Author Archives: López-Levy Arturo

WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES OF TAKING CUBA OFF THE STATE SPONSORS OF TERRORISM LIST?

The Huffington Post,  April 27, 2015

Arturo Lopez Levy

Original here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arturo-lopez-levy/what-are-the-consequences_1_b_7144090.html

The April 14th decision to remove Cuba off the State Department’s State Sponsors of Terrorism list is the most important, concrete step towards normalization of diplomatic relations with Havana taken by the U.S. government since the Carter Administration. It has both tangible and intangible implications of historical importance to Cuba’s relations with the U.S and its triangular relations with other major international actors.

First, if Cuba is not a terrorist threat, it is difficult to say that it is a threat to the U.S. at all given the asymmetry of power between the two states, and Cuba’s renunciation of nuclear weapons by signing and ratifying the Tlatelolco and nuclear non-proliferation treaties in the late 90s.

Second, it clarifies Cuba in America’s official narrative not as a security threat but a country in transition, which is more in line both with Cuba’s own self-image and how Latin American and European countries see it. Such a description undermines any rationality for the embargo and lends itself to a U.S. policy that emphasizes engagement and people to people contacts.

Third, it enables Obama to stop applying the Trading With the Enemy Act of 1917 to Cuba, the law on which much of the executive branch’s sanctions regime, including limits on American citizens’ right to travel, is based. If next September the president decides not to renew his authority to impose sanctions to Cuba under this law, citizens could challenge in court the prohibition to travel and succeed.

Fourth, it reduces Cuban state’s liability for individual claims in U.S. courts for acts that occurred under Cuba’s jurisdiction; cases that have already cost the island’s frozen accounts in U.S. banks millions of dollars. Taking Cuba off the list of terrorist nations would help an eventual settlement of claims between Cuba and USA, as part of a normalization process.

Fifth, so long as Cuba was falsely designated on the terror list, it would not have agreed to opening embassies. Now the road to embassies in both capitals is open. Similarly, Cuba off the list lessens the regulatory risks and enforcement threats used by the U.S. government to pressure banks not to deal with Cuba, giving the nation greater latitude in gaining finance and benefitting from two-way trade.

Sixth, it encourages other countries to foster closer ties with Cuba, as it eliminates the drama involved in having commercial relations with a country designated a sponsor of terrorism by Washington. This will be especially meaningful for the European Union, which is also reviewing its policy towards Cuba, which has always resisted the extraterritoriality of U.S. sanctions on its companies.

Seven: taking Cuba off the list means countries can take the State Department list, a U.S. national security tool, more seriously. Cuba’s inclusion on the list was seen on the island as an insulting lie. Removing this unnecessary barb, that has prevented bilateral relations, will build confidence for more flexible Cuban nationalist positions. The gratuitous inclusion on the list has harmed U.S. soft power, in many sectors of Cuban and Latin American civil society. In Cuba, ending such charade became a nationalist cause. One statement that most hurt Yoani Sánchez, opposition blogger, was her insistence on keeping Cuba on the list of terrorist countries because according to her: “The Castros have not put their guns away.”

Another important element is the effect that taking Cuba off the list will have on American and Latin American perceptions of the power held by pro-embargo Cuban Americans. The legal procedure for removing Cuba from the list dubs them the losers from the start. The president simply gives Congress 45 days advance notice of his intention to remove Cuba from the list of countries that sponsor terrorism. Obama requires the advice of Congress, not its consent.  The president knows how to count and he realized the pro-embargo legislators don’t have the votes to pass a bill or a joint resolution immune from a presidential veto.

In conclusion, President Obama prevails. Legislators can comment, write letters to the president and reflect on Obama’s decision. Thus, opponents such as Senators Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Robert Menendez are stuck in the role of the chorus in Greek tragedies: shouting, screaming and crying but not playing a substantial role. Cuba will be off the State Department list of States Sponsors of terrorism. A major roadblock to the rapprochement track between Cuba and the United States has been removed

 

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CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS, ASCE 2014

The papers presented at the 2014 Conference of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy are now available.

Cuba in Transition: Volume 24: Papers and Proceedings of the Twenty-Fourth Annual Meeting.

The papers listed below are hypewr-linked to directly to their respective file on the ASCE web site.

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U.S.-CUBA RELATIONS: ENTERING A TESTING PERIOD

Arturo Lopez Levy, University of Denver

 Huffington Post, January 19, 2015

Original here: TESTING PERIOD

In August 2010, Cuban Roman Catholic Cardinal Jaime Ortega went to Washington and shared with many a message he heard directly from Raul Castro:

He repeated to me on several occasions that he is ready to talk to the United States government directly, about every issue.”

This message was music to the ears of many U.S. foreign-policy officials and politicians who were convinced the time had come to bring American relations with Cuba into the post-Cold War 21st century. It took more than four years for the promise of Ortega’s message to be fulfilled.

Last December 16, Raul Castro and Barack Obama had a direct phone call to discuss the general situation of the relations between Cuba and the United States. The two presidents agreed to a spy-swap accompanied by some Cuban humanitarian gestures to release USAID subcontractor Alan Gross and 53 prisoners confined for different reasons in Cuban jails. Most importantly, they also agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations between the two countries. President Obama asked Secretary Kerry to conduct a non-ideological assessment likely to lead to Cuba’s removal from the State Department list of Terrorism Sponsoring Nations. President Obama negotiated with Cuba “chivalrously, not like a shyster” as Henry Kissinger recommended to his diplomats in 1975.

President Obama’s December 17 discourse undermined the basis of the embargo policy. Obama introduced a new American official narrative about Cuba. He discussed Cuba’s situation not as a threat to U.S. national security but as a country in a transition the United States should support. President Obama also acknowledged that “It does not serve America’s interests, or the Cuban people, to try to push Cuba toward collapse.” He discussed several initiatives to help Cuba’s growing non-state economic sectors and wide-range civil-society groups, not only those in the political opposition.

This is a significant departure from the course U.S. policy has followed for almost six decades, but actions must now be undertaken by both countries to make these changes durable and real.

A strategic and realistic view of U.S-Cuba engagement

Cuba and the United States need to develop a strategic view of the process their presidents launched on December 17, 2014. A crucial issue, perhaps the crucial issue, is how to neutralize those opposed to the dismantlement of the hostility structures at both sides of the Strait of Florida. There are powerful spoilers in key positions such as Senator Marco Rubio, who will now chair the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee for Western Hemisphere Affairs. Rubio and anti-normalization of relations groups in Miami and Havana are already trying to trigger a crisis to roll back the rapprochement and return to the old patterns of hostility and isolation.

The Obama Administration should not restrain itself from partnering with Cuba to make the agreement stick. Cuban officials have historic reasons to suspect about American intention and see plots everywhere. Good communications from Washington clarifying when plots have nothing to do with the Administration can help to diminish spoilers’ political influence. One big issue to watch is the democracy-promotion program. Washington should not apologize for defending its democratic values but the Secretary of State can provide responsible guidelines to shape these programs into less intrusive practices that are more in line with international law.

On the other side, Cuba has a complex track record of managing thorny provocations by anti-normalization Miami groups. The shooting down of the Brothers to the Rescue planes in 1996 demonstrated the Cuban military’s lack of understanding about the U.S. political debate in that electoral year. Bill Clinton wrote in his memoirs: “I later received word from Castro — indirectly of course — that the shoot down was a mistake. Apparently he had issued earlier orders to fire on any aircraft that violated Cuban airspace and had failed to withdraw them when the Cubans knew the Brothers to the Rescue were coming.”

Cuba needs to be pro-active rather than reactive, not only toward the United States actors but also empowering independent civil-society groups. A vibrant autonomous community, separated from U.S. regime-change policy but independent from the Cuban Communist Party (CCP), would be the best alternative to the pro-embargo small opposition groups who count on a Cuban government’s repressive response to their provocations for derailing the process.

It is important to translate into the two societies’ gains, the opening steps taken by their governments. People-to-people exchanges are the most resilient bond connecting two countries. Economic interdependence, educational programs, travel, religious communities’ contacts, and family ties are building blocks of a durable relationship. Whether American and Cuban policymakers can make the December 17 changes irreversible will depend on how their regulations motivate and empower pressures from different U.S. constituencies to liberalize cross-Strait relations.

The best way to reinforce Obama’s discourse about a Cuba in transition is to advance, as much as it is safely possible, toward a more efficient market-based mixed economy and establish economic ties and trade with the U.S. private sector. One important new development is Obama’s announcement of a license to export U.S. agricultural machinery for Cuba’s private sector. The Cuban government should prepare legislation and infrastructure to eliminate red tape and unnecessary regulations of the private sector’s importation of agricultural machinery.

A stable move to a pluralist and open political society is also in line with Cuba’s national interests and international human-rights standards. Cuba’s internal political discussion is today more open than ever since 1961, except on the issue of the one-party system. There is a widely spread civil society of intellectuals, religious communities and second-culture publications, think tanks, and rights advocates interested in responsibly expanding the representation and competitiveness of the political system without opening the door to embargo advocates.

Decentralization — planned by the CCP since 2011 — can be a major democratization step by transferring power from the center to the municipalities and provinces.

There are a few strongly symbolic steps Cuba can take in its foreign policy. Havana could establish diplomatic relations with Israel and South Korea, helping to have a more balanced Latin American attitude toward these two American allies located in key strategic regions. Cuba can also use the Summit of the Americas to join at least some parts of the Inter-American system, such as the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism and the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission. These steps are not an abandonment of any nationalist principle but could demonstrate that Cuba is — to use Kissinger’s words about Iran — “more a country than a revolutionary cause.” A nationalist Cuba, focused on economic development, is not incompatible with a U.S.-led world order.

The time between now and the Summit of the Americas in April 2015 is a critical juncture for rapprochement chances. The immoral, illegal and counterproductive U.S. embargo remains in place, harming Cuba’s chances for economic reform and political liberalization. No one expects that Cuba would become a model democracy overnight. The Cuban Communist Party is not committed yet to the universal human rights as they are written in international conventions. But a Rubicon was crossed by the two presidents in December 17, 2014. U.S.-Cuba relations are still far from optimal, but they have never had a more promising framework since President Carter departed from the White House in 1981.

This post is part of a Huffington Post blog series called “90 Miles: Rethinking the Future of U.S.-Cuba Relations.” The series puts the spotlight on the emerging relations between two long-standing Western Hemisphere foes and will feature pre-eminent thought leaders from the public and private sectors, academia, the NGO community, and prominent observers from both countries. Read all the other posts in the series here.

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A New Day Dawns at the US Interest Section Embassy in Havana

Cuban_interest_section_dcAnd at the Cuban Interest Section  Embassy in Washington

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Lopez-Levy and Piccone: UNITED STATES, CUBA and EBOLA

Fighting Ebola: A new case for U.S. engagement with Cuba

Original Article: http://tbo.com/list/news-opinion-commentary/fighting-ebola-a-new-case-for-us-engagement-with-cuba-20141028/

BY ARTURO LOPEZ-LEVY
Special To The Tampa Tribune; October 28, 2014

The simple fact that Cuba and the United States are in the same boat fighting the Ebola epidemics in Western Africa demonstrates how the level of conflict between the two countries is irrational. While Havana and Washington have considerable differences — and no parallel efforts against a common enemy as Ebola can bridge them — it is evident that narratives of suspicion and intransigence prevent such joint efforts for the benefit of both countries and the world in general.

But, words matter. The recent statements by John Kerry and Samantha Power praising what Cuba is doing to fight Ebola in Africa on behalf of the U.S. State Department — as well as the declarations by Fidel and Raul Castro that Cuba would welcome collaborative efforts on Ebola with the United States — show that a revision of the bilateral relations is long overdue.

President Obama now needs to apply the dictum of his former chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, and not waste the opportunity presented by the Ebola crisis. Cuba and the United States should advance long-term cooperation in international health efforts under the auspices of the WHO.

Political leadership in the White House and the Palace of Revolution would transform a fight against a common threat into joint cooperation for the advancement of human rights (the right to health is a human right) all over the developing world and the national interests of the two neighbors.

Political conditions are ripe for such turn. Americans strongly support aggressive actions against Ebola and would applaud a president who put lives and medical cooperation with Cuba above ideology and resentment.

As more information comes out about Cuba’s international health effort, it is becoming clearer how unreasonable it is to assume that all Cuban presence in the developing world is damaging to U.S. national interests. The more than 40 000 Cuban doctors and health personnel working in 80 countries are playing a key role to improve human development and protect the world from the spread of Ebola and other contagious diseases.

During the Bush administration and even under Obama, the United States spent lavishly to support groups in Miami that focus on undermining Cuba’s international health presence in Africa and Latin America.

The U.S Cuban Medical Professional Parole Immigration Program (CMPP) is reminiscent of the Cold War. The program encourages Cuban doctors to abandon their contracts in third countries and immigrate to the United States.

Washington’s ideology-driven hostility toward Cuba’s international health efforts has further divided the United States from other democratic countries. The trouble for Miami die-hard Cold Warriors is that examples of how Cuba shares the burden and merits of international health efforts with U.S. allies are expanding. Cuba is cooperating with several institutions of the European Union, Brazil, Canada and Norway in projects of medical education on the island, and in Haiti and other countries. The programs might even grow as result of the current negotiation in Brussels between the EU and Cuba for a comprehensive agreement on cooperation and political dialogue.

The good news is that two former U.S. presidents, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, have talked positively about Cuba’s health achievements and international programs. President Carter and former first lady Rosalyn even visited Cuba’s Latin American School of Medicine in 2002. In a meeting with then Cuban minister of health Carlos Dotres, Mrs. Carter mentioned that their presidential center’s Global Health program would like to collaborate with Cuba’s international medical educational assistance. There is no moral, political or national security explanation for why such humanitarian endeavors are not happening already.

As a senator and presidential candidate, Obama was one of the loudest critics of looking at Cuba through the glasses of the Cold War. As a president, it isn’t enough for him just to retune the same policy of embargo implemented by his predecessors. He must adjust the official U.S. narrative about post-Fidel Cuba: It is not a threat to the United States but a country in transition to a mixed economy, and a positive force for global health.

Arturo Lopez-Levy is a visiting lecturer at Mills College in California and a PhD candidate at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver.

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Ebola Could Bring U.S. and Cuba Together

By: Ted Piccone, Brookings Institution

On October 28, the United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly for the 23rd year in a row to condemn the United States’ tough embargo on Cuba as a unilateral interference in free trade. Coincidentally, the UN system is tackling the devastating spread of the Ebola virus in West Africa and urging states to contribute medical and financial resources to stem the outbreak.

Ironically, Cuba and the United States have led the world in responding to the call for help, rushing hundreds of medical workers, military personnel, equipment, and other resources to Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea to treat Ebola’s victims and prevent the epidemic from spreading. Could this be the moment for both countries to set aside their differences and join forces for the greater good?

The answer is a qualified yes. The onerous U.S. embargo poses no obstacles to such cooperation, and in any event, bilateral assistance for humanitarian reasons, including food and medicine, is a well-established exception to the rule. So there is no legal reason why U.S. personnel could not work alongside Cuban doctors and nurses in a third country to provide humanitarian aid to the stricken.

Moreover, there are precedents for this kind of cooperation. In 2010, in response to the devastating earthquake in Haiti, American and Cuban personnel worked together to provide emergency care, including the provision of U.S. medical supplies to field hospitals staffed by Cuban doctors.

Cooperation was so positively received that the two sides launched high-level discussions about a joint project to build a new hospital in rural Haiti to be staffed in part by Cuban medical personnel.

Yet, as in so many other instances, cooperation between Havana and Washington broke down. This time, the dispute concerned a Bush-era program allowing Cuban doctors and other health personnel easy immigration into the United States. Cuba insisted that the program be dropped.

Already, nearly 1,600 Cuban health workers have taken advantage of the enticement, which undermines Cuba’s well-regarded health-care system, a pride of the revolution.

Proponents of the expedited visa program, on the other hand, argue that these medical workers are forced to work for Cuba’s public health service under the island’s restrictive labor laws. Given their specialized medical training, they also have a much harder time than other Cubans gaining permission to leave the island, even under the more relaxed travel policies that Cuba adopted in 2012.

U.S. President Barack Obama has a unique opportunity to show the world that the United States can rise above old hostilities for the sake of saving lives. He can immediately use his executive authority to suspend the discretionary parole program for any Cuban medical worker who is deployed to West Africa in response to the Ebola outbreak, and thereby stem Cuba’s professional brain drain.

Cuba has sent more than 50,000 medical personnel to 66 countries (more than those deployed by the G7 combined), and is now the biggest single provider of health-care workers to the Ebola crisis in West Africa. For their part, the Cubans could address concerns about the nature of their highly touted medical missionary work by giving participants in their medical brigades the option of serving abroad as volunteers, not conscripts, at no cost to their careers if they say no, and with higher pay if they say yes.

The timing for such a move is ripe. Since Obama eased the embargo in his first term by allowing more Cuban Americans to visit and send remittances to their relatives, and facilitating other categories of travel to the island, people on both sides of the Florida Straits are reconnecting in myriad ways, slowly rebuilding the bridge that has long divided the two countries.

Both sides have begun cooperating in modest but pragmatic ways, in such areas as counter-narcotics, aviation security, marine environmental affairs, and migration. This would be one additional step on the path toward the reconciliation that a majority of Americans, including Cuban Americans in Florida, want and deserve.

The next steps, however, will be even more important. After the November elections, President Obama should signal his willingness to improve relations with Cuba by ending more travel and remittances restrictions, expanding support to Cuba’s emerging private sector, and engaging in high-level talks to remove Cuba from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism.

Action on key cases involving citizens held in prison in both countries should be on the agenda as well, but not as a precondition for talks. And, assuming cooperation in West Africa goes well, President Obama should broaden the scope and timeline of the suspension of the medical parole program.

Now is the time to take these steps, before President Obama travels to the Summit of the Americas in Panama in April. There, he and Cuban President Raúl Castro should finally talk face-to-face, without preconditions, and set a path toward reconciliation through dialogue. It would be a great legacy for both presidents as they depart office in just a few years.

This piece was originally published by The Mark.

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EL DERECHO A VIAJAR A CUBA

Arturo López Levy

Cuando los funcionarios electos establecen diferentes normas para sí mientras limitan los derechos constitucionales del resto de los estadounidenses, la credibilidad del sistema político sufre y el capital de las instituciones democráticas se erosiona.

El caso del viaje a China de los asistentes del senador Marco Rubio y la congresista Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, patrocinado por el Estado-partido comunista, es un ejemplo doloroso. Durante décadas, los legisladores cubanoamericanos se han opuesto a los viajes a Cuba y amonestado ferozmente a cualquier colega o sus asistentes que lo ha hecho buscando información o para dialogar con el gobierno. Rubio y Ros-Lehtinen han hecho del tema de no viajar a países comunistas una prueba de integridad política y de fidelidad a los derechos humanos. Rubio ha dicho en el Senado que cada dólar que se gasta en un viaje a un país comunista financia directamente la represión. Cada dólar, excepto los gastados por sus asistentes en la Gran Muralla y Tiananmen mientras escuchaban los méritos del presidente Mao.

Cuando la hipocresía es expuesta, el liderazgo político es más necesario. Es el momento en que los líderes y la opinión pública deben tomar partido y dejar en claro cuáles son sus principios. La integridad marca la principal diferencia entre los que creen que los viajeros estadounidenses son –como Hillary Clinton lo expresa– “anuncios andantes” a favor de una sociedad abierta, en Cuba y en China; de quienes viajan a Pekín, mientras predican sus políticas anti-Castro restringiendo el derecho de los estadounidenses a viajar.

La Casa Blanca debería actuar con liderazgo. Cada vez que el senador Rubio y la congresista Ros-Lehtinen cuestionan ferozmente la moral de las decisiones de Obama para expandir los viajes pueblo-a-pueblo, la administración Obama reacciona tímidamente o no reacciona. Los funcionarios de Obama parecen olvidar el propio discurso del presidente sobre la importancia de comunicarse con la sociedad civil cubana y la actualización de una política concebida “desde antes que él naciera”.

Muchos cubanoamericanos que votaron dos veces por Obama están decepcionados porque el presidente da demasiado a los políticos pro-embargo y escucha muy poco a los que defienden sus promesas de diálogo y la comunicación con Cuba. Después de la reelección en 2012, ganando una mayoría cubanoamericana, la secretaria de Estado Hillary Clinton aconsejó al presidente Obama: “echar otro vistazo al embargo. No está logrando sus objetivos, y frena nuestra agenda más amplia en América Latina”. ¿Por qué no lo hace?

Después de la reforma migratoria cubana bajo Raúl Castro, es más fácil para un cubano, que vive bajo un gobierno comunista, viajar a Estados Unidos que para un ciudadano estadounidense, que vive en democracia, viajar a Cuba. Esta es una grave contradicción que pone a los que abogan por una Cuba democrática, con buenas relaciones con Estados Unidos, en seria desventaja política. El presidente Obama hizo lo correcto en 2011 cuando autorizó las licencias para viajes religiosos, educativos, humanitarios y de algunos otros propósitos no turísticos para viajar a Cuba. Pero, ¿por qué no elimina los procedimientos burocráticos engorrosos para esos viajes regulados y adopta una licencia general para cualquier viaje con propósito no turístico?

La inacción de la administración Obama ante el actual proceso de reformas en Cuba divide aún más a Washington de otros países democráticos. Europa está negociando un acuerdo amplio de cooperación económica y diálogo político con Cuba. En Cartagena, Colombia, en el 2012 durante la Cumbre de las Américas, América Latina habló con voz clara: todos los países del hemisferio, excepto Canadá y Estados Unidos, reafirmaron su deseo de incorporar a Cuba en la próxima Cumbre prevista en Panamá en la primavera de 2015.

La ansiedad de los aliados de Estados Unidos en América Latina crece cada día que la Cumbre de las Américas de 2015 se acerca. Brasil y un importante número de estados latinoamericanos y caribeños han declarado su intención de boicotear la Cumbre de 2015, si no es invitada Cuba. La invitación a Cuba no se trata tanto de tener a Raúl Castro en la foto de los presidentes, sino transmitir una desaprobación general a la política de aislamiento contra la isla, ayudando a la Casa Blanca a removerla.

Washington debe eliminar las incoherencias flagrantes entre los valores que predica y las prácticas de sus políticos. Todos los estadounidenses deberían gozar de igualdad ante la ley en el ejercicio de su derecho constitucional a viajar. El senador Rubio y la congresista Ros-Lehtinen no deben pontificar contra los viajes a Cuba después de que sus empleados visitaron Pekín y la Gran Muralla de la mano del partido-estado chino. Sus electores cubanoamericanos están desmintiendo sus posturas al ritmo de casi 400,000 visitas a Cuba cada año. No es coherente con la forma de vida estadounidense que un grupo disfrute de un derecho que sus representantes niegan al resto de la población.

Este incidente desastroso podría dar un giro para bien si el presidente Obama defendiese la libertad de viajar como un derecho humano. Algunos dirán que la Casa Blanca no puede desafiar el Congreso mediante políticas que atentan contra la ley Helms Burton. Pero si Estados Unidos quiere que otros países se unan a los esfuerzos para promover los derechos humanos y la apertura política en la Isla, debe dar el ejemplo practicando la libertad que predica. La libertad de viaje como un derecho humano es fundamental tanto en la política de Estados Unidos hacia Cuba como hacia China.

Arturo-Lopez-Levy-11 Arturo López Levy,  Escuela Josef Korbel de Estudios Internacionales de la Universidad de Denver.

 

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Cuba: hacia un redimensionamiento de los derechos humanos

Una discusion sobre derechos humanos en Cuba era publicada en Espacio Laical. La publicacion completa esta aqui: Derechos Humanos Dossier, Espacio Laical, December 2013

La temática de los derechos humanos ha sido una constante que ha marcado, durante muchos años, los debates sobre Cuba. La construcción de versiones particulares sobre el tema, desde diferentes puntos del espectro político-ideológico nacional, nos muestra la existencia de una gran contraposición de opiniones. Se trata de un tema crucial que, más temprano que tarde, cobrará mayor fuerza en los procesos de transformación que vive el país. Por este motivo nuestra revista ha convocado a un grupo de expertos para debatir sobre este asunto trascendental. Participan en el dossier el jurista Roberto Veiga, editor de la revista Espacio Laical; el politólogo Rafael Hernández, director de la revista Temas; el jurista Julio César Guanche, ensayista y pensador cubano; monseñor Carlos Manuel de Céspedes,vicario de la Arquidiócesis de La Habana, pensador y ensayista; y el politólogo Arturo López-Levy, académico y activista cubano radicado en Estados Unidos.

Las Preguntas:

1-¿Puede hacer una reseña sobre los imaginarios históricos de nuestra nación acerca del tema de los derechos de la persona?

2-En las últimas décadas, ¿cuáles concepciones han conseguido en nuestro país una mayor elaboración y difusión? ¿Alguna noción ha prevalecido?

3-¿Cuánto han avanzado en materia de derechos las generaciones que hoy comparten el país?

4-¿Cuánto nos queda por avanzar? ¿Cuáles podrían ser los mejores mecanismos para lograrlo?

 New Picture (9)

 Roberto Veiga, Rafael Hernández, Julio César Guanche, Monseñor Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, y Arturo López-Levy

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NUEVA EDICIÓN DE LA REVISTA ESPACIO LAICAL

The July-September 2011 edition of La Revista Espacio Laical has just been published.  Its primary focus is on an evaluation of the results of the VI Congress of the Communist party of Cuba.Included also is an interview with Phil Peters, author of the Blog The Cuban Triangle and Carlos Saladrigas.Unfortunately it is available only in Spanish.

Here is a full Table of Contents together with Abstracts of some of the Economics Essays with hyper-links.

Table of Contents:

Índice General
Secciones y artículos:

EDITORIAL : El reto de ser audaces  – Del Magisterio.

RELIGIÓN
– Contemplarán al que traspasaron.  Por Sandro Magister

– La contemplación de la belleza.  Por Joseph Ratzinger

PÁGINAS RESCATADASA cargo de Jorge Domingo Cuadriello
– El patriotismo cubano. Por Eliseo Giberga

EL DOSSIER: Post VI Congreso PCC
– El VI Congreso del Partido y los Lineamientos: ¿un punto de vi raje para Cuba?  Por Archibald Ritter
– El VI Congreso: una evaluación preliminar.  Por Armando Chaguaceda.
– Cuba: ¿qué cambia tras el VI Congreso del Partido Comunista?  Por Carmelo Mesa-Lago.
– Cambios en marcha y consensos por lograr.  Por José Ramón Vidal
– Tratando de reinventar el socialismo. (Entrevista a Ricardo Alarcón). Por Manuel Alberto Ramy
– Reformas económic as y desarrollo en el Este de Asia: ¿una experiencia para Cuba? Por Arturo López-Levy

INTERNACIONALES

– La apuesta egipcia. Entrevista a Antonios Naguip. Por Gianni Valente
– Mi vida para la libertad de Chile. Entrevista a Sergio Bitar. Por Roberto Veiga González

BÚSQUEDA:

– Cuba y su diáspora: el desafío de facilitar un reencuentro.  Por Carlos Saladrigas

– Poder  e ineptitud en el exilio de Miami. Por Alejandro Armengol

CUBA
– Vivir como vecinos. Entrevista a Philip Peters. Por Roberto Veiga González

– Aportando para el diálogo y el consenso.  Entrevista a Roberto Veiga González.  Por Armando Chaguaceda

TEMA POLÉMICO

– Saladrigas, Arboleya y el debate sobre el futuro de Cuba.  Por Lenier González Mederos

CULTURA

– Re-señas de libros. Por Jorge Domingo Cuadriello

– Elogio y digresión.  Por David Mateo

– Aspera ad Astra o el itinerario espiritual de un líder político. Por Habey Hechavarría Prado

– José María Chacón y Calvo. Por Malena Balboa Pereira

– Cambiar o no cambiar: ¿es ese el dilema? Por Francisco Almagro Domínguez

– Harold Bloom y yo. Por Roberto González Echeverría

ESPIRITUALIDAD

– En busca de una transformación relevante. Por Raúl Fornet-Betancourt

DE LAS ENTRAÑAS DE LA ISLA

– Cuba en su diversidad cultural. Por Jesús Guanche

EN DIÁLOGO

– El lugar de la ciudadanía. Participación política  y República en Cuba.  Por Julio César Guanche

LA POLÉMICA

– Las propuestas de Carlos Saladrigas para Cuba. Por Jesús Arboleya Cervera

– Comentarios sobre la entrevista a Saladrigas y las opiniones de Arboleya. Por Ramón de la Cruz Ochoa

– Saladrigas y el debate con Ramón de la Cruz. Por Jesús Arboleya Cervera

– Soberanía nacional, emigrados e inversionistas Por Arturo López-Levy

Abstracts

El VI Congreso del Partido y los Lineamientos: ¿un punto de viraje para Cuba? Por Archibald Ritter

El VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba (PCC) probablemente será de gran importancia para el futuro de Cuba. La revisión que el Congreso hizo de los Lineamientos de la Política Económica y Social del Partido y la Revolución significa que ahora es políticamente correcto apoyar, promover e implementar esta ambiciosa agenda de reformas. Por deducción, es también políticamente correcto llegar a la conclusión de que medio siglo de experimentación económica estuvo en su mayor parte equivocada, y fue contraproducente e insostenible. A pesar de los intentos de crear una impresión de continuidad histórica con la referencia a una “actualización” del modelo económico, los viejos enfoques de gestión económica han quedado profundamente desacreditados. El Congreso ha certificado el clima creado por los cambios de opinión acerca de cómo puede funcionar mejor la economía cubana. Ahora parece que es altamente improbable un regreso a los viejos modos de operar.
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El VI Congreso: una evaluación preliminar. Por Armando Chaguaceda
Pocos eventos han generado tantas esperanzas, frustraciones y debates como el pasado VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba. La postergación del mismo por 14 años y el trasfondo político del país (continuación de la crisis estructural del modelo socialista de Estado, inicio de reformas económicas e institucionales, relevo de liderazgo) fueron caldo de cultivo para las más variadas especulaciones. Por ello, al cierre inmediato de sus cortinas, diferentes analistas compartieron sus plurales evaluaciones del foro, tributando al necesario balance de sus resultados en cuyo seno se inserta el presente texto. (leer más…)


Cuba: ¿qué cambia tras el VI Congreso del Partido Comunista? Por Carmelo Mesa-Lago
En abril de 2011 se realizó el VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba (pcc), después de 14 años sin celebrar ese tipo de reuniones. El Congreso estuvo marcado por las ambiciosas reformas que Raúl Castro se propuso como meta tras reemplazar a su hermano Fidel Castro en 2006. No obstante, las contradicciones, las indecisiones, las inercias y las resistencias del aparato burocrático siembran dudas acerca de la eficacia de los cambios aprobados por el Congreso para sacar al país de la profunda crisis económica que enfrenta y recuperar unas fuerzas agotadas. (leer más…)


Cambios en marcha y consensos por lograr. Por José Ramón Vidal
Las sesiones del VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba, celebradas en abril último, cerraron una etapa de formulación y consulta de propuestas dirigidas a producir transformaciones en el modelo económico y social, que como es lógico suponer tienen y tendrán en lo adelante inevitables repercusiones en la esfera política. (leer más…)


Tratando de reinventar el socialismo. (Entrevista a Ricardo Alarcón). Por Manuel Alberto Ramy
Hace apenas 48 horas concluyó el VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba, un congreso que, según lo que he leído y escuchado, prefigura un país cualitativamente distinto y una sociedad diferente. El presidente de la Asamblea Nacional y miembro del Buró Político del Partido Comunista, Ricardo Alarcón, me ha concedido esta entrevista. Sé que dispone de poco tiempo así que me gustaría hacerle tres preguntas muy concretas. La primera está referida al ámbito del Poder Popular.(leer más…)


– Reformas económicas y desarrollo en el Este de Asia: ¿una experiencia para Cuba? Por Arturo López-Levy
Al discutir los cambios planteados en los Lineamientos económicos y sociales del VI Congreso del Partido Comunista de Cuba, muchos observadores han evocado las reformas en el Este de Asia, particularmente los procesos ocurridos en China y Vietnam. El contexto cultural, económico y social cubano es diferente al de estas naciones; sin embargo, conviene plantearse si hay lecciones de aquellas experiencias que Cuba pueden adaptar. (leer más…)


 

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