On Thursday, September 19th, the US State Department expelled two Cuban diplomats, citing that they were working on “influence operations against the United States.” The State Department provided no further details on what actually occurred. The department’s spokeswoman, Morgan Ortagus, could only label the alleged operations as, “activities harmful to US national security.” Along with the expulsion of the two diplomats, all other members of the Cuban mission to the UN have been restricted to the island of Manhattan.
Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez released a string of tweets immediately following the incident, calling the accusations “vulgar slander.” He stated that the US is seeking to provoke a diplomatic escelation that would lead to the closing of embassies and a strengthening of the embargo of Cuban goods.
These allegations of the Cuban diplomats came not too long after the suspected attacks on US diplomats in Havana. The US accused Cuba of using sonic weapons to cause ill effects on members of the US embassy, who reported dizziness and hearing loss. However, a Canadian study, published on the same day as the expulsion of the Cubans, suggested that neurotoxins from widely used Cuban pesticides could be to blame for the cognitive damage—not sonic weaponry.
US diplomats began experiencing symptoms in 2016
The information above is what I gathered from three different sources: CNN, Fox News, and BBC News. As expected, the BBC was the most neutral of the three, keeping their story short and to the point. CNN was also very neutral, but they included by far the most information, a lot of which could be used to defend Cuba in this situation. Finally, Fox News took a subtle anti-Cuban stance—expected from a conservative source. They used very strong rhetoric to describe the situation saying, “the Cubans were found to be running spy operations on American soil,” and they didn’t mention anything from the Cuban side of the story, unlike the BBC and CNN.
It is interesting to see the implications that world context can have when looking at revolutions. The Cuban revolution was more than half a century ago, yet it affects the foreign policy of other nations today. Had the revolution happened at a different time, one that wasn’t as close to the Cold War, the present situation may have never occurred. A long string of events stemming from the actions of Fidel Castro, has led to a Diplomatic struggle he could have never seen coming in 1953.