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Fri Dec 19, 2014, 08:06 PM

Cubans look to future with optimism in wake of historic breakthrough

Source: The Guardian

One of Hermania’s Arufat’s fondest memories of her childhood in pre-revolutionary Cuba is of waiting at the ferry port for her mother to arrive back from the United States, bearing – as she always did – a handful of gifts.

More than half a century on, the 70-year old retired librarian is now lining up outside the US consulate in Havana, trying to get the first of what she hopes will be many visas – a prospect that she believes had been enhanced thanks to this week’s announcement that the two Cold War enemies are normalising relations.

“It’s wonderful news. We are very excited”, she said, sitting on the wall of a crumbling art-deco residence with her documents in hand. “It should make life easier. Perhaps the ferry services will start again. I’m hoping I can follow my mother and come and go all the time”.

<snip>

Among the biggest hopes, particularly among young Cubans, is a more open and cheaper Internet service. In recent years, the government has relaxed restrictions on computer ownership and allowed “Internet rooms” to do business, but low coverage and high charges mean that most of the population is still excluded. The cheapest service is $5 an hour.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/dec/19/cubans-future-castro-us-foreign-policy-optimism



Regarding the internet service in Cuba: I sent my daughter and sister to Cuba two years ago on holiday. Their only complaint about the entire trip (which they raved about) was the lack of decent internet service.

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Reply Cubans look to future with optimism in wake of historic breakthrough (Original post)
inanna Dec 2014 OP
inanna Dec 2014 #1
okaawhatever Dec 2014 #2

Response to inanna (Original post)

Fri Dec 19, 2014, 09:44 PM

1. Canadian expat tells of Cuba’s euphoria after U.S. ‘game changer’ (Globe & Mail)

This week is not one Gregory Biniowsky will ever forget.

The Canadian lawyer has lived in Havana for 23 years, a place where hope has regularly ebbed and flowed on expectations the United States would restore relations with the Caribbean island.

<snip>

The significance of the dramatic announcement go beyond relations between the U.S. and its much smaller next-door neighbour. Smoothing ties with Cuba will improve U.S. ties with Latin America as a whole, a region that long urged the U.S. to end its trade embargo. And it will have ripple effects on Canada’s long-standing relationship with the island, opening up both business opportunities and more competition, along with big changes in a favoured Canadian holiday destination.

“Across the political spectrum, from stalwart supporters of the Cuban revolution to intelligent opponents of the system, everybody is very happy,” Mr. Biniowsky said in a phone interview. “It’s not difficult to pick up on the extreme significance of it.”

Link: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/canadian-expat-tells-of-cubas-euphoria-after-us-game-changer/article22169277/?cmpid=rss1

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Response to inanna (Original post)

Sat Dec 20, 2014, 01:27 AM

2. Love all the good news coming out of Obama's move. nt

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