A letter from Gerardo

Gerardo Hernández, one of the five Cuban antiterrorist fighters held in US jails sent a letter to all who have supported their cause and to the Cuban people, on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of their imprisonment last September 12. The letter was sent to our agency by the International Committee for the Freedom of Ramon Labañino, Rene Gonzalez, Fernando Gonzalez, Antonio Guerrero and Gerardo Hernandez, known as the Cuban Five.

Dear Compañeras and Compañeros

We have arrived at the tenth anniversary of the arrest of the Cuban Five in a crucial moment of our legal process. (..This is the way it is called, but perhaps it would be more appropriate to say (“illegal process”). The Eleven Circuit Court of Appeals, based in Atlanta, just ended our appeals. That means that if it was up to them everything would stay like it is and some day my bones would be sent to Cuba when my death frees me from the two life sentences.

The mentioned court has given clear signals of the type of “justice” the Five can receive in this country. When the decision was 3-0 in our favour, with 93 pages of solid arguments in which the three judge panel stated what happened in our case was “the perfect storm”, the entire court, against all the prognostics, not only accepted to revise it, but reinstated all of the original charges without much explanation.

Suddenly, “the perfect storm” became a little drizzle. But, this time, when the decision was 2-1 against the Five, with obvious legal errors, with a judge arguing in 16 pages that the prosecutors presented absolutely no proof that could support the charge of conspiracy to commit murder, with a judge that even voting against us—recognized that it was a very “close case” and with several arguments from the defense that were not even correctly analyzed, the Eleventh Circuit Court refused to look back into it.

Like we say in Cuba: “Not even the water is clearer”. We have had to say over and over again that this is a political case, and those who do not see it like that is because they chose to not see it.

Somebody recently mentioned that the last word is now on the Supreme Court. I would say that they would have the second to last word. The last word on the case belongs to you, our brothers and sisters from Cuba, the United States and from all over the world who through these years have been our main source of encouragement. Our hopes are not deposited in any court. Ten years are more than enough to have been cured of any naivety. Our hope is with you who through great sacrifice and swimming against the current have made it possible, that today, people in all continents, know about the injustice against the Five.

There are those of you who are not resting in your houses or taking time off but instead honor us with your presence in different activities, commemorating the tenth anniversary of our imprisonment. It is you who carry the responsibility of continuing to struggle to unmask the double standards of a government that invades other countries supposedly to fight terrorism, and at the same time shelters and protects known terrorists and imprisoned those who were trying to prevent these types of criminal acts.

We trust you to unveil the hypocrisy of the corporate media, and some international organizations that portray suffering political prisoners who are in reality mercenaries and traitors of our country who lower themselves for a handful of dollars or a visa. Meanwhile there is a deafening silence in the case of two women that have been denied, for a decade, their elemental right to visit their husbands in prison.

We know that the truth is in our side, but to achieve true justice, we need a jury of millions of people from around the world, and we need you, defenders of just causes, to let our story be known.

The injustice committed against the Five has kept us for 10 years far away from our homeland, but this has not prevented us from sharing with our people their joys and also their sufferings.

A few days ago Hurricane Gustav caused great damage in Cuba, particularly in the Island of Youth and Pinar del Rio, two territories from where, in all these years, we have received a great deal of support and warmness.

We are sure that those who live in these areas together with the local and national leadership, with the solidarity of all dignified Cubans and many friends from around the world, will know how to become stronger in these difficult moments and –as is characteristic of revolutionaries—will convert the difficulties into victory. Although we can not be there physically, today more than ever the Five are with you in our hearts, with all of our brothers and sisters in the Island of Youth and Pinar del Rio that have done so much in the struggle for our liberation.

Compañeras and Compañeros: It has been 10 years since September 12, 1998, and we want to thank you one more time for walking with us on this long and accidental road. We know that to continue this march, we can continue counting on you, and you can also count on us and our firm commitment to resist with our heads held high for as long as it takes.

Hasta la Victoria Siempre
USP Victorville