The U.S. Still Lists Cuba As a Terrorist State — But Who Are We to Judge?


Earlier this year, a group of prominent U.S. diplomats contemplated whether or not Cuba should be included on the United States' state sponsors of terrorism list for another year. Earlier this month in Washington, the State Department chose to have the country remain on the list along with Iran, Sudan, and Syria. Many Cubans who believe their country has changed in recent years were angry. Although Cuba remains on the State Department's list, it's very possible that the U.S. actually sponsors more terrorist activity than Cuba.

A few of the State Department's reasons to keep the island on the list were that it had been harboring fugitives wanted in the U.S., and supporting members of Spain's Basque Fatherland and Liberty terrorist group (ETA). According to Pete Kasperowicz of the Global Affairs, Cuba had also recently become a member of the Financial Action Task Force of South America, which requires it to "adopt anti-money laundering recommendations." However, Cuba still claims that it has withdrawn from supporting terrorist groups such as FARC and has refrained from harboring members of ETA.

Cuba has had a Marxist government since the 1950s and being deemed a "rogue nation" in 1982 landed it a spot on the U.S. government's list. An anonymous speaker from Cuba's foreign relations department, MINREX, claimed,

"It is ridiculous that the United States continues to include Cuba on an arbitrary list of states that sponsor terrorism, while it is Cuba that has suffered so much from terrorism — originating from the United States."

Although the Untied States has aided several foreign countries, has a strong alliance with several nations all around the world, and has itself been the victim of terrorist activity, its history of sponsoring terrorism in other countries is unsettling. In a study released about a month after 9/11 in 2001, researchers Edward S. Herman and David Peterson from the Centre for Research on Globalization discovered that the U.S. has invaded or has supported terrorist activities in more than 13 countries including Cuba since the 1950's.

It may seem hypocritical of the U.S. to criticize other nations while taking part in the same activity, but then again every nation has the right to take the necessary precautions to maintain the safety of its citizens.