To my understanding the embargo was installed by Kennedy during the Cuban missile crisis.
This was to show Cuba and others that there are very serious and large ramifications should one allow ones territory to be used as a launch platform for Russian nuclear missiles capable of striking anywhere in the US within minutes (Miami) to hours.
The belligerent Cuban regime has not backed down from it’s chosen path of repression of its own people and aggression against the US.
It has sent its people into wars across the continents under the banner of socialism and revolution.
Cuba is still sending its people in ‘brigades sociales’ to support socialist regimes like Maduro (who wages war on his own people).
That is their choice but it comes at a cost to them.
The real victims here are the Cuban people who remain opressed, are left with very limited opportunities and see little in the way of progress over the years and whose lives are miserable.
The embargo does contribute to it but let’s not forget that by their own actions the Cuban government has brought this on themselves.
I also believe that should the embargo be revoked tomorrow, that it would make little difference in the way the power dynamic on the island would work.
Those in power would still cling to it by any means necessary and syphon off any extra gains to the economic activity for military and personal use, leaving the population at large in the same difficult circumstances.
Do not forget that Cuba is not a socialist country (look towards the EU for examples of that) but a ruthless dictatorship.
Image the damage they could do if their actions didn’t have consequences (missile crisis, angola, el salvador, venezuela, nicaragua) and their economic development wasn’t somewhat influenced.
As a final point, please don’t think the embargo is responsible for a food crisis. The cubans can feed themselves, but on my recent visit I have encountered many fallow fields where crops could be grown. Also in the cities hardly anybody has a vegetable patch in their yards or on their balconies and neither are vacant lots used to produce food.
So much unused farmland is not an effect of the embargo, yet Cubans complain about the price of their vegetales on the open market.