In Sunday’s interview on CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” Florida Senator Marco Rubio talked about the upcoming presidential debate and answered critical questions on foreign policy.
Rubio was asked about how the U.S. relationship with Cuba might change upon the reported eminent death of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.
“Well, it won’t be the direction the president has taken it over the last four years.”
“Let me give you an example. They have these things called people-to-people trips to Cuba, which ostensibly is for Americans to be able to travel to Cuba, be in contact with everyday Cubans. That’s not what they are. They’re really tourism trips. I mean, people go over there for salsa dancing and cigar-rolling lessons. And all it is is a source of hard currency for the Castro regime. You talk about Fidel Castro being near death. I don’t know that to be true, but I can tell you what’s been dead for over 50 years in Cuba, and that’s democracy. There are no political freedoms in Cuba. And I think that, sadly, over the last four years, the cause of freedom in Cuba has been — has been hurt by this additional trips to Cuba and remittances that are providing hard currency for that regime.”
Rubio said the following in response to the question “are there lessons to be learned for today’s politicians from what happened during the Cuban missile crisis?”
“Well, you read the accounts after the fact, it was even more chilling in terms of some of the advice that the president was getting from his military officials at the time. You look back in hindsight and maybe you’re glad he didn’t take some of that advice, in terms of some of the issues.”
“Look, I think war and armed conflict is always the last of all the options you have on the table. I think you try to avoid that at all costs. Sometimes it’s unavoidable. That’s the lesson of World War II. I think the other lesson of the last 50 or 60 years, however, is that, the stronger the U.S. military, the stronger our defense capabilities, the stronger the chances for peace are.”
“And that’s a lesson of the Cold War and thereafter is you always want — I think and I believe and Mitt Romney believes strongly that the world is a safer and better place that the United States is the strongest military power on earth. The stronger you are, the less likelihood you’ll ever have to use it.”