Cablegate Chronicles: The Underarm of Appliances

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A bit of news extracted from the early summer edition of "Cartas de Cuba," a roundup of dispatches from Cuba.

FROM: HAVANA, CUBA
TO: STATE DEPARTMENT
DATE: JUNE 5, 2006
CLASSIFICATION: CONFIDENTIAL
SEE FULL CABLE

Chinese Appliances: Cubans who visit USINT tell us frequently that new, supposedly energy-saving appliances made in China are of very poor quality. The small refrigerators have earned the nickname of "underarms," because they break quickly and are seen on the streets carried under the arms of their unhappy owners to the repair facilities (which of course are understocked with spare parts). The new Chinese-made ovens have a blue plastic thermostat button which users say melts when the ovens are heated up to normal baking temperatures.

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