United States Severs Diplomatic Relations With Cuba - 1/3/1961

US History |

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There comes a time in a person’s life when a decision must be made to draw the figurative line in the sand. Once that step has been taken, any hesitation to not respond back appropriately is showing a side of weakness and that individual who crossed it immediately knows he/she can get away with anything. The stakes are even higher when this scenario plays out in the open world of politics. When that line in the sand is drawn and no appropriate response is taken, it sends a dangerous message that could endanger the lives of everyone involved. 

There have been many times throughout history where this has happened and one in particular occurred during the Cold War in the early part of the 60s. Relations between Fidel Castro’s government in Cuba and the United States had showed signs of deteriorating and in the climax of this, President Dwight D. Eisenhower decides to sever all diplomatic relations with them as the American embassy becomes closed in Havana.

The United States was signaling with the action they took that they were going to oppose Castro’s regime with extreme measures; officials from the U.S. was very concerned that his goal was to bring communism into the western hemisphere. The reason given for the immediate end of relations was the demand by Castro that the staff be reduced as accusations began to heat up from the government from Cuba that America was using as a base for spies their American embassy.

Since Castro had acquired control in early 1959, relations between Cuba and the United States had been on a steady decline. Soon, it became clear to U.S. officials that the government set up by Castro was too anti-American and could not be trusted; the fear was that Cuba would be turned into a communist bloc. Castro decided in early 1960 to sign with the Soviet Union a trade treaty which made Eisenhower’s administration to start training and financing a group of Cuban exiles to attempt to overthrow Castro. His response was to expand on his program of nationalizing foreign companies and property. This led to a response by the United States to start cutbacks regarding trade with Cuba. The break in diplomatic relations on January 3rd, 1961 was the culmination of what was a increasingly bitter event.

The end of American policy in an attempt to resolve with Castro’s government its differences using diplomacy happened once relations between the two were severed. President John F. Kennedy just two months later let loose the force of Cuban exiles that was created when Eisenhower was in office. Tragically, the result was a debacle forever known as the Bay of Pigs in which the military of Castro captured or murdered the exile troops. The relationship between Cuba and the United States became one of the chilliest during the Cold War era after the incident of the Bay of Pigs. Relations was not re-established again until over 50 years later until July of 2015 that both nations fully and formally normalized relations; this led to the opening of diplomatic missions and embassies in both countries as well as an easing of travel restrictions.

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Cody Cartier

The "Boss"

Cody is a native of Tampa Bay, Florida and lets it be known on a daily basis. Each day he is wearing some kind of Tampa Bay sports apparel, mainly that of the Buccaneers. He is a season ticket holder and hopes to one day see them make it back to the Super bowl. He started as our resident photographer, but has found that his talent lies in writing.