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Thawing out U.S.-Cuban relations and what led them to freeze in the first place




U.S. President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Cuban President Raul Castro during the official memorial service for former South African President Nelson Mandela at FNB Stadium December 10, 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
U.S. President Barack Obama (L) shakes hands with Cuban President Raul Castro during the official memorial service for former South African President Nelson Mandela at FNB Stadium December 10, 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

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Since the Cuban Revolution in 1959, relations between the United States and Cuba have been tense, to say the least. The U.S. has maintained an embargo on Cuba, which prevents any U.S. corporations from doing business with Cuba, and does not have formal diplomatic relations with Cuba. The U.S. embassy in the Cuban capital of Havana has been closed since 1961, when Cuba began to get close with the Soviet Union.

However, with the announcement from both the Cuban and U.S. presidents that steps were being taken to normalize Cuban-American relations, it appears that more than 50 years of bad blood between the two countries may be starting to settle. The agreement would ease travel restrictions between the U.S. and

Guests:

Julia Sweig, Nelson and David Rockefeller Senior Fellow for Latin America Studies and Director for Latin America Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations

Jose Moya, professor of history at Barnard College in New York City. He grew up in socialist Cuba and his work focuses on Latin American history, civilization, and world migration.