Tags: Castro-Cuba | Exclusive Interviews | MidPoint | Carlos Perez

Ex-Reagan Cuba Adviser: Obama's Timing Is 'the Worst'

By    |   Wednesday, 17 December 2014 04:38 PM

By normalizing relations, President Barack Obama has just thrown a lifeline to Cuba's flailing dictatorship instead of exploiting the island nation's desperate economic situation to extract meaningful concessions on human rights, a former Cuba adviser to President Ronald Reagan told Newsmax TV on Wednesday.

"We're getting in bed with a Stalinist regime, a communist regime," and at the worst possible moment because the U.S. negotiating position would have been strengthened by waiting even just a few months, Miami talk radio personality Carlos Perez told "MidPoint" host Ed Berliner.

Story continues below video.


Note: Watch Newsmax TV now on DIRECTV Ch. 349 and DISH Ch. 223
Get Newsmax TV on your cable system – Click Here Now

Under a deal announced by President Barack Obama on Wednesday, the two estranged countries will exchange prisoners and re-open their respective embassies — shuttered since not long after communists led by Fidel Castro overthrew Cuba's U.S. backed-government in 1959 and allied with the Soviet Union.

The longtime U.S. economic embargo against the neighboring island remains in place, but Obama said that he hopes to see Congress begin talks to lift it, and that in the meantime he will ease various travel, commercial and financial restrictions dating back more than 50 years.

Perez said the timing is terrible because Cuba's economy is being squeezed by a global plunge in oil prices that has left Cuba's allies and financial supporters — in particular Venezuela and Russia — less able to subsidize the Cuban economy.

By coming to Cuba's aid, the U.S. is simultaneously handing Cuba's Castro regime a "propaganda victory" and taking financial pressure off Cuban allies who are themselves hostile to U.S. interests, he said.

Perez cited Venezuela as one example, saying: "Venezuela is on the verge of bankruptcy, and this is the worst moment for President Obama to negotiate. He should have waited, because you don't negotiate with a communist regime and a Stalinist regime in this particular situation.

"What do we get out of this negotiation? The release of Alan Gross?" said Perez, referring to an imprisoned American aid worker who was exchanged in the deal for three convicted Cuban spies.

"This is not a negotiation," he said.

Story continues below video.



Perez acknowledged that a half-century of diplomatic and economic isolation did not dislodge Fidel Castro or his brother and successor Raul Castro, and he said he is "not against lifting the embargo in some way."

"But in order to do that, you have to receive something [in return]," said Perez. "And this is the something that I don't see in this negotiation. This is … a one-sided negotiation."

Some in Washington are also attacking the deal — negotiated in secret over the last 18 months — as a giveaway to the country's regime for few, if any, tangible concessions on political liberties, freedom of the press and human rights.

While the president described the deal as a step toward greater political and economic openness in Cuba, Perez said that, in fact, the Cuban government is soliciting U.S. aid in order to maintain its grip on power.

He asked why the administration didn't demand a free press and free enterprise as a condition of re-establishing relations.

Perez said that in Miami, the heart of America's expatriate Cuban community and home to thousands of exiles, "people are very upset for a reason."

"After 55-plus years, after so many crimes and people killed by this regime … to receive life support from this government is unbelievable," he said.

© 2019 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Newsmax-Tv
President Barack Obama has just thrown a lifeline to Cuba's flailing dictatorship instead of exploiting the island nation's desperate economic situation to extract meaningful concessions on human rights, a former Cuba adviser to President Ronald Reagan told Newsmax TV on Wednesday.
Carlos Perez
581
2014-38-17
Wednesday, 17 December 2014 04:38 PM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved