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Let the Scramble of Lesser Mortals Begin

February 4th, 2014 | Posted by William Vidal in Cuba policy | Hard-line hijinks | Life After-Castro | US Politics

From Alan Farago’s excellent “Scramble for Cuba” post on Counterpunch:

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For an aging and dying generation of Cuban Americans, the enduring hope was for retribution and a swift execution of justice in Havana. Miami Cuban Americans would lead the charge. Instead of forcing change in Havana, anti-Castro hatreds primarily succeeded in mobilizing voting blocks in South Florida, ensuring a conservative GOP majority in the state legislature and a Congress that marched to the same syncopated downbeat as the upbeat in Havana. Meanwhile, a lot of money was made by Miami Cuban Americans controlling the levers of politics, of growth and development of suburbs and condo canyons, of privatization of government services and charter schools, while the Castros held on in Havana.

Today, the Castro brothers are fading faster than the conservative Cuban American lock on Miami politics. The Fanjuls, on the other hand, with their “30,000 foot view” do understand that history is moving.

So what the Fanjuls do, matters. The Washington Post story is like the wisp of smoke emerging from the Vatican chimney when the cardinals have made their decision on the next Pope.

Put another way: there is money and then there is real money.

Here is what Capitol Hill Cubans will not write. For so many of the Miami Cuban American elite, the signal of the Fanjuls turning to Cuba is a shift as great as the state department declaring the cessation of hostilities and the return of the embassy to Havana.

What the Capitol Hill Cubans can’t ask and can’t answer, how big is the piece of the pie going to be for Miami Cuban American businessmen? That’s always  been the question they wanted to know.

For decades, Miami Cubans claimed to want the whole of Cuba, for “freedom and democracy”, knowing that they probably have to settle for less. But how much less? As the years ground on, with Mas Canosa gone and Fidel enfeebled, business interests from other parts of the world have gained traction. The port work, the infrastructure, the city center: the shovels are turning in Havana.

The Washington Post story and the instant reaction from the Capitol Hill Cubans couldn’t be more clear.  The Fanjuls want their piece of the action.  The game in Havana is, on. Let the scrambling of lesser mortals, begin.

 

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One Response

  • Gretchen Law says:

    Dear Friends,
    A few days ago I launched my first kickstarter project to raise monies for a documentary film, El Tocororo. It’s about a young American woman’s insights into Cuban life. You can learn about it at Kickstarter.com — documentary film — El Tocororo. Or go to:

    http://kck.st/1bsf2So

    Donations of any amount are appreciated and if you know of others who might be interested in this topic, please pass it along.

    Thanks so much! Would love to hear from you.

    Gretchen
    gretchenlaw@yahoo.com
    646-713-4124



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