On September 12, 16 years completed since the arrest of Gerardo Hernández, Antonio Guerrero, Ramón Labañino, Fernando González, and René González in Miami, Florida.
The "Cuban Five" (also known as Cinco Heroes or Cuban Five) were sent by the authorities of the country to gather information on terrorist organizations based in the state of Florida, which mainly in the 90s, had organized and executed numerous terrorist attacks on Cuban soil, with more than 5,500 casualties, dead and maimed.
After the collapse of the Socialist bloc in the early 90s, Cuba was forced to rely on tourism to boost its national income. To undermine this effort of the Caribbean island for economic survival, the right-wing organizations based in Miami (Alpha 66, F4 Commandos, Cuban American National Foundation, Brothers to the Rescue, etc.) organized dozens of terrorist attacks at hotels, airports and other facilities with hundreds of victims, including Cuban citizens and foreigners. The most known, is the case of the Italian Fabio di Celmo, who was killed outside the hotel Copacabana.
To counter this threat, the Cuban government sent to Florida the team of five to penetrate these organizations, consisting of Cuban dissidents and common criminals of the local mafia, in order to gather data and to prevent future attacks.
In 1998 Fidel Castro sent a personal letter to the (then) President Bill Clinton, through the Nobel-awarded writer Gabriel García Márquez. Castro requested for the US president intervention to arrest terrorists and offered the cooperation of the Cuban authorities for this purpose. Shortly, an FBI echelon arrived in Cuba and received 64 envelopes containing facts for 31 cases of terrorism. However, instead of capturing terrorists, a few months later, the people who risked their lives fighting against terrorism were trapped and arrested: The Five Cuban patriots.
The case of "Five" is not a common situation of political prisoners who became victims of mistrial and imprisoned unjustly. Using Hernández, Guerrero, Labañino, F. González, and R. González, the US empire wanted to demonstrate its power and punish once again the Cuban people for the "crime" of national sovereignty and independent political beliefs, choosing to be defined through Socialism.
The case of the Five Cuban patriots is inextricably linked to both the criminal and financial embargo of the island and the illegal occupation of Guantánamo Bay by the United States, which are permanent positions of their official diplomacy.
In particular, the "Five" disturbed the "unofficial" policy of the United States, namely, the untold but clear support to illegal organizations based in Florida, that since the fall of the dictator Batista are trying to overthrow the legitimate revolutionary government of Cuba, and have caused enormous human and material losses in the country.