President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raúl Castro talk during a game between the Cuban national baseball team and Major League Baseball's Tampa Bay Devil Rays in March 2016 in Havana. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)


Dec. 17, 2014 "The Cold War died Wednesday. Its death was foretold, yet somehow it still came as a shock," Manuel Roig-Franzia wrote in The Washington Post the day President Barack Obama announced a move to normalize relations with Cuba. The announcement was the culmination of more than a year of talks between the two countries. Karen Tumulty and Anne Gearan wrote the same day that Obama's decision aligned "with a growing sentiment that current Cuba policy has become counterproductive." Under the new policy, embassies were opened in both countries, and Americans could travel more easily to Cuba. Obama himself visited, the first sitting president to do so in 88 years. After Donald Trump was elected president, however, the United States reversed course. In June, Trump announced he was "canceling the last administration's completely one-sided deal with Cuba" and cited the Castro regime's history of human rights abuses. Under Trump, the new embassies have remained open, but travel restrictions have tightened. In May, the United States expelled two Cuban diplomats after an alleged sonic attack on U.S. Embassy staff in Havana. In October, the State Department announced it was expelling 15 Cuban diplomats. The Cuban government has denied having anything to do with the suspected attacks in Havana.

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