FROM THIS EPISODE
Fidel Castro's health is a state secret in Cuba, but acting leader Raul Castro--Fidel's brother--has twice made overtures for negotiations with the United States. The US has maintained an embargo against its Communist neighbor for almost 50 years, and the current Bush Administration has tightened restriction on travel and remittances sent home by Cuban refugees. Last week, in response to Raul Castro's offers, 10 members of Congress spent three days in Havana. But their request to meet with Raul himself was denied.
William Delahunt, Congressman (D-MA)
Oscar Corral, Reporter, Miami Herald
Brian Latell, Senior Research Associate Institute for Cuba and Cuban American Studies
Antonio Jorge, Professor of Political Economy and International Relations
In what was likely his last news conference of 2006, President Bush said today, "We're not winning" in Iraq but "we're not losing," and eventually "we're going to win." While the President has not decided if that will require a "surge" of troops in the short run, he does want to increase the overall size of the Army and the Marines. The cost--and the politics--of building ground forces, comprised a major plank in John Kerry's Presidential platform two years ago. Meantime, fresh from his swearing in as Donald Rumsfeld's replacement, Defense Secretary Robert Gates already is on the ground in Iraq, talking to reporters about the possibilities of a short term "surge" and a long term increase in America's ground forces.
Michael Fletcher, Washington Post (@Fletchpost)
Kevin Ryan, Senior Fellow, Harvard's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
Gordon Adams, American University / Foreign Policy magazine (@Gadams1941)