News from Havana

I recently returned from three weeks in Cuba, three really interesting weeks. The day after I arrived, December 17th, breaking news was the announced normalization of relations between the USA and Cuba after 54 years of rancour and isolation. I felt I was present at an historic moment.

The reaction in Cuba ranged from quiet elation, to dancing in the streets. One man told me the hair on his arms was standing on end hours after the announcment. On the other hand, people concerned about Cuba being overwhelmed by the giant to the north said they were very glad that the isolation would end, and hopefully some day soon the long-standing embargo against Cuba–the infamous trading with the enemy legislation–would end too. They said Cuba would have to be strong in order not to lose the things the Revolution was fought for–equality, universal and gratis education, free health care, free day-care centres and much more. Watching what will happen in Cuba now will be fascinating.

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