On December 3rd, 2009, the Castro regime took an American hostage in order to coerce the United States into releasing (then) five imprisoned Cuban spies, including one serving a life-sentence for murder conspiracy in the death of three Americans.
(Image below: Yesterday, General Raul Castro honoring the now-released Cuban spy convicted in the murder of three Americans.)
Now -- knowing that President Obama has invested his legacy in the normalization of relations and can be pushed-over -- the Castro regimes seeks to coerce the Administration into removing it from the "state-sponsors of terrorism" list.
Where will the Obama Administration draw the line?
Cuba would agree to restore diplomatic relations with the United States in time for the April Summit of the Americas if Washington quickly and convincingly removes the Caribbean country from a list of state sponsors of terrorism, a senior Cuban official said on Wednesday.
Diplomatic ties were severed in 1961, and negotiators for the two longtime adversaries will meet in Washington on Friday, following up on the first round of talks held in Havana last month.
If the sides move fast enough, they could reopen embassies in each other's capitals in time for the April 10-11 summit in Panama, where U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro could meet for the first time since agreeing on Dec. 17 to restore ties and exchange prisoners.
A senior Cuban official put the onus on Washington to first strike Cuba from the terrorism list, which can apply sanctions to banks doing business with the designated countries.
"It depends on what the United States does. It does not depend on Cuba," Gustavo Machin, deputy director of U.S. affairs for the Cuban foreign ministry, told reporters on Wednesday. "It depends on whether we are really taken off the list of terrorist countries."
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