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Washington Opens Ties with Havana

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President Obama says isolation and punishment have not forced Communist Cuba to change, so he’s reversing 50 years of diplomatic policy.  He said the US will end its isolation of Cuba and begin establishing normal relations by opening an embassy in Havana.

Critics call normalizing relations an "undeserved bailout" of the Castro regime, based on the "illusion" that renewed ties will translate into political freedom.  But supporters say it puts the onus on Cuba itself to further liberalize its economy, allow more dissenting voices and, ultimately, to establish democracy. Will it produce a historic transition or more of the same?

Credits

Guests:
Ted Piccone - Brookings Institution - @piccone_ted, Carlos Alzugaray - former Cuban diplomat and political analyst - @zuky43, Jorge Mas - Cuban American National Foundation - @vozdecanf, Andrew Gomez - 29-year-old Cuban American, Ann Louise Bardach - journalist and author - @albardach

Host:
Warren Olney

Producers:
Jenny Hamel, Sáša Woodruff, Evan George