The Cuban 5 are five Cuban men who were arrested by the FBI in 1998. Their only crime was to expose the activities of right wing Cuban-Americans in Miami who had carried out bombings of Cuban hotels in an attempt to cripple the Cuban tourist industry.
The Cuban 5 never harmed anyone nor ever used any weapons on their mission. Their only objective was to protect their country and stop terrorism.
In the 1950s, Cuba was ruled by a brutal dictator called Fulgencio Batista. Batista was backed by the United States. He ruled Cuba in interests of American Corporations and the mafia, while the ordinary Cuba people were oppressed and exploited.
In 1959, a popular revolution in Cuba ousted the hated Batista regime. The new left wing government in Cuba began nationalising the assets of the Mafia and big corporations so they could be run in the interests of the Cuban people. The United States reacted by sending an invasion force to overthrow the new government in an incident that became known as ‘The Bay of Pigs’. After this failed invasion attempt, the US began economic sanctions against Cuba as well as sponsoring old allies of Batista who had fled to Miami. These Cuban exiles hated the new government in Cuba and began planning attacks against it.
There is a long and shameful history of the United States using ‘Black Ops’ to try and destroy the Cuban Revolution. For over 40 years the US has been behind hundreds of terrorist attacks on Cuba that have killed over 3,000 Cubans.
The Cuban 5 went to Miami in 1990 to try and infiltrate the terrorist groups organising attacks on their homeland. These groups were backed by the CIA and were responsible for many deaths.
In 1998, the Cuba 5 presented the FBI with evidence that groups in Miami had been involved in bombing Cuban hotels and had even more attacks planned. Instead of arresting the terrorists, the FBI arrested the Cuban 5. They were charged with ‘espionage’, ‘conspiracy’ and ‘being agents of a foreign government’.
The Five were held in solitary confinement for 17 months in prison until their trial in November 2000. The trial took place in the extremely hostile environment of Miami and made it impossible for the men to get a fair hearing. The trial was a one sided farce that made a mockery of the US justice system.
The Cuban Five were convicted and sentenced to four life terms and 75 years. One of the five was released on parole in 2011 but the other 4 remain incarcerated.
The men are considered national heroes in Cuba who tried to protect their country. There are campaigns across the world demanding the freedom of these men.