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On August 20, reason to confront shame once again
On August 20 a hearing before a panel of judges of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta will open a window to the world where, in barely 30 minutes, the lawyers of the Cuban Five will present the case for the men's innocence before the disgraceful stubbornness of a prosecution willing to comply at any costs with Washington's political mandates.

Gerardo Hernandez, Antonio Guerrero, Ramon Labanino and Rene Gonzalez were arbitrarily sentenced to long prison terms ranging from 15 years to double life terms just for informing Cuba of terrorist plans organized in southern Florida by right wing elements. On September 12, the five anti-terrorist fighters will have served nine years in prison suffering humiliation and physical and mental torture, ordered by George W. Bush using all types of legal tricks to prolong their incarceration, despite the fact that international legal experts have characterized the sentences as illegal and unjust.

Up until now, the long period of imprisonment, appeals and arguments have been silenced by the mighty US press, although recently this wall of silence has begun to crack.

The recent publication of an extensive article in the New York Times, as well as a radio interview carried by the BBC have joined what seems to be interest by the international press in the case of the Cuban Five. In this context, solidarity with the five has increased in the international community, including in the United States, with demonstrations being organized in support of justice prior to the August 20 appeal hearing. Social activists, politicians, honest journalists, competent attorneys, families, Cubans across the island and people in general who recognize the noble mission of fighting terrorism know the case of the Five is more political than legal. This is evident when the prosecution, on behalf of the US government, violated basic and constitutional norms in the trail and acted with cruelty in the Miami trial. Hatred against the Cuban people is a clear expression of a US government's impotence that represents the ideology and interests of the right wing, who do not accept the fact that Cuba is an independent and sovereign country.

On August 20, the united actions by people of good will in the United States and other parts of the world can influence a decision that will mean the difference between reason and shame.

Source: By Rolando Pérez Betancourt, Radio Cadena Agramonte

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