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GOP wants Biden to beam internet down to Cubans: 'It’s communism versus capitalism'

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Republicans are putting pressure on the Biden administration to provide internet access to the Cuban people after the country's communist regime blocked its citizens from expressing themselves online earlier this week.

Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida and GOP Federal Communications Commission commissioner Brendan Carr asked President Joe Biden on Wednesday night to help provide internet access to those in Cuba. This comes at the same time Republicans in Congress are discussing with the Biden administration if and how to execute this new initiative, Sen. Marco Rubio's staff confirmed.

Biden acknowledged the United States was considering whether it had the technological ability to provide internet access to Cuba during a press conference at the White House on Thursday evening.

The Cuban government responded violently to the citizen protests against its authoritarian regime, enacting an internet blackout from Sunday through Wednesday and beating hundreds of protesters across the country, with others detained or missing.

"It’s communism versus capitalism, and we have the capability to help shed light in a time of darkness within Cuba, so why wouldn’t we?" Carr told the Washington Examiner.

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Carr said the federal government — in tandem with American businesses, such as Google — has the technical capability to deliver internet service to the Cuban people by beaming connectivity from hot air balloons or directly from U.S. soil.

He also said that the U.S. government and tech companies had used similar aerial internet technology to provide online access to Kenya and Puerto Rico in the past few years under the Trump administration.

Republicans say internet access is key to allow the Cuban people's anti-communist protests to proceed and succeed.

"If the Cuban people have free and unfettered access to the internet — the first thing the regime shut down yesterday was the internet — they can communicate with each other, and they can receive information and communicate with the world," Rubio said on the Senate floor on Monday.

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"There's a way to use federal facilities in Key West and Guantanamo Bay on the island to provide using the helium balloons the ability to get unfettered internet access to the people on the ground so they can have communication with the world and talk to themselves and take action and begin to build a new country," Rubio added on Fox News on Thursday.

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Tags: News, Policy, Cuba, Communism, Biden Administration, Congressional Republicans, Marco Rubio, Ron DeSantis

Original Author: Nihal Krishan

Original Location: GOP wants Biden to beam internet down to Cubans: 'It’s communism versus capitalism'

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