Monday, February 28, 2011

Brothers to the Rescue Remembered 15 years later


 A Vigil for Truth, Justice and Remembrance



Fifteen years ago on February 24, 1996 at 3:21pm and at 3:28pm two Brothers to the Rescue planes were shot down with air to air missiles in international airspace extra-judicially executing Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña, and Armando Alejandre Jr in an act of state terrorism.

Vigil was co-hosted by Students for a Free Tibet and the Free Cuba Foundation at the main fountain at Florida International University between 3:21pm and 3:28 pm the times that two Brothers to the Rescue planes were destroyed by air-to-air missiles fired by Cuban MiGs as they searched for rafters. Family members and friends of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña and Armando Alejandre Jr. were in attendance. In addition Sylvia Iriondo one of the passengers of the third and surviving plane hunted that afternoon attended the vigil.



Jose Basulto of Brothers to the Rescue speaks about the downing of two of its planes on February 24, 1996.

Four youths, three of them Cuban-Americans and one Cuban residing in the United States lost their lives in that crime. Their names were Armando Alejandre Jr., Mario de la Peña, Carlos Costa and Pablo Morales.

Brothers to the Rescue was founded in 1991 by Bay of Pigs veteran Jose Basulto, became a nonviolent civic activist following the teachings of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. The organization's purpose was to rescue Cuban boat people found at sea.



Jose Basulto habla sobre Hermanos al Rescate y el derribo de dos de sus avionetas el 24 de febrero 1996.

Cuatro jóvenes, tres de ellos ciudadanos estadounidenses de origen cubano y un cubano residente en Estados Unidos, perdieron su vida en aquel crimen. Sus nombres eran Armando Alejandre Jr., Mario de la Peña, Carlos Costa y Pablo Morales.

Hermanos al Rescate fue fundada en 1991 por el veterano de Bahía de Cochinos, José Basulto, devenido un luchador cívico no violento con apego a las doctrinas de Gandhi y Martin Luther King. El propósito de la organización era rescatar "balseros" cubanos hallados en alta mar.


Donato Poveda canta "Los Plantados" en LA VIGILIA POR LA VERDAD Y JUSTICIA

A Vigil for Truth and Justice, held at 6:00 pm at the Brothers to the Rescue Monument in front of Hialeah Gardens City Hall, 10001 NW 87 Avenue, Hialeah Gardens, FL 33016. The purpose of the event was to remember what happened fifteen years ago when Cuban MiGs shot down two Brothers to the Rescue planes on a humanitarian mission over the Florida Straits. The Cuban artist Donato Poveda sang the above song in honor of Brothers to the Rescue and Cuba's prisoners of conscience.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

February 24, 1996: Armando, Carlos, Mario & Pablo four victims of Cuban State Terrorism

High resolution images to download to observe the day, 15 years ago on February 24, 1996 when Cuban MiGs fired air to air missiles shooting down two planes in international airspace and murdering: Armando Alejandre Jr. (45 years old) born on April 16, 1950;  Carlos Alberto Costa (29) born on June 23, 1966; Mario Manuel de la Peña (24) born on December 28, 1971 and Pablo Morales (29) born on May 16, 1966.




Orlando Zapata Tamayo: Born on May 15, 1967 – Murdered on February 23, 2010

High  resolution images to download to observe the day, one year ago, of Orlando Zapata Tamayo's extra-judicial death at the hands of Cuban officials on February 23, 2010.















Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Call to Take Actions for Orlando Zapata & Brothers to the Rescue Martyrs

Two important dates are approaching: Wednesday, February 23 and Thursday, February 24


Fifteen years ago on February 24, 1996 at 3:21pm and at 3:28pm two Brothers to the Rescue planes were shot down with air to air missiles in international airspace extra-judicially executing Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña, and Armando Alejandre Jr in an act of state terrorism.



One year ago on February 23, 2010 at 3:00pm Cuban prisoner of conscience Orlando Zapata Tamayo died (or was extra-judicially executed) after 83 days on a water-only hunger strike.  During the strike prison officials denied him water contributing to his death which constitute both torture and murder.





The Free Cuba Foundation on January 22, 2011 called on people of good will to join us in fasting and prayer for Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña and Armando Alejandre Jr. on February 23 and to then organize vigils and moments of silence between the times when both Brothers to the Rescue planes were shot down at  3:21pm and 3:28pm on February 24.



Now we are announcing activities taking place in Miami, Florida and invite you to send us news about actions that you are carrying out around the world. Please come back to this page. We will be adding photos and images that you can use for your own event(s).

February 23

3:00pm 24 Hour Fast for Orlando Zapata Tamayo
Location: Francisco Human Rights Park
                 9445 SW 24 Street (Brothers to the Rescue Martyrs Blvd), Miami, FL



Raúl Arencibia Fajardo ex-preso de conciencia anuncia un ayuno de 24 horas para recordar a Orlando Zapata Tamayo este 23 de febrero comenzando a las 3:00 de la tarde.



Free Cuba Foundation coordinator Neri Martinez announces a worldwide 24 hour vigil for Orlando Zapata Tamayo on February 23, 2011. Orlando Zapata Tamayo died one year ago on February 23, 2010 at 3:00pm after 83 days on hunger strike during which prison officials denied him water and contributed to his death.

February 24

3:00pm Silent Vigil for Justice
Location: Main Fountain Florida International University
11200 South West 8th Street, Miami, FL





Vigil will be co-hosted by Students for a Free Tibet and the Free Cuba Foundation at the main fountain at Florida International University between 3:21pm and 3:28pm the times that two Brothers to the Rescue planes were destroyed by air-to-air missiles fired by Cuban MiGs as they flew through international airspace searching for rafters. Family members and friends of Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña and Armando Alejandre Jr. will be in attendance. This event is for FIU students and members of the FIU Community and has been held annually since 1996.

5:30pm Vigil for Truth and Justice
Location: Brothers to the Rescue Monument in front of Hialeah Gardens City Hall, 10001 NW 87 Avenue, Hialeah Gardens, FL 33016.



VIGIL FOR TRUTH AND JUSTICE

Mayor Yioset De La Cruz will welcome the Miami community to remember what happened fifteen years ago when Cuban MiGs shot down two Brothers to the Rescue planes on a humanitarian mission over the Florida Straits. Armando Alejandre Jr., Carlos Costa, Mario de la Peña, and Pablo Morales were murdered in cold blood.

Members of Brothers to the Rescue, as well as other invited guests, will address the crowd with their thoughts on the quest for truth and justice. We must never forget what happened fifteen years ago, and we can never rest until truth and justice have been met. Please join us.

7:00 pm Mass for Armando Alejandre Jr., Carlos Costa, Mario de la Peña & Pablo Morales 
           St. Agatha Catholic Church, 1111 SW 107 Ave.


MEMORIAL MASS
Memorial Mass organized by the families of Armando Alejandre Jr., Carlos Costa, Mario de la Peña and Pablo Morales.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Less than Two Weeks to Take Action for Brothers to the Rescue & Orlando Zapata Tamayo


We're still compiling fact sheets on Orlando Zapata Tamayo and Brothers to the Rescue to assist activists in countering the disinformation placed out there by the Cuban dictatorship and its apologists. Feel free to offer critiques of the fact sheets in the comments section below.

At the same time the final push to gather signatures to petition President Obama that the murderers of Armando, Carlos, Mario and Pablo not be pardoned and that those still at large 15 years later finally be placed on Interpol watchlists.

Be sure to return to this blog for updates in the days to come. Images to download and recommendations on how to conduct a proper fast and tips for an effective vigil will be posted. As of this morning 54 people have pledged to hold a fast and a vigil beginning one year after the death of  Orlando Zapata Tamayo and ending the following day, 15 years after the Brothers to the Rescue Shoot down.

At the same time our prayers go out to our brothers and sisters in Egypt for a successful non-violent transition to democracy. Keep spreading the word. Non-violent civic resistance is powerful and can bring down tyrants when organized and carried out effectively.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Fact Sheet on Orlando Zapata Tamayo

Cuban Prisoner of Conscience Orlando Zapata Tamayo: 
Tortured and Murdered by Cuban Government Officials


Fact #1 Orlando Zapata Tamayo was murdered by Cuban government officials


Both Abel Lopez Perez and Reina Luisa Tamayo charge that Cuban prison officials denied Orlando Zapata Tamayo water in an effort to break his spirit. Reina Luisa Tamayo in an interview with Yoani Sanchez, hours after her son’s death denounced that officials had denied him water.[1] Abel Lopez corroborates the charge stating: “Before Zapata was checked into the hospital, he was regularly taking some vitamins. He was in a weak state of health. A military chief known as ‘Gordo’, who was the one responsible for ordering all of Zapata’s things to be taken out of the cell and to stop giving him water, also took his bottle of vitamins and poured all the pills down a drain. He told him, ‘Those who are in protest here don’t drink vitamins. I think those are pills sent to you by the Yankees so you can continue your hunger strike.’ Those were the exact words said to him, I verified them. His vitamins were taken away, as were any other medications. And they stopped giving him water for a while.”[2] This type of practice was also documented in the 1966 death of another Cuban hunger striker, Roberto López Chávez.[3], [4] Denying water to a man on water only hunger strike is cruel and inhuman treatment that contributed to his death.


Fact #2 Orlando Zapata Tamayo was an Amnesty International prisoner of conscience

Orlando Zapata Tamayo was recognized as an Amnesty International (AI) prisoner of conscience on January 29, 2004 a designation given only to nonviolent activists after careful examination.[5] On January 29, 2004 Amnesty International outlined Orlando Zapata Tamayo’s past arrests:

“He has been arrested several times in the past. For example he was temporarily detained on 3 July 2002 and 28 October 2002. In November 2002 after taking part in a workshop on human rights in the central Havana park, José Martí, he and eight other government opponents were reportedly arrested and later released. He was also arrested on 6 December 2002 along with Oscar Elías Biscet[6], but was released on 8 March 2003. Most recently, he was arrested on the morning of 20 March 2003 whilst taking part in a hunger strike at the Fundación Jesús Yánez Pelletier, Jesús Yánez Pelletier Foundation, in Havana, to demand the release of Oscar Biscet and other political prisoners.”[7]

Orlando Zapata Tamayo appeared photographed in the Cuban government’s own publication Los Disidentes, in photos prior to his 2003 arrest and was then recognized by Cuban officials as a dissident. The Spanish newspaper El Mundo carried a photo the day after the Cuban regime announced the death of Orlando Zapata Tamayo with prominent Cuban dissidents.[8]


Fact #3 Orlando Zapata Tamayo’s hunger strike was an act of non-violent self-defense


Orlando Zapata Tamayo had been beaten and tortured on more than one occasion by prison guards and state security along with other prisoners. His body was scarred and his health in decline. For example Amnesty International reported that, on "October 20, 2003 [Orlando Zapata] was dragged along the floor of Combinado del Este Prison by prison officials after requesting medical attention, leaving his back full of lacerations."[9] Cuban political prisoner Abel Lopez Perez transferred to the same prison in Camaguey as Orlando Zapata Tamayo on December 3, 2009 briefly saw him and heard from other prisoners “that a few days before being taken away, Zapata stood up and shouted, ‘People, don’t let yourselves be lied to. Don’t believe anything that they tell you. I’m not demanding a kitchen or any of the things they took away from me. I’m demanding an improvement of treatment for all prisoners, and so you all know, I am going to die for it.’”[10] The case of Ariel Sigler Amaya, another Cuban prisoner of conscience, is instructive. He had to threaten a hunger strike, although already emaciated and crippled, to obtain medical treatment to save his life.[11] The hunger strike was not an act of suicide but rather a tactic of self defense within the arsenal of nonviolent options.


Fact #4 Between 1966 and 2010 at least six Cuban political prisoners died while on hunger strike: Roberto López Chávez , Carmelo Cuadra Hernández , Pedro Luis Boitel, Olegario Charlot Pileta, Enrique García Cuevas and Orlando Zapata Tamayo.


Roberto López Chávez, 25 years old, died on December 11, 1966 in Isla de Pinos prison on hunger strike without medical assistance.[12] Armando Valladares, in his prison memoir, Against All Hope described the circumstances surrounding his death: “When Roberto López Chávez, went on a hunger strike to protest the abuses in the prison, the guards withheld water from him until he became delirious, twisting on the floor and begging for something to drink. The guards then urinated in his mouth. He died the next day.”[13], [14]

Carmelo Cuadra Hernández, died in La Cabaña prison in April of 1969 on hunger strike, after suffering mistreatment and torture over eight and a half months, without receiving medical care and was the third political prisoner that has died on a hunger strike.[15], [16]

Pedro Luis Boitel died on hunger strike on May 25, 1972.[17],[18]

Olegario Charlot Pileta, died in the famous "Escaleras" (staircase) of the Boniato prison, in of January 1973 during a hunger strike, without medical assistance and is described in documents as a “black youth.” [19],[20]

Enrique García Cuevas died on a hunger strike, without receiving medical care, in cell No. 4 of the new Provincial Jail of Santa Clara, on June 24, 1973.[21]

Two of the four outlined above died on hunger strikes after Pedro Luis Boitel and there are partial estimates that place the number identified to have died while on hunger strike at twelve including both Boitel and Zapata. Since the death of Pedro Luis Boitel there are partial lists identifying six political prisoners dead on hunger strikes between May 25, 1972 and February 23, 2010.[22]



1. Sanchez, Yoani “Orlando Zapata Tamayo's Mother Speaks After Her Son's Death” The Huffington Post February 24, 2010 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/yoani-sanchez/orlando-zapata-tamayos-mo_b_475006.html

2. Felipe Rojas, Luis “Abel Remembers the Last Days of Zapata in a Prison of Camaguey” Crossing the Barbed Wire November 24, 2010 http://cruzarlasalambradaseng.wordpress.com/2010/11/24/abel-remembers-the-last-days-of-zapata-in-a-prison-of-camaguey/

3. Valladares, Armando Against All Hope: The Prison Memoirs of Armando Valladares (1st edition Knopf April 12, 1986) quote taken from (1st Edition Encounter Books April 1, 2001) pg. 379

4. Glazov, Jamie United in Hate: The Left's Romance with Tyranny and Terror WND Books, 2009 Pg 48



5. Amnesty International “CUBA Newly declared prisoners of conscience” January 29, 2004 http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AMR25/002/2004/en/308bf23e-d648-11dd-ab95-a13b602c0642/amr250022004en.html

6. Quintero, Tania “CUBA | Llorando a un amigo ¡Así te voy a recordar, Orlando!” El Mundo February 24, 2010 http://www.elmundo.es/america/2010/02/24/cuba/1267020583.html

7. Amnesty International “CUBA Newly declared prisoners of conscience” January 29, 2004 http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AMR25/002/2004/en/308bf23e-d648-11dd-ab95-a13b602c0642/amr250022004en.html

8. Felipe Rojas, Luis “Abel Remembers the Last Days of Zapata in a Prison of Camaguey” Crossing the Barbed Wire November 24, 2010 http://cruzarlasalambradaseng.wordpress.com/2010/11/24/abel-remembers-the-last-days-of-zapata-in-a-prison-of-camaguey/

9. Rodriguez, Eliott “Paralyzed Former Cuban Prisoner Arrives In Miami” CBS4 July 28, 2010 http://cbs4.com/local/ariel.amaya.cuban.2.1829264.html

10. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights “Annual Report 1975: 1805 Cuba” http://www.cidh.org/annualrep/75eng/Cuba1805.htm

11. Valladares, Armando Against All Hope: The Prison Memoirs of Armando Valladares (1st edition Knopf April 12, 1986) quote taken from (1st Edition Encounter Books April 1, 2001) pg. 379

12. Glazov, Jamie United in Hate: The Left's Romance with Tyranny and Terror WND Books, 2009 Pg 48

13. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights SITUATION OF POLITICAL PRISONERS IN CUBA (1976) http://www.cidh.org/countryrep/cuba76eng/chap.1.htm

14. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights SEGUNDO INFORME SOBRE LA SITUACIÓN DE LOS PRESOS POLÍTICOS Y SUS FAMILIAS EN CUBA May 7, 1970 http://www.cidh.org/countryrep/Cuba70sp/cap.1b.htm

15. Amnesty International “CUBA Newly declared prisoners of conscience” January 29, 2004 http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AMR25/002/2004/en/308bf23e-d648-11dd-ab95-a13b602c0642/amr250022004en.html

16. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights “Annual Report 1975: 1805 Cubahttp://www.cidh.org/annualrep/75eng/Cuba1805.htm

17. Tamayo, Juan O. “Jailed Cuban activist Orlando Zapata Tamayo dies on hunger strike” The Miami Herald February 23, 2010 http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/02/23/1496572/cuban-activist-dies-on-hunger.html

18. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights 6TH REPORT ON THE SITUATION OF POLITICAL PRISONERS IN CUBA: CHAPTER III: AN ANALYSIS OF CERTAIN INDIVIDUAL CASES SUBMITTED TO THE IACHR 14 December 1979 http://www.cidh.org/countryrep/cuba79eng/chap.3.htm

19. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights CHAPTER I SITUATION OF POLITICAL PRISONERS IN CUBA (1976) http://www.cidh.org/countryrep/cuba76eng/chap.1.htm

20. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights “Annual Report 1975: 1805 Cuba” http://www.cidh.org/annualrep/75eng/Cuba1805.htm

21. Inter-American Commission on Human Rights CHAPTER I SITUATION OF POLITICAL PRISONERS IN CUBA (1976) http://www.cidh.org/countryrep/cuba76eng/chap.1.htm

22. Corzo, Pedro “El calvario de las prisiones cubanas” El Nuevo Herald March 13, 2010 http://www.elnuevoherald.com/2010/03/13/674331_p2/pedro-corzo-el-calvario-de-las.html

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Fact : February 24, 1996 Brothers to the Rescue Shootdown was an act of State Terrorism


Fact Sheet on Brothers to the Rescue Shoot down (February 2011 Update)


"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts" - Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan
"To forgive is not to forget. The merit lies in loving in spite of the vivid knowledge that the one that must be loved is not a friend. There is no merit in loving an enemy when you forget him for a friend."- Mahatma Gandhi


FACT 1: By definition: Terrorism is the calculated use of violence (or the threat of violence) against civilians in order to attain goals that are political or religious or ideological in nature; this is done through intimidation or coercion or instilling fear)
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=terrorism


FACT 2: Cuba is responsible for violating the right to life (Article I of the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man) to the detriment of Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña, and Armando Alejandre, who died as a result of the direct actions of its agents on the afternoon of 24 February 1996 while flying through international airspace. 

Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
REPORT Nº 86/99 CASE 11.589 ARMANDO ALEJANDRE JR., CARLOS COSTA, MARIO DE LA PEÑA, AND PABLO MORALES vs. CUBA
September 29, 1999
http://www.cidh.org/annualrep/99eng/Merits/Cuba11.589.htm


FACT 3:
Cuba is responsible for violating the right to a fair trial (Article XVIII of the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man) to the detriment of the relatives of Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario De La Peña, and Armando Alejandre, in that to date the Cuban authorities have not conducted an exhaustive investigation with a view toward prosecuting and punishing the perpetrators and have not indemnified those same relatives for the damage they suffered as a result of those illicit acts.

Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
REPORT Nº 86/99 CASE 11.589 ARMANDO ALEJANDRE JR., CARLOS COSTA, MARIO DE LA PEÑA, AND PABLO MORALES vs. CUBA
September 29, 1999 http://www.cidh.org/annualrep/99eng/Merits/Cuba11.589.htm


FACT 4:
In Alejandre v. Republic of Cuba, 996 F.Supp. 1239 (S.D.Fla. 1997), a federal district court awarded the families of three of the four occupants of the “ Brothers to the Rescue” planes shot down by Cuba in 1996 a total of $187.7 million in damages against Cuba.

Lawsuits Against State Supporters of Terrorism: An Overview by Jennifer K. Elsea, Legislative Attorney American Law Division
http://www.law.umaryland.edu/marshall/crsreports/crsdocuments/RS22094_06232005.pdf


FACT 5:
WASP spy network was involved. One of the “illegal officers” (Gerardo Hernandez) was convicted of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder based on his role in the February 24, 1996, shoot-down of two unarmed civilian aircraft in international airspace by Cuban Air Force jet fighters, which resulted in the deaths of four people, three of them U.S. citizens.

http://www.america.gov/st/pubs-english/2008/June/20070712120209atlahtnevel0.7962915.html


http://topics.nytimes.com/topics/reference/timestopics/organizations/b/brothers_to_the_rescue/index.html



FACT 6:
Brothers to the Rescue had spotted and saved thousands of rafters in the Florida Straits and was engaged in such a mission on that day. The one plane that skirted the boundary briefly was the only one to return. The other two were shotdown miles away from Cuba’s boundary having never entered or touched it on that day and the planes had been in contact with the Cuban tower throughout the flight.

ICAO Resolution on February 24 shootdown
http://www.icao.int/icao/en/nr/1996/pio199606_e.pdf



FACT 7:
On July 26, 1996 the United Nations Security Council: "Noting that the unlawful downing of two civil aircraft on 24 February by the Cuban Air Force violated the principle that States must refrain from using weapons against airborne civil aircraft, the Security Council this afternoon condemned such use as being incompatible with the rules of customary international law "

On the conclusion of the ICAO report on the shooting down of two civilian aircraft by Cuban Air Force Resolution 1067 (1996) Adopted by the Security Council at its 3683rd meeting, on 26 July 1996
http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/country,,UNSC,,CUB,4562d94e2,3b00f1522b,0.html



FACT 8:
The issue of controversy arose from Jose Basulto's (one of the survivors of the attack) belief that elements in the Clinton Administration collaborated with the Cuban government in this act of state terrorism: ....I'm sure that behind this there was at least intentional, gross negligence on the part of some people in the U.S. government. I don't know who they are. I haven't been able to prove a conspiracy as such, but the possibility exists.''

Clear and Present Danger / The Miami Herald February 16, 1997
http://www.fiu.edu/~fcf/brothers21497.html


FACT 9: Ana Belen Montes, the US intelligence community's top analyst on Cuban affairs had throughout a sixteen-year career at the Defense Intelligence Agency sent the Cuba intelligence service sensitive and secret information and helped to shape US opinion on Cuba. Scott W. Carmichael, a senior security and counterintelligence investigator for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), served as the lead case agent on the Ana Montes espionage investigation. In the first five pages of his book True Believer he indicates that his investigation was triggered by her odd behavior before and after the Brothers to the Rescue shoot down. On September 21 2001 Ana Belen Montes was arrested and subsequently charged with Conspiracy to Commit Espionage for the government of Cuba. Montes eventually pleaded guilty to spying, and in October, 2002, she was sentenced to a 25-year prison term followed by 5 years of probation. Montes is listed as FMC Register #25037-016. Her tentative release date is listed as July 1, 2023.

True Believer: Inside the Investigation and Capture of Ana Montes, Cuba's Master Spy
http://www.amazon.com/True-Believer-Inside-Investigation-Capture/dp/1591141001
Federal Bureau of Prisons Inmate Locator - Ana Belen Montes
http://www.bop.gov/iloc2/InmateFinderServlet?Transaction=IDSearch&needingMoreList=false&IDType=IRN&IDNumber=25037-016&x=16&y=19


FACT 10:
A Cuban pilot said he saw Cuban MiGs rehearsing the shootdown six days beforehand in a October 8, 1998 Miami Herald article.

Cuban pilot: I saw MiGs rehearse shootdown by Carol Rosenberg / The Miami Herald
http://www.fiu.edu/~fcf/migsrehearse.html

 
FACT 11: On December 27, 2010 and again  in a January 19, 2011 clarification the defense of Cuban spy-master Gerardo Hernandez acknowledged that "there was overwhelming evidence that the 1996 shoot-down of two Brothers to the Rescue planes occurred in international airspace, not Cuban territory."

The Miami Herald: Cuban spymaster now claims Brothers to the Rescue shooting was outside Cuban airspace by Jay Weaver December 27, 2010
http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/12/26/1989507/cuban-spymaster-now-claims-brothers.html

The Miami Herald Corrections & Clarifications: January 19, 2011
http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/01/19/2022551/corrections-clarifications-january.html#storylink=mirelated


Conclusion based on the facts the Cuban government committed an act of state terrorism when it blew two civilian aircraft out of the sky with air to air missiles while in international airspace after the government planned and prepared to carry out the act months beforehand.