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Cuba After Castro

Cigar-smoking dictator finally says goodbye - but does it matter?

Castro 2007-CNNCastro 2007-CNNThe Internet is buzzing this morning over news that Castro is finally on his way out. But what does his exist really mean? For the world? For Americans who cannot currently travel there legally?

When Castro seized power in 1959, the island was bustling with tourism. But his particular brand of Stalinism and more than 4 decades of punishing US embargos has taken its toll on the island.

Bush, who is traveling to Rwanda this week isn't mustering much enthusiasm about Castro's planned departure. "Eventually, this transition ought to lead to free and fair elections--and I mean free, and I mean fair--not these kind of staged elections that the Castro brothers try to foist off as true democracy."

Presidential hopeful, Barack Obama, who has publically stated he wants to open trade talks with Cuba said lifting the embargo is overly optimistic at best right now.

Janisset Rivero, the executive director of Cuban Democratic Directorate, a group that works with dissidents in Cuba, told CNN this morning that Castro has been paving the way for his brother for a while now.

"One big dictator is replacing the other. It will be big deal when political prisoners are released, when political parties are allowed to organize, when the country stops being ruled by a single party."

As the editors at Jaunted said this morning, power swapping between the Castro brothers may simply make the situation worse in Cuba. It's currently a favorite vacation spot of Europeans and Canadians, but government instability has a way of removing the patina of vacation hotspots.

What do you think of the situation in Cuba?

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