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CUBA-U.S. RELATIONS: DIPLOMATIC MILESTONE, BUT NO PARADIGM SHIFT FOR NOW
The resumption of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba marks a paradigm shift for U.S. foreign policy in Latin America, and a historic step in post-revolutionary Havana. As the longstanding foes dating to the Cold War begin a gradual rapprochement, expectations for the newly re-established relationship diverge. While the Obama administration’s diplomatic achievement will be lauded for years to come, enthusiasm at the Castros’ has remained tepid, and a major political and economic shift will take much longer to materialise. If Cuba is to regain the disproportionate influence it once possessed in the region, the island must embark on an ambitious political and economic project that would propel it once again as a promising and unique country at a time when domestic politics dominate the Latin American and U.S. agenda.