The framing of Cuba's protests and economic problems being a result of the U.S. trade embargo "is all lies" and a communist regime "weapon to control people into compliance," Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., said Tuesday on Newsmax.
"There is no embargo on the Cuban people; if the Cuban people were allowed to freely commerce and open independent businesses, they could [thrive]," Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants, told Newsmax's "Spicer & Co." "The only embargo is on companies owned and controlled by the Cuban military. They just happen to own everything, because they are Marxists, because they are socialists.
"And Marxism is about control. It isn't about prosperity. It isn't about security. It isn't about being better off. It's about dividing people and controlling them."
A passionate Rubio told Spicer and co-host Lyndsay Keith that "lives have been destroyed by socialism," a truth the Cuban regime is too "embarrassed to admit."
"Marxism divides people, and then it pits them against each other, and then it says, 'only government can solve it; give us the power, give us your freedom, and we'll provide security,'" Rubio said.
"You never get security, and you never get your freedom back either."
The Obama administration's opening up of tourism only "emboldened" and enriched the communist government of Cuba, but it was not shared with the Cuban people, Rubio stressed.
"What people don't understand is, we can decide to open up all we want, it's the Cuban regime that allows how much of that opening they allow in," he continued, noting the government enriched itself with then-President Barack Obama's move.
"So they said, 'thank you for sending us tourists in the Obama opening. They have to go to the hotels that we control and we own. Thank you for allowing more money to be sent to family members. We're going to take a 10% cut, and then we're going to force it to become a local currency so we can keep the dollars for ourselves and use it in our stockpile and for our purchases."
It still comes down to the control of Marxism and socialism of their economic experiment, which has always failed in world history, capitalists argue.
"That regime cannot allow the Cuban people to have prosperity," Rubio said. "They cannot allow an opening to benefit the Cuban people, because the day the Cuban people can provide food for their own families and not have to rely on the government, they lose control over them."
The anti-Cuba protesters in the streets were not asking that the U.S. embargo be lifted, Rubio noted. Rather, that was the pro-communist government backers, who he said are enticed to comply on the false promise of a better life under communism.
"And that's why the people on the street aren't chanting for the end of the embargo," Rubio concluded. "They're chanting 'libertad,' which means 'liberty.'
"They know this is all lies and want an end to it."
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