Originally published in Institute for Policy Studies.
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Film Highlights U.S. Hypocrisy: Those who tried to prevent terror get imprisoned, while guilty go free.
A controversial film by award-winning filmmaker Saul Landau will premiere in Washington, DC on April 6 at the West End Cinema. Will the Real Terrorist Please Stand Up addresses a terrorism campaign against Cuba orchestrated from U.S. soil, with complicity from the U.S. government. A discussion with Landau will follow.
His documentary juxtaposes the history of violence by CIA-trained Cuban exiles and five Cubans, serving long sentences in U.S. prisons, for attempting to thwart their efforts. The film recounts how small groups of Cuban exiles waged a terrorist campaign against Cuba’s government for half a century, with active or passive support from the U.S. government.
In the 1990s, Florida-based exiles began bombing tourist sites, the backbone of Cuba’s economy. An Italian tourist died in one of the bomb attacks. Since the FBI didn’t arrest the bombers in Miami, Havana sent agents there to infiltrate and report on the violent groups. Instead of stopping the terrorists, the FBI arrested five Cuban spies. They were tried in Miami and given draconian sentences despite a dramatic absence of evidence against them.
The film features an interview with Gerardo Hernandez, one of the Cuban Five. He’s currently serving life imprisonment in Victorville Maximum Security Prison for “conspiracy to commit espionage.” Landau also interviews Luis Posada Carriles, Orlando Bosch, and others who have acknowledged perpetrating acts of terrorism in Cuba as “freedom fighters.” Fidel Castro and Danny Glover appear in the film as well.
Landau, an Institute for Policy Studies fellow since 1972, has produced more than 40 films on social, political, and historical issues. He has won the Letelier-Moffitt Human Rights Award, the George Polk Award for Investigative Reporting, and the First Amendment Award, as well as an Emmy for Paul Jacobs and the Nuclear Gang. Landau has written more than 10 books and is a poet. He received an Edgar Allen Poe Award for Assassination on Embassy Row, a book he co-authored with John Dinges on the 1976 murders of Chilean Ambassador Orlando Letelier and Ronni Karpen Moffitt, both of whom were Landau’s IPS colleagues.
- There will be two screenings on April 6, beginning at 7 and 9 PM.
- West End Cinema is located at 2301 M Street NW in Washington, DC.
- $12 general admission; $10 student discount
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