letter of may to Obama.
Monday May 6, 2013 - 21:18
Last new: The court has finally granted a motion to allow René González to serve the remaining portion of his three-year parole in Cuba, after which he will of course be able to remain in Cuba, outside the jurisdiction of the court.
Now the letter:
Mr President Obama
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue N.W.
Washington DC 20500
It has been more than fourteen years now that your country has held prisoner the five Cubans Gerardo Hernández, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González, Ramón Labañino, and René González. You know very well, Mr President, that these five patriots are perfectly innocent, and that the clever trick used to sentence them consisted of imputing charges of the “attempted conspiracy” type, needing no proof. As the proverb says, “Give a dog a bad name and hang him.”
This month, let’s talk about their charges of “attempted conspiracy of spying”. Prominent persons of the different intelligence-gathering domains in the United States, such as Colonel George Bucker, Admiral Eugene Carroll, Generals Edward Atkeson and Charles Wilhelm have declared that the five Cubans had no access, under any circumstances whatsoever, to any kind of information of strategic nature. Not the slightest document relating to a State secret was ever in their possession! Nevertheless, these five men were convicted to extremely heavy prison sentences for attempted espionage.
Real spies who, themselves, were caught with important documents were, on the other hand, sentenced to relatively light sentences, and even released on bail. Here are three examples, among others, that took place under the presidency of your predecessor.
To start with, the stupefying case of Leandro Aragoncillo, ex-Marine, arrested on October 5th 2005 in New Jersey. He had in his possession the trifling sum of 733 secret documents coming from the White House, the Pentagon and the Defense Department. He was spying while working for Al Gore, and then for Dick Cheney. He was sentenced to ten years of prison.
One of the most spectacular cases was that of agent Donald W. Keiser of the Central Intelligence Agency who, on December 12th 2005, admitted to Judge T.S. Elliot of Washington, that he had stolen 28 documents classed top secret, 1,976 documents classed secret and 1,655 documents classed confidential. These documents had been handed over to Isabelle Cheng, an agent of the Taiwan Intelligence Corps.
Keiser was released after having paid a $500,000 bail and required to wear an electronic bracelet. He was sentenced on January 22nd 2007 to one year and one day and a fine of $25,000, without ever having been accused neither of espionage nor of attempted espionage! He had already been caught red-handed in 2000 for the theft of a portable computer belonging to the Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, which didn’t keep him from being named to the Federal Department of Foreign Services.
To finish, here is the example of Agent Lawrence A. Franklin, a spy. Collaborating with Donald Rumsfeld, he spied for years for Israel. He handed over to Israeli agents Steve Rosen, Keith Weissman and Naor Gilon, an impressive number of pieces of intelligence from the Pentagon, concerning Iran. The first two agents worked under cover for the American Israel Political Committee, the most important Israeli political lobby in Washington. The third was a political advisor for the Tel Aviv Embassy in Washington. Lawrence A. Franklin was sentenced to one year of prison in 2006 before being released on bail.
So you see, Mr President, the five Cubans who themselves were not spies, were angelic beside these big names in espionage. Their mission was to infiltrate the Miami Mafia gangs, which is not at all the same thing. The Cuban Five handed over, in June 1998, to the F.B.I., a considerable number of documents, thereby avoiding quite a number of terrorist attacks.
While waiting for their liberation that will come sooner or later because justice will win in the end, these five men are still deprived of their freedom.
Ramón Labañino and Gerardo Hernández have suffered the pain of losing their mothers during their detention. René González who was released on probation in the United States since 2011, whereas he has completely served his sentence, cannot go back to Cuba before 2014. In 2012, he lost his brother Roberto. He has just lost his father, without having been able to be at his side to ease his last days.
Since having been arrested in September of 1998, the hope for Gerardo Hernández, Fernando González and their wives, to have children, dwindles every day.
Your country continues to refuse entrée visas for the United States to the wives of Gerardo Hernández and René González, an inhuman situation for these two couples. On top of these injustices, especially for Gerardo Hernández, who is still in a maximum security prison, he is often harassed. For example, last April 7th, the actor Danny Glover went to California to visit him. Unfortunately, he had to go back without having seen him, the visit having been refused – even though Danny Glover is among those authorized to visit Gerardo Hernández.
As you can see, Mr President, your administration is engaged in a veritable relentlessness against these five patriots. We are really hoping for you to come back to the values worthy of the Nobel Peace Prize that was awarded to you. You have the possibility to put an end to these injustices towards the Cuban Five; do something quickly!
Please receive, Mr President, the expression of my most sincere humanitarian sentiments.
Translated by William Peterson
Copies sent to: Mrs. Michelle Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Kathryn Ruemmler, Janet Napolitano, to Mr.. Joe Biden, John F. Kerry, Denis MacDonough, Harry Reid, Eric Holder, Pete Rouse, Rick Scott, and to Charles Rivkin, United States Ambassador in France.
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