The myths about the U.S. trade embargo on Cuba

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My English is very rusty, so I did the best I could. I promise that in the next article I’ll improve my grammar. 

There are some myths surrounding the U.S. trade embargo on Cuba , imposed in 1960 by then President of the United States , Dwight David Eisenhower , even as a ” partial embargo ” in response to the policy of confiscation of property of Americans in island . In 1962, U.S. President John Fitzgerald Kennedy ( JFK ) , declared a ” total embargo ” on Cuba , establishing that Cuban products are illegal in the United States and creating various restrictions on exports of U.S. firms to the island .

Currently, U.S. companies can sell food and medicine to Cuba and U.S. citizens can travel to Havana , however , with some restrictions on the groups that can take advantage of this “flexibility ” .

The embargo limits the commercial relations between companies of the United States and Cuba and the Castro regime is accused of being the cause of the ills on the Island Prison , which is the first and greatest myth about the topic . It is easy to see that this embargo Cuba circumvents quietly for decades , first through the investment of the Soviet Union until 1991 , and trade with the bloc of countries that composed between 1972 and 1989 . Were $ 3 billion per year received by Cuba coming from the USSR between 1970 and 1991 . Furthermore , Cuba sold sugar above the world market price to the USSR and this will sell oil at rock-bottom prices .

Even with all these resources Cuba has not obtained the expected growth and the collapse of the USSR in 1991 and saw its economy regress GDP dropped 35 % in 2 years , with the worst crisis in the history of the country . During the period of the USSR , Cuba also traded with countries such as France , which in 1967 sold goods amounting to approximately $ 70 million and imported from Cuba $ 34 million in assets.

After the 1991 collapse of the USSR , Cuba was forced to generate new revenue . The solution comes with the opening of the island to tourism and intensification of relations with other countries such as Britain , Venezuela and Brazil . Exports of nickel, sugar and coffee helped Cuba , but the great relief came with the election of Hugo Chavez as President of Venezuela in 1999 .

Approached Chavez and Fidel Castro in Cuba initiated a policy similar to that held by the Soviet Union . Venezuela currently provides 120,000 barrels of oil a day to Cuba pays with sending Cuban professionals of strategic sectors , especially health , to meet the poor in Venezuela . Only in 2008 trade with Venezuela reached U.S. $ 2,698 billion , with China at U.S. $ 2,457 , U.S. $ 1.41 billion Canada and Spain U.S. $ 1,154 billion. In 2013 already hit $ 600 million only to Brazil .

The human material turned export to Cuba , which has about 15 000 health professionals working worldwide , a number that will increase with imports of Cuban doctors to Brazil . In Venezuela, the payment made to Cuba is $ 8 per query in Brazil will be R $ 10 thousand per month , with 7000 reais directly at the hands of Castro . South Africa pays $ 7000 to Cuba for each doctor . Approximately $ 5 billion enter Cuba every year due to the export of these professionals by the Castro regime . Out trade with other countries and with the United States itself , which is currently the 4th largest trading partner of Cuba and the 5th largest supplier .

Now I ask, and the embargo ? But that ban? Now , it is clear that the embargo does not prevent the Cuban trade with other countries and even U.S. companies , so can not be blamed for the economic ills of the Prison Island . And all the money of the USSR ? Was undertaken to create and maintain the eighth largest army in the world , ensuring the continuing power of Castro and mismanaged , as are also other resources that annually enter Cuba. The socialist model is responsible for the economic crisis on the island .

Before the embargo in 1960 , in 1959 to be exact , came into effect a law that prohibited the purchase and sale of cars registered from that year . Even today we see cars antiguíssimos Island . Recently the government of Raul Castro decreed the possibility of selling the vehicle to Cubans , but it is necessary to face all the Cuban bureaucracy , that is not little . Ie , before the United States is close to Cuba , Fidel was closing Cuba to the United States .

To say that American products in addition to food and medicine can not reach the island is incorrect, as there are video games , DVDs , films , copies of the Windows system , among others , usually pirated . There will be the excuse that Cuba was pushed piracy by the embargo , but that does not change the fact that the products come the same way , with the difference that those who are missing from this are the companies in the United States .

The Brazil besides financing the Castro regime by paying the labor of Cuban doctors also lends money to Cuba through the National Bank of Economic and Social Development ( BNDES ) to finance the infrastructure projects and loans directly to Castro . Only the port of Mariel and Special Zone Development ( ZED ) of Mariel in Cuba will cost $ 700 million to the coffers Brazilians . Until the Castro brothers recognize that the failed socialist model no longer fits and it is necessary to transition from Cuba for a more liberal market economy , under the excuse ” updating socialism ,” Raul Castro implements reforms in this direction .

The embargo is to blame for the Cuban economy sinking, but the Cuban government and its own communist ideals plaguing the island since 1959 . If the embargo was removed , how long will the Castro regime would without this excuse to hide their failures and failure of your model ? If socialism is so good, because 2 million Cubans fled to the United States ? And these exiles help Cuba’s economy with dollars in donations to their relatives on the Island Prison , who were not so lucky . Outside the 73 cooperatives authorized 09.24.2013 , one for the export of ornamental birds that exceed $ 700,000 in the country and want to get to a million with this cooperative .

By Roberto Lacerda Barricelli

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Sources:

– O mito da Revolução Cubana – Por Paulo Roberto de Almeida (Ordem Livre – 01/06/2009) – http://www.ordemlivre.org/2009/06/o-mito-da-revolucao-cubana/

– Estados Unidos es el quinto sócio comercial de la Isla (Cubaencuentro – 15/08/2008) – http://www.cubaencuentro.com/cuba/noticias/estados-unidos-es-el-quinto-socio-comercial-de-la-isla-104132

– Com ajuda de 700 milhões do Brasil, Cuba abrirá zona com regras atrativas ao investimento estrangeiro (24/09/2013) –http://portal100fronteiras.com.br/noticias.php?id=16290

– Comércio Exterior cubano cresce 39% em 2008 – (UOL Notícias – 02/11/2008) –http://noticias.uol.com.br/ultnot/efe/2008/11/02/ult1808u129254.jhtm

– AFP: Cuba cria primeira cooperativa dedicada à exportação (24/09/2013) –  http://www.em.com.br/app/noticia/internacional/2013/09/24/interna_internacional,452583/cuba-cria-primeira-cooperativa-dedicada-a-exportacao.shtml

– DN Globo: Cuba quer duplicar exportações da indústria biotecnológica (12/04/2013) – http://www.dn.pt/inicio/globo/interior.aspx?content_id=3161811&seccao=EUA%20e%20Am%E9ricas

– Folha de São Paulo: Cuba anuncia autorização para compra e venda de carros (28/09/2011) – http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/mundo/982242-cuba-anuncia-autorizacao-para-compra-e-venda-de-carros.shtml

– Reuters Brasil (2010): Sob embargo, Cuba pirateia produtos dos Estados Unidos – http://reuters-brasil.jusbrasil.com.br/noticias/2358918/sob-embargo-cuba-pirateia-produtos-dos-estados-unidos

– Diário do Nordeste: Presidente da Venezuela visita Cuba para fortalecer relações (27/04/2013) – http://diariodonordeste.globo.com/noticia.asp?codigo=358133

– BBC Brasil: Por que Cuba tem tantos médicos? (09/06/2013) –http://www.bbc.co.uk/portuguese/noticias/2013/06/130608_cuba_medicos_pai.shtml

– Mídia Sem Máscara: Em Cuba, vice-presidente da Colômbia fala bobagens (17/10/2011) –http://www.midiasemmascara.org/artigos/internacional/america-latina/12497-em-cuba-vice-presidente-da-colombia-fala-bobagens.html

– Política & Economia: Fatos sobre o embargo econômico EUA à Cuba (17/02/2007) – http://www.politicaeconomia.com/2007/02/fatos-sobre-o-embargo-economico-eua.html

– Cuba Transition Project: Mitos e Realidades na Cuba de Castro (Jaime Suchlicki – 2013) –http://ctp.iccas.miami.edu/FACTS_Web/PG/Cuba%20Facts%20Issue%2019%20Portuguese.htm

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