Released American prisoner Alan Gross says he learned in Cuba that 'freedom is not free'

Associated Press

Alan Gross says he learned the lesson during five years in Cuban captivity that freedom is not free.

Gross spoke in Washington just after returning from Cuba, where he was imprisoned for five years. Cuba released him as part of an agreement to re-establish diplomatic relations with the U.S.

Continue Reading Below

Gross says he hopes the U.S. and Cuba can now move beyond their mutually belligerent policies. He says two wrongs never make a right.

Gross says that despite his experience, he has utmost respect and fondness for Cuba's people. He says they are in no way responsible for his ordeal. He described most Cubans as incredibly kind, generous and talented.

Gross says knowing he wasn't forgotten by people in the U.S. was crucial to his survival.