CIPR | Center For Inter-American Policy & Research

Tulane University

Recent Post-Doc Paolo Spadoni Publishes Book: 'Failed Sanctions: Why the US Embargo against Cuba Could Never Work'

October 8th, 2010

Hot off the press is recent CIPR post-doc Paolo Spadoni’s book Failed Sanctions: Why the US Embargo against Cuba Could Never Work (University Press of Florida, November 2010)

An overview of the book from the University Press of Florida says Paolo Spadoni’s latest work is:

“An excellent study indicating how transnational players, particularly corporations, nation-states (including Cuba), and individual tourists (particularly Cuban-Americans) were able purposefully or inadvertently to undermine the U.S. embargo on Cuba so that from its earliest stage in 1960 it was doomed to failure.”—Peter Schwab, SUNY-Purchase

For almost five decades, the United States has maintained a comprehensive economic embargo on Cuba. U.S.-based travel to the island is severely restricted, and most financial and commercial transactions with Cuba are illegal for U.S. citizens. In the 1990s the United States tightened the embargo further, seeking to promote change in Cuba by depriving the Castro government of hard currency revenues. And yet the stalemate remains.

How effective has the embargo been in achieving its main goal? Paolo Spadoni dispassionately answers, “Not very.” By extending his analysis to non-state actors (including multinational corporations, migrants, international travelers, indirect investors, and food exporters), Spadoni demonstrates that the United States has not only been unable to stifle the flow of foreign investment into Cuba but has actually contributed to the recovery of the Cuban economy, particularly from the deep recession it entered following the demise of the Soviet Union.

Failed Sanctions is a must-read book for those who closely follow Cuban-U.S. relations and for anyone interested in the efficacy of economic sanctions as a foreign policy tool.

Find out more about the author here.

Purchase your copy of Failed Sanctions: Why the US Embargo against Cuba Could Never Work HERE.