When I was 17, my then girlfriend's brother was a merchant navy officer. I still remember his telling me what he had recently seen in Cuba: a dead victim of the repression of the dictator Batista nailed to a tree, his penis (doubtless severed in life) stuffed in his mouth. The Batista regime enjoyed the support not only of official America but also of American organised crime (it is common knowledge that the brothels and gambling clubs of Havana were run by the Mafia).
Shortly afterwards, the Batista regime was overthrown by Castro. Since then, for 35 years, the reaction of the United States has been to attempt to bully and intimidate Cuba, to subject the country to an unremitting economic blockade and to do everything it can (though with little success) to undermine the Cuban government.
Such behaviour by the United States ill becomes a great nation, especially one that is capable of generosity and breadth of vision. It would be sad if it were to be rewarded.
A. C. BOLGER