Cuban Five: Fernando Gonzalez Arrives in Cuba

February 28, 2014 | Print Print |
Fernando Gonzalez arriving to Cuba.  Foto: Estudios Revolución

Fernando Gonzalez arriving to Cuba. Foto: Estudios Revolución

HAVANA TIMES — Former Cuban intelligence agent Fernando González arrived in Havana on Friday, one day after being released by US authorities after more than 15 years in prison, reported dpa news.

Gonzalez, one of the “Cuban Five” arrested in 1998 and sentenced for conspiracy to commit espionage to long prison terms in the United States, came to the island around noon, according to the official Granma website.

Gonzalez, 50, declared a “hero” by the Cuban State along with his four companions, was received at the airport by his mother.  He is expected to make a public appearance later, although no time was given.

Upon his release on Thursday from his Safford, Arizona prison, the former agent was handed over to immigration authorities for deportation to Cuba.

The Cuban Five were sentenced in 2001 to long prison terms after a prolonged trial. One of them, Gerardo Hernandez received a double life sentence for the added charge of conspiracy to commit murder.

Cuba has always maintained that the agents of the Cuban intelligence’s “Wasp Network” were operating in the US to thwart radical Cuban exile attacks against the island.

René González was the first of the Cuban Five to be released. He completed his prison sentence in October 2011 and after a parole period was allowed to return to live in Cuba since May of last year.

The case of the Cuban Five is one of the thorniest issues in the difficult relations between Washington and Havana.

Another is the case of Alan Gross, a highly paid US operative who was sentenced to 15 years in Cuba for endangering the island’s national security.

Gross was working for Development Alternatives Inc., a US-AID contractor.  When arrested he claimed that his illegal activity was part of a humanitarian mission.

What's your opinion?

  • Think Free

    Time for an exchange to conclude this chapter and move the relationship along. Although it won’t do for the Castro haters, it would be better for the people if the easing of tensions and trade supported Raul’s reforms. A gradual opening up of the economy would be preferred to a failed state. Let the people drive the change versus imposing through coercive measures.

    • Moses Patterson

      You write, “it would be better for the people if the easing of tensions and trade supported Raul’s reforms”. Really? How do you know that? Until there is democracy in Cuba, how do you or anyone else really know what the Cuban people want, let alone need?

      • Terry Downey

        Moses, how do you know there won’t? Nobody truly knows what future awaits Cuba after the lifting of the economic embargo. It’s all speculation on both sides, but to keep it in place because one is convinced it won’t bare any positive fruit…is a defeatist attitude.

      • Think Free

        Adam Smith, Wealth Of Nations. Economic freedom is precursor to emergence of self governance. For the common man, personal freedom is about ability to raise one’s standard of living by one’s effort. Wether the wealthy are such because they are owners of capital or because they are members of the political cabal makes little difference.

      • John Goodrich

        As a total supporter of:
        1) capitalism
        2) the U.S. oligarchic-plutocratic government
        3) organized religion and
        4) the nuclear family
        all of which are totalitarian and all of which provide the base for your very existence, how can you even think about saying that it is CUBA which needs democratization ?
        You need to think about the contradictions between your words in favor of democracy and your actual totalitarian preferences..
        ( I have detailed why these four institutions are indeed totalitarian on several occasions and will do so again if you need reminding -let me know. )
        Seriously, your central belief systems are all totalitarian and can you not see this ?
        As Pink Floyd would put it:
        “Is there anybody in there’

        • Runs With Scissors

          Mr. Goodrich:
          You are a troll who sings the same song over and over again. Get some new material – you are boring.
          And fyi, Pink Floyd said “Is there anybody out there?”

        • informed Consent

          I need a good laugh. Please remind us again of your concepts of totalitarian systems.

  • Think Free

    Feral Capitalism ? No such thing in America. We do have too many out of work citizens. Mostly because they have not prepared themselves. Some adjustments are needed to safety net to motivate productive contribution and support skill development.

    The problem with coercive liberalism is that the price of equality is a shared misery. The nirvana you write about is often promised and not delivered. I prefer to take my chances in an open economy, even with it’s many faults.