Things have changed drastically since the days when the United States had active spy networks working in Cuba. Once upon a time, the goal of the government was to topple the Castro administration, and Cuba has been kept in the dark for a long, long time after the Communist uprising. The Cold War, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Mariel Boatlift… and now, a resumption of normal relations between two countries separated by only a short swim. For the first time since the Kennedy administration, an American flag is flying over a United States embassy in Havana, Cuba.
“As two people who are no longer enemies or rivals, but neighbors,” said Kerry in a speech delivered in both English and Spanish, “[it is] time to unfurl our flags, raise them up and let the world know that we wish each other well.”
In a wonderful moment, the American flag was presented to the Marines guarding the base by three Marines who lowered the last flag in January 1961. The national anthems of both the United States and Cuba were played, to the cheers of the gathered crowd, some of whom held small American flags to go with their Cuban flags. Kerry is the highest-ranking US official to visit Cuba since the FDR administration.
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