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YellowFever
17 Dec 14,, 18:55
Obama hails 'new chapter' in US-Cuba ties - BBC News (http://m.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-30516740)

Might be worth it just for the new travel destinations and decent cigars.....

Parihaka
17 Dec 14,, 19:10
Win. There was no point to this other than to satisfy expat Cubans in Florida. Win.

YellowFever
17 Dec 14,, 19:18
Now we can turn it into Cancun minus the drug cartels. :biggrin:

gunnut
17 Dec 14,, 19:53
One of the few Obama policies I agree with. Sanctions have done...what...over the last 50 years? It's time to try something different.

Let's conquer them with Coca Cola and McDonald's and Starbucks instead of depriving them of Coca Cola and McDonald's and Starbucks.

Albany Rifles
17 Dec 14,, 20:48
Its going to destablize the market for baseball players!!!

gunnut
17 Dec 14,, 20:52
Quick, flood the market with cheap Cuban imports...

http://img.pandawhale.com/132916-they-took-our-jobs-gif-FKqS.jpeg

TopHatter
17 Dec 14,, 22:02
It's about damn time. Absolutely no benefit whatsoever to a continued embargo other than politics.

GVChamp
17 Dec 14,, 23:03
It's about damn time. Absolutely no benefit whatsoever to a continued embargo other than politics.

That's a pretty big benefit, IMO. I care a lot more about who is in the White House than I do about trade policy with some craphole island.

I'd give Cuba a freakin' Super-carrier if they take Puerto Rico, too.

bbvet
18 Dec 14,, 02:39
I agree also - regardless of the idiot and his clown college admin. We didn't do it right 50 years ago - it's way overdue to change policy. Better to sell them "Made in the USA" than having them continue to buy Russki.

I wonder if the Coca Cabana:Dancing-Banana: will make a comeback?

tbm3fan
18 Dec 14,, 02:53
Win. There was no point to this other than to satisfy expat Cubans in Florida. Win.

Just saw this on the news and what took so damn long to do it? We have relations with Russia and China but Cuba is a big bad no no.

Then we have Rubio on TV talking about blocking normalization. Well, Marco, eat my shorts you moron.

Russia had some new deals in the making but I would hazard a guess that those may fall by the wayside.
I'm pretty sure the average Cuban will be saying go home Ruski while saying we love Yankees (sorry Albany :) )

zraver
18 Dec 14,, 03:28
This has the potential to save a lot of lives. For years the life blood of international relief work has been American donors. Cuban doctors are often the yeomen doing the work, but marrying American dollars with Cuban doctors and nurses has been difficult. For example during the Haitian earthquake- Cubans, not Americans or other nationalities were the most common provided of medical treatment. Today, Cuba has had nearly 200 doctors and nurses in West Africa fighting Ebola for months- well ahead of any official American response.

tbm3fan
18 Dec 14,, 03:39
The real gold mine here is going to be those rolling gold mines called 1950's Buicks, Fords, Chevy's and Olds. I for see container ships heading this way with many of those cars on board.

God, I hope Fast 'n Loud doesn't get over there as I can't stand those guys.

Albany Rifles
18 Dec 14,, 03:45
Looks like I will get to do battlefield tours of the Spanish American War battlefields!!!!

Woot!! Woot!!!

TopHatter
18 Dec 14,, 03:47
Just saw this on the news and what took so damn long to do it? We have relations with Russia and China but Cuba is a big bad no no.

And Vietnam!

zraver
18 Dec 14,, 05:04
And Vietnam!

Fighting and dying next to Germans in A-stan.... The biggest killer of Americans in combat in the last 100 years.

bonehead
18 Dec 14,, 06:04
Fighting and dying next to Germans in A-stan.... The biggest killer of Americans in combat in the last 100 years.

My have things changed. In the Pacific we are now allies with Japan and the enemy is China.

Blademaster
18 Dec 14,, 08:49
My have things changed. In the Pacific we are now allies with Japan and the enemy is China.
That change already occurred back in the 50s. What was so surprising about it today?

Monash
18 Dec 14,, 09:26
My have things changed. In the Pacific we are now allies with Japan and the enemy is China.

I believe it would be a serious error of judgement to class China as an enemy at this point in history, a competitor yes but not necessarily as an enemy. This is because at the moment, here an now, this is not what they actually are. An enemy is usually defined something along the lines of someone feels hatred toward, intends injury to, or opposes another. Do the US and China hate each other? - one hopes not. Do they fear/distrust each other on certain issues - probably yes. However unless the default position of the US is that all serioius competitors for global economic influence and power must by default be enemies then it can instead afford to adopt a position of watchful caution. For it's part China has to learn how to use it's new found economic/military power without pissing off all it's neighbors in the process. Something which is obviously a work in progress.

Automatically assigning someone the title of 'enemy' when you don't have to is a recipe for certain trauma if not disaster. Make them enemies when you absolutely have to yes, but why go looking for enemies when its possible they can still be turned into part time colleagues if not friends.

SteveDaPirate
18 Dec 14,, 17:41
I'm going to second Monash's remarks. While both the US and China are well aware of the potential for conflict, both countries are interested in finding a way around the Thucydides Trap. The strategic distrust in the relationship is obvious, but China has strong incentives to integrate into the international order rather than attempting to overthrow it.

looking4NSFS
18 Dec 14,, 18:25
Just as "Only Nixon could go to China"* it may very well be that "Only Obama could go to Cuba." It's about time. How it will play out with Guantanamo (the base, not the prison, although they are closely intertwined) will be interesting. Will Cuba finally cash in all those past due checks?

* Rumored to be an ancient Vulcan proverb.

Native
18 Dec 14,, 18:37
I have always wondered why we have held on to this old policy. Not sure if I was missing something. I'm glad to see these steps.

Looks like Obama might get a legacy after all.

astralis
18 Dec 14,, 20:08
a bit off-topic here, but...


While both the US and China are well aware of the potential for conflict, both countries are interested in finding a way around the Thucydides Trap.

note that china and the US view the Thucydides Trap differently. the US views the trap as fear that a rising power will try to challenge the established power for dominance (a la Wilhelmine Germany), while China views it more like the original Trap, where the established power will try to pre-emptively challenge the rising power.

astralis
18 Dec 14,, 20:09
back to the topic, Marco Rubio is going batsh*t crazy over this, and finding out to his dismay that sanctions on Cuba aren't as politically popular as it used to be.

bonehead
18 Dec 14,, 20:22
I believe it would be a serious error of judgement to class China as an enemy at this point in history, a competitor yes but not necessarily as an enemy. This is because at the moment, here an now, this is not what they actually are. An enemy is usually defined something along the lines of someone feels hatred toward, intends injury to, or opposes another. Do the US and China hate each other? - one hopes not. Do they fear/distrust each other on certain issues - probably yes. However unless the default position of the US is that all serioius competitors for global economic influence and power must by default be enemies then it can instead afford to adopt a position of watchful caution. For it's part China has to learn how to use it's new found economic/military power without pissing off all it's neighbors in the process. Something which is obviously a work in progress.

Automatically assigning someone the title of 'enemy' when you don't have to is a recipe for certain trauma if not disaster. Make them enemies when you absolutely have to yes, but why go looking for enemies when its possible they can still be turned into part time colleagues if not friends.

China has done nothing to indicate they want to be a friend to the U.S.

China has built up their military and is aiming it at the U.S.

China has tried tell the U.S and other countries what to do on international and internal policies. China has even made demands of other countries.

China is actively hacking and acquiring U.S. secrets of national security.

China is polluting the world, guess where the bulk of it goes?

China has made threats to U.S allies in the pacific region, especially Japan.

China is at war with the U.S economically.

One does not have to hate the enemy…one just has to stand up and fight the enemy or stand by and let the enemy take over. China has shown no interests in not pissing off other countries as they feel they have a right to do what they are doing. Who needs enemies when you have a friend like china?

bonehead
18 Dec 14,, 20:25
That change already occurred back in the 50s. What was so surprising about it today?

It was surprising in the 50's as no one could have seen that coming so shortly after the intense fighting in the pacific theater in WW2. What is surprising today is that so many people view china with neutrality or even favorably and that is a mistake considering what china has been up to.

bonehead
18 Dec 14,, 20:31
back to the topic, Marco Rubio is going batsh*t crazy over this, and finding out to his dismay that sanctions on Cuba aren't as politically popular as it used to be.


I think we should be doing our current policy on what Cuba is currently doing. Keeping the sanctions out of tradition or spite is wrong. If Cuba can at least be a neutral party then screw Rubio. If Cuba still wants to be, and can be, a threat to the U.S. then the sanctions should continue. However I think that Obama knows his 15 minutes of fame is coming to an end and he will be a whirlwind on the issues as he tries to make his presidential legacy. The normalizing of sanctions are more about Obama and less about Cuba.

Monash
18 Dec 14,, 21:51
China has done nothing to indicate they want to be a friend to the U.S.

China has built up their military and is aiming it at the U.S.

China has tried tell the U.S and other countries what to do on international and internal policies. China has even made demands of other countries.

China is actively hacking and acquiring U.S. secrets of national security.

China is polluting the world, guess where the bulk of it goes?

China has made threats to U.S allies in the pacific region, especially Japan.

China is at war with the U.S economically.

One does not have to hate the enemy…one just has to stand up and fight the enemy or stand by and let the enemy take over. China has shown no interests in not pissing off other countries as they feel they have a right to do what they are doing. Who needs enemies when you have a friend like china?

For another topic but ... each of the conducts/policies you have identified above are also practiced by the US - against China. Goose and gander if you prefer. I am not suggesting by the way that from a 3rd party perspective there is nothing to choose between the two sides, clearly that is not the case. It is equally clear however that both nations are also using all the standard geopolitical 'tools' to try and achieve their foreign policy objectives. All nations do this - with effects in proportion to their power. My point was that it is still in the best interests of both sides to build up those parts of the relationship where there are convergences of interest to the point where those convergences act as counterweights to issues upon which there is serious disagreement. It's about working together and avoiding open conflict not becoming BFFs.

Doktor
18 Dec 14,, 22:14
The Cuba Deal: Why Now? - Atlantic Mobile (http://m.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/12/the-new-cuba-an-offspring-of-biology-and-technology/383893/)

cirrrocco
18 Dec 14,, 23:37
China has done nothing to indicate they want to be a friend to the U.S.

China has built up their military and is aiming it at the U.S.

China has tried tell the U.S and other countries what to do on international and internal policies. China has even made demands of other countries.

China is actively hacking and acquiring U.S. secrets of national security.

China is polluting the world, guess where the bulk of it goes?

China has made threats to U.S allies in the pacific region, especially Japan.

China is at war with the U.S economically.

One does not have to hate the enemy…one just has to stand up and fight the enemy or stand by and let the enemy take over. China has shown no interests in not pissing off other countries as they feel they have a right to do what they are doing. Who needs enemies when you have a friend like china?

Agree that CHina is now a Frenemy , but with regard to your points

China has built up their military and is aiming it at the U.S. - Agree

China has tried tell the U.S and other countries what to do on international and internal policies. China has even made demands of other countries. - The US does that all the time to the world. regarding torture , human rights, trade policies , what's wrong with China doing the same.

China is actively hacking and acquiring U.S. secrets of national security. - Yeah I agree there.

China is polluting the world, guess where the bulk of it goes? - Sorry I disagree there. The West polluted for 200 years and now the developing world is catching up. The US pollutes more per capita even now than China. if the same question was put to the west 50 years ago, the polluting countries would asked me to fvck off as they wanted to raise the standard of living for their citizens. I would say give the developing world the right technology as a subsidized price and then insist on pollution curbs.

China has made threats to U.S allies in the pacific region, especially Japan. - Agree

China is at war with the U.S economically. - Thus is where I am just flabbergasted. How the US actually spawned their mortal enemy for the future

tbm3fan
18 Dec 14,, 23:50
back to the topic, Marco Rubio is going batsh*t crazy over this, and finding out to his dismay that sanctions on Cuba aren't as politically popular as it used to be.

Rubio and his dwindling base...

Bigfella
19 Dec 14,, 03:28
Fighting and dying next to Germans in A-stan.... The biggest killer of Americans in combat in the last 100 years.

Japan also sent non-combat troops to Iraq. Engineers I believe. The combat units who were providing security were.....Australians. Simply highlights what a bizarre anachronism this embargo is. Let hope Congress gets over its partisanship to do the right thing.

Officer of Engineers
19 Dec 14,, 03:31
Ottawa will be protesting. We just lost 99% of our flights to Cuba!

Bigfella
19 Dec 14,, 03:33
back to the topic, Marco Rubio is going batsh*t crazy over this, and finding out to his dismay that sanctions on Cuba aren't as politically popular as it used to be.

How do you see the domestic politics of this? Are the Dems making a play for younger Cubans who are already leaning Dem? Do they think they can use it to make the GOP look isolated & out of touch? Will the optics of this help the Dems shore up the Hispanic vote, or is there unlikely to be an impact there? Will there be a side benefit in making Rubio look more like a loon?

Obviously it will improve relations with the region and will have economic benefits. I suspect that this is one of those things where, once it is over, people will be amazed that anyone cared.

Officer of Engineers
19 Dec 14,, 03:36
The Castros will be more scared of the ending of the embargoes. American-Cubans will now be able to return with more money clout than they could ever imagine ... and no way to counter it. American-Cubans can buy mercernary armies bigger than what Cuba can field.

gf0012-aust
19 Dec 14,, 03:59
How do you see the domestic politics of this? Are the Dems making a play for younger Cubans who are already leaning Dem? Do they think they can use it to make the GOP look isolated & out of touch? Will the optics of this help the Dems shore up the Hispanic vote, or is there unlikely to be an impact there? Will there be a side benefit in making Rubio look more like a loon?

Obviously it will improve relations with the region and will have economic benefits. I suspect that this is one of those things where, once it is over, people will be amazed that anyone cared.

the state holding the most ex pat cubans and a very very strong spanish speaking vote is florida - and florida is jeb bush country. considering that he is a republican who has a hispanic support base, then it buggers up a few other republicans with an opposing view

zraver
19 Dec 14,, 04:09
I believe it would be a serious error of judgement to class China as an enemy at this point in history, a competitor yes but not necessarily as an enemy. This is because at the moment, here an now, this is not what they actually are. An enemy is usually defined something along the lines of someone feels hatred toward, intends injury to, or opposes another. Do the US and China hate each other? - one hopes not. Do they fear/distrust each other on certain issues - probably yes. However unless the default position of the US is that all serioius competitors for global economic influence and power must by default be enemies .

When it comes to challenging our sea power- actively looking for ways to do so then yes they are enemies.

Officer of Engineers
19 Dec 14,, 05:12
Kamakazies are dangerous - once.

Monash
19 Dec 14,, 07:33
When it comes to challenging our sea power- actively looking for ways to do so then yes they are enemies.

Meanwhile the US Navy actively seeks tactics and technology that will counter their efforts and/or increase it's own ability to threaten Chinese sea power. Plus of course the balance of military power will have to shift enormously away from the US and towards China before they have any realistic chance of the defeating the US and all it's Asian allies. So there is some considerable time for both sides to work through deals that prevent a conflict, which lets face it is bad for business - theirs and ours.

astralis
19 Dec 14,, 15:04
ultimately it can be boiled down to a phrase: china doesn't want to fight us, it wants to BE us.

astralis
19 Dec 14,, 15:13
How do you see the domestic politics of this? Are the Dems making a play for younger Cubans who are already leaning Dem? Do they think they can use it to make the GOP look isolated & out of touch? Will the optics of this help the Dems shore up the Hispanic vote, or is there unlikely to be an impact there? Will there be a side benefit in making Rubio look more like a loon?

all of the above, but i find it unlikely that it'll have a major impact. it just got to the point where doing so was no longer politically painful, and between the legacy/good policy, why not.

i find the political bloviating about how this will be a boost for Hillary Clinton to be exaggerated. it's a nice touch but this isn't something that will bring out the voters.

Albany Rifles
19 Dec 14,, 16:48
Rubio is already having to walk back some of his comments. His comments about not approving an ambassador and funding an embassy are being nuanced.

Perhaps McConnell told him to calm it down.

While the the folks and descendants of the folks who came here in 1959-1961 are hardlined and bitter, the folks he came here since about 1970 onward are strongly pro this move.

Blademaster
19 Dec 14,, 16:55
Rubio is already having to walk back some of his comments. His comments about not approving an ambassador and funding an embassy are being nuanced.

Perhaps McConnell told him to calm it down.

Will he eat his words about Obama being the worse negotiator?



While the the folks and descendants of the folks who came here in 1959-1961 are hardlined and bitter, the folks he came here since about 1970 onward are strongly pro this move.

Which tells me this is a generational thing. Out with the old, in with the new.

GVChamp
19 Dec 14,, 17:52
Bigfella,

Politically, it's a risky move. The Dems won Florida in 2012 by less than a % point, but are slowly building momentmum. Taking any chance to piss off the Cuban community, with that small a margin, is a huge risk when we're talking about 27 electroal votes.

I don't think Obama undertook this to increase Democrat political standing. Presidents in their second term are generally more concerned about legacy building. A lot of the, erm, progressive left, which we all know Obama is part of even if he pretends he isn't, really finds the Cuba embargo obnoxious. They are the most engaged about the issue, except for the old Cuban emigres.

Anyways, the embargo on Cuba is a Cold War leftover, but the real oddity isn't that it still exists, but that it was getting STRONGER. Since the Cold War ended, we have imposed MORE sanctions on Cuba, even listing it as a State Sponsor of terror. This obviously is a dumb, politically-motivated move.

TopHatter
19 Dec 14,, 17:53
My have things changed. In the Pacific we are now allies with Japan and the enemy is China.

Fighting and dying next to Germans in A-stan.... The biggest killer of Americans in combat in the last 100 years.

To this day I still find it just slightly somehow oddly sinister to see Iron Cross and the Rising Sun on F-4 Phantoms.

tbm3fan
19 Dec 14,, 18:57
Rubio is already having to walk back some of his comments. His comments about not approving an ambassador and funding an embassy are being nuanced.

Perhaps McConnell told him to calm it down.

While the the folks and descendants of the folks who came here in 1959-1961 are hardlined and bitter, the folks he came here since about 1970 onward are strongly pro this move.

and those old Cubans are dying off steadily now

Albany Rifles
19 Dec 14,, 19:00
To this day I still find it just slightly somehow oddly sinister to see Iron Cross and the Rising Sun on F-4 Phantoms.

I remember sharing with my Dad in 1999 a headline and photo from the European edition of Stars & Stripes when the Air WAr over Kosovo occurred.

It said something like..."Luftwaffe engages in bombing sorties, first tiem since 1945".

My dad was a ww 2 vet and it made him shiver he said.

astralis
19 Dec 14,, 19:09
GVChamp,


Taking any chance to piss off the Cuban community, with that small a margin, is a huge risk when we're talking about 27 electroal votes.


but the Cuban community is not monolithic-- under-50s support normalization. moreover i doubt the hard-up pro-sanction Cuban emigre camp were going to vote Democrat anyway. limited political risk.

Albany Rifles
19 Dec 14,, 19:33
My best friend is of Cuban-Lebanese extraction. His Lebanese side is around 120 years in the US.

His Cuban side is more recent...his mother was the Cuban Consul to the US in Boston when Castro came to power. Her brother was an official in the government and her younger sister was in banking. Needless to say, things changed for all. His aunt and uncle, along with their mother, came to the US right. All were stripped of their Cuban citizenship and became US citizens. the attitudes of the three siblings were very different:

The aunt always pined for the grand old days of Cuba and wanted Castro and crew to rot in hell...don't give an inch.

The uncle didn't give a damn...he had renounced the Church years prior, came to the US and built a succesful career as an American.

My friends mother had a very interesting path. Since she was a government official at the time of the take over she felt duty bound to continue at her post. She recalled to Havanna about 5 months later where she was put to work in the Foreign Ministry. She had my friend with her....her husband, my friends dad, was on a assignment for US AID...draw your own cocnlusions. She applied for a release to return to the US with by buddy on family grounds. It took awhile but she got permission and arrived in the US to link up with the father. Here is the hitch...because she had worked for the Castro regime...for 5 months...she was refused US citizenship. So she went to work for the OAS...who granted her a special category of Citizen of the World. Until her death her passport was from the OAS and not the US. She could have gotten US citizenship later as he programs and laws changed but never bothered.

Her view? She wanted Castro and crew gone soonest...and believed the best way to do that was normalize relations ASAP. She held this belief since I knew in 1974.

My friend shares his mother's belief...always has.

I asked my friend how he was doing....he said he was very happy because we would get to do what we had promised when we were 25...we are going to do a bike tour of the Sierra Maestra Mountains and drink Cuba Libres on El Malecón. And then we are going to return teh ashes of his grandmother, mother aunt & uncle to the family crypt....along with the Cuban flag that flew over the Consualte in Boston the day the coup occurred.

GVChamp
19 Dec 14,, 20:14
GVChamp,



but the Cuban community is not monolithic-- under-50s support normalization. moreover i doubt the hard-up pro-sanction Cuban emigre camp were going to vote Democrat anyway. limited political risk.

So you're an economics guy, I'll put Hayek here:

"
The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.
"

If you're wrong, you lose Florida. It's a .8% margin. And if you lose Florida, you could very well lose the election.
Even "limited" risk means a hell of a lot of risk when you're talking winner-take-all with a <1% margin.

Cactus
19 Dec 14,, 20:42
ultimately it can be boiled down to a phrase: china doesn't want to fight us, it wants to BE us.

The Japanese also didn't want to fight the British, they wanted to BE British. They wore pin-striped suits and top-hats, carried umberellas, even drove on the wrong side of the road... all they wanted was "their India" (i.e. China). How did that turn out?

Monash
20 Dec 14,, 00:01
The Japanese wanted the oil embargo gone and a free hand in China. Failing that they decided to settle for taking (British) Malaysia and the rubber tin and oil reserves in that area. You Gaijin (pejorative form) Americans stood in the way. Had the US and UK acquiesced to Japan's plans for expansion into mainland Asia a shooting war the Pacific might not have even started - at least not during the course of the European conflict.

zraver
20 Dec 14,, 06:23
The Japanese wanted the oil embargo gone and a free hand in China. Failing that they decided to settle for taking (British) Malaysia and the rubber tin and oil reserves in that area. You Gaijin (pejorative form) Americans stood in the way. Had the US and UK acquiesced to Japan's plans for expansion into mainland Asia a shooting war the Pacific might not have even started - at least not during the course of the European conflict.

Nah, not with Hong Kong, Malaysia and the DEI acting like bright red flags putting lie to the co-prosperity sphere.... The Japanese didn't start developing shallow running torpedoes in 1939, mapping coasts and landing beaches, developing spy networks, naval infantry, attack carriers and long ranged air craft for nothing. The signs that Japan was gearing up for offensive war were visible. Ditto for modern China.

Monash
20 Dec 14,, 11:03
The Japanese didn't start developing shallow running torpedoes in 1939, mapping coasts and landing beaches, developing spy networks, naval infantry, attack carriers and long ranged air craft for nothing. The signs that Japan was gearing up for offensive war were visible. Ditto for modern China.

America was doing the same thing at the same time, it was actively developing it's carrier fleet and long range aircraft (think B-17, P-38 & P-47). It had a well developed Marine Corps and was activity tracking Japanese military deployments at the time. In short it working to cement it's own strategic objectives in the Asia Pacific Region. War Plan Orange wasn't a work of speculative fiction. For that matter you had a 'War Plan' for dealing with Great Britain for Gods sake, which doesn't mean the Joint Chiefs of Staff actually had a hard on for carrying it out, just that professional military organizations plan for all hypothetical contingencies.

(P.S. I'd have to do the research but for that matter I'd wouldn't be surprised if Great Britain didn't have 'War Plans' drafted in the event of conflict with the U.S. prior to WW11.)

Mantas
20 Dec 14,, 11:17
It seems thath Americans want to be sure thath there won't be any reopened or even new military bases in Cuba established by Russia or maybe China :)

Double Edge
20 Dec 14,, 13:37
If you're wrong, you lose Florida. It's a .8% margin. And if you lose Florida, you could very well lose the election.
Even "limited" risk means a hell of a lot of risk when you're talking winner-take-all with a <1% margin.
Right, this is the std reason why US could not normalise relations with Cuba for so long.

Anyway, am glad to see there isn't too much opposition here. Cubans always struck me as unique compared to their neighbours in the region. Very proud of their culture.

TopHatter
20 Dec 14,, 16:42
For that matter you had a 'War Plan' for dealing with Great Britain for Gods sake, which doesn't mean the Joint Chiefs of Staff actually had a hard on for carrying it out, just that profession military organizations plan for all hypothetical contingencies.

Good point and the typical layman doesn't see it that way. Nor do they understand other reasons for preparing "War Plans":

1. It's excellent training and practice

2. A "invasion" plan could rather quickly be modified to become a "reinforcing an ally" plan. I would imagine mass-disaster relief would also fall in that category. After all, what is disaster relief but a non-kinetic invasion of another country?

Albany Rifles
20 Dec 14,, 19:07
We had war plans against EVERYBODY!!! And we don't throw stuff out.

United States color-coded war plans - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_color-coded_war_plans)

As the article points out they are excellent staff planning tools.

DOR
20 Dec 14,, 20:22
This was bound to happen when the conditions were right:

1) Democratic President (Only Nixon had the balls to go to China)
2) Second term in office (no reason to take a risk)
3) Post mid-term election (ditto)
4) No other major foreign policy priority (Clinton wanted a summit with Kim Jung-il)
5) No crippling domestic issue ("Not now, Monica! I'm trying to normalize!")

zraver
21 Dec 14,, 00:51
America was doing the same thing at the same time,

And? I have no doubt that Japan saw the US as an enemy and block to Japanese ambitions. I didn't say enemy made them wrong and us right, only that their actions were that of an enemy.


I'd wouldn't be surprised if Great Britain didn't have 'War Plans' drafted in the event of conflict with the U.S. prior to WW11

More likely, articles of surrender... At least until the various naval treaties were signed. The US controlled UK access to credit, raw materials and food. A pissed off US without the naval treaties beats the UK in very short order.

The reason the UK wanted the London and Washington Naval treaties was to head off a brand new battleship arms race they could not win. They were exhausted by WWI and could not match US financial or production resources. By the time the Versailles treaty was signed the US had 22 Dreadnoughts. 14 of them were super-dreanoughts, and had 10 more super dreadnoughts and 6 super battle cruisers were under construction. The Royal navy had 32 dreadnoughts but only 11 were true super dreadnoughts, 11 were intermediate and none of them had transoceanic range. They had no new battleships under construction. They had 12 battlecruisers, only 1 of them a super battle cruiser and no new ones on the slips. By 1924 it would have been USN- 31/21 dreadnoughts and 6 super battle cruisers vs RN- 32/11/11 dreadnoughts and 11/1 battle cruisers.

RN superiority was doomed without another expensive ship building race the UK could not afford. Not only numbers though, most US ships could sail in excess of 10,000 miles. Few British ships could. US ships could set out and shut down the global commerce the UK depended on and the RN could not stop them. The RN depended on coaling stations that would have been both incredibly exposed to USMC raids and unable to provide the fuel oil the best British ships needed.

The naval treaties saved the UK.

zraver
21 Dec 14,, 00:53
This was bound to happen when the conditions were right:

1) Democratic President (Only Nixon had the balls to go to China)
2) Second term in office (no reason to take a risk)
3) Post mid-term election (ditto)
4) No other major foreign policy priority (Clinton wanted a summit with Kim Jung-il)
5) No crippling domestic issue ("Not now, Monica! I'm trying to normalize!")

Nixon was a Republican.... In fact Obama is the first Dem president to seekout major foreign policy changes. Normally its the GOP- Ike, Nixon, Reagan

gf0012-aust
21 Dec 14,, 01:01
(P.S. I'd have to do the research but for that matter I'd wouldn't be surprised if Great Britain didn't have 'War Plans' drafted in the event of conflict with the U.S. prior to WW11.)

Circa washington treaty there was a significant cohort of US snr military who did see Gt Britain as a military and thus strategic threat. Some of those snr US military carried that prejudice right up to and well into WW2

eg USN war games treated the RN as read team

Monash
21 Dec 14,, 01:02
We had war plans against EVERYBODY!!! And we don't throw stuff out.

United States color-coded war plans - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_color-coded_war_plans)

As the article points out they are excellent staff planning tools.

Does anyone know which variant of 'War Plan Red' was meant cover the invasion of Australia?

I submit that given our (then) current state of military preparedness we would have retaliated with an asymmetric militarily campaign involving huge volumes of beer, sausages and beach parties cleverly designed to wear the occupying forces military preparedness down to the point where your Government decided they had no choice but to send them home for detox. :)

Come to think of it, this might still be our plan! :rolleyes:

DOR
21 Dec 14,, 03:37
Nixon was a Republican.... In fact Obama is the first Dem president to seekout major foreign policy changes. Normally its the GOP- Ike, Nixon, Reagan

Nixon was a REPUBLICAN?!? Not by today's standards! Seriously, did you not understand the context? I'll spell it out: the post-Cold War GOP (the historical context is very important) has not sought to overturn Kennedy's Presidental decree for ideological reasons.

Monash
21 Dec 14,, 04:34
Ideology weighs heavily on most of the policy decisions being made by the Republicans of late, which is not necessarily a bad thing so long as it is balanced by a healthy dose of pragmatism. Sadly I'm afraid it is the latter which appears in short supply of late in some sections of the GOP.

Albany Rifles
21 Dec 14,, 05:16
Z,

Yeah, cause Truman, Kennedy, Carter and Clinton did nothing in international relations.....

United Nations
Marshall Plan
Foreign Assistance Act
Ich bin ein Berliner
Camp David
Dayton Accords

zraver
21 Dec 14,, 05:25
Z,

Yeah, cause Truman, Kennedy, Carter and Clinton did nothing in international relations.....

United Nations
Marshall Plan
Foreign Assistance Act
Ich bin ein Berliner
Camp David
Dayton Accords

None of those are ground breaking and 180 from conventional wisdom in the way that Nixon in Bejing or Reagan in Reykjavik were.

Officer of Engineers
21 Dec 14,, 05:29
None of those are ground breaking and 180 from conventional wisdom in the way that Nixon in Bejing or Reagan in Reykjavik were.
Jason, you shitting me? Carter, PRC in 79. Within 30 days of Deng's visit, the 1st Sino-VN War.

zraver
21 Dec 14,, 05:48
Jason, you shitting me? Carter, PRC in 79. Within 30 days of Deng's visit, the 1st Sino-VN War.

Sir the state visit by Deng was not very ground breaking, it was building on Kissinger's work about flipping China...

Officer of Engineers
21 Dec 14,, 05:59
Sir the state visit by Deng was not very ground breaking, it was building on Kissinger's work about flipping China...Jason,

Are you shitting me? Do you understand the implications of the 1979 Sino-VN War? And the result of Deng's visit?

Deng played us ... to our benefit. Within 2 weeks of Deng visiting the US, he destroyed the Soviet's southern flank to China ... with our blessings!

Julie
21 Dec 14,, 08:27
Embargo and sanctions only hurt the citizens...the Government still does what it wants to as continuing to embrace communism. Opening relations with Cuba I think is a good thing. I just hope Obama doesn't add iran and/or N korea to the list.

Monash
21 Dec 14,, 14:23
More likely, articles of surrender... At least until the various naval treaties were signed. The US controlled UK access to credit, raw materials and food. A pissed off US without the naval treaties beats the UK in very short order.

The reason the UK wanted the London and Washington Naval treaties was to head off a brand new battleship arms race they could not win. They were exhausted by WWI and could not match US financial or production resources. By the time the Versailles treaty was signed the US had 22 Dreadnoughts. 14 of them were super-dreanoughts, and had 10 more super dreadnoughts and 6 super battle cruisers were under construction. The Royal navy had 32 dreadnoughts but only 11 were true super dreadnoughts, 11 were intermediate and none of them had transoceanic range. They had no new battleships under construction. They had 12 battlecruisers, only 1 of them a super battle cruiser and no new ones on the slips. By 1924 it would have been USN- 31/21 dreadnoughts and 6 super battle cruisers vs RN- 32/11/11 dreadnoughts and 11/1 battle cruisers.

RN superiority was doomed without another expensive ship building race the UK could not afford. Not only numbers though, most US ships could sail in excess of 10,000 miles. Few British ships could. US ships could set out and shut down the global commerce the UK depended on and the RN could not stop them. The RN depended on coaling stations that would have been both incredibly exposed to USMC raids and unable to provide the fuel oil the best British ships needed.

The naval treaties saved the UK.

Z, will be off line for a while so I will go into more detail when I return (assuming I remember of course) however:

- Correct me if I'm wrong but immediately prior to the outbreak of WW!! GB still had the largest navy in the world (not large enough to cover all the commitments that would eventuate during that war by any means) but still the largest pre-war navy.
- Every Government of the day wanted the Washington Treaty (they all signed it) their Admirals not withstanding or course. The Great Depression had crippled the global economy and all nations were looking to reduce expenditure. So yes US Naval supremacy might have been 'doomed' if the US had continued it's build up but the short answer is it didn't - and for the same reasons as everyone else the kitty was running on empty. So while the the US might have been able to to continue with their program more than GB could it didn't mean they were willing to.
- GB was also in full transition to fuel oil by the end of WW1. (I think the Queen Elizabeth Class were the first all fuel oil capital ships in the fleet starting from 1913/14?) They continued this process through the interwar years -to the extent that by WW11 coaling stations were no longer a significant consideration by the the start of hostilities;
- by default GB had a chain of naval stations across the globe and an Empire to sustain those bases, making it very hard for the US to knock out its ability to resupply, repair and refit in preparation for naval offensives at the time and place of its choosing. Those stations located in the major ports of the dominion would in turn be defended by (in many cases large numbers) of Commonwealth troops
- the Entente Cordiale would ensure the British Isles resupply across the channel even if the US were to blockade the Atlantic and Mediterranean approaches to the GB Isles.
- lastly I am not suggesting the U.S would lose such a hypothetical conflict, nor am I suggesting it would win. Just that the scale and complexities of the problems faced by both sides, using only the forces historically available to them in the period concerned makes the outcome much less clear cut than you seem to predict.

And this doesn't even take into account the political and economic interests on both sides of the Atlantic working to avoid any conflicts between the two Great powers of the time. As an aside I believe Imperial Germany actually drafted a war Plan for an attack of the US Atlantic Coast early int he 20th century only to scrap the whole idea based on the likelihood that:
A) The US would eventually mobilize sufficient military reserves to drive off the limited number of German troops that could be landed; and
B) The fact that the British Navy would almost certainly intervene on the side of the US meaning the German navy would get reamed by the combined actions of both navies.

Cheers for now and have a great Xmas.

GVChamp
21 Dec 14,, 16:38
Jason,

Are you shitting me? Do you understand the implications of the 1979 Sino-VN War? And the result of Deng's visit?

Deng played us ... to our benefit. Within 2 weeks of Deng visiting the US, he destroyed the Soviet's southern flank to China ... with our blessings!
Not really the unique result of aggressive Presidential action, as far as I can tell.

Even the Camp David Accords aren't really the result of any particular genius on Carter's part: Carter wanted a huge multi-lateral agreement that would bring peace to the entire Middle East. Egypt and Israel resoundingly agreed that Carter was a moron and they would start negotiating peace between themselves.

Now that's not giving Carter enough credit: he's a great peacemaker! He had a relentless drive to do SOMETHING and achieve SOMETHING that bordered on obsessive.

But his actual idea of a huge peace conference was ridiculous.

Albany Rifles
21 Dec 14,, 20:01
Z,

Really!?!?

The Marshall Plan flew in the face of what the Unite States had done in every single war in our history. We reached out and helped our allies AND our adversaries after the war get back on their collective fleet. When had we ever done that? When had ANY nation state done that?

Truman also DEMANDED that Berlin be supported....in the face of the isolationists led by Taft...guaranteeing that city would stay in 4 power status...allowing Kennedy & Reagan to alter make their points there.

Huge game changer.

I also left out that Truman recognized the state of Israel...against the express wishes of most of our allies.

Truman used the United Nations time and again to the West's advantage...not just for our advantage. Again, a major first. And he used the UN to gather a coalition which faced down Communist expansion in Korea.

Without Kennedy standing at Brandenburg Gate and linking the US....AND NATO inexorably to the survival of Wdst Berlin as a West German city...Reagan never would have been able to admonish Gorbachev 25 years later.

So Camp David no big deal, huh?

It ended 34 years of continuous combat between the primary adversaries in the Arab-Israeli wars. How many wars facing trans-Arab armies has Israel had to fight since? It changed the dynamic in the Middle East. It allowed the Saudis and the Emirates to use their national armies to fight fellow Arabs (see Iraq in 1991). It also allowed Jordan to normalize relations becaus eit showed all the Arab nations that while it may take awhile negotiations were doable with Israel.

Oh, he also committed US ground troops to keep the peace. Ever hear of the MFO? And they are still there.

Carter abandoned the "shuttle diplomacy" and committed his administration to multi-lateral negotiations which eventually bore fruit.

As for the Dayton Accords, again the US committed US ground troops into an entirely new area in Eastern Europe for the first time in the post-Cold War era. What resulted was the Balkans, an area which had real possibility of splintering off into a spread of fighting to rival what happened post 1914. The bottomline is that the killing stopped...which no one else was able to accomplish...Brits, French, NATO (with apologies to OOE), Russians. When the 1st Armored Division crossed the Sava River...huge game changer.

So, Z, I am sorry but I just don't buy your backhanded dismissal of these events.

Each was a game changer and saw the United States fundamentally take a different tack than it had in our history....with wide-ranging international implications.

GVChamp
22 Dec 14,, 01:07
None of those are major breaks from US history, the result of unique Presidential action, or even game-changers.

The Marshall Plan wasn't Truman's idea. Every major US official thought the plan to dismember Germany was pants-on-head retarded. It isn't even really new, just a continuation of American Idealism in place since Wilson's 14 points. It's not even the first time we tried to help out Germany, see the Young Plan and the Dawes Plan.

Recognizing Israel is not really that big of a deal, in terms of how the Cold War will eventually play out and end. All that changes is that the Jews are an oppressed minority like the Kurds or the Yazdi or the Coptics or the Palestinians. The US and the USSR are still going to pay people to shoot at each other. If anything, the lack of Israel existing makes it that much harder for the Soviets to penetrate the region, since the Suez Crisis was the initial catalyst for Soviet influence in that area.

The Camp David Accords are somewhat more relevant, because it's much later in the game, but Carter didn't cause that. He wanted a huge multi-lateral peace conference. The Egyptians and Israelis themselves wanted to make peace, Carter just facilitated. Granted, that's really, REALLY understating his role, because playing mediator in that conflict is NOT easy, but it wasn't his bright idea to suddenly make peace in the Middle East and he didn't suddenly come up with a dramatic new way to make it happen, all by his lonesome.
And Egypt-Israel peace is NOT a big ticket Cold War item. Does it move Egypt out of the Soviet camp? Yes....okay...so what happens if Egypt stays in the Soviet camp? Israel fights another war in the 1980s and smashes the Arabs again, the Saudis still dump a whole lot of oil on the market and the Soviets still get bankrupt. America still saves the day and the Cold War ends, it just ends with the Middle East in shittier shape than it otherwise would be.
But that's still a small ticket item. It's not Berlin, it's not Cuba, it's not Turkey, and it sure as hell isn't opening up China. The Soviets did not put 50 divisions to their south because they were concerned about the horrible threat from the few million Jews living a thousand miles away from them.

Dayton falls in the same camp: irrelevant, small change, incremental.

Honestly, I think Cuba falls in the same camp too, along with most of Obama's foreign policy: irrelevant, small change, incremental. Bush II had an absolutely transformative way of looking at the world and wanted to make it happen.

I think Zraver's right on this one, post-war Democrats tend to be less dynamic on the FP front than post-war Republicans. Wilson and FDR are totally different beasts, might as well compare Obama to Bismarck or Hercules.

zraver
22 Dec 14,, 01:09
Albany, as important as those events were (and I'm not dismissing their importance) they were not 180 changes in policy. As for helping our former enemies... US loan guarantees floated the Weimar Republic. The Marhsal Plan was historic, but not out of character.

Monash, I wasn't talking WWII but the fleets as they existed and were planned from 1918-25. So why the QE's had been oil fired, the majority of the fleet was coal or oil sprayed coal where the bulk of the US fleet was oil. Without access to coaling/ fuel oil stations the RN of 1918 time period is a regional power regardless of how many ships it has. The RN not only eviscerated its capitol ship building program in order to make escorts during the war, but post war it lacked the money to resume the construction. From 1916-1923 the RN built 15 capitol ships. The US built (or was building) 24. So if the Washington Treaty talks had broken down, the resulting naval arms race would ahve seriously favored the US over the UK in the Atlantic.

Albany Rifles
22 Dec 14,, 15:39
Z,

Loan gurantees is one thing. American troops and straight cash allotments is something totally different.

Oh, and we gave to the Japanese as well.

I know about the Dawes Plan...but the Dawes Plan was how to deal with reparations. The Marshall Plan repudiated reparations, a basic fundamental in post-war outcomes for centirues, and instead instuted a totally new approach.

The Dawes Plan was how to mitigate a punishment. The Marshall Plan was how to get Europe, as well as our adversaries, back on their feet so they would not longer be adversaries.

It may have been a continuation of ideas...but Truman's Administration put it into practical effect, and stayed the hand of further damage to the German economy by stopping the European Allies, priamrily the French, with the Petersburg Agreement, which set the framework for the Bonn-Paris Conventions.

Without the Truman Doctrine, Marshall Plan and Petersburg Agreemnt, you don;t get there.

And the US had NEVER been that involved in our history to that level to aid Allies as well as a former foe.

zraver
23 Dec 14,, 00:57
Sir, agree to dissagree that they were 180 degree departures. The Dawes Plan was modified by the Young plan... supported by John Foster Dulles who helped craft the preamble of the UN Charter. I say this to point out that on both sides of the aisle there was a belief of magnanimity in victory. Likely caused idealization of Appomattox. Kindness in victory while not uniquely American is a particular American trait going back to at least 1865.

gunnut
23 Dec 14,, 02:33
I find it interesting that everyone here, conservative, liberal, centrist, pragmatist, democrat, republican, independent, military, civilian, US, non-US, almost down to a man (and woman) supports opening relations with Cuba.

Just about every single poster from gun forum that I visit was opposed to normalize relations with Cuba. There were a few for it, but they were far out-numbered by those who oppose.

Julie
23 Dec 14,, 03:05
I find it interesting that everyone here, conservative, liberal, centrist, pragmatist, democrat, republican, independent, military, civilian, US, non-US, almost down to a man (and woman) supports opening relations with Cuba.

Just about every single poster from gun forum that I visit was opposed to normalize relations with Cuba. There were a few for it, but they were far out-numbered by those who oppose.In comparison with other countries the US has relations with, Cuba is none the worse. I think it will be nice to have relations with a country that has less oil and drama for a change. And in agreement with Yello, their cigars are one of a kind. :biggrin:
:

cataphract
23 Dec 14,, 03:06
I find it interesting that everyone here, conservative, liberal, centrist, pragmatist, democrat, republican, independent, military, civilian, US, non-US, almost down to a man (and woman) supports opening relations with Cuba.

Just about every single poster from gun forum that I visit was opposed to normalize relations with Cuba. There were a few for it, but they were far out-numbered by those who oppose.

What are the arguments in opposition of normalized ties with Cuba? Even the most conservative Americans can see that the embargo hasn't had the intended effect.

GVChamp
23 Dec 14,, 04:32
What are the arguments in opposition of normalized ties with Cuba? Even the most conservative Americans can see that the embargo hasn't had the intended effect.

The embargo is underrated. We demonstrated clearly the cost of popular revolution in the Post-War era and the cost of allying to the Soviet Union. The combination of the America embargo and economic mismanagement turned the Carribean's most prosperous economy into a shit-hole. After the collapse of the USSR, the ensuing "Special Period" basically meant total ruin for the Cuban economy.

That's actual a very useful tool for certain aspects of Latin American policy: keep a lid on domestic discontent or you'll end up like Guatemala or Cuba. And definitely, definitely, definitely don't ally with the Soviets, or even make us THINK you're allying with the Soviets, because we will RUIN you.

As for maintaining the embargo: I think it's pointless now. We have bigger fish to fry and it's more important for US-Latin American nations to cooperate than to brutally protect our sphere of influence. Different ball-game now. However, I think Americans vastly overestimate the productive value of our culture and liberal values in general. I think the idea that we will conquer the world with McDonald's will eventually come back to bite us in the ass, as cultures turn their nose up at our obese, 30% high school dropout, lolcatz loving culture.

gunnut
23 Dec 14,, 05:19
What are the arguments in opposition of normalized ties with Cuba? Even the most conservative Americans can see that the embargo hasn't had the intended effect.

The argument FOR embargo is that we should not recognize the legitimacy of the Castros. They are evil men and should be punished. Legitimizing them is a slap to the face of those whom he victimized.

gunnut
23 Dec 14,, 05:23
The embargo is underrated. We demonstrated clearly the cost of popular revolution in the Post-War era and the cost of allying to the Soviet Union. The combination of the America embargo and economic mismanagement turned the Carribean's most prosperous economy into a shit-hole. After the collapse of the USSR, the ensuing "Special Period" basically meant total ruin for the Cuban economy.

That's actual a very useful tool for certain aspects of Latin American policy: keep a lid on domestic discontent or you'll end up like Guatemala or Cuba. And definitely, definitely, definitely don't ally with the Soviets, or even make us THINK you're allying with the Soviets, because we will RUIN you.

As for maintaining the embargo: I think it's pointless now. We have bigger fish to fry and it's more important for US-Latin American nations to cooperate than to brutally protect our sphere of influence. Different ball-game now. However, I think Americans vastly overestimate the productive value of our culture and liberal values in general. I think the idea that we will conquer the world with McDonald's will eventually come back to bite us in the ass, as cultures turn their nose up at our obese, 30% high school dropout, lolcatz loving culture.

The problem with embargo is it usually punishes the people at the bottom, the most helpless and the least involved.

Those at the top are not seriously affected. They still hold the power of life and death over those at the bottom. They still enjoy all the goods and services smuggled to them via black market. Think Kim Jung Un can't watch Youtube or browse this forum? Fidel still has his Mercedes.

Meanwhile, their people, whom we hope would rise up and remove these evil people, were starved to the point of incapable of offering a fight, and taught that their plight was due to the evil American imperialism.

The embargo usually has the desired effect, except the exact opposite result.

Monash
23 Dec 14,, 06:18
I find it interesting that everyone here, conservative, liberal, centrist, pragmatist, democrat, republican, independent, military, civilian, US, non-US, almost down to a man (and woman) supports opening relations with Cuba.

Just about every single poster from gun forum that I visit was opposed to normalize relations with Cuba. There were a few for it, but they were far out-numbered by those who oppose.

As I have commented on before this may be because many involved in the firearms politics in the US view all significant government policy decisions through the narrow lense of firearms politics I.e. liberals want to restrict my access to firearms so any policy that advances the cause of 'liberalism' must be bad while anything decision that advances conservatism is 'good'.

Triple C
23 Dec 14,, 06:37
An embargo now serves what purpose? Cuba hasn't been a threat to U.S. national security for quite some time and as it is now, isn't any more odious than many countries US does business with, and much better than some.

GVChamp
23 Dec 14,, 11:40
The problem with embargo is it usually punishes the people at the bottom, the most helpless and the least involved.

Those at the top are not seriously affected. They still hold the power of life and death over those at the bottom. They still enjoy all the goods and services smuggled to them via black market. Think Kim Jung Un can't watch Youtube or browse this forum? Fidel still has his Mercedes.

Meanwhile, their people, whom we hope would rise up and remove these evil people, were starved to the point of incapable of offering a fight, and taught that their plight was due to the evil American imperialism.

The embargo usually has the desired effect, except the exact opposite result.

I don't buy this narrative. Cuba is not North Korea. Cuba is probably wealthier than most of Syria and Ukraine, for instance. We didn't starve them out of existence, and Cuba is free to trade with practically any of the other 200+ nations in the world.

Castro absolutely did have an iron grip on the nation, but expecting that to suddenly go away because we started trading with them is a little naïve. Decades of free trade haven't changed China, it just gives the Chinese more weapons to point at US carriers. Free trade is not a substitute for actual diplomacy.

The actual benefit is allowing more Cuban-Americans to go back to Cuba, but right now travel restrictions aren't lifted. Also, remittance payments will become a huge part of the Cuban economy, which gives the US some more leverage in future crises: we can always turn off the remittance payments and put future Cuban governments in quite a pickle.

Vargas
03 Apr 15,, 23:12
I think the ones who lose with the new opening of relations are only the privileged class of Cuba...
A big part of what allowed the regime to last until now was the tread of an American invasion, was to appeal to nationalism against the "liberal imperialist beast represented by the United States".
When I mean liberal, I am not using the American meaning of the word, that basically means someone with progressive left ideals, but how the rest of the world views the word "liberal".
Now that they don't have that power anymore, to appeal to patriotism and nationalism, a lot of the legitimacy of the Communist regime there faded away with the struck of a pen.