Letter About WASP Network Movie on Netflix from Chairman Eduardo Garcia
June 30, 2020
Netflix’s film The Wasp Network by Olivier Assaya is a portrayal of the Cuban regime’s efforts to gather intelligence against Cuban exiles, and supposedly not against the U.S. thus maligning the reputation of Cuban exiles along the way. It was partially filmed in Cuba with the full assistance of the Communist State. It was considered a dud by critics at the Venice and Toronto festivals and FACE (Facts About Cuban Exiles) cannot understand why Netflix has decided to give it a wider audience by streaming it.
FACE feels its plot needs correction as it portrays the Wasp Network as benign to the U.S. In 2001 five Cubans went to U.S. prison for spying for Cuba at the Barksdale B52s AFB, Boca Chica Naval Station, MacDill AFB, Homestead ARB, and U.S. CENTCOM & SOCOM and for sending to Cuba the flight plan of Brothers to the Rescue airplanes shot down by Cuban Migs, murdering four American volunteers looking for rafters in distress.
These rescuers hardly fit the film’s narrative of Miami Cubans as a mafia. The Cuban experience in the United States and other countries has proven disappointing and remarkable It has been disappointing because a homeland was lost and attempts to retrieve it turned into a nightmare, but it has also been remarkable because refugees settled successfully in their new countries and soon flourished in many aspects of society, particularly in the U.S. Instead, Cubans in Cuba remain dirt poor not because of the embargo but because of the total lack of freedom imposed by the Communist regime.
Of the Wasp Network spies discovered by the FBI, four escaped back to Cuba, 10 were captured, five confessed. The rest were labeled the Cuban 5 or the 5 Heroes by Cuba. In 2010 U.S. Aid contractor Alan Gross was accused of spying in Havana for handing out cell phones and computers to the remaining 1,100 Jews left from the once-thriving community of 30,000. It was not a secret mission. He was sentenced to 15 years so as to be swapped for the Cuban 5 in the last days of President Obama’s term. As part of the deal U.S. taxpayers paid for the artificial insemination of the wife of ringleader Gerardo Hernández.
While the U.S. helps a religious group, Cuba sends spies to collect data on the U.S. military to be sold to Russia, China, or the highest bidder. The false and negative image of Cuban exiles portrayed in the Wasps Network is an insult to the Cuban-American community, based on false narratives provided by Communists. FACE requests that Netflix immediately eliminate this film from its streaming service.
Facts About Cuban Exiles (FACE) was founded in 1982 to defend the reputation of Cuban exiles & Cuban Americans. FACE includes many prominent civic & community leaders who represent a cross-section of the Cuban diaspora in Miami. Its mission is to promote, foster and improve the reputation and image of people of Cuban origin who have sought refuge outside of Cuba due to the existing political conditions, as well as that of their descendants. FACE also endeavors to promote good will towards Cuban Americans and to develop greater understanding & co-operation with other groups in the Miami community. FACE has encouraged fair and balanced media coverage and has responded to biased or erroneous reports. It has published the book Cubans: An Epic Journey and publishes information on Cuban exiles and Cuban Americans.