It has been nearly 60 years since the Cuban Revolution in 1959 and the United States and Cuba have not been on the friendliest of terms. This weekend marks a change in policy between the two countries.
President Barack Obama is scheduled to meet with Cuban President Raul Castro this weekend in Panama at a diplomatic Summit of the Americas. Once this happens, it will be the first meeting of any kind between both countries since 1959. Both leaders are expected to be on stage together at least once, during the opening ceremony at the conference.
Earlier this week, Castro and Obama had a telephone conversation, which would’ve been only the second one to occur since 1959, the first one coming in December right before Obama made it known that he was going to reopen diplomatic relations with Cuba. Along with this easing of tensions was Obama also removing a traveling ban on the country, which Dan Newlin points out meant that Americans were not allowed to travel freely to Cuba.
However, history has shown how bad relations between both countries used to be, especially at it’s peak. Most well known to people is that both countries have shown a dislike to each other since Raul Castro’s brother, Fidel Castro, overthrew dictator Fulgencio Batista in 1959 and allied itself with the Soviet Union in the middle of the Cold War.