Cuba’s Opposition to Proposed U.S. Democracy Promotion Program

A prior post mentioned that two days after President Obama’s speech in Cuba the U.S. Department of State announced its solicitation of proposals to conduct a Community Internship Program for Cuban Youth. That post also suggested that this announcement was unwise and counterproductive and would undermine Obama’s credibility with the Cuban government and people.[1]

An article in Granma, the official newspaper of the Cuban Communist Party, makes that very point. It opens with Obama’s statement in the speech, “The United States has neither the capacity nor the intention to impose changes in Cuba, the changes depend on the Cuban people. We will not impose our political and economic system, because we know that every country, every people must forge their own destiny.” The article then referred to Obama’s saying he was not asking “the people of Cuba to tear something down–but I’m appealing to the young people of Cuba who will lift something up, build something new. The future of Cuba must be in the hands of Cuban People.”[2]

The article then reported about the State Department announcement of the proposed Community Internship Program for Cuban Youth and said: “It appears that this “evolution” and Obama’s “appealing” are not enough, and in order to ‘lift something up,’ the Cuban youth require money and instructions from the [U.S.].”


[1] Reactions to President Obama’s Speech to the Cuban People, dwkcommentaries (Mar. 26, 2016); Department of State, Community Internship Program for Cuban Youth (WHAP-WHAAQPPC-16-001), (Mar. 24, 2016); New State Department program targets Cuban youth, Along the Malecon (Mar. 25, 2016). Duke University apparently intends to submit a proposal for such a grant.

2] U.S. Department of State allocates $800,000 dollars to “train’ Cuban youth, Granma (Mar. 30, 2016)

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As a retired lawyer and adjunct law professor, Duane W. Krohnke has developed strong interests in U.S. and international law, politics and history. He also is a Christian and an active member of Minneapolis’ Westminster Presbyterian Church. His blog draws from these and other interests. He delights in the writing freedom of blogging that does not follow a preordained logical structure. The ex post facto logical organization of the posts and comments is set forth in the continually being revised “List of Posts and Comments–Topical” in the Pages section on the right side of the blog.

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