“I spoke with Alan two days
ago. Never have I heard him more hopeless and depressed,” said his wife, Judy
Gross. “His voice was fading away as he spoke. His spirit is almost
He mentioned that he had gained five pounds, which considering
that he lost 100 should have been a good thing. But, the reason he has gained
the weight is because he is no longer able to walk because his arthritis has
become too painful.”
Saturday will mark two years since Gross was
arrested in Havana for bringing satellite phones into the country without
permission. The 62-yearold says he was acting as a contractor on behalf of USAID
and the phones were meant to set up a communications center for the local Jewish
In March 2011, a Cuban court found Gross guilty of subversion
and sentenced him to 15 years in prison.
Observers have speculated Gross
is being used as a bargaining chip by Cuba, which wants the US to release the
Cuban Five, a ring of Cuban operatives jailed in the US. Last month, Gross’s
wife launched a new and more aggressive phase in her campaign to free her
husband at the Jewish Federations of North America’s General Assembly, calling
on gatherers to apply pressure on policy makers.
On Monday, she
reiterated that call outside the Cuban Interests Section in
“Please join us in the effort to keep Alan’s case top-of-mind
with policymakers,” she said.
“Contact your congressmen and ask them to
sign the Cardin and Van Hollen letter to the Cuban Interests Section.
them to make a statement on the House floor this December 1. Tell everyone you
know about Alan.”