Havana, Washington e o caso Alan Gross 1

Há quatro anos, Alan Gross está preso em Cuba, onde cumpre uma pena de 15 anos de prisão por “subversão”

By Salim Lamrani, GlobalResearch.ca

Desde o dia 3 dezembro de 2009, Alan Gross está preso em Havana. Era um empregado da Development Alternative, Inc (DAI), contratada pela Agência dos Estados Unidos para o Desenvolvimento Internacional (USAID, por sua sigla em inglês), a qual, por sua vez, depende do Departamento de Estado. Gross foi julgado e condenado a 15 anos de prisão por distribuir equipamentos via satélites, no marco do programa do Departamento de Estado de “promoção da democracia em Cuba”, cujo objetivo é uma “mudança de regime” na ilha.[1]

De acordo com Washington, Gross estava em Havana para ajudar os membros da comunidade judaica cubana a “se conectarem com outras comunidades judaicas do mundo” [2]. Não obstante, a mesma comunidade judaica de Havana contradiz a versão oficial dos Estados Unidos e da família Gross. A agência estadunidense Associated Press afirma, de sua parte, que os “líderes da comunidade judaica de Cuba negaram que o contratado estadunidense Alan Gross […] tivesse colaborado com eles”.[3] Do mesmo modo, a Agência Telegráfica Judaica pontua que “os principais grupos de Cuba desmentiram qualquer contato com Alan Gross e qualquer conhecimento de seu programa.”[4]

O reverendo Odén Marichal, secretário do Conselho de Igrejas de Cuba (CIC), que agrupa as instituições religiosas cristãs bem como a comunidade judaica de Cuba, também ratificou essa posição: “A comunidade hebraica de Cuba, que é membro do Conselho de Igrejas de Cuba, nos disse: ‘Nós jamais tivemos relações com esse senhor, jamais nos trouxe nenhum equipamento de nenhum tipo’. Negaram qualquer relação com Alan Gross!”.[5]

Wayne S. Smith, embaixador estadunidense em Cuba entre 1979 e 1982 e diretor do programa “Cuba” do Centro de Política Internacional de Washington, diz, por outro lado, que “Gross estava envolvido em um programa cujas intenções são claramente hostis a Cuba, já que o objetivo é nada menos que a mudança de regime”.[6]

Feature continues here: Havana, Washington e o caso Alan Gross

Will Pollard, Gross Follow in Wake of Ostreicher? 2

By Jacob Kamaras, JNS.org

WHILE an air of mystery surrounds the details of Jewish businessman Jacob Ostreicher’s return to US soil after being held for more than two years in Bolivia, the involvement of legislators and a high-profile celebrity in his case may shed some light on the conditions that could lead to the freedom of other high-profile Jewish prisoners, such as Jonathan Pollard (US), Alan Gross (Cuba) and Ilya Farber (Russia).

Ostreicher, a 54-year-old Brooklyn native, traveled to Bolivia in December, 2010 to oversee rice production and was arrested in June, 2011 on suspicion of money laundering and criminal organization.

No formal charges were ever brought against him, but he spent 18 months in prison before being released on bail in December, 2012, after which he remained in Bolivia under house arrest.

News of Ostreicher’s escape from Bolivia broke Dec. 16, and little was known about the circumstances of his return to America until actor Sean Penn told the Associated Press on Dec. 18 that he was with Ostreicher following a “humanitarian operation” to free the Jewish businessman “from the corrupt prosecution and imprisonment he was suffering in Bolivia.”

In May, Penn testified about Ostreicher’s situation in a hearing before the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs’ Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations. Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), one of the leading advocates in Congress for Ostreicher’s release, had arranged the hearing and on Dec. 17 thanked Penn “for his tireless work to free Jacob.”

Bill Richardson — the former governor of New Mexico and US Ambassador to the UN — said in a recent conference call with reporters that, like the rest of the public, he doesn’t “have all the circumstances of [Ostreicher’s] escape” from Bolivia.

But Richardson attempted to explain the conditions that may have led to Ostreicher’s freedom, citing a meeting he had with Bolivian President Evo Morales a year ago as an example of the “quiet diplomacy” he and other key officials engaged in on Ostreicher’s behalf.

Richardson also said that in the efforts to bring about Ostreicher’s release, there was “intensive public pressure by many Jewish organizations” that was “very effective.”

“What needs to happen in successful releases is a combination of public pressure and private diplomacy,” Richardson said. “Those combinations in many cases are the roots for success.”

ON Dec. 10, Richardson wrote a letter to President Barack Obama …..

Story continues here: Will Pollard, Gross Follow in Wake of Ostreicher?

Citing “Former” Cuban Spy, AFP Reports Dissident Influence Waning 1

In a feature worthy of Granma or Russia’s Pravda, the AFP reported that Cuban dissidents now travel freely, but their on-island influence has diminished. Curiously, the AFP conceded that Cuba’s apartheid regime censors dissident messages, but failed to report that foreign travel is allowed only when approved by Havana’s pervasive security and intelligence services. Likewise, it omitted State Security’s long-term, repressive targeting of the internationally-known Ladies in White and less famous protesters.

The piece then quoted “former” Cuban spy Arturo Lopez-Levy as saying dissidents do not provide “viable alternatives to the country’s main problems.” In reality, Lopez-Levy is a self-professed “former” Intelligence Officer in Havana’s dreaded Ministry of the Interior (MININT). He is also a relative of MININT Col. Luis Alberto Rodriguez Lopez-Callejas, Raul Castro’s son-in-law and head of GAESA, the regime’s business monopoly. Now living comfortably in Colorado, Lopez-Levy (aka Lopez-Callejas) is in his eighth year as a doctoral student in Denver.