Monday, March 21, 2016


JFK+50:  Volume 6, No. 1895


Havana, Cuba (JFK+50) The last President of the United States to visit Cuba was Calvin Coolidge in 1928.  Eighty-eight years later, the 44th United States President, Barack Obama, is making a state visit to the island nation.  

What makes this visit different from the one Coolidge made is the fact that Cuba has been under communist rule since 1961.  

My generation grew up during the Cold War with Cuba as the enemy.  In fact, the Soviet Union's alliance with Fidel Castro put our nation and the whole world in fear of a nuclear war.  That possibility became all too real during the Missile Crisis of October 1962.

President Obama spoke yesterday upon his arrival here in Havana to the staff of the newly-opened United States Embassy.  He said...

"This is a historic visit.  It's an historic opportunity to engage with the Cuban people."

The President, accompanied by his wife, Michelle, and two daughters, then took a walking tour in the rain of Old Havana.  When they reached the Plaza de Armas, the presidential party was welcomed with the crowd chanting "USA, USA."

They also visited the Catedral de San Cristobal, which President Obama described as "a reminder of the values that we share."

This afternoon, as I am writing this post, President Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro are making a joint appearance in which they are speaking to the press.

Later the two leaders will attend an exhibition baseball game between the Cuban national team and the Tampa Bay Rays.


"Obama marks historic shift in Cuba visit," by Julie Pace & Michael Weissenstein, Associated Press, The Knoxville News-Sentinel, March 21, 2016,

Catedral de San Cristobal
Havana, Cuba
Photo by Anagoria