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Swedish Free the Five Committee
On the occasion of the announced release of Fernando González, we evoked the humble grandeur of an essential in the struggle for the freedom of the Cuban Five, filmmaker Saul Landau. While passing through Stockholm, Saul met a Swedish cultural personality, actor and director Etienne Glaser. Saul today is not physically with us, but so is the ally that he left us.
Etienne Glaser, one of the Swedish endorsers to the Commission of Inquiry into the Case of the Cuban Five, has confronted with courage the intentional silence and malicious misrepresentations of the official Swedish media. He raised his voice with a debate article that the morning paper Dagens Nyheter refused to publish. Undoubtedly, the pen of Etienne reminds us of Saul’s
The text written by Etienne Glaser:
Imagine that a small note can make one so frantic!
The journalistic task involves a situation of constant inadequacy, which is obvious. It is not possible to satisfy the need of all suffering people to describe their stories in a fair manner, even though this claim is constant. With this in mind, I read in today’s Dagens Nyheter a short note entitled “Acclaimed Cuba Prisoner released”. Acclaimed yes, but not by someone at Dagens Nyheter!
The factual background that was not mentioned in the notice derived from TT-AFP is however subject of a large international tribunal on 7-8 March in London, with a number of senior lawyers and politicians from India, South Africa, France and several other countries, including United States (Ramsey Clark; former US Attorney General) and with the support of cultural figures as Nadine Gordimer, Gunter Grass, John le Carré, Noam Chomsky and others.
What is it they will highlight and discuss about?
For more than four decades right-wing Cuban exiles in Miami in association with co-thinkers in the United States have performed a series of bomb attacks on flights to Cuba and against tourist hotels in Cuba. Many deaths and many injuries have been the result. Cuba tried diplomatically and through the UN to stop terrorist activity but without success.
Because of this, five Cuban men decided to infiltrate these groups in Miami. They killed no one, they threatened no one, and they injured no one. They succeeded beyond expectations in their task and their extensive documentation was handed over by the Cuban government to the FBI. U.S. government showed no signs of wanting to do something, and the final answer from the U.S. came when the five men were arrested on charges of espionage. They were held in solitary confinement for 17 months, yes, you read it right, for 17 months waiting to be brought to court.
This is just the beginning of a story about one of the worst legal abuses in the U.S. The Cuban Five were convicted in a court in Miami, and it did not help that the lawyers asked to have the trial moved to a place where the jury was not primarily influenced by Castro-hating Cuban exiles. But no, it had to be right in Miami, and the Cuban Five were convicted (that was predetermined) to grotesquely long sentences, several of them got life sentences, the shortest sentence being the one of René González – 15 years.
There are U.S. lawyers and politicians who clearly have stated that the Cuban Five were not guilty of any crime and did not threaten U.S. security. But in general, the US public opinion knows nothing about this Justice scandal. They know nothing about the “acclaimed” Cuban Five.
Maybe Dagens Nyheter has written about the Cuban Five and the international movement that has grown ever stronger and bigger and now led in London to the Commission of Inquiry into the Case of the Cuban Five, which a group of Swedes, lawyers and other people involved in human rights issues, will attend.
The small post today in Dagens Nyheter is however an unusual qualifying example of misinformation.
But, dear journalists, it can be easily amended.