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Should the US maintain the embargo against Cuba?
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The embargo has hurt innocent Cuban people

The Cuban embargo has made it difficult for ordinary Cubans to get access to important medical treatment. Widespread food shortages have caused malnutrition. The embargo is a cruel measure that harms ordinary people, not the Cuban government.

The Argument

The embargo against Cuba has cost the country $130 billion according to UN estimates. This has mostly impacted normal Cuban people, rather than the government. [1] Restrictions on trade and movement have made life-saving medicines difficult to come by for ordinary Cubans. Equipment for the detection of cancer anti-retroviral drugs used to combat HIV, and drugs to alleviate the side effects of chemotherapy are just some of the items Cuba has been unable to obtain during the embargo.[2] In recent times the government has promoted farming rats and ostriches to deal with severe food shortages. Food is one of the main imports Cuba would get from the United States if it were able. [3] Since the collapse of Cuba’s principle support and trading partner the USSR, Cuba has suffered from widespread malnutrition caused by food shortages.[4] Ordinary Cubans do not deserve this punishment for having an authoritarian government. The Cuban government has proven it does not care about its people enough to enact a regime change just to help ordinary Cubans. The embargo against Cuba has harmed Cuban people’s quality of life and hurt them unnecessarily to punish their government. The government would be more unpopular if the embargo were lifted.

Counter arguments

Cuba trades with other countries worldwide, its economic problems are not caused solely by US sanctions. Cuba’s terrible economy and widespread poverty are two-fold. Firstly, the centrally planned communist economy has been a failure in Cuba as it has elsewhere. Secondly, the widespread corruption which is inevitable in a one-party state has led to government officials keeping much of Cuba’s revenue for themselves and for personal vanity projects.[5] Humanitarian aid has also long been established to prevent too much suffering to the Cuban people. Most recently the US has offered aid in the wake of the coronavirus.[6] The Cuban regime seeks to blame the US for its failing economy. The US has attempted to alleviate the worst of the problems the embargo has caused.



[P1] The embargo has robbed Cuba of essential medical supplies and food. [P2] Ordinary people are the principle victims of the shortages. [C] The embargo is a cruel measure and should be lifted.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] The US still sends humanitarian aid when Cuba is struggling


This page was last edited on Saturday, 17 Oct 2020 at 22:44 UTC

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