Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on Friday blasted the Obama administration’s latest Cuba policy shift as one that makes “no sense,” because it foresees some intelligence sharing between the two countries.
From Washington Examiner
President Obama last week announced a wide array of changes related to Cuba, including changes further easing trade and travel restrictions Americans face related to Cuba. One set of changes to be implemented by the Treasury Department lifted the limits on the amount of tobacco and alcohol products people can buy in Cuba.
But the White House outlined several other changes, including one that said the Director of National Intelligence will “support broader United States Government efforts to normalize relations with Cuba, with Intelligence Community elements working to find opportunities for engagement on areas of common interest.”
Rubio said that change is unwarranted because Cuba is still working against U.S. interests.
“This makes absolutely no sense, considering Cuba’s intelligence agencies actively work to endanger American lives by stealing our military and national security secrets and selling them to Iran, North Korea, Russia and China,” he said. “At a time when Russia is actively trying to influence elections in the U.S. the Obama administration is saying it’s going to make nice with the very same Cuban intelligence agencies whose number one mission is to steal classified information from our government and recruit spies in the U.S.”
Much of the attention last week was on the commercial changes implemented by the Treasury Department, but Rubio said the new Treasury rules included other objectionable changes that U.S. officials didn’t highlight. For example, the new regulation changed the definition of various terms to expand the list of Cuban officials who can enter into contracts with Americans.
Specifically, the rule narrows the list of prohibited Cuban officials and Communist Party members who are banned from entering into contracts for telecom and other services with U.S. companies.
“The Obama administration did not include some of the most significant changes in its public or private descriptions of the announcement, suggesting a deliberate attempt to hide them from the American people,” he said.
However, the intelligence aspect of the change was noted in a summary of the White House announcement.
Read Full Story At Washington Examiner