From the start of his arrest in 2009 and later sentencing in Cuba for acting as a paid agent of the US government, the US press and government defended him as just an innocent trying to help the Jewish community in Cuba get access to the internet. Cuba allowed him to come and go many times before they finally arrested him with the evidence in his posession.
Eventually the cover story was debunked by a Associated Press (AP) reporter who dug out the not so innocent details . Gross was a well paid agent ($500,000 or more) carrying out a US AID program specifically designed to get rid of socialism in Cuba.
He was bringing in not cell phones and laptops (which are legal in Cuba anyway), but very costly setellite equipment and encrypted communications chips that only the CIA or US State Dept. have access to and cost many thousands of dollars per month to operate.
The use of this extremely expensive high tech equipment, including the secret CIA technology, was designed to undermine and eventually lead to the overthrow of the Cuban government by setting up widespread, clandistine communications networks that the CIA and dissidents in Cuba could use with impunity.
Yet even after his own secret reports revealed he knew he was at risk and was breaking Cuban laws, his supporters in the US, such as the Washting Post kept repeating the earlier stories that he was just a dogooder at worst misled by his handlers at AID. Additionally the Post's repeated defence of Gross, consistenly put out false information and even blocked sources that refuted his innocence.
Recently my the Post blocked the following commen, and even after I deleted all but the links to sources, they still blocked it::
"Consider the evidence, in the case of Alan Gross, both legal and political.
While the Gross situation has been widely covered in the US press, the earlier and politically relevant case of "The Cuban 5" was long ignored. Now has been discussed as an unjust incarceration of anti-terrorist Cubans, but unfortunately for the 5 and their families, the American people know little about them and less about the facts. Meanwhile self-admitted right-wing Cuban terrorists have been given support and sanctuary by the US government and much of the media. While the Cuban 5 have up to life sentences for trying to stop terrorism, the US media continues to publicize the case of Alan Gross, an American sentenced to 15 years for working for the US AID to overthrow the government of Cuba. Specifically, he was caught and his own reports to his contractors admit that he knew he was bringing sophisticated communications equipment in violation of Cuban law. He was paid well and the equipment was very expensive. After five trips and enlisting unsuspecting tourists to carry in some of his items, he was caught.
His defenders in the US attempt to paint him as an innocent, just wanting to help the Jewish communities better communicate and that at worst he was ill informed by his employers about the illegalities and dangers of what they hired his to do. Unfortunately for Mr. Gross, he saved his detailed reports to his supervisors which included the nature and risks of his work. He knew for example that he was transporting encryption chips not available to the US citizens and supplied by either the CIA or the State Department. He also knew that the satellite phones and other equipment he brought in was way beyond the cost and use of ordinary computer or cell phone users. Keep in mind that cell phones and ordinary computers are legal in Cuba. But equipment meant to circumvent the law and government and supplied and paid for by million dollar programs whose primary purpose is to overthrow the government of Cuba, are neither legal nor just a matter of better communications.
Before your sympathy is exploited, at least check out the available facts behind these cases.
Check out the Cuba 5 case. A recent discovery, exposed the fact that the US government's paid journalists in Florida millions to publish articles to prejudice the jury against The Cuba 5 and the Cuban government.
Around the time this was revealed, the Washington Post for example, oddly published two similar pieces about Alan Gross in the same issue, both supporting the US government's position. The two pieces were similarly shallow and dishonest at least by omission and could have been written by Gross's support group (See link below).
At first, the US press lauded Gross as a complete innocent. The Post still does. But an excellent AP article exposed Gross' true purpose and clandestine activities. For a time after the AP expose, Gross' own statements sort of conceded he'd done wrong and even blamed his employers (USAID and the US government) for not properly warning or preparing him. [See links below.]
But lately, the main stream US media and his supporters have reasserted his complete innocence. However, if you do some Google research, you should check out Gross's support pages, and notice who they chose to be his defense lawyers; Perseus Strategies.
[Note: Since I compiled these links, the Alan Gross support site removed many of these documents. I have saved them and posted on this site. WT]
1. Alan Gross’s True Cuba Mission, Havana Times, posted by Circles Robinson, Jan. 19, 2013. "Secrecy, politics at heart of Cuba Project, by Tracey Eaton. This is a long, detailed article with the primary documents showing the full, factual legal and political case of Alan Gross. Some of the documents were already loaded below, but this is a good summary article.
2. Associated Press, Feb. 13, 2012. First in-depth report in US press spells out the case, including CIA/State Dept. links. Note that Alan Gross' support page [link below] includes a number of self-serving press links, but jumps right over the AP story link. (If you need a copy, email me.)
http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D9SSHGPG2.htm - In Word format, in PDF format
3. Decent overview of this case on Wikipedia.
4. Cuban Indictment of Alan Gross, January 29, 2011. (Very revealing details.) [Was removed from Alan Gross Support site.]
http://www.bringalanhome.org/newsroom/Indictment.pdf In PDF on this site.
5. Cuban Court Sentencing Decision March 11, 2011 detailing conviction of Alan Gross. (PDF attached)
6. Appeal Decision, Aug. 4, 2011. Note that Gross' support page highlights a section they think is favorable to their argument, but if you read the whole document (and the others) his awareness he was breaking the law becomes obvious. (PDF without Gross highlighting attached) [Was removed from Alan Gross Support site.]
http://www.bringalanhome.org/newsroom/Appeal%20Decision.pdf This document in PDF on this site.
7. Alan Gross' Support Home Page. Note that they have included links and attachments of the major documents, except the AP report of Feb. 13, 2012, and they have been understandably very biased in their use and interpretation of these documents.[A numer of documents were removed from Alan Gross Support site.]
8. Perseus Strategies - Press Release Sept. 13, 2012 (English/Spanish) [Note the logo!] [Was removed from Alan Gross Support site.]
http://www.bringalanhome.org/newsroom/Newsroom-2012-09-13.pdf This press release on this site in PDF.
9. Perseus Strategies (These guys deserve to be researched.)
10. Perseus Strategies logo search. Notice the imperialistic logo designs they considered before they choose the one on their documents and site.
http://99designs.com/logo-design/contests/create-next-logo-perseus-strategies-llc-83530(If this disappears, let me know.)
11. Statement by Josefina Vidal Ferreiro, Director of the United States Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cuba. International Press Center, Havana, December 5 2012.
http://www.cubadiplomatica.cu/sicw/EN/Home/tabid/12151/ctl/Details/mid/19908/ItemID/23035/Default.asp [This link doesn't work now, so here is a Word version and a PDF version from http://tinyurl.com/kv8hpye.
12. "Many of those details can be found on a blog called ALONG THE MALECON with the headline "Alan Gross and his Descent into Hell". He wasn't simply in Cuba helping the Jewish community share recipies for bagels and matzo ball soup. The blog: " Walter Lippmann.
13. Alan Gross released as part of exchange between US government and Cuba. Alan Gross returns to US on Decemer 17, 2014 and the remaining three of the Cuba 5 prisoners are released by the US government and return to Cuba. It is part of Obama's initiative to work toward normalization of relations with Cuba. Many issues remain and will be difficult to resolve due to the fact that the U.S. laws imposing a very punative economic and poltical embargo (Cuba calls it a Blockade) against anyone doing business with Cuba is based on laws passed by the US Congress: The Cuba Torricelli Act of 1992 and the Helms Burton act of 1996. The US governmnt also two lies it had to cover up. First that the Cuba Fibe were spies and terrorists and second that Alan Gross was not an agent of the US government. To get around these inconvenient un-truths, the US said it was exchanging the Cuban agents for a US agent held by Cuba. Oddly, Rolando "Rollie" Sarraff Trujillo,as of this writing is still unaccounted for. While Alan Gross' supporters continue to coverup the fact that he was paid huge sums as part of a program to overthrow the government of Cuba, he is not to receive an additonal 3.2 million dollars. If you want more information, just Google any of these names and issues.
I welcome any additions or corrections.
I do hope that these cases are resolved in a way that helps return the 5 to their homes.
December 6, 2013