In 1903, the United States signed a lease agreement with Cuba that granted the US control over a portion of Cuban territory. The agreement, known as the Cuban-American Treaty of Relations, gave the US control over a naval base at Guantánamo Bay in southeastern Cuba.
This lease agreement was a crucial part of US foreign policy in the early 20th century. At the time, the US was rapidly expanding its global influence, and the lease of Guantánamo Bay provided a strategic foothold in the Caribbean. The US Navy could use the base to patrol the waters around Cuba, and it also provided a refueling and repair station for American vessels.
The lease agreement was signed in the aftermath of the Spanish-American War, which saw Cuba gain independence from Spain, but also brought the US into the position of a major player in Cuban affairs. The Cuban-American Treaty of Relations was seen as a way to ensure continued US involvement in Cuban affairs, while also providing the US with a secure base in the Caribbean.
The lease agreement has remained in effect ever since, despite occasional tensions between the US and Cuba over the base. In recent years, the US presence at Guantánamo Bay has become increasingly controversial, with many arguing that the base violates Cuban sovereignty.
Despite this controversy, the lease agreement remains an important part of US foreign policy, and the base at Guantánamo Bay is still seen as a vital strategic asset for the US military. Whether or not the lease agreement will remain in place in the coming years remains to be seen, but it is clear that the legacy of this agreement continues to shape the relationship between the United States and Cuba.