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Posted March 10, 2007 by publisher in Cuba-World Trade

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The top Republican on the U.S. House of Representatives’ Foreign Affairs Committee on Thursday said she wants to stop Cuba from drilling for oil in waters 45 miles (72 km) from Key West, Florida.

U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida said Cuba’s drilling plans could endanger her state’s pristine beaches—a prime driver of its tourist economy—and endanger the only living coral reef in North America.

“It is totally unacceptable that the Cuban regime be allowed to drill for oil just 45 miles from our shores,” Ros-Lehtinen said. “The consequences of a spill are disastrous.”

Drilling for oil and natural gas off Florida has been banned for 25 years, even though there are sizable deposits in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico.

But Cuban leader Fidel Castro opened 43,250 square miles (112,000 square kms) of offshore waters to foreign exploration in 1999, even though U.S. companies are barred from participating because of trade sanctions enforced since 1962 against Communist Castro’s revolutionary government.

Cuba has partnerships with four foreign companies including ones from India and Canada to explore Cuba’s Gulf of Mexico waters.

Ros-Lehtinen said she will introduce legislation next week aimed at stopping the drilling plan. She did not give any details about how her legislation would accomplish the task, or if the plan would comply with international trade rules.

About 6,000 coral reefs stretch from Key Biscayne to Dry Tortugas off the tip of Florida.

The U.S. Geological Survey estimated that the North Cuba basin could contain some 4.6 billion barrels of oil, with a high-end potential of 9.3 billion barrels.

Cuba produces 60,000 barrels per day of poor-quality oil and imports about 98,000 bpd of oil and derivatives from its ally Venezuela.

  1. Follow up post #1 added on March 10, 2007 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Every time I read something that this political hack has to say I have to shake my head and say “What an idiot!”

    Are there any oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico that are less than 45 miles from Florida? I am pretty sure there are many.

    What right does she think she has to restrict international business in international waters?

    If she is introducing legislation next week then how come “She did not give any details about how her legislation would accomplish the task, or if the plan would comply with international trade rules.”?

    Probably because her bill is stupid and dead on arrival?

    This woman is a danger to Americans’ freedom of travel and trade and the only reason people vote for her is because she brings money to her district to hasten the “transition” in Cuba.

    She secretly wants Fidel and Raul to stay in power forever so she can retain her power. When Fidel and Raul and/or the Embargo are gone, she will be voted out of office and she knows it.

    Also, the Havana Journal owns ileanaRosLehtinen.com and IleanaRos-Lehtinen.com and is using them as a political protest. We point the domains to a page at the Havana Journal that we think the world should read.

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  2. Follow up post #2 added on March 11, 2007 by Curt

    If that bitch ever went back to Cuba and became president the country would still be a dictatorship.

  3. Follow up post #3 added on March 11, 2007 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    No need for name calling. Let’s stay on a higher level.

    With that said, she was born in Cuba in 1952 and left when she was seven. I don’t think she has ever been back so all she knows about Cuba is what she has read and been told by old Cuban exiles who want to restrict Americans’ freedom of travel and trade and punish Cuban citizens until they revolt against Castro which hasn’t happened yet.

    Did I hear her say…“Maybe next year the 45+ year old failed Plan A Embargo will work? Okay, maybe the year after that or the year after than. Oh, both Castro’s are dead? Whoopie, we won. See I told you so.”


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  4. Follow up post #4 added on March 12, 2007 by MiamiCuban

    Interesting how she never introduced the bill when they first started drilling.  Now that there’s promise of oil she wants to tighten the noose around Cuba once and for all and deprive the Cuban people of a better life.  What a pitiful, desperate act on the part of Ileana (and the Diaz-Balart Brothers who no doubt are siding with her).  These people have no conscience.

  5. Follow up post #5 added on March 14, 2007 by Pete Chavez

    The table CubanAmerican elected leaders and non-elected Cuban leaders are sitting at is the same table and it is a round table and they are all eating from the same pie. 

    To Curt: If Cuba were a free place all along “that Bitch” never would have come here.  Nor I and about seven hundred thousand other Cubans outside of Cuba.  That you can rely on.

    To Publisher: Your arguement that Ros-Lehtinen is thrilled with the embargo so that she can continue to remain employed is getting tired.  I don’t like her much either but I recgonise that she basically tends to her constituency, isn’t that what it’s all about here?  I don’t think that there is anything necessarily wholesome that motivates politcians to be politicians and even less dictators.
    Cheap shots just aren’t very informative but I do appreciate that you post news of what that little minx is up to from time to time.

    To MiamiCuban: Yeah, real interesting.

  6. Follow up post #6 added on March 14, 2007 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    Is her the majority or minority of her constituency pro-Embargo? I honestly don’t know.

    However, I am comfortable saying the the pro-Embargo constituents probably donate the most money to her campaign AND dictate all her actions.

    Did I go too far?

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  7. Follow up post #7 added on March 14, 2007 by Pete Chavez

    Oh not at all.  I just don’t think that she is this nefarious figure that has got a cauldron burning in her back office with voodoo dolls representing the anti-embargo movement and just so that she can stay in power?  Most of the pro embargo people are of the opinion that if China is awash with an economic boom and they are well on their way to the first world (if not there already) how is it that Tiananmen Square is still not to be spoken about there or how is it that Tiananmen Square happened at all?  They are basically of the belief that the more money in tyrants hands is exactly that,  more money in tyrants hands and not in the hands of the people or for the benefit of the plight of the people and the direction towards human rights, transparent governance, business etc.  that oil fields, a lifted embargo and any other trade agreement may bring.  And that is just one view that I have heard out many different views and reasons why people support the embargo. 
    At the end of the day I don’t believe in the Embargo but sometimes I think that your language and other peoples characterizations gets us away from a real analysis of why our opponents do what they do or opine the way they do.  For example,  I don’t feel that Americans are these scrawny, pink faced gray haired Uncle Sams greedily searching for wealth in the world at the expense of every living thing on Earth.  Yet that seems to be the cartoon made of us all over Cuba on billboards.  The Miami Pro-Embargo community tends to be made into cartoon caricatures on this site from time to time.  Life just isn’t two dimensional.  That’s all that I meant by your speculation as to why she is pro-embargo.

  8. Follow up post #8 added on March 14, 2007 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    No problem.

    When I talk about Cuban exiles, I try to say OLD Cuban exiles. Those are the ones that encourage the restriction of rights of all Americans.

    I am always on the side of freedom, in the US and in Cuba.

    Ros-Lehtinen benefits by having the Embargo in place which means she benefits by having Raul and/or Fidel as the President of Cuba. That’s how I see it.

    What kind of power will she and the OLD Cuban exiles have in Washington or in the Presidential election swing state of Florida.

    I didn’t even mention the amount of lost tourist dollars to her district when the Embargo is lifted.

    Ros-Lehtinen and the Diaz-Balarts are pro-Embargo AND they secretly want a Castro as President of Cuba.

    Sorry if that sounds old but I don’t see any opposition to that reasoning.

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  9. Follow up post #9 added on March 14, 2007 by Pete Chavez

    Maybe they do, maybe they don’t.  I don’t know what is in the “secret” heads of people.  It’s great that you are omniscient and I am not trying to be fresh.
    Although, one thing that causes you to miscalculate (and that is not your fault because you are not Cuban) is that Cubans LOVE Cuba, no matter the where or the what of things and those out there know what this thing that we have is and what it means to us.  I dont’ trust for one minute that Washington triage of Cuban politicians but I know that they love Cuba not hate it.  I hate to say this but I think one would have to be Cuban to understand this.

  10. Follow up post #10 added on March 14, 2007 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Point well taken. Thanks. I am not Cuban though I like to think that I understand and appreciate Cubanidad.

    One of the sites in our Havana Journal Media Network is http://Cubanidad.com .

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  11. Follow up post #11 added on March 14, 2007 by Pete Chavez

    thanks for the site, will take a look!

  12. Follow up post #12 added on July 25, 2008 by N.J. McCOO;


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