Merrick Garland has been a federal judge on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals since 1997. Prior to his tenure on the court, Judge Garland served as a prosecutor in the criminal division of the Justice Department. Charles Dharapak/AP/File
Elena Kagan is the solicitor general of the United States and a former dean of Harvard Law School. Zuma/Newscom/File
Pamela Karlan teaches public interest and election law at Stanford Law School. She is also the founding director of the school’s famous Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, in which students litigate real cases before the court. Courtesy Stanford Law
Harold Koh is a professor of international and national security law at Yale Law School. Professor Koh is currently on leave and serving as legal adviser to the State Department. Kevin Dietsch/UPI/Newscom/File
Janet Napolitano is secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. Formerly, she was governor and attorney general of Arizona. She worked as a US attorney in the Clinton administration. Dominique Faget/AFP/Newscom/File
A former law professor at Harvard Law School, Cass Sunstein joined the Obama administration last year as administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs within the White House Office of Management and Budget. Harvard Law/UPI/Newscom/File
Kathleen Sullivan teaches constitutional law at Stanford Law School and is a partner at California-based Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan. She was the dean of Stanford Law. She is openly gay. Courtesy Stanford Law
Diane Wood has served 14 years as a federal judge on the Illinois-based Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. She is well-known for her judicial battles with two prominent conservative judges on that court, Richard Posner and Frank Easterbrook. Lloyd DeGrane/University of Chicago/File
Today's announcement of restored diplomatic ties between Cuba and the US comes after five decades of antagonism, including the 54-year-old US trade embargo against the Communist island. The Christian Science Monitor covered the embargo from the start.
ByBertram B. Johansson, Latin America Writer
Melanie Stetson Freeman/Staff/File
Today, President Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro announced that the United States and Cuba are restoring diplomatic ties after five decades of antagonism. The US has maintained a trade embargo against Cuba since Oct. 19, 1960. Below is The Christian Science Monitor's story from that day.