"And when will the relations between the "government" of Cuba and the people of Cuba be re-established?" - Christian Liberation Movement, April 10, 2015
On the evening of April 10, 2015 Raul Castro and Barack Obama met and shook hands again in Panama at the Summit of the Americas the first time was on December 10, 2013 in South Africa at Nelson Mandela's funeral.
Both occasions coincided with massive assaults on human rights by the Castro regime, the first being in Cuba on international human rights day and the second in Panama when mobs of Castro agents rioted to prevent independent civil society activists from gathering together to address issues of democratic consolidation and human rights because they did not want Cuban dissidents participating.
Despite ample evidence that the Castro regime continues to be a state sponsor of terrorism the Obama administration is speedily moving to remove Cuba from the list of terror sponsors in order to proceed to the normalization of diplomatic relations. The Cuban dictatorship has made removal from the list one of the key elements in formally opening embassies.
The United States over the past six years has had a policy towards Cuba that yields to the constant pressures of the regime to a degree that it gives appeasement a bad name.
For example the woes of the Summit of the Americas began this past weekend with Cuban dissidents and rights activists being retained. harassed and threatened by Panamanian security. This was followed up by a brutal beat down of Cuban resistance activists in Panama City's Porra Park. Finally at the Summit of the America's Civil Society Forum mobs of Castro regime agents rioted and disrupted the gatherings slandering and libeling Cuban and Venezuelan activists. This has gone on through the present day.
Raul Castro met with President Obama, shook his hand and spoke with him but the Castro regime is unwilling to do that with Cubans who dissent politically from the regime calling them mercenaries and puppets. This leads to the question when will relations be "normalized" between Cubans and their "government"? This is the question raised by the Christian Liberation Movement tonight.
Apparently, for the Castro regime only Raul Castro and the people he designates are the only Cubans who can meet with President Obama. Over social networks regime agents denounced the president's meeting with Cuban dissidents in the civil society forum.
Apologists for the engagement policy claim that this is the Castro regime sabotaging the President's attempt to lift sanctions and normalize diplomatic relations. This is a misreading of two fundamental truths. First, this behavior is in the regime's nature because it is totalitarian and cannot tolerate dissenting views. Secondly, the Castro regime observes the United States having normal relations with pariah states such as Saudi Arabia and the Peoples Republic of China and ask why can't they be treated the same way.
Human rights in Cuba and throughout the world have been in decline for years and the current policy of legitimizing the Castro regime while providing financial credits and loans to the dictatorship promises to erode democracy and human rights for years to come in the Americas.
On April 2, 2015 Amnesty International recognized another prisoner of conscience which is another sign that the nature of the regime in Cuba remains unchanged, as do thousands of arbitrary detentions.
This Summit of the Americas has demonstrated on a small scale where human rights and democracy is going in the region. This future is bleak in the area of human rights and democracy. On April 8, 2015 in El Clarin, Rosa María Payá Acevedo observed the underlying fact of this summit: "The Presidents will be sitting here speaking with a General (Raul Castro) who has never been elected by the people, who arrived in power through dynastic means." Today the presidents of democratic states of the Americas legitimized a military dictatorship in Cuba.