Earlier this month, USAID subcontractor Alan Grossbegan his fourth year in a Cuban prison. Ever since his incarceration, a debate has raged over whether the United States should halt further efforts to engage with the Cuban people until the Cuban government releases Gross. Both Alan and his wife Judy have repeatedly calledon the U.S. and Cuba to engage in a dialogue without preconditions. Sadly, like all things Cuba-related, the debate over Gross' incarceration has since devolved into an ideological three-ring circus where finding a solution has become a secondary objective behind not appearing to be making concessions to the enemy.

The Washington Post perfectly captured the tone deafness of the current debate in a recent editorial: "better relations between Cuba and the United States must be conditioned on real steps toward democratization by Havana. But until Mr.Gross is released, they ought to get worse." This position reflects exactly the sort of stale, inside-the-box thinking that has long plagued the discourse over U.S.-Cuba policy....



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