The UN is at it again, blaming the US for all the problems in Cuba because of our embargo with the communist country. As they do every year, they condemn the embargo with a resolution. And as we do almost every year (thanks Obama), we vote against the resolution.
This year Nikki Haley condemned the entire UN for such a despicable resolution, saying the US would not back down from the embargo:
Here’s more from Fox News:
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Thursday pushed back against condemnation from the U.N. over the U.S. embargo against Cuba, criticizing the body for failing to condemn human rights abuses in the communist country, and promising that the U.S. “won’t back down” in its support for freedom in Cuba.
Haley spoke in the U.N. General Assembly on the second day of debate on a resolution calling for ending the U.S.’ economic, commercial and financial embargo against Cuba. The vote is now an annual tradition at the U.N., where Israel and the U.S. are the only countries to vote against the resolution. That tradition was repeated Thursday, where the resolution condemning the embargo passed 189-2 to applause from the chamber.
In her remarks ahead of the vote, coming after a lengthy list of speakers lined up to condemn the U.S., Haley said the resolution would not help a single Cuban family or feed one Cuban child, and defended the decades-long embargo.
“Our reason for the embargo is and has always been Cuba’s denial of freedom and the denial of the most basic of human rights for the Cuban people,” she said. “The United States will continue to stand with the Cuban people until their rights and their freedoms are restored. Period. We won’t back down.”
Haley also accused countries of acting from anti-U.S. bias rather than from concern for the Cuban people: “It’s one more time that countries feel they can poke the United States in the eye. But you’re not hurting the U.S. when you do this. You are literally hurting the Cuban people by telling the regime that their treatment of their people is acceptable.”
After the vote, Haley said that “there are no winners here today, only losers.”
“The U.N. has lost, it has rejected the opportunity to speak on behalf of human rights,” she said.
A state department official pointed out that our embargo isn’t an international embargo and doesn’t prevent Cuba from trading with whomever it chooses:
#Cuba is free to trade with any country. The U.S. embargo is not an international blockade. The Cuban government intentionally misrepresents the embargo as a #bloqueo and uses it as an excuse for its failed economic model. #UnblockCuba’s failed economy. #EmbargoFacts
— Kimberly Breier (@WHAAsstSecty) October 31, 2018
Yet we get blamed for Cuba’s poverty? It’s laughable.
This year, unlike previous years, the US actually introduced amendments that would call out Cuba’s human rights abuses. But only Israel and Ukraine supported them:
“This year, you will be asked to vote not just on the American embargo. You will be asked to also vote on Cuba’s political prisoners. You will be asked to vote on Cuba’s lack of freedom of expression. You will be asked to vote on Cuba’s oppression of workers,” Haley said. “This year, you have the opportunity to do something that will send an unmistakable message to the people of Cuba that the world is not ignoring their suffering.”
Those amendments, however, were overwhelmingly shot down. Only Ukraine voted in support of all the amendments with Israel and the U.S. Between 65 and 67 nations abstained, and the remaining countries voted against. The Canadian ambassador said its vote was not against the substance of the U.S. amendments but it was voting against them because the resolution was not “a suitable platform” to consider Cuba’s respect for its human rights obligations.
In the end, only the US and Israel voted against the resolution:
Today, We stood alongside the US and @nikkihaley when the UNGA convened to vote on Cuba's resolution to condemn the US embargo. #Israel was the only country to stand with the US in voting against the Cuba's attack on the Americans. Together, we fight for a safer and better world. pic.twitter.com/zi7RmmmpCy
— Ambassador Danon (@dannydanon) November 1, 2018
In very much related news, the Trump administration is putting new sanctions on Cuba, as well as Venezuela and Nicaragua:
U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton says Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua form a "troika of tyranny." He has announced new sanctions on Venezuela and Cuba and says there will be additional ones on Nicaragua. https://t.co/jGEf2yc8iK— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) November 1, 2018
The United States imposed new sanctions Thursday on Venezuela and Cuba and promised additional penalties against Nicaragua as the Trump administration laid out a hard-line policy toward countries the White House branded a “troika of tyranny.”
National security adviser John Bolton condemned what he called the “destructive forces of oppression, socialism and totalitarianism” that he said the three countries represent.
In a speech in Miami, home to thousands of exiles from Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua, Bolton said the U.S. “will no longer appease dictators and despots near our shores in this hemisphere.” He spoke at the Freedom Tower, an important local landmark to the Cuban community in South Florida.
The administration will prohibit U.S. citizens from involvement in the gold export trade from Venezuela. American officials have said Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro illegally exported at least 21 metric tons of gold to Turkey to avoid U.S. sanctions and to try to help rescue a collapsing economy once bolstered by vast oil reserves.
The U.S. government has sanctioned dozens of top Venezuelan officials, including Maduro, as part of economic measures designed at pressuring the South American country’s return to democracy.
Bolton blamed Cuba for enabling Maduro’s government and he urged the nations of the region to “let the Cuban regime know that it will be held responsible for continued oppression in Venezuela.”
In a clear contrast to the Cuban policy of the Obama administration, Bolton said the State Department added over two dozen entities owned or controlled by the Cuban military and intelligence services to a restricted list of entities with which financial transactions by U.S. persons are prohibited.
Bolton said the goal is to prevent dollars from reaching the Cuban military, security and intelligence services.