[Marxism] City of Detroit called for Freedom for the Cuban Five

Walter Lippmann walterlx at earthlink.net
Wed Apr 5 21:18:21 MDT 2006

City of Detroit called for Freedom for the Cuban Five


Resolution calling for Freedom for the Cuban Five was passed
unanimously by the Detroit City Council, Michigan, United States, on
Wednesday, March 29. This resolution was send to the President of the
United States, the Attorney General, the Secretary of State, a number
of senators and representatives and to the media so that they may be
encouraged to act.

Resolution to Support the Cuban 5

Resolution by City Council Member JoAnn Watson

March 29, 2006

Whereas, Ramon Labanino, Rene Gonzalez, Fernando Gonzalez, Antonio
Guerrero, and Gerardo Hernandez known as the "Cuban Five" have been
imprisoned in the United States since Sept. 12, 1998, and

Whereas, these Five Cuban men, were arrested in Miami, Florida in
September, 1998 and charged with 26 counts of violating the federal
laws of the United States, 24 of which were relatively minor and
technical offenses, such as the use of false names and failure to
register as foreign agents. None of the convicted charges involved
violence in the U.S., the use of weapons, or property damage, or the
transmission of U.S. government documents or classified information,

Whereas, the sentences range from 15 years to multiple life terms
plus years, much longer than others convicted of transmitting
classified information, and

Whereas, these arrests took place shortly after the Cuban government
shared information with U.S. government authorities concerning
terrorist actions against Cuba planned from Miami, and

Whereas, The Five had come to the United States from Cuba following
years of violence perpetrated by a network of terrorist made up of
armed mercenaries drawn from the Cuban exile community in Florida.
For over forty years these groups have been tolerated, and even
hosted, by successive U.S. Governments. More than 3,000 Cuban
citizens have lost their lives due to this terrorism including the 73
passengers of Cubana airlines bombed in mid air thirty years ago on
October 6, 1976, a bomb was found in the airport terminal in Havana,
tourist buses were bombed, as were hotels causing the death of an
Italian citizen. Boats from Miami traveled to Cuba and shelled hotels
and tourist facilities, and

Whereas, the anti-Cuba terrorists struck even inside of the United
States, not only in Miami and Puerto Rico, but in Washington, D.C.
where thirty years ago, former Chilean foreign minister, Orlando
Letelier and his aide, Roni Moffat, were assassinated by car bomb,

Whereas, the mission of the Five was not to obtain U.S. military
secrets, as was charged, but rather to monitor the terrorist
activities of those mercenaries and report their planned threats back
to Cuba. The arrest and prosecution of these men for their courageous
attempt to stop the terror was not only unjust, it exposed the
hypocrisy of America's claim to oppose terrorism wherever it
surfaces, and

Whereas, nothing reveals this more than the contrast between the U.S.
government's handling of the Five's case with that of Orlando Bosch
and Luis Posada Carriles. Both Bosch and Carriles were members, even
leaders, of the Miami terror network and self confessed terrorists,
who planted a bomb on a Cubana airline in 1976, which exploded in
midair, killing 73 people. Bosch and Carriles have received safe
haven in the United States. The US government has thus far refused to
extradite Carriles to Venezuela for trial on the airline bombing as
required by international covenant, and

Whereas, three of the Cuban Five, Fernando Gonzalez, Gerardo
Hernandez, and Rene Gonzalez volunteered and fought against the
apartheid South African army, recognized by Nelson Mandela in these
words, "if today all South Africans enjoy the rights of democracy; if
they are able at last to address the grinding poverty of a system
that denied them even the most basic amenities of life, it is also
because of Cuba 's selfless support for the struggle to free all of
South Africa 's people and the countries of our region from the
inhumane and destructive system of apartheid. For that, we thank the
Cuban people from the bottom of our heart", and

Whereas, on August 4, 2005 the convictions were unanimously
overturned by a three judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of
Appeals citing it was impossible for the Five to receive a fair trial
in Miami due to "the various Cuban exile groups and their
paramilitary camps that con6nue to operate in the Miami area. The
perception that these groups could harm jurors that rendered a
verdict unfavorable to their views was palpable," and

Whereas, on May 27, 2005 the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detentions
found the detention of the Five was "in contravention of article 14
of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights" and
requests the U.S. "Government to adopt the necessary steps to remedy
the situation, in conformity with the principles stated in the
International Covenant on, Civil and Political Rights," and

Whereas, Amnesty International has condemned the inhumane treatment
of the Cuban Five am their families by refusing visas for family
visits, and

Whereas, The US government is seeking to avoid releasing these
innocent men through appeals of the 11th Circuit Court decision,
knowing full well they would never be convicted outside of Miami,
Florida, and

Whereas, two notable supporters of the Cuban Five will be speaking on
their case in Detroit on Saturday, April 1 including Leonard
Weinglass, appellate attorney for the Cuban Five who has a 35 year
history of defending political and civil right activists, the peace
movement and political prisoners in the United States, whose clients
have included African American journalist Mumia Abu Jamal, former
First daughter Amy Carter, actor and activist Jane Fonda, Pentagon
Papers co-defendant Anthony Russo, civil rights leader Angela Davis
and the Chicago Eight anti-Vietnam war protesters, and

Whereas, Mr. Weinglass will be joined by Rev. Dr. Joan Brown Campbell
who is Religious Director of the Chautauqua Institute in New York and
helped to negotiate with President Clinton and President Fidel Castro
the return of Elian Gonzalez to his father and family in Cuba just
months before the trial of the Cuban Five opened in Miami, Florida.
Rev. Campbell communicates with the families, wives and children, of
the Cuban Five who are cruelly refused visitation by the United
States government, Then Therefore, Be It

Resolved, that the City of Detroit officially welcomes Mr. Weinglass
and Rev. Campbell, by presentation of this resolution at the April 1
event, and Be it further

Resolved, that the City of Detroit calls for Freedom for Ramon
Labanino, Rene Gonzalez, Fernando Gonzalez, Antonio Guerrero, and
Gerardo Hernandez, the Cuban Five, And be it further

Resolved, that the City of Detroit calls for an end to the blockade
of Cuba and restoring the right of U.S. citizens to freely travel and
exchange with the people of Cuba, and Be it further

Resolved, that the City of Detroit calls on the U.S. government to
extradite Luis Posada Carriles to the sovereign country of Venezuela
without further delay so he may stand trial for the 1976 bombing of
Cuban a airlines resulting in the deaths of 73 people, and Be it

Resolved that the City of Detroit will broadcast the 48 minute video,
"Mission Against Terror", a joint Cuba/Ireland production for public
viewing on the City of Detroit cable channel for public information,
And Be It Further

Resolved, that this resolution be sent to the President of the United
States, the Attorney General, the Secretary of State, Michigan
Senators Levin and Stabenow and Detroit Congressional Representatives
Kilpatrick and Conyers and Michigan Governor Granholm, and Michigan
State Senators, Representatives and the media so that they may be
encouraged to act.

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