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Street pressures will erode elite cohesion in Cuba

Monday, July 19, 2021

Significance

The government is nevertheless shaken. Protests were triggered by severe economic hardship, and reflect a loss of public confidence that the government can improve matters. The state's repressive response has led to expressions of disconformity from individuals hitherto loyal to the system, which may signal emerging fissures within the ruling elite.

Impacts

  • Piecemeal reforms, announced to appease protesters, will do little to improve Cubans' lives.
  • Sweeping reforms are unlikely as they would strain elite cohesion.
  • Diaz-Canel's handling of the crisis illustrates the limitations of his authority.
  • Perceptions of elite unity, long key to political stability, are now problematic, offering little flexibility or hope of change.

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