Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Alan Gross statement released

Café Fuerte has published the declaration in court of USAID contractor Alan Gross, in his own handwriting.  He explains his intentions and his respect for Cuban sovereignty and his view that he would never set out to subvert a political system.  Most intriguing, he says he was “used” and “duped.”  By whom he does not say – by the U.S. government, the company that contracted him, or Cuban officials.

Café Fuerte also has an interview with Mrs. Gross.

Meanwhile, Governor Richardson is leaving Cuba, having withdrawn after a few days his melodramatic ultimatum not to leave without visiting Mr. Gross in jail.  I have good wishes for anyone who tries to help, but there is a lot that I don’t understand about Richardson’s effort.  Such as why he would set up a conflict over a goal – a prison visit – that lower-profile visitors have achieved without fanfare.  Or why he would provide a running public commentary on his views and his efforts.  In the end, my guess is that neither government objected to his visit, but neither sought his mediation, much less the hoopla.  It looks like improvisation to me, and Mr. Gross deserves better.


Anonymous said...

This issue needs press. Almost any press. I don't know if the kind of inflamatory statements that Richardson made would attract the coverage needed. But even if they end up being fully biased toward the Gross perspective there may be some asking why the Cuban government act like that and then the point of the Cuban 5 could gain some of the much needed visibility. There is a major assumption here: people will wonder about the reasons of Cuba instead of assuming that this is just another inhumane "communist" regime with no other drive than power and no other mean than repression. Whether or not these were Richarson's intentions is beyond my grasp.


brianmack said...

Totally agree with your comment Phil.
It seems incredible that Bill Richardson would make such a confrontation, knowing full well
the ramifications. Are the Cuban Five considered "hostages?" The entire scenario is immature and as many have exclaimed over and over again, hurting the chances for reunification.

Anonymous said...

Reading his whole statement he mentions he would have 'never brought anything here' implying the BGANS were in his possession going through customs. Hard to believe the cubans wouldn't have stopped him. If they didn't with intent to seeing what he was doing, then he was duped by the govt. If not, then the US did the duping. Either way, responsibility lies with Gross to make damn sure if he was bringing in such high tech equipment to see if it was legal or not. If he was bringing it in did he declare it? In my experience no way he could get it in without being stopped. So... there definitely is a question of who is being duped or not.
and BGANS are used millions of times daily?

Antonio said...

Ay, this is interesting. When Gross was first arrested (seems like forever), my first thought was that the Cuban 5 should start packing. I thought they would be going home soon.
Now, I don't know what to think.