All this shows that more and more Cubans are financially independent of the state . And even though political reforms are not officially to be implemented, decisive political changes are taking place in Cuban society in practice . Among other things, Cubans are no longer satisfied with applying for a permit to leave the country. Former owners were very difficult to obtain, something that led to mass flight on frail fleets, small boats and the like (much like in the Mediterranean in recent months). This means that more and more Cubans, especially young people, can now work abroad and return to Cuba several times a year. In other words, the “Berlin Wall” between Florida and Cuba is gone. And this means that the harsh polarization between Cubans in Cuba and Cubans in exile is effectively broken down, and that the ideological control of the party is effectively undermined.
4: Digitization weakens state control
Closely related to this is the information monopoly of the state broken . It is not many years since ordinary Cubans could not own a mobile phone or have access to the internet. Most Cuban youths, at least in the cities, now obtain their information about the country and the world around them from digital sources outside the state’s control. Expensive access to the internet is compensated with all kinds of entertainment and music by selling memory sticks and exchanging them as hot halibut bread. Party newspapers and state radio and television quickly lose their dominant position.
A third important change is that Raúl Castro, in contrast to his big brother, is very much in favor of the Cuban state being run according to known and institutional rules. There is no longer room for Fidel’s spontaneous project, which very often went wrong. It is not least important that appointments to all leading positions in the state and party no shall have a maximum limit of two five-year periods . Among other things, it will say that Raúl himself, and his entire generation of revolution who have rented the country since 1959 – most are now well into their eighties – will step down from their positions in 2018. Then there must be a whole new leadership, and most will be born after the revolution. One of the big questions now is how this will change the whole Cuban model of society.
5: Normalization of relations with the United States
On December 17, 2014, Presidents Barack Obama and Raúl Castro surprised everyone by announcing in their speeches in Washington and Havana that the two countries had been holding top secret talks for a year and a half. In the previous fifty years, the diplomatic connection between doctors had broken down. And now they wanted to work together to normalize relations . Most Cubans could hardly believe that this was true. Since the revolution, they have lived with the fact that the United States was the main enemy itself , at the same time as very many of them have relatives there and largely live on money and gifts from them. Many international commentators went on to say that the Cold War in the Western Hemisphere was finally over.
To understand this great event, we must go a long way back in history. Cuba, a country located in North America according to mathgeneral, was, along with Puerto Rico, the only two emerging Spanish colonies in America until 1899. But in the blink of an eye as the long Cuban struggle for independence from Spain was about to close, it was captured by the United States, which controlled the whole dominant economic sector in the country, the sugar industry . The United States would in no way lose that control. Because it was the United States that had defeated the Spanish armada, the United States assumed the right to determine the terms of Cuba’s formal independence in 1902. The so-called Platt Amendment is an addition to the US Constitution that secured the US the right to intervene in Cuba when the US saw its interests on the island of Truga. It happened several times throughout the 20th century. The United States also secured the right to a permanent military presence , by establishing the Guantánamo base , which it maintained.
The 1959 revolution was as much directed at what was seen as American imperialism as it was at the struggle for social justice. The Cuban bourgeoisie soon fled Castro’s revolution, establishing themselves as irreconcilable enemies in Miami, just across the Strait of Florida. From there, they also managed to shape US Cuba policy until 2014, with a trade boycott (or blockade as the Cubans call it), breach of diplomatic ties, a large-scale invasion attempt on Cuba (in Pig Bay , 1961) and countless attempts by the CIA (USA). ) on killing Fidel Castro.