On Wednesday, President Barack Obama announced renewed diplomatic ties with the communist regime of Cuba, with the reopening of Cuban embassies in Washington and Havana for the first time in more than 50 years. U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, reacted to the deal, which he has long warned was a terrible idea.
Royce issued the following statement:
Establishing full diplomatic relations with Cuba is consistent with President Obama’s record of being out-negotiated by authoritarian and anti-American regimes. Since December’s announcement, we’ve seen no real progress on human rights for the Cuban people, or the settling of property claims.
Unfortunately, the Obama Administration has given no indication that it would use an Embassy in Havana to press to protect the Cuban worker whose wages are taken by the Castro regime to finance its continued repression of the Cuban people, while lining the pockets of Communist Party officials.
The secret negotiations that fell so short of achieving long-standing and important U.S. policy objectives should have been ended. If this is how the White House negotiated with the desperate Cuban leadership, the American people should be deeply concerned with its ongoing nuclear negotiations with Iran’s aggressive Ayatollah.
This past December, Royce weighed in on Obama’s decision to coordinate the release of three Cuban spies in exchange for U.S. aid worker Alan Gross, suggesting it signaled a “disturbing trend” under the Obama Administration, in which there are increased negotiations with spies and terrorists for illusory gains.
Obama’s deep concessions to Cuba reflect perceived failure in Iranian nuclear negotiations, where the U.S. has made numerous concessions to the Iranian regime merely to prolong the talks, and without achieving the goal of preventing Iran’s emergence as a nuclear power.