The United Nations and U.S. Senate are now on record condemning the Cuban government for its continued detention of Jewish American Alan Gross.Their criticism comes on the third anniversary of the former USAID contractor's imprisonment.
The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention reportedly says Cuba is holding the former USAID contract worker in violation of international law. Cuban government lawyers dispute those assertions.
The U.S. Senate passed a resolution (S. Res. 609) last night which calls on President Raoul Castro to immediately and unconditionally free Gross from prison.
Gross' wife Judy expressed concern for her husband's medical condition during my interview with her last September. He's 63-years old and suffers from various medical conditions, including severe degenerative arthritis. Alan has lost 100 pounds during his captivity, yet the Cuban government has repeatedly denied family requests that the Red Cross or independent doctors be allowed to examine him.
Hanukkah begins this weekend. It's a joyful time when Jews celebrate God's provision for the ancient Maccabees; their lamps remained alight for eight days though they possessed enough oil for only one day.
God is still doing miracles 2,200 years later. Let's pray he'll do one for Alan Gross--that the hardened hearts of Cuban officials will be turned so he'll experience the joy of lighting a Menorah this year--back home with his family in Maryland.