By: Natalie Bell
International Business Law
Cuba, the largest island nation in the Caribbean just ninety miles off the coast of Florida, experienced many difficult struggles through its extensive history. It was the last major Spanish colony to gain independence, following a lengthy struggle that was begun in 1868. It was in 1898 when the U.S. intervened during the Spanish-American War that it finally overthrew Spanish rule. The Treaty of Paris established Cuban independence, which was granted in 1902 after a three-year transition period. The United States and Cuba concluded a Treaty of Relations in 1934, which, among other things, continued the 1903 agreements that leased the Guantanamo Bay naval base to the United States (CIA World Factbook). In the time before 1959, the United States had maintained strong ties with Cuba. Many Americans had many various business investments there, and the country was a special place for tourists from around the world. Since the fall of the U.S.-supported dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista in 1959, it was Fidel Castro who has mainly led Cuba throughout the years. It was in Febuary 19, 2008 when Fidel Castro finally ceded power to his brother Raul Castro. Since the majority of Cubans were born after the 1959 revolution, most of the Cuban people have known no other leader. President Fidel Castro outlasted no fewer than nine American presidents since he took power in 1959 (Castro:Profile). Relations between the United States and Cuba deteriorated rapidly as Fidel Castro and the Cuban regime moved toward the acceptance of the one-party communist system. Cuba seized the assets of American citizens and U.S. firms including farms, factories, hotels, bank accounts, and real estate without compensation. It was finally on April 16, 1961 when Fidel Castro declared Cuba a...