Economic and security reasons why the U.S. should normalize relations with Cuba
Curtain, Joseph W.
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Cuba's economy has not only survived the end of Soviet-era subsidies but has thrived in the era of globalization. This thesis documents the adjustments the Cuban government has made to the economy and the increase in foreign direct investment (FDI) that has occurred as a result. The thesis also shows how China, Venezuela and Iran continue to invest more money in the island and subsequently threaten to wield more influence over Cuba. The U.S. has the opportunity to mitigate the threats posed by Venezuela and Iran vis-aÌ -vis Cuba. However, the policy espoused by current policy makers is logically flawed. The Helms-Burton Act contains unrealistic benchmarks for ending the embargo that provide little incentive for Cuban leaders to liberalize. Neither presidential candidate advocates a change in this legislation. In contrast, this thesis argues that the normalization of relations with Cuba can diminish the influence Iran and Venezuela have on Cuba and keep potential threats from coming ninety miles off the coast of the U.S. The next president should call for Congress to repeal the Helms-Burton Act so that executive discretion can be exercised with respect to Cuban foreign policy.
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