Embassy Of The Republic Of Cuba
Let’s Put An End To The Injustice
The US Government seriously violated the Constitution and the Law to guarantee the unfair sentences of the Five Cuban patriots: Gerardo Hernández Nordelo, Ramón Labañino Salazar, Antonio Guerrero Rodríguez, and Fernando González Llort y René González Sehwerert, who just arrive at 14 years of arbitrary and illegal punishment. This was not an isolated event, but rather a systematic effort during the whole process against the Five that cost millions of tax payers’ money.
Disclosing this behavior would force the authorities – both the Court and the Executive- to arrange for the immediate release of the five men and, consequently, Washington has also conspired to hide what it did thus committing an additional crime: cover up.
This is the essence of the affidavit just submitted to Florida’s South District Judge, Joan Lenard, by Martin Garbus, Gerardo Hernández Nordelo’s lawyer. The text supports his previous request demanding the overturning of Gerardo’s conviction or, as an alternative, the Judge’s order to release all the evidence the Government is hiding and the granting of an oral audience.
Although there are many other violations mentioned in the process of appeal – now in its last, extraordinary stage- this document focuses on the conspiracy of the Government with Miami media to condemn beforehand the accused and render a fair trial impossible.
The nature of the conspiracy was to use these media to unleash an unprecedented propaganda campaign of hatred and hostility. To this end they used a large group of “journalists” –in true fact Government cover agents- who published articles and comments time and again, day and night, to produce an authentic flood of misinformation. Just to quote an example, from November 27, 2000 –when the trial started- to July 8, 2001 -when they were found guilty- The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald alone had published 1111 articles, an average of more than 5 per day.
In Miami, the case had out-of-proportion coverage, and the “journalists” and local media were instrumental in the creation of an environment of irrational hatred that would result in the outcome predetermined by the Government. Self-appointed professional journalists distorted the facts, lied and fabricated an image that showed the accused as present threats to the community.
Outside Miami, the trial of the Five did not catch the interest of the big corporate media. Details of the case were not reflected in news agency dispatches, published in the print media, or covered by radio or TV outside Florida. It found no space –not even once- on the TV channels that are devoted exclusively, 24 hours a day, to reporting US court occurrences.
How to explain such a disinterest? It was, at the time, the longest trial in the history of the United States. Generals, colonels, high-ranking officials and experts, an admiral and an advisor to the president were called as witnesses; well-known terrorists identified as such –some of them wearing their war-trade costumes– took the stand. This was a squabble implying international relations and issues related –truly or allegedly– to national security and terrorism, the favorite topics of the big media. But nobody said anything except the local media. For the rest of the people the trial simply did not exist.
The ironclad censorship imposed on the case allowed for the amazing impunity with which the authorities protected the terrorists and, unjustly and cruelly, punished five men who confronted them heroically, unarmed, without resorting to violence, without hurting anyone.
In August 2005, the three judges in the Court of Appeals unanimously ruled the mistrial of the Miami process because it had taken place under what they described as “a perfect storm of prejudice and hostility”, created by the local media. When the three judges gave their historical ruling they did not know –they or anybody else could not have known- that the orchestrator of the perfect storm was the Attorney’s Office that prevaricated openly and forfeited its constitutional duty to preserve legality and guarantee a fair trial.
The habeas corpus requests for the Cuban Five unjustly imprisoned in the United States, and in particular the affidavit submitted by Martin Garbus, focus on the role performed by "journalists" who, paid by the US government, created an environment of hysteria and irrational hatred that frightened the jurors until they brought in a guilty verdict despite the fact that the US Attorney did not present any evidence and -even worse- admitted they could not substantiate their main charge.
denunciation by Martin Garbus poses a challenge to
professional journalists. Will they let this be covered up
again and become accomplices of those who tarnished their
noble profession? Or will they try to save the honor of
their profession by demanding that the fakes be unmasked and
that truth and justice prevail?
Read the text of the affidavit. Let’s put an end to the injustice.