Top

Who are the “Cuban Five”?

Who are the “Cuban Five”? Are they really “political prisoners” held in the U.S.? If President Bush is serious in denying “safe havens for terrorists” B does he need to look at Miami, too? Imagine a country losing over 3,000 innocent people to terrorism, including passengers on its civilian airlines, just because of their nationality. And a government defending its own citizens by monitoring and infiltrating illegal terrorist groups operating in another country. Imagine the information they found, on training camps, explosives, and related plots, being turned over to the FBI — but then the FBI arrests the informants and not the terrorists! That is the story of the “Cuban 5″… Hear Andres Gomez, Author & progressive Cuban-American leader in Miami Andres Gomez came to the US as a child shortly after the Cuban Revolution, and became a leader of the unsung progressive wing of the exile community in Miami. Braving numerous threats from fellow exiles, he helped found the Antonio Maceo Brigade, edited the progressive magazine Areito, and organized trips to Cuba, as well as rallies in Miami opposing the illegal U.S. contra war on Nicaragua, the U.S. travel ban and economic blockade of Cuba, and for the return of Elian Gonzalez to his family. He is a compelling and authoritative speaker with first-hand knowledge of the situation in South Florida where the Cuban Five worked to defeat terrorism and were then tried and convicted. He will be joined by lawyers familiar with the case to explain legal aspects. Saturday, November 8th, 7:00 p.m. Central United Methodist Church, 639 N. 25th St. Free & open to the public (off street parking available south of the Church) Sponsored by the Milwaukee Coalition to Normalize Relations with Cuba, (414) 273-1040, www.cubawifriends.org, and other supporting organizations. See also www.freethefive.org. Cuban-American leader to speak here on Terrorism in Miami and the “Cuban 5” case Andres Gomez, a nationally known leader of progressive Cuban Americans, will speak in Milwaukee on Saturday, November 8 about five Cubans who were convicted in Miami in 2000 as a result of their nonviolent efforts to gather information on terrorist groups operating in Florida. One of the prisoners is serving a 19-year sentence at the federal prison in Oxford, Wisconsin. Three of the “Cuban Five,” as they are internationally known, were given life sentences, and all have served five years already, much of it in solitary confinement. Amnesty International has criticized the conditions of their imprisonment and denial of visitation rights, and two Nobel laureates have joined the call for them to be released. Their case is still on appeal. Gomez, who emigrated from Cuba as a child shortly after the Cuban Revolution, is a leader of progressive Cuban-Americans in Miami who have called for improved relations with Cuba, in the face of numerous threats and physical attacks directed against them. He has served as editor of the magazine Areito, and co-founded the Antonio Maceo Brigade, an organization of Cuban-Americans (named after the Afro-Cuban general and leader of its war for independence from Spain) who visit Cuba and promote reconciliation. He helped organize rallies in Miami against US military intervention in Central America, to end the U.S. travel ban and economic blockade of Cuba, and for the return of Elian Gonzalez to his family. He will share his first hand knowledge on the history of violence in Florida which the Cuban Five sought to address, and on their trial in Miami and what can be done. According to Gomez, terrorist acts, including bombings organized and financed from Miami, have claimed the lives of more than 3000 innocent people in Cuba. The Cuban Five monitored and infiltrated some of the groups responsible, and turned over their information to Cuba, which shared it with the FBI. But instead of arresting the terrorists, it was the Five who were apprehended and charged. How this came to occur, and what happened next, is the story he will be telling in Milwaukee. Gomez is also widely noted as an eloquent speaker. His presentation will take place at 7 p.m., at the Central United Methodist Church, 639 N. 25th St., and is offered free to the public. It is sponsored by the Milwaukee Coalition to Normalize Relations with Cuba and the National Lawyers Guild. For additional information, call 273-1040, or visit www.cubawifriends.org and www.freethefive.org.