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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 04:18 PM
Original message
US Travel to Cuba Spikes to More Than 1,000 Daily
Source: Reuters

US Travel to Cuba Spikes to More Than 1,000 Daily
Published: Monday, 6 Dec 2010 | 2:27 PM ET
By: Reuters

More than 1,000 travelers from the United States are arriving every day in Cuba on average, most of Cuban origin, making Havana's long-time foe its second source of visitors after Canada, travel industry and diplomatic sources said on Monday.

U.S. charter companies flying to the Communist-ruled island say business has boomed since President Barack Obama's administration lifted restrictions last year on Cuban-Americans visiting their homeland, and also loosened curbs on academic, religious, cultural and other professional travel.

U.S. citizens are forbidden from traveling to Cuba without their government's permission under a wide-ranging U.S. trade embargo on the island imposed nearly five decades ago.

"There is a huge increase this year compared with 2009," said Armando Garcia, president of Marazul Charters, the oldest of a growing number of companies chartering flights to Cuba.



Read more: http://www.cnbc.com//id/40533574
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Xenotime Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 04:21 PM
Response to Original message
1. Sounds like GitMo is still open.
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saigon68 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 05:12 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. Lots of hungry people starving in amerika
Spending millions on Gitmo
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boppers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 05:17 PM
Response to Reply #1
6. Gitmo's been there since 1898.
It's not going anywhere any time soon.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guantanamo_Bay_Naval_Base
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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-10-10 01:14 AM
Response to Reply #6
15. It should be GONE...
Edited on Fri Dec-10-10 01:15 AM by ProudDad
It's a hypocritical abomination for the USAmerikan Empire to have a base on the island of Cuba :puke:
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Violet_Crumble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 04:46 PM
Response to Original message
2. Putting aside the lack of freedom Americans have had when it comes to travel...
...I take it the US govt in its infinite wisdom and respect for freedom of movement, still bans non-US citizens from travelling from the US to Cuba? I find the whole thing so utterly ridiculous. I'm lucky. If I want to go have a holiday in Cuba, my govt quite rightly doesn't stop me from doing so :)
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Yep, you've got that right, Violet Crumble. Not one person from the US who is NOT Cuban is allowed
to travel there legally without the government's permission.

Long ago, the F.B.I. started haunting Canadian airports, watching the flights, checking passenger manifests, pulling people aside, questioning them, etc. because they had learned Americans have been going to third countries and flying to Cuba from there.

I read at least 10 years ago that Canadian airport employees are totally disgusted by this imperious practice of attempting to commandeer their own country's business this way. It's an insult.

It's also a colossal insult to ordinary US citizens. I am convinced they don't want US citizens getting a chance to see how much different things are in Cuba from the propagandistic drool they've been feeding the public in order to keep fanning the fires of erroneous hatred in case they need public support in some future attack on the island, betraying the promise they made in the 1960's to never invade Cuba again. We know how much honor means anymore. They need to keep the US public misinformed, and delusional in case they need them for support in some future aggression against the people of Cuba in order to re-seize their government and return it to the puppet dictatorship the people overthrew.
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peachykeen Donating Member (10 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 05:16 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. travelers insulted
I agree it is an insult. What is it like there vs the propaganda?

If it is for a future attack, why only Cuba be targeted with a travel ban?
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 05:26 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. It is a truly wonderful place
Trust me on that.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 05:42 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. You'd better go back to see Cuba before they drop the travel ban and everyone from the US tries
to get into Cuba at the same time! A reverse, and loud, obnoxious, Mariel Boatlift!
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:13 AM
Response to Reply #9
13. Yes - a reverse Mariel Boatlift
:rofl:
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peachykeen Donating Member (10 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 06:33 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. Please elaborate.
I've never been and would love to hear more about it. When were you there? What did you like about it? What were the unexpected surprises? What aspects don't match what we hear about it in the US?
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:12 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. I cannot comment
on the tripe you hear about Cuba in the US. The reality is a beautiful and friendly country where , yes , at present everyone is employed by the Communist state resulting is many of the people being poor but overall contented. Things will start to change next year with the advent of small private enterprises becomimg legal. They have no great love for the US contributed to by the perstistence of the embargo - the same cannot be said for Canada , the EU and China all of whom they love.

Oil discoveries within their own International waters both between Cuba and Florida and also in the Caribbean Sea should be of significant benefit to them in terms of their currency reserves. I would think China will do the drilling for them.

Looking back it would seem that Ernesto aka Che was correct in his belief right back in the sixties that they should've gone with China in the first place : not the USSR whose ultimate demise he predicted.
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 05:24 PM
Response to Original message
7. Can always turn up by sea ,
report at a harbour and after exchange of pleasantries, a brief search to ensure you're trying to import sat navs whatever, and purchase of a visitors card they just let you in according to what I was told there.

"Normal" Americans are probably much more welcome there than that bunch of nut jobs in Miami.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-06-10 06:09 PM
Response to Reply #7
10. Here's a story I read years ago about 2 US citizens whose boat needed repairs in Cuba,
who had to fight for their lives legally in the US when they got back:

VICTORIES VS. THE TRAVEL BAN

~snip~
Kip (73) and Patrick (58) Taylor of Michigan sailed to Cuba in 1996. Knowing that U.S. law prohibited spending money in Cuba, the Taylors stocked their sailboat with enough provisions to last for the duration of their three-month trip. While sailing back to Florida, their boat was caught in a storm and struck by lightning, destroying their mast. After being rescued by the Cuban Coast Guard, the boat was towed back to Cuba. When the Taylors applied to the U.S. Treasury Department for permission to repair it, they were told to abandon their boat and leave their two dogs in Cuba. After weeks of attempting to negotiate, and unwilling to leave behind their dogs and a sailboat worth more than the costs of repairs, the Taylors fixed their boat mostly by themselves and with the help of visiting sailors who donated parts.

Upon their return to the U.S., the Taylors faced a civil charges from OFAC for disclosing that they gave a band-aid to a Cuban cook who had hurt his finger. They were charged with providing "nursing services to a Cuban national," which is forbidden under the embargo. For the next four and a half years, the Taylors, who are on a fixed income, were unsuccessful in requesting a hearing or a reduction of the penalty. In 2001, the government froze Patrick Taylor's tax refund, which he needed to pay for urgent medical care, and applied it to his fine. In 2003, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) filed suit claiming that the Taylors were unfairly penalized under the Cuba embargo regulations. Lawyers also say the two were not informed of their Fifth Amendment rights which protect them from self incrimination. The suit was eventually settled.More:
http://www.righttotraveltocuba.org/defending/victories_...
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-09-10 09:09 PM
Response to Original message
14. Comments on Cuba's strong aid to Haiti:
Edited on Thu Dec-09-10 09:14 PM by Judi Lynn
CARICOM, Cuba relationship strong
12/10/2010
By Allison Ramsay

Today, the value of the relationship between the Caribbean Community and Cuba is stronger than it has ever been due largely to Cubas unwavering commitment to the countries of the community.

That is according to Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, as she delivered remarks at the Cuba-CARICOM Day celebration at the Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination on Wednesday night.

In this regard, Cuba has encouraged the establishment of bi-lateral joint commissions with individual member states through which co-operation in the form of technical assistance programmes in ... agriculture, science and technology, tourism and disaster management is channelled. This assistance has proved invaluable to the human and social development of our region, said Minister McClean.

As she noted Cubas assistance to Haiti, a country that is still suffering the effects of Januarys earthquake, the Senator noted that Cuba has remained committed to Caribbean development even while the attention of the international community has already been forced away to address other disasters.

More:
http://www.barbadosadvocate.com/newsitem.asp?more=local...
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