Kin-ming Liu at PostGlobal

Kin-ming Liu

Hong Kong

Former Washington-based columnist for The Hong Kong Standard, The New York Sun, and Insight on the News, an online weekly published by The Washington Times. Covered economic and political relations between the United States and East Asia, with an emphasis on China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Former chairman of the Hong Kong Journalists' Association. Currently a business executive at a Chinese-language newspaper in Hong Kong. Close.

Kin-ming Liu

Hong Kong

Former Washington-based columnist for The Hong Kong Standard, The New York Sun, and Insight on the News, an online weekly published by The Washington Times. more »

Main Page | Kin-ming Liu Archives | PostGlobal Archives


« Previous Post | Next Post »

Treat Cuba Like China

The Current Discussion: With Castro gone, will Cuba become America's 51st state?

With Castro gone, Cuba will not become America's 51st state. Washington, however, should try to achieve that, perhaps by lifting the trade embargo and extending a free trade agreement to Havana.

Economic liberalization will bring political liberation -- as we're constantly being told that it would be the case for China. Therefore, the U.S. has been trading with the Asian communist state as if there's no tomorrow, achieving a record trade deficit of US$256 billion in 2007. However, we're also told, this formula doesn't apply to Cuba, another communist state.

If denying trade with Cuba is the way to press for positive changes on the island state, then denying trade with China should also be the way to press for positive changes in the mainland state. If trading with China is the way to open up the communist giant, then trading with Cuba should be the way to open up the small communist state.

Well, the China Exception somehow creeps in again, doesn't it?

Intellectual honesty and policy consistency demands the lifting of the embargo against Cuba. After all, the embargo has failed to bring the downfall of Castro for decades. It's time to try something different. If free trade with Cuba could bring progress to the people there, it may strengthen the case in China where free trade has, so far, failed to bring any magic.

Fidel Castro has resigned from a position he was never elected to in the first place. Unfortunately, its poison might outlast the beast itself. The U.S. must try harder to help the people in Cuba. Lift the embargo -- let the Cubans make dollars instead of relying on Hugo Chávez more.

Please e-mail PostGlobal if you'd like to receive an email notification when PostGlobal sends out a new question.

Email This Post to a Friend | Del.icio.us | Digg | Facebook | Email the Author

Reader Response

ALL COMMENTS (60)
PostGlobal is an interactive conversation on global issues moderated by Newsweek International Editor Fareed Zakaria and David Ignatius of The Washington Post. It is produced jointly by Newsweek and washingtonpost.com, as is On Faith, a conversation on religion. Please send us your comments, questions and suggestions.