Cuban and American officials as well as progressives in various parts of the world on Monday blasted the soon-to-be-departed Trump administration\u0026#039;s decision to put Cuba back on the U.S. State Department\u0026#039;s list of \u0022State Sponsors of Terrorism,\u0022 a move that critics say reveals the U.S. government\u0026#039;s hypocritical approach to the topic of \u0022terrorism.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022As the case of Cuba reveals, \u0026#039;terrorism\u0026#039; means resistance to massive U.S. terrorism and refusal to bow down to the master.\u0022\r\n—Noam Chomsky, linguist and activist\r\n\r\nSecretary of State Mike Pompeo\u0026#039;s last-minute announcement, which reverses an Obama-era effort to improve diplomatic relations with the neighboring island nation,\u0026nbsp;comes just\u0026nbsp;before President-elect Joe Biden takes office on January 20.\r\n\r\nOn its way out the door, the Trump administration is \u0022laying political land mines\u0022 for Biden—not only in Cuba but also in Yemen and Taiwan—wrote\u0026nbsp;Robbie Gramer and Jack Detsch in\u0026nbsp;Foreign Policy\u0026nbsp;on Monday.\r\n\r\n\u0022The decision is a part of a blitz of 11th-hour moves by the Trump administration to push through hard-line policies championed by influential domestic political constituencies despite the complications they create for State Department lawyers, humanitarian interests abroad, and the incoming Biden administration,\u0022 The Washington Post reported Monday.\r\n\r\nGramer and Detsch, however, suggested that the Trump administration is carrying out these actions not despite the harm they will cause the Biden administration but rather because the changes will constrain the incoming White House.\r\n\r\nCuba joins Iran, North Korea, and Syria on the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism, a list that critics say conspicuously leaves out \u0022U.S. allies that actually do sponsor terrorist groups: Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe U.S.\u0026nbsp;first added\u0026nbsp;Cuba to its list of terrorism-sponsoring states in 1982 even as the Reagan administration provided financial support and arms to Nicaragua\u0026#039;s right-wing counterrevolutionary forces accused of widespread human rights violations.\r\n\r\nThe State Department removed Cuba from its blacklist in 2015, part of what the New York Times called\u0026nbsp;former President Barack Obama\u0026#039;s \u0022normalization of relations between Washington and Havana.\u0022\r\n\r\nIn his statement attempting to justify the State Department\u0026#039;s\u0026nbsp;re-designation of Cuba as a state sponsor of terrorism, Pompeo accused Cuba of \u0022repeatedly providing support for acts of international terrorism in granting safe harbor to terrorists.\u0022\r\n\r\nAs The Guardian reported, \u0022That is partly a reference to the former Black Panther Assata Shakur\u0026nbsp;who was jailed in the U.S.\u0026nbsp;for the 1973 killing of a police officer and later escaped to Cuba\u0026nbsp;where she was granted asylum by its then-leader Fidel Castro.\u0026nbsp;It is also based on Cuba\u0026#039;s refusal to extradite a group of guerrillas from Colombia\u0026#039;s National Liberation Army (ELN) for alleged involvement in a 2019 bomb attack in Bogotá,\u0022 as well as the nation\u0026#039;s ongoing support for Venezuelan President\u0026nbsp;Nicolás Maduro, who survived\u0026nbsp;a failed U.S.-backed coup attempt in 2019.\r\n\r\nLast week\u0026#039;s attempted coup on U.S. soil, wherein an insurrectionary pro-Trump mob killed a police officer during a violent attack on the Capitol following weeks of lies from the president and Republican lawmakers about the legitimacy of the presidential election outcome, was also at the forefront of critics\u0026#039; minds on Monday.\u0026nbsp;\r\n\r\n\u0022This designation of Cuba as a state sponsor of terrorism with less than a week to go in his presidency and after he incited a domestic terror attack on the U.S. Capitol... that\u0026#039;s hypocrisy,\u0022 Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) told The Associated Press in an interview.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nTrump administration should add itself as a state sponsor of terrorism https://t.co/yu03yamCKE\r\n— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) January 11, 2021\r\n\r\n\r\nAs journalist Reese Erlich explained in a column late last week:\r\n\r\n\r\nIn reality, Cuba has never been a state sponsor of terrorism. It\u0026nbsp;supported\u0026nbsp;armed insurgents in Latin America and\u0026nbsp;sent troops\u0026nbsp;to Angola to beat back a South African invasion of that country. But it never supported intentional attacks on civilians practiced by such groups as Al Qaeda.\r\n\r\n\r\nCuba\u0026#039;s Minister of Foreign Affairs Bruno\u0026nbsp;Rodríguez\u0026nbsp;denounced Pompeo\u0026#039;s announcement, calling it \u0022hypocritical\u0022 and \u0022cynical\u0022 for the U.S. to put Cuba on its list of terrorist-sponsoring states.\u0026nbsp;\u0022U.S. political opportunism,\u0022 Rodríguez added, \u0022is recognized by those who are honestly concerned about the scourge of terrorism and its victims.\u0022\r\n\r\nAccording to journalist Dan Cohen, \u0022the U.S. sponsored and protected right-wing fanatics who used actual terrorism to destroy the Cuban economy while Cuba has aided liberation movements around the world and sought peace.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nTrump administration will name Cuba a \u0022state sponsor of terrorism\u0022.\r\n\r\nThe US sponsored and protected right-wing fanatics who used actual terrorism to destroy the Cuban economy while Cuba has aided liberation movements around the world and sought peace.https://t.co/cgao2eJMQJ\r\n— Dan Cohen (@dancohen3000) January 11, 2021\r\n\r\n\r\nErlich provided a brief snapshot of how the U.S. has weaponized the concept of \u0022terrorism\u0022:\r\n\r\n\r\nAccording to the\u0026nbsp;State Department, \u0022Terrorism means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience.\u0022\r\n\r\nBy that definition, the people who\u0026nbsp;blew up\u0026nbsp;the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut in 1983 were terrorists. Although the group attacked soldiers in a conflict zone, the marines were \u0022noncombatant targets,\u0022 not soldiers fighting in the field.\r\n\r\nBy contrast, the 2019 U.S. military drone strike that killed Iranian General Qasem Soleimani and Iraq militia leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was not terrorism because it was carried out openly, not by \u0022clandestine agents.\u0022\r\n\r\nHow convenient! Insurgent groups can only kill soldiers in the battlefield, whereas the Pentagon can create battlefields anywhere in the world so long as it assassinates people openly.\r\n\r\nThe State Department uses gobbledygook to lump together Al Qaeda, ISIS, Marxist guerrillas, and Palestinians who are engaged in armed struggle. Its \u0022terror list\u0022 has always reflected Washington\u0026#039;s drive for hegemony rather than a fight against terrorism.\r\n\r\n\r\nIn recent months, Cuba has been sending doctors around the world to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. Despite being burdened for decades by harmful economic sanctions imposed by the U.S., the biggest export of the small island nation, which has a lower child mortality rate than its more powerful and hostile neighbor to the north, is medical care.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nWhile Cuba has been sending doctors around the world to combat COVID, @SecPompeo is about to designate Cuba a state sponsor of terrorism. Despicable. #CubaNobel#CubaSavesLives#WorstSecretaryofStatehttps://t.co/xJDLce2UqB\r\n— Medea Benjamin (@medeabenjamin) January 11, 2021\r\n\r\n\r\nIn addition to drawing attention to the fact that the U.S. has run a \u0022gulag\u0022 in\u0026nbsp;Guantánamo\u0026nbsp;Bay Naval Station in Cuba for nearly two decades, CodePink\u0026#039;s Medea Benjamin juxtaposed Cuba\u0026#039;s international medical brigades with U.S. support for the Saudi regime\u0026#039;s starvation-inducing blockades and deadly airstrikes on Yemen and asked, \u0022Who is the state sponsor of terrorism?\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nDisgusting hypocrits. Cuba is saving lives around the world with its medical missions. The US is killing and starving people with bombs, like in Yemen. Who is the state sponsor of terrorism? https://t.co/rTclawsN6w\r\n— Medea Benjamin (@medeabenjamin) January 11, 2021\r\n\r\n\r\nPaul Pillar, a retired 28-year veteran of the CIA and former deputy chief of the agency\u0026#039;s Counterterrorism Center, told Erlich that\u0026nbsp;the State Department\u0026#039;s list of state sponsors of terrorism has been highly politicized since Congress created it in 1979 and included only countries aligned with the Soviet Union.\r\n\r\n\u0022The U.S. won\u0026#039;t put allies on the list even though they engage in terrorist behavior,\u0022 Pillar said, citing the example of Saudi Arabia\u0026#039;s murder of\u0026nbsp;journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Instead, experts say, the U.S. uses the blacklist as a coercive tool to reward compliant countries and punish noncompliant ones or entice them to bend to the will of Washington.\r\n\r\nDecrying the hypocrisy of the list, renowned linguist and activist Noam Chomsky told Erlich by email that the U.S. should \u0022either eliminate it, or make it honest.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022As the case of Cuba reveals, \u0026#039;terrorism\u0026#039; means resistance to massive U.S. terrorism and refusal to bow down to the master,\u0022 Chomsky said.