CUBA: A Way Forward


Director of the Cuba Documentation Project Peter Kornbluh sheds light on the history behind the radical shift of U.S.–Cuba relations.

On December 17, 2014, a quick succession of events ended with a radical reconfiguration of U.S.-Cuba relations. In the early morning, a U.S. government plane arrived in Havana to repatriate Alan Gross, the development contractor who had been imprisoned for more than five years for smuggling sophisticated satellite communications systems onto the island as part of USAID’s “Cuban Democracy and Contingency Planning Program.” After Gross boarded, the plane did not take off until another jet, carrying three Cuban spies who President Obama had just released after 16 years in prison, touched down at José Martí International Airport. After a three-hour flight, Gross landed at Andrews Air Force base where Secretary of State John Kerry welcomed him home.

Peter Kornbluh
Publication date: 
August 21, 2014
Publication type: 
Berkeley Review of Latin American Studies Article