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A Cuban Conundrum

The Contradictions in Washington's Relations With Havana

A man hangs Cuban flags on a building near the U.S embassy (not pictured) in Havana, Cuba, August 11, 2015. Alexandre Meneghini / Reuters

At the new Cuban and U.S. embassies in Washington and Havana, the flags of each respective country are now waving in the muggy August air. On July 20, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez inaugurated the island’s restored diplomatic mission on northwest 16th Street by throwing a party and giving a speech. In a reciprocal affair on August 14, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry raised the stars and stripes over Havana’s northern shore. Still recovering from a broken femur, Kerry passed on the chance to learn the guachineoan animated line dance that is the latest craze among Cuban youth.

With that same energy, American travelers, businessmen, and media impresarios have descended upon Cuba in the wake of U.S. President Barack Obama’s partial loosening of travel and trade restrictions. Since 2009, Cuban Americans have been able to travel and send remittances fairly freely. Then, in 2011, the

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