Cuba

What's The Story?
1:19 am
Thu July 10, 2014

The Power Of The Diaz-Balart Name, From Cuba To Miami

Three generations of Diaz-Balarts in political office: from left, grandfather Rafael was a mayor and legislator in Cuba; father Rafael was also in the legislature and an undersecretary of the interior in Cuba; and Lincoln and Mario have both served in the state legislature and U.S. Congress.
Credit Miami Herald, Mario Diaz-Balart, Lincoln Diaz-Balart

 

Take our quiz on South Florida's political families.  

When immigrants leave their country, they usually leave their connections and name recognition behind. But that doesn’t apply to Cubans in South Florida, which is home to almost half of the U.S. Cuban population.

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The Florida Roundup
11:37 am
Fri June 27, 2014

The Florida Roundup: As Cuba Changes, Does U.S. Policy?

A fisherman walks the streets of Mariel. The Cuban government hopes expansion of the port will draw large cargo ships coming through the Panama Canal.
Credit David Gilkey/NPR

Both the U.S. and Cuba have relaxed travel restrictions so family visits are easier and more money is flowing to the island nation, so what’s next?  

NPR Morning Edition host David Greene joins us after spending a week in Cuba, talking with government officials, entrepreneurs, shopkeepers and fishermen.

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Opinion
1:35 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Until Moderate Cuban-Americans Vote, No Poll Will Change U.S. Cuba Policy

A Miami Cuban sports a T-shirt calling for an end to the embargo.
Credit Flickr/futureatlas.com

The Cuba policy hardliners in this country look more panicked than Fidel Castro trying to find his dentures.

Each month seems to bring more evidence that Americans – and Cuban-Americans – reject Washington’s long and failed strategy of isolating the communist island. The latest is this week’s Florida International University poll: A majority of Miami Cubans favor dropping the U.S. trade embargo against Cuba and engaging the country as a way of undermining the Castro dictatorship.

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Latin America
8:52 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Locked Up In Latin America: Why These Controversial Cases Are Hard To Resolve

Andrew Tahmooressi, while still a Marine, with his mother Jill Tahmooressi, who lives in Weston, Fla.
Credit Courtesy Jill Tahmooressi

There’s an old saying among Mexican officials when dealing with the United States: Always tell the gringos yes, but never tell them when.

That dance is the result of two centuries of tortured bilateral relations marked by U.S. insensitivity and Mexican hypersensitivity. And it’s most likely what’s playing out now as Washington and Mexico City haggle over the fate of a former U.S. Marine, Andrew Tahmooressi.

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Opinion
2:38 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Please Don't Call Yoani Sánchez A Hero If You Really Don't Want To Help Her

Yoani Sanchez working in Havana.
Credit Andre Deak / Flickr

It’s hard to tell what’s most striking these days: Yoani Sánchez’s heroism or America’s hypocrisy.

Last week, when communist authorities tried to block Sánchez’s new digital newspaper, 14ymedio, Florida Senator Marco Rubio called her “one of Cuba’s most courageous” dissidents. And rightly so.

But he also called the internationally acclaimed blogger “an aspiring Cuban media entrepreneur.” And that’s where the inconsistency starts.

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Politics
6:54 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Group Of Foreign Policy Experts Call On President To Relax Cuban Embargo

Among the signers of a letter calling on the president to ease restrictions in the Cuban embargo are, clockwise, former intelligence chief John Negroponte, former foreign policy advisor Anne-Marie Slaughter, Related Group CEO Jorge Perez, former ambassador Paul Cejas and former Secretaries of the Interior Bruce Babbit and Ken Salazar.

A group of businessmen and former high-ranking U.S. officials is asking President Obama to relax the embargo on Cuba. They want the President to ease travel and investment restrictions to help Cubans with their economic and social needs.

A letter sent last week by the group had 44 signers including former intelligence chief John Negroponte, former foreign policy advisor Anne-Marie Slaughter, and Jorge Perez, CEO of the Related Group.

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Cuba
11:15 pm
Mon April 28, 2014

#CubaNow Policy Group Highlights Key Generational Shift

One of the #CubaNow ads placed in Washington D.C. metro stations this week.
Credit #CubaNow

This year has seen a growing chorus of polls, studies and statements calling for an overhaul of U.S. policy on communist Cuba. On Monday a new group called #CubaNow added its voice -- and signaled the growing generational shift among Cuban-Americans.

#CubaNow, based in Miami and Washington, D.C., is comprised mostly of younger Cuban-Americans who feel that a half-century of isolating Cuba has failed. They favor more open economic engagement as a way to help democratize the island.

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Latin America Report
10:56 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Was "Cuban Twitter" Dumb Or Defensible? Or Both?

A Cuban state television camera at the Plaza de la Revolucion in Havana.
Credit cubadebate

Confession: When I criticized ZunZuneo as the story emerged earlier this month, I left something important unsaid.

I support its basic intent. That is, the effort to help Cubans or anyone else access news, information and opinions that authoritarian governments around the world try to block.

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Links
5:49 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

What Everyone Is Reading April 6-12

Credit Rick Stone

In honor of creative writing, and because it's still National Poetry Month, here's a whimsical headline combining all the stories from this past week's top-five:

"Cuban tabloid tweets Charlie Crist will be writing a poem about the possible end of greyhound racing in Florida."

Luckily, that's a piece of fiction.

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The Florida Roundup
11:53 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Deadline To Sign Up For Obamacare Passes: Now What?

Marie Rachelle Dominique, 47, asks counselor Bernard Guiteau at the Borinquen Medical Center in Miami about signing up for health insurance.
Credit WALTER MICHOT / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

 

 

The sign-up is over: now the coverage.

The deadline to get health insurance under the Affordable Care Act passes with hundreds of thousands of Floridians signing up. Who’s covered? Who isn’t? And at what price?

Those are some of the questions we're asking this week on The Florida Roundup. Also on our radar: 

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Opinion
11:50 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Cuba Clueless: Covert Twitter Scheme Tweets U.S. Policy Failure

Cuban woman walk by wall graffiti in Havana.
Credit Flickr

If you needed any reminding of how archaic and clueless U.S. policy on Cuba can be – and the extent to which it so often actually aids an oppressive communist dictatorship – look no further than Thursday’s excellent Associated Press article about the “Cuban Twitter” fiasco.

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Commentary
10:54 am
Fri March 28, 2014

Castro Opens Cuba's Capitalist Door Another Notch – Should Washington Walk Through?

Cuban leader Raul Castro with leaders of the ruling communist party.
Credit Flickr

It may or not be a coincidence that Cuban leader Raúl Castro disclosed his new foreign investment law this week just as Venezuela was getting another big thumbs-down from the financial world.

Cuba’s threadbare communist economy depends on kindred benefactors like socialist Venezuela. But as that oil-rich country’s own economy continues to implode – the Fitch Ratings company downgraded Venezuelan credit to “Outlook Negative” on Tuesday – Castro has no choice but to open his island’s rusted doors more broadly to capital, capitalism and capitalists.

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Arts
6:38 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

Key West Reconnects With Its Cuban Roots Via Art Exchange

Credit Christine Armario / AP

Sandra Ramos has never wanted to emigrate from Cuba, but in her more than four decades on the island, she has seen many people leave.

Their absence resonates throughout her work. The image of her as a 10-year-old is plastered behind a wall of palm trees, trapped on the island. In another piece, her school girl's body lies across a gaping space in the middle of a bridge, trying to connect two separate lands.

"It's a perspective on immigration from those who stay," Ramos said.

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Sunshine Economy
8:58 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Bittersweet: The Sugar Industry In South Florida

Rick Roth, President of Roth Farms, stands among his sugarcane in Palm Beach County.
Credit Tom Hudson

Talking about sugar in South Florida is like talking about politics and religion in polite company. Few people are without strong opinions about the sugarcane farms stretching across the eastern Everglades south of Lake Okeechobee. The industry is a mix of government price policies, environmental regulations, trade practices and the demand for food.  

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Latin America Report
3:15 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

Crist And Cuba: Is Florida Ready For An Embargo Reversal?

Charlie Crist (left) announces his anti-embargo stance to Bill Maher.
Credit Real Time With Bill Maher / HBO

What does Charlie know that we don’t know?

Charlie Crist, Florida’s ex-Republican governor and now its leading Democratic gubernatorial candidate, assumed a real political risk this month: He called on Washington to lift the 52-year-old U.S. trade embargo against communist Cuba.

In an interview with WLRN, Crist insisted his changed stance is a matter of common sense.

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