Author: Julie Baron

Catalonia, Iraq, and Ambazonia: The Separatist Epidemic

With news of the separatist tensions rising, if not reaching a breaking point altogether, in Catalonia as they pressure Spain to recognize their independence, it must be stated that other regions are facing similar issues as well. Iraq and Ambazonia, two other countries probably more known for their troubles than a first-world, developed, OECD nation like Spain, have issues of their own, with smaller factions looking to assert their autonomy and secede from the jurisdictions of their formal national governments. However, this begs the question: is separatism an epidemic at this point in time, and furthermore, what drives a group to seek their own status as a nation-state in this era?  The Catalan Conflict As tensions spark in the whole world, the one on the cover of most newspapers these past few weeks is the Catalan conflict. But what is Catalonia, and why is it so important? Catalonia ranks as one of Spain’s 10 richest regions with a high GDP, a large concentration of renowned companies’ social headquarters, and constant  tourism. Yet, Catalonia’s different cultural …

New Policies, Same Old Communism: Cuba – Pt. III

  By: Tannishtha Pramanick Since the time of Fidel Castro’s rise to power in Cuba, after overthrowing the corporate-minded and corrupt Fulgencio Batista in 1959, the country has seldom been on positive terms with the United States. Castro’s Marxist-Leninist policies were not to the taste of the United States, and rightfully so. In theory, Castro looked to promote a higher standard of living for Cubans, as well as liberation from the consequences of the wealth-gap that had originated under the power of the sugar plantations and corrupt businessmen. In practice, these policies only served to deteriorate Cuba’s economic conditions, leading to a decline in the quality of life of most Cubans. Despite Castro’s regime operating under communist policies, the United States did, initially, recognize the nation and its government. As time wore on, Castro increased trade with the Soviet Union, as well as nationalized businesses, mainly American-held ones, and increased tariffs on US imports. In retaliation, the United States began a series of economic sanctions, each one more severe than the last. The process began …

New Policies, Same Old Communism: Cuba – Pt. II

  By: Tannishtha Pramanick Since the time of Fidel Castro’s rise to power in Cuba, after overthrowing the corporate-minded and corrupt Fulgencio Batista in 1959, the country has seldom been on positive terms with the United States. Castro’s Marxist-Leninist policies were not to the taste of the United States, and rightfully so. In theory, Castro looked to promote a higher standard of living for Cubans, as well as liberation from the consequences of the wealth-gap that had originated under the power of the sugar plantations and corrupt businessmen. In practice, these policies only served to deteriorate Cuba’s economic conditions, leading to a decline in the quality of life of most Cubans. Despite Castro’s regime operating under communist policies, the United States did, initially, recognize the nation and its government. As time wore on, Castro started increasing trade with the Soviet Union, as well as nationalizing businesses, mainly American-held ones, and increased tariffs on US imports. In retaliation, the United States began a series of economic sanctions, each one more severe than the last. The process …

New Policies, Same Old Communism: Cuba – Pt. I

  By: Tannishtha Pramanick Since the time of Fidel Castro’s rise to power in Cuba, after overthrowing the corporate-minded and corrupt Fulgencio Batista in 1959, the country has seldom been on positive terms with the United States. Castro’s Marxist-Leninist policies were not to the taste of the United States, and rightfully so. In theory, Castro looked to promote a higher standard of living for Cubans, as well as liberation from the consequences of the wealth-gap that had originated under the power of the sugar plantations and corrupt businessmen. In practice, these policies only served to deteriorate Cuba’s economic conditions, leading to a decline in the quality of life of most Cubans. Despite Castro’s regime operating under communist policies, the United States did, initially, recognize the nation and its government. As time wore on, Castro started increasing trade with the Soviet Union, as well as nationalizing businesses, mainly American-held ones, and increased tariffs on US imports. In retaliation, the United States began a series of economic sanctions, each one more severe than the last. The process …