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Refuge beyond ReachHow Rich Democracies Repel Asylum Seekers$
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David Scott FitzGerald

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190874155

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190874155.001.0001

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Raising the Drawbridge to Cuba

Raising the Drawbridge to Cuba

Chapter 6 Raising the Drawbridge to Cuba
Refuge beyond Reach

David Scott FitzGerald

Oxford University Press

U.S. policies toward Cubans have oscillated between periods of welcome and restriction embedded in an overall trajectory of restriction. The biggest difference between the treatment of Haitian and Cubans was that only Cubans seeking protection were granted realistic legal paths to enter the United States through visa waivers for air passengers, relaxation of enforcement of immigration laws, more robust asylum screening on the high seas, and in-country processing programs for dissidents and other programs guaranteeing slots in the immigration stream. The favorable treatment of Cubans shows that even tens of thousands of asylum seekers arriving over the course of a few months did not threaten the capacity of the United States to provide sanctuary for those facing persecution at home. The Cuban case also challenges the conceptualization of remote control. Remote control’s efficacy is highly dependent on collaboration by other governments, such as Cuba’s willingness to accept Cubans intercepted at sea by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Keywords:   Cuba, wet foot, dry foot, Freedom Flights, Mariel boatlift, balsero, in-country processing, Guantanamo, Coast Guard, transit migration

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