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NEWS
By Matthew Hay Brown, The Baltimore Sun | May 21, 2012
Alan Gross, the Potomac man serving 15 years in Cuba after carrying communications equipment into the communist island nation, continues to communicate with supporters from the military hospital where he is held. The Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington said Monday that Gross called to express his gratitude for the efforts of the Jewish community to push for his release. "I worked many years to reinforce the concept of community and I really feel it," Gross, 63, said during the telephone call last week, according to the council.
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NEWS
By Matthew Hay Brown, The Baltimore Sun | May 11, 2012
Alan Gross, the Maryland man who is serving 15 years in a Cuban prison after taking communications equipment into the communist nation, is asking authorities there to let him return to the United States to visit his ailing mother before she dies. Gross, who grew up in the Baltimore area and lived in Potomac, told CNN that he and his lawyer had written to the Cuban government "on more than one occasion" to request permission to see Evelyn Gross. "I have a 90-year-old mother who has inoperable lung cancer.
NEWS
March 26, 2012
Cuban accusations against American Alan Gross and recent Egyptian allegations against four Americans who were promoting democracy on Egyptian soil have some eerie similarities. Alan Gross, who has been confined in Cuba since 2009, and the four Americans in Egypt who recently had bail posted for them by the Government of Qatar, have been using United States taxpayers' money to promote openness and democracy in two countries that have no interest in the United States interfering in their internal affairs.
BUSINESS
By Lorraine Mirabella, The Baltimore Sun | February 21, 2012
Plans to begin weekly flights to Cuba from Baltimore have been pushed back to October because of lack of demand, the head of the travel company offering the service said Tuesday. The flights were to begin next month. William Hauf, president of Tampa, Fla.-based Island Travel & Tours Ltd., said his company delayed the start of the service to Havana from Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport to allow more time to market the flights to eligible groups, such as university and religious organizations.
NEWS
By Matthew Hay Brown, The Baltimore Sun | November 28, 2011
- Judy Gross stood outside Cuba's diplomatic mission to the United States, microphone in hand, and described her family's Thanksgiving. "There was once again an empty seat for Alan," she told sign-wielding supporters Monday in front of the Cuban Interests Section in Washington. "That huge void, the pain, and the anguish are worse this year, as no one thought that we would be celebrating another holiday without Alan. " "Free Alan Gross now!" supporter Les Ulanow shouted. The demonstration reflected a new approach in the long campaign to win the release of the Maryland man, who was sentenced in March to 15 years in a Cuban prison for crimes against the state.
TRAVEL
By Steve Kilar, The Baltimore Sun | November 17, 2011
It was undoubtedly exciting news: Baltimore would become one of the few spots in the U.S. offering flights to Cuba, a Communist nation largely off-limits to American travelers. But one critical item had been overlooked: the paperwork. The Florida travel company that plans direct flights from Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport to Havana is being scrutinized by federal officials for promoting its plans before receiving the necessary approval for charter flights.
NEWS
November 9, 2011
Our organization was pleased to read about plans to begin charter flights from BWI to Cuba in March ("Hola, Cuba! Flights from BWI to Cuba to start next year," Nov. 4). It's about time. The ban on U.S. citizens traveling to Cuba has been in place for over 50 years. It is part of the economic embargo the U.S. instituted to try to starve Cuba into complying with our vision of what Cuba's form of government should be. If it was up to people like the restaurant owner from Towson quoted in the article, that policy would stay in place another 50 years.
NEWS
November 8, 2011
I was elated to read your article about the new charter flights to Cuba ("BWI flights to Cuba to start in March," Nov. 5). I left Cuba in 1997 which I was 9, which officially makes me a "Castro's daughter" - the term Cuban-Americans use to describe those who left long after the revolution. That being said, I don't share the views of those who lament any thawing of relations between the United States and Cuba. For me, the Cold War is over, the Eastern bloc and the Soviets are gone, and now it's time to focus on our little island and its wonderful people who have been isolated much too long.
TRAVEL
By Michael Dresser and Steve Kilar, The Baltimore Sun | November 5, 2011
A Tampa-based company plans to begin offering flights next spring from BWI-Marshall Airport to Cuba, where travel has been restricted since 1961, shortly after Fidel Castro took power and nationalized U.S.-owned businesses. But visitors shouldn't count on buying tickets solely to explore the island's beaches. "You cannot go to Cuba for what they call tourism," said William Hauf, president of Island Travel & Tours Ltd., which announced plans for the flights Friday. The Island Travel trips are considered charters, though they will operate at fixed times on Wednesdays much like scheduled airline flights.
BUSINESS
Eileen Ambrose | November 4, 2011
If you have the hankering for a good cigar, you will be able to jump on a charter flight from BWI to Cuba beginning in March and buy a box there. Island Travel & Tours Ltd.  will be operating the weekly service that departs mid-afternoons starting March 21. William Hauf, president of Island Travel, said in a statement:  “These flights will greatly expand opportunities for increased engagement between the two countries and facilitate legal travel to Cuba for business leaders, government officials, diplomats, academics, cultural groups, agricultural interests, performing arts groups, and Cuban-Americans wishing to reconnect with their families and their country.” Baltimore is entering an elite travel niche.
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