Talk of espionage today has focused on Russian spies and the hacking of the 2016 U.S. presidential election. But recent reports of painful and unexplained hearing loss by U.S. diplomats in Cuba have raised questions about both the spy craft that may have caused it as well as the possible ...

President Donald Trump today announced a rollback to the Obama-era opening to Cuba in a speech at the Manuel Artime Theater in Miami’s Little Havana. “Effective immediately I am canceling the previous administration's one-sided deal with Cuba,” he said. The Obama-era deal opened diplomatic relations between the two Cold War ...

On Feb. 3, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer announced “we are in the midst of a full review of all U.S. policies towards Cuba.” This is excellent news. Under an administration which has thus far been dominated by knee-jerk responses and actions dictated more by politics than policy, it ...

In an historic proclamation, then President Barack Obama announced in December 2014, “the United States of America is changing its relationship with the people of Cuba [and] we will begin to normalize relations between our two countries.” Obama promised to reestablish diplomatic relations that had been severed for nearly 53 ...

President Donald Trump has indicated he will reverse the Obama administration’s policy on Cuba, despite previously saying the deal was fine. The Cipher Brief asked Frank Mora, Director of the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center at Florida International University, about what he thinks U.S.-Cuba relations will be like ...

I remember remarking to Cuban American friends in Miami some 20 years ago and in the wake of the passage of the Helms-Burton Act (which formalized the U.S. trade embargo on Cuba) that it was my humble opinion that if we just got rid of the embargo against Cuba and ...

Aside from a “big, beautiful wall” and so-called “bad hombres,” references to the southern border and illegal immigration, the U.S. campaign season has largely neglected any discussion of policy toward Latin America.  As the presidential election looms ahead, the winner has the potential to either build on the initiatives of ...

Since the turn of the century, perhaps earlier, there has been a consistent distancing between the U.S. and Latin America. Today it is difficult, perhaps even fanciful, to talk about U.S. policy toward the region as a whole; region-wide policies are mostly a thing of the past. During the Cold ...

I am not an expert in anything that has to do with Cuba. I don’t speak Spanish. I visited the country for the first time in March to go fishing, not to research Cuban society. I only spent four days in Havana, as a tourist. But I still came back ...

President Barack Obama’s arrival in Havana, Cuba marks the first visit by a sitting U.S. President in 88 years.  But more than just a warming of relations with the island nation, the visit is a symbol to the entire hemisphere.   The President will also travel to Argentina this week.  It ...

President Barack Obama’s trip to Argentina and Cuba gives welcome attention to the dynamics and challenges of Latin America and the Caribbean. While designed to capitalize and build upon positive developments in both countries, it also invites reflection on what will be his legacy there. At the beginning of his ...

Frank Mora, the former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Western Hemisphere, told The Cipher Brief that President Barack Obama has two distinct objectives during his Latin America trip:  In Cuba, the President wants to “maintain the momentum” and in Argentina, he hopes to “start a new chapter in ...

I remember reading many years ago a critic describe the passage of time as one of the cheapest of dramatic devices—an easy way to advance the plot in a drama or novel. Rather than actually tackle the issues that produce problems and conflict, authors often just advance the clock. Several ...

With global attention focused on Russia’s role in the Syria quagmire, the media is barely covering Vladimir Putin's aggressive maneuvers in Ukraine, let alone his foreign policy in America’s own backyard—Latin America. Since Putin came to power, he has attempted to restore Russia’s superpower status around the world, especially in ...

On November 30, 2015, on the sidelines of the United Nation COP21 Climate Change Summit in Paris, the Presidents of Peru and Russia signed an agreement establishing a strategic partnership. The accompanying joint declaration included expanded cooperation in defense, counternarcotic activities, development, next year’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in ...

Through hybrid warfare and the Gerasimov Doctrine, Russia is increasingly blurring the lines between war and peace, business and crime.  Russia’s involvement in Latin America is starting to follow a similar course. Douglas Farah, President of IBI Consultants, explains why he does not believe Russia’s presence in Latin America is ...

As a native Costa Rican and Professor of political science, Constantino Urcuyo Fournier has a unique perspective into Russia’s increasing involvement in Latin America.  As opposed to China’s growing economic activity in the region, Urcuyo Fournier says Russia is building strategic relationships to irritate the U.S., but he warns the ...

President Barack Obama continues to pave the way for improved U.S.-Cuban relations, as changes to U.S. travel to and business with Cuba took effect on Monday. The revisions made to the Cuban Asset Control Regulations (CACR) and Export Administration Regulations (EAR) will ease U.S. sanctions on Cuba related to travel, ...