Brief: An Opening for Colombia and Cuba?

An ambassador warned Colombia of a coming militant attack.

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Background: Cuba’s position in the Gulf of Mexico and proximity to the Florida coast has always made the island a strategic benefit when the U.S. controlled it and a strategic liability when it didn’t. As the Cuban missile crisis perhaps best exemplified, it is an attractive partner for Washington’s rivals. Throughout the Cold War, the government in Havana supported militant revolutionary groups throughout Latin America. To some degree it still does, though its role in this regard has been diminished. What Happened: On Monday, Colombia’s defense minister said that Cuba’s ambassador to Colombia had warned that the National Liberation Army, the paramilitary organization better known as the ELN, would attack Bogota in the coming days. The ambassador submitted a document saying outright that the information had been received by the Cuban Embassy but had not been verified. The warning comes days after Cuba announced plans to open up its economy’s private, self-employment sector, part of the government’s larger efforts to revitalize the country’s economy. Local residents have expressed their skepticism of the changes, noting that more thorough reforms are needed for small and medium-sized companies and saying the government was still the main obstacle to economic recovery. Bottom Line: The […]

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