Havana Dreaming

By Campo-Flores, Arian | Newsweek, August 2, 2010 | Go to article overview

Havana Dreaming


Campo-Flores, Arian, Newsweek


Byline: Arian Campo-Flores

After 50 years, the U.S. travel ban on Cuba has not made the island any more free. But those Americans pressing to lift it are now closer to success than ever before.

Nobody would accuse Guillermo Farinas of being soft on the Cuban government. The psychologist and dissident journalist has staged nearly two dozen hunger strikes to protest state repression. His belly is peppered with needle pricks from all the forced feedings. One stretch without food caused a lung to fill with blood and plunged him into a coma. During his most recent hunger strike--begun in February to press for the release of 25 ailing political prisoners--he nearly died when a blood clot formed in his jugular vein. He resumed eating only after President Raol Castro announced in early July that he was freeing 52 dissidents, including the 25 sick ones. And yet, in a recent interview with Spain's El Pais, Farinas called for something considered heresy in some anti-Castro circles: lifting the U.S. travel ban on the island. "The visits of millions of U.S. citizens would without doubt change this country," he said.

The anti-Castro lobby remains strong in the United States, and wants to keep Cuba isolated. Until now, it's been able to defeat virtually every effort to open the island to American tourists. But Farinas is one of a growing number of influential Cubans and Americans who see the 50-year policy to completely isolate Cuba as a failure. Now interest groups of all sorts--big business, farmers, human-rights advocates, religious organizations, even many Cuban-Americans--have united to back a new congressional bill that would lift the travel ban and further loosen restrictions on U.S. agricultural sales to the island. "There is significant momentum building," says Carlos Saladrigas, co-chair of the Cuba Study Group, which supports the measure.

Hardline Cuban-Americans will try to defeat the bill by pressuring key legislators. But by combining travel and food provisions in one bill, drafters won over numerous farm-state lawmakers whose constituents are eager to sell to Cuba. The bill passed the House Agriculture Committee at the end of June. Next, it could go either to the Foreign Affairs Committee (whose chairman supports it) or to the House floor for a vote. "They're within striking distance of winning," says Geoff Thale, program director of the Washington Office on Latin America.

If the bill succeeds in the House, attention would turn to the Senate, where Cuban-American Sen. Robert Menendez has vowed a filibuster. Last month, however, Democratic Sen. Byron Dorgan and Republican Sen. Mike Enzi--sponsors of their chamber's version of the legislation--issued a statement saying they were confident they had enough votes to get it through.

The American business and agriculture lobbies, which have long supported more trade with Cuba, feel they have a potential ally in President Obama, who early in his term lifted travel and remittance restrictions on Cuban-Americans. Now the lobbyists are cranking up pressure on Congress. Faced with the threat of a double-dip recession, American producers are desperate to tap new markets. A number of pro-business organizations, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Foreign Trade Council, have declared this a "key vote"--one they'll take into account when compiling their annual scorecards of lawmakers. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Havana Dreaming
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.