Former Miami-Dade Democratic Party Chairman Joe Garcia talks some Cuba in this two-part video interview done by Tracey Eaton, a journalist and blogger with experience in Cuba. If you are a Facebook friend of Joe Garcia you saw these segments in his feed during the last few days.
Your blogger here recommends a look if you haven’t already. Garcia is one of the most knowledgeable policy people on Cuba, having a wealth of family background, experience running the Cuban American National Foundation, consulting with the Obama Administration on relations with that large island to the south of Florida that has been run by the Castro brothers for half a century.
But, as he says, he’s never been to Cuba. That may change – if the communist authorities say yes to his recent application to travel when Pope Benedict XVI will be there in late March. Ah, springtime in Havana, when many Miamians with links to Cuba may be there to celebrate the pope’s pre-Easter trip.
Some highlights from the interview:
- Everybody should go to Cuba – 400,000 went from the US last year under relaxed US rules.
- It can’t be ignored that things are changing in Cuba, but not the regime’s intent to remain in power.
- Obama is restructuring US government programs aimed at fostering civil society in Cuba.
- No more Miami-centric US spending to please right-wing Cuban-Americans.
- The US embargo is a failure but it’s like a religion, and Garcia was a bishop of that church in the past.
- The emotional impact of the Cuban revolution is still powerful to many in Miami; revenge, however, has no future.
For a summary of changes in Cuba, check out this article in Progreso Weekly.
Part 1 of the interview with Joe Garcia:
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