To the Editor:

Re “The Moment to Restore Ties to Cuba” (editorial, Oct. 12) and “Still Pondering U.S.-Cuba Relations, Fidel Castro Responds” (Editorial Observer, by Ernesto Londoño, Oct. 15):

Latin America and the Caribbean require a closer involvement of the United States, and Cuba has been an obstacle in recent years, when the leaders of the region promote its inclusion in their organizations and meetings, such as the Summit of the Americas to be held in Panama in 2015.

President Obama must be there to express the ideals of democracy and human rights, contribute to solving the most urgent problems and strengthen ties with neighbors. Russia, China and others are advancing in Latin America, seeking to displace the United States.

Since the Obama administration started the people-to-people policy in 2009, encouraging exchanges between Americans and Cubans, a lot has changed. Remittances from relatives and friends help thousands of Cubans to survive and even open small businesses.

More important, Cubans are feeling empowered by exchanges of views with Cuban-Americans coming to visit and Americans on cultural, academic, scientific, religious, sport and trade trips. Cubans who travel to the United States discover the opportunities offered by democracy and work.

Further steps by President Obama would help the Cuban people, civil society and dissidents. It is not just a matter of discussing whether to have an embargo, although the embargo must be lifted, but of making the appropriate decisions at the right time. The moment is ripe.

Fidel Castro, in citing the New York Times editorial, is delighted to be back in the headlines and wants the credit in case of a turn in Cuban-American relations.

Havana, Oct. 16, 2014

The writer, an independent journalist, was a co-founder of Ladies in White, an opposition group.

Recent Articles

Date Title
10/30/14 U.S. attends Ebola meeting in Cuba called by leftist bloc
10/30/14 In Cuba, a new church, a ray of hope
Alan Gomez, USA Today
10/29/14 Cuba tries to drive up fertility amid baby slump
AP, The Washington Post
10/29/14 Cuba's Roofs, Small Spaces of Freedom
Yoani Sanchez, The Huffington Post
10/29/14 Another exodus of Cubans in the making
Fabiola Santiago, The Miami Herald
10/27/14 The Shifting Politics of Cuba Policy
Editorial Opinion, The New York Times
10/22/14 Lech Walesa Meets Cuban Democracy Activists in Warsaw
Yoani Sanchez, The Huffington Post
10/21/14 Current Record
10/21/14 Cuba should not be rewarded for denying freedom to its people
Editorial, The Washington Post
10/20/14 Calling time on America's blockade of Cuba
Will Grant, BBC
10/20/14 Cuba’s Impressive Role on Ebola
Editorial, The New York Times
10/17/14 How Business Can Change Cuba
Tim Padgett, Businessweek
10/16/14 Rare Independent Group Aims to Open Debate in Cuba
Michael Weissenstein, AP
10/16/14 Cuba to introduce modern, more secure ID cards
10/15/14 Still Pondering U.S.-Cuba Relations, Fidel Castro Responds
Ernesto Lodoño, The New York Times
10/15/14 Fidel Castro reprints NY Times embargo editorial
AP, The Washington Post
10/14/14 As times change, Cuban exiles in the U.S. learn it’s possible to go home again
Stephen Wicary, The Globe and Mail
10/14/14 The Castros Are Responsible for Cuba’s Failures, Not the U.S.
Jorge Benitez, The New York Times
10/14/14 Democracy Can’t Take Root in Isolation
Chris Sabatini, The New York Times
10/14/14 U.S. Engagement With Cuba Is Worth the Risk
Ted Henken, The New York Times
10/14/14 Obama Should End the Embargo on Cuba
Editorial, The New York Times
10/14/14 Cuba Doesn’t Deserve Normal Diplomatic Relations
Carlos Alberto Montaner, The New York Times
10/14/14 Cuban-Americans Want More Engagement
Ric Herrero, The New York Times
10/14/14 No Legitimacy for Cuba’s Dictators
Frank Calzon, The New York Times
10/14/14 Time to Restore the Rich Cultural Ties Between the U.S. and Cuba
Catherine Murphy, The New York Times
10/10/14 Changes in Cuban laws lead to a surge of migrants arriving in U.S. by land, sea and air
AP, Fox News Latino
10/10/14 In Rickety Boats, Cuban Migrants Again Flee to U.S.
Frances Robles, The New York Times
10/8/14 Miami congressional candidates differ on U.S.-Cuba policy
Patricia Mazzei, The Miami Herald
10/8/14 Summit missing a strong agenda
Dan Restrepo, Miami Herald
10/8/14 US Official Downplays Cuba's Invitation to Summit
10/7/14 New book unveils diplomatic exchange between Castro and Obama
Nora Gamez Torres, El Nuevo Herald
10/7/14 Pro-Cuba travel TV ad airing in Miami
Tampa Bay Tribune
10/3/14 Cuba Advances Critical Task of Peso Unification, Bank Chief Says
10/3/14 Records: Kissinger made plans to attack Cuba
Alexandra Olsen, AP
10/3/14 Political arrests down in Cuba, opposition says
EFE, Fox News Latino
10/2/14 Bodies of four victims found off Hollywood Beach identified as Cuban migrants
Alfonso Chardy, El Nuevo Herald