The history between Cuba and the United States adds a new wrinkle as the Associated Press is reporting that the United States government tried to infiltrate Cuba's underground hip-hop movement to try and start a youth movement against the country's communist regime. According to the report, the government's "idea was to use Cuban musicians 'to break the information blockade' and build a network of young people seeking 'social change...'"

The operation has been deemed "amateurish" and "profoundly unsuccessful." Not only did the United States put uninformed Cuban hip-hop artists at risk, the operation also hurt Cuba's budding hip-hop culture. Cuban hip-hop artists that the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) attempted to promote either left the country or stopped doing local shows after feeling pressure from Cuban government officials. Because of the pressure, one of the most popular indie music festivals on the island was taken over by the Cuban government once it was linked to the USAID.

"Any assertions that our work is secret or covert are simply false," the USAID said in a statement.

[Associated Press]

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