Cuba: Trapped by history – Still?

Mervyn Bain, Liliana Fernández Mollinedo

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Throughout its history Cuba has had an intimate relationship with outside powers and since January 1959 Cuban foreign policy has attracted much academic attention. Subsequently, a number of different theories regarding Cuban foreign policy have evolved. These are undoubtedly important, but this article will posit that it is only by examining legacies from the past that a fuller understanding of the island’s bilateral relationships is achieved. In order to do this, the article will examine Cuba’s relationship with the United States, European Union and Russian Federation. Significant change is taking place, but legacies from the past remain important in all three, which have had very different results for Havana’s contemporary relationships with Washington, Brussels and Moscow. Areas of contestation from the past remain unresolved and will continue to be important for the foreseeable future.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)260-276
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Politics
Issue number2
Early online date24 Feb 2016
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2016


  • Cuba
  • foreign policy
  • USA
  • EU
  • Russian Federation


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