support babalú

Your donations help fund
our continued operation

do you babalú?

what they’re saying






recommended reading

babalú features

recent comments

  • asombra: Peñalver was also blacker than Mandela, just not the right kind of black.

  • asombra: Doesn’t Nosferatu look adorable? Isn’t this what every country should aspire to as its patriarch? Lord, the shame.

  • asombra: Cubans should stop expecting any better than this, because this is perfectly normal, strictly speaking. The longer we keep...

  • asombra: Actually, Batista, who was much more a man of the people than Fidel, tried and worked hard to look and act like a gentleman, and...

  • asombra: It’s not hard to manipulate those who practically beg for it, so if the manipulator’s halfway competent, it’s...

search babalu

babalú archives

frequent topics

elsewhere on the net


Families of American pilots murdered by Cuba’s Castro regime: No Spies for Gross Exchange

Via Capitol Hill Cubans:

Families of Shootdown Victims: No Spies for Gross Exchange

Shoot Down Victims’ Families Opposed to Cuba’s Proposed Exchange of US-Convicted Cuban Spies for Alan Gross

We the families of the three American citizens and one American resident shot down over international waters by the Cuban government on February 24, 1996, strongly oppose any exchange of Gerardo Hernandez for Alan Gross, Cuba's hostage.

Hernandez is currently serving two life sentences in US prison. One of these is for conspiracy to commit murder in the Feb. 24, 1996, shoot down murders of Carlos Costa, Armando Alejandre, Jr., Mario de la Peña and Pablo Morales. Hernandez’s sentences were affirmed by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, and the US Supreme Court declined to review them. He has received all benefits available from the US justice system.

Gerardo Hernandez's activities went beyond potential damage to our country; his actions resulted in the deaths of four human beings, and his life sentence for conspiracy to commit murder brings at least partial justice for the shoot down.

Mr. Gross, on the other hand, was convicted and sentenced to fifteen years for providing satellite phones and computer equipment to Cuba’s Jewish community. There is quite a difference between conspiring to commit murder and helping Cubans communicate with each other and with the outside world. If Cuba is really serious about wanting to improve relations with the US, it should act unilaterally and release Mr. Gross immediately.

We would only support trading Gerardo Hernandez for the following three men, all indicted for the February 24, 1996, shoot down by the US, and identified as direct perpetrators of the crime by international organizations such as the United Nations: Cuban Air Force General Ruben Martinez Puente, who gave the actual order to shoot down the two aircraft; Cuban Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Francisco Perez Perez, pilot of the MiG that shot the missiles that pulverized the aircraft, and the copilot, his brother Cuban Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Alberto Perez Perez.

The US should actively pursue the release of Mr. Gross from the untenable and unfair position of being a hostage of the Cuban government, but not at the expense of justice for our loved ones. We hope that the US’s Department of State leadership continues former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton’s policy regarding Gerardo Hernandez; she was well aware of all the factors involved in this case and understood that Mr. Gross and Hernandez are most definitely not exchangeable if justice is to be served for murdered US citizens.

The Families of Carlos Costa, Armando Alejandre, Jr., Mario de la Peña and Pablo Morales

2 comments to Families of American pilots murdered by Cuba’s Castro regime: No Spies for Gross Exchange

  • antonio2009

    These four martyrs are the real heroes. There is no comparison to Alan "Woe-is-me" Gross, whose motivation for taking electronic equipment to Cuba to the Jewish community that betrayed him was a $500,000 salary. Gross denounced the U.S. before being sentenced in the hope of getting less time in prison and later sue the U.S. government. Gross is no hero. He is really gross. If we make heroes and martyrs out of gullible idiots who end up in jail in Cuba, then the fugitive Robert Vesco, who died in a Cuban prison, is also a hero and martyr. Not!

  • asombra

    How about we trade Bill Clinton for Gross? There could even be a Nobel Peace Prize in it for him.