Page 25 - The 'X' Chronicles Newspaper - October / November 2019
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Did Castro OK The Kennedy Assassination? 25

                Did Castro OK The

            Kennedy Assassination?

                  Continued from Page 24

                 By the early sixties, the brothers had
          reached their initial goals of winning the
          American presidency and leadership in Cuba.
          Castro's victory came at great cost. In the years
          since, historians have debated whether Fidel
          ever actually murdered someone. But few
          question Racal's baptism in blood, nor his
          ongoing ministry. Of the deaths he has overseen,
          some were street criminals but the vast majority
          were political enemies, and estimates of the toll
          range as high as 14,000, claimed in a Harvard
          University study.  The Cuba  Archive project
          concluded that some 5,600 Cubans have died in
          front of firing squads and another 1,200 in
          “extrajudicial assassinations.” Minors and
                                                         who wrote a memorandum of this meeting, regard, secretly discussing the political
          females were not spared.
                                                         which remains the only known documentary neutralization of Fidel. But in the last year of
                 Under pressure from within and without,
                                                         evidence that Jack and Bobby ever endorsed or JFK's life, while those more circumspect means
          Kennedy and Castro began directing their
                                                         authorized a hit on Fidel.                      were in play, the U.S. plans to kill Castro
          newfound power to destroying each other. When
          Jack came to power, he considered Fidel to be          The meeting commenced with a briefing continued. With the U.S.-backed assassinations
          Cuba's liberator after the corrupt cruelties of  from Lansdale about the training of Cuban exile of other world leaders—Rafael  Trujillo in the
          Batista, but Eisenhower and Nixon had already  insurgents in the fine points of guerrilla warfare. Dominican Republic and Ngo Dinh Diem in
          been plotting a coup. Elaborate (albeit flawed)  The president then reiterated that he was not yet Vietnam—Fidel became even more certain that
          plans were already in place.  The secret war   ready to approve any direct American military he was the next hit on the Kennedys' list. In 1965
                                                         involvement in such plans. Lately he had made Castro's sister Juanita, who had defected the
          against the Castros was forced upon the
                                                         many speeches warning against the new year before to the States, testified before the
          Kennedys by the  American Right, by Jack's
                                                         insurrectionary forms of war, and calling for U.S. House Committee on Un-  American
          early disdain for moderating “liberalism,” and
                                                         improved countermeasures.                       Activities that “Fidel's feeling of hatred for this
          by the Hard Left pressure exerted by Raul and
          Che Guevara. Assassination was only one tool in        Bobby then briefly described a possible country cannot even be imagined by Americans.
          the American kit, but given the nightmare cults  opportunity in which members of the Cuban . . . His intention—his obsession—is to destroy
          that had so recently empowered Hitler and      underground might stake out Fidel. Lansdale's the U.S.!”
          Stalin, political decapitation was seen as     memo, written later that same afternoon, called        The CIA began to focus upon one
          tactically concise and morally expedient.  This  ‘die plan’ “worth assessing firmly and pursuing Rolando Cubela, a military hero of the Cuban
                                                         vigorously. If there were grounds for action, the revolution who had secretly grown disillusioned
          secret war, however, would leave deeply buried
                                                         CIA had some invaluable assets which might with Fidel's Communist leanings. He thus began
          scars on the heart of America.
                                                         well be committed for such an effort.” Lansdale flirting with CIA agents in order to form a
                 In November 1961 the CIAs Cuba desk
                                                         went on: “I pointed out that this all pertained to possible alliance aimed at el presidente's
          officers Bill Harvey and Sam Halpern had a
          plan, the next phase in the ongoing attempt to  fractioning the regime. If it happened, it could removal. According to the CIA, there was no
          remove Castro. Halpern came up with a name     develop like a brush-fire, much as in Hungary, contact with Cubela from August 29, 1962, until
          for it: Operation Mongoose, named after a      and we must be prepared to help it win our goal September 1963. On September 7, officer
          carnivorous predator that kills its prey after  of Cuba freed of a Communist government.”      Nestor Sanchez and his partner, Richard
                                                                 In the words of a former CIA director, Maxwell Long, met with Cubela at a safe house
          stealing its eggs. It thus both dispatches its
                                                         “The language of the memo speaks for itself. in Porto Alegre, Brazil, to reassure him that the
          enemy and removes its progeny, thereby
                                                         The only thing that Robert Kennedy can be agency had decided to use him in the next phase
          preventing any line of succession—exactly what
                                                         referring to is the assassination of Castro. This of their plan to overthrow Castro.  They
          the Kennedy White House and the CIA had in
                                                         paragraph should never have been written.”      discussed ways of approaching other Cuban
          mind for the Castros and their political
          descendants.                                           It was not until just before the United military officers; Cubela told Sanchez that he
                 The plans were to continue fomenting    States launched the Bay of Pigs invasion in April wanted assurances at the top who could ensure
          revolution, and, by most estimates, the operation  1961 that Castro publicly declared himself a America's support for his actions, which
          had somewhere between $50 million and $150     “socialist.” But once Fidel embraced the Red included the decapitation of the Cuban regime.
                                                         path, he did so with a vengeance, goading Soviet This was always the last word in any talks with
          million to spend on its endeavor. The logistics
                                                         Premier Nikita Khrushchev to fire the first nuke Cubela: he wanted to hear it from the  White
          would be implemented by Harvey and his “Task
                                                         in the Missile Crisis in October 1962. Given House.
          Force  W.”  The  White House had taken the
                                                         Cuba's rogue tendencies, Khrushchev had made           Within the agency, there were a number
          Cuban operation out of the purview of the CIAs
                                                         it the KGB's business to stay on top of U.S. of dissenting voices. Cubela's mistress and her
          Western Hemisphere Division and placed it
          directly under the control of Bobby Kennedy    efforts, and the Soviets had learned of Operation brother were high- level G2 (Cuban intelligence)
          and the White House staff. The president thus  Mongoose.  To deter it, Khrushchev sent his officers. He was thought to be as “changeable as
          had direct oversight.                          island ally 40,000 Russian troops, 1,300 field the weather, ... capable of rash, thoughtless,
                 On March 16, 1962, a meeting convened   pieces, 700 antiaircraft guns, 350 tanks, and 150 violent action under the strain of provocation,
                                                         fighter jets. Fidel and Raid were soon tense situations, or frustration.” The year before
          in the Oval Office with the goal of setting
                                                         wonderfully well protected. Later, when Castro he had attempted suicide.
          presidential guidelines for Operation Mongoose.
                                                         embraced the Chinese Communists, the Soviet
          The meeting was attended by the president;
                                                         leader started taking steps to contain Castro's                        (Continued on Page 27)
          Bobby; the newly installed director of the CIA,
                                                         megalomania.                                      Your thoughts, comments, suggestions
          John McCone, and all the rest of the innermost
          players in the secret war, including Ed Lansdale,      There is evidence that the Soviet premier       are always welcomed. Email
          Bobby's Mongoose coordinator. It was Lansdale  and the  American president colluded in this
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