Today, President Barack Obama announced that the United States and Cuba would begin to exchange in normal diplomatic relations and that he would push for further reform of the US-Cuba policy. With the news came the release of prisoners in Cuba and the return of prisoners to Cuba. This included the release of Alan Gross, who had been imprisoned for five years.
While this move has been met with with some criticism, it is something that Hillary Rodham Clinton has called for. In her book, Hard Choices, Clinton called for an updated strategy in regard to Cuba. She released a statement tonight supporting this move stating:
“I am deeply relieved by Alan Gross’s safe return to the United States, and I support President Obama’s decision to change course on Cuba policy, while keeping the focus on our principal objective — supporting the aspirations of the Cuban people for freedom. It is great news that Alan is finally home with his family, where he belongs.
As secretary of state, I pushed for his release, stayed in touch with Alan’s wife, Judy, and their daughters, and called for a new direction in Cuba. Despite good intentions, our decades-long policy of isolation has only strengthened the Castro regime’s grip on power.
As I have said, the best way to bring change to Cuba is to expose its people to the values, information, and material comforts of the outside world. The goal of increased U.S. engagement in the days and years ahead should be to encourage real and lasting reforms for the Cuban people. And the other nations of the Americas should join us in this effort.”
News and Image Source: Politico