationalized” (i.e. stolen) by the communists.

Before you lift the embargo, let’s remember the thousands of Cubans who saw their property stolen by the communists.

The U.S. is about the rule of law, specially “property rights”.  Let’s stand for that before we let the Castro regime get away with stealing billions from hard-working people.

P. S. You can hear CANTO TALK here & follow me on Twitter @ scantojr.


“Oye compay, que semana”: We talk Cuba with Jorge Ponce!

Jorge Ponce and I looked back at this big “semana” of Cuba news.

It started with the handshake, talk of Dr Gross, calls for lifting the embargo, to more of Alberto’s posts about human rights violations in the island.

Even Elian made the news this week.  Wonder if someone told Elian that his mother died to bring him to the US?

It was quite a week!  We spoke with Jorge Ponce about it.

Listen here:



“El disco rayado”: It’s always about the embargo over at The NY Times!

No matter what happens in Cuba it is always about the US embargo over at The NY Times:

“Mr. Obama took some tentative steps to ease the embargo in 2009 by allowing Cuban-Americans to visit and send remittances to the island. He also cleared the way for telecommunications companies to establish licensing deals in Cuba. But the administration has not pushed publicly for any significant changes since then.

The Castro regime has not helped. For the last four years it has imprisoned Alan Gross, a State Department contractor, for distributing satellite phone equipment to Jewish organizations in Cuba. Mr. Castro should release Mr. Gross and the numerous other political prisoners. But at the same time, Mr. Obama should press Congress to end the embargo and overhaul policy toward Cuba.”

CK.  So what has happened since President Obama took some “tentative steps” back in 2009?

The answer is the next paragraph:   “The Cuban regime has not helped……”

So let me get this straight.

We took some steps in 2009 and the result was Allan Gross and more dissidents imprisoned.

So we lift the embargo now and what happens?  Probably the same as the “Cuban regime has not helped….”

When are we going to get it?

The Castro regime needs to lift the embargo because no one wants to sell them anything on credit, or “son mala paga” like my mother likes to say.

The Castro regime does not pay their debts and they are hoping that some “come-m….a ”  in the US gives them credit or bails them out.

We should be tightening the screws rather than relaxing anything!