Jump to content
The Education Forum

WHAT RFK APPROVED


Tim Gratz
 Share

Recommended Posts

http://www.jfklancer.com/cuba/11-12-63.html

FOREIGN RELATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES

1961-1963

Volume XI

Cuban Missile Crisis and Aftermath

DEPARTMENT OF STATE

Washington

376. Memorandum for the Record

Washington, November 12, 1963.

//Source: Department of State, INR Historical Files, Special Group Meeting No. 105, December 6, 1963. Secret; Eyes Only. For McCone's account of this meeting, see Document 375.

SUBJECT

Cuban Operations

A meeting was held this morning with higher authority on the above subject. Present were: Mr. Rusk, Mr. McNamara, Mr. Robert Kennedy, Mr. Bundy, Mr. McCone, Mr. Johnson, Mr. Gilpatric, Mr. Vance, General Taylor, Mr. Helms, Mr. FitzGerald, Mr. Cheever, and Mr. Shackley.

Mr. McCone gave a brief summary of recent developments inside Cuba. He stated that the military is generally loyal to Castro. There have been some disorders but not very extensive. Castro's internal security forces appear to be well organized. He has developed a system of informers which is becoming increasingly effective. The economic situation is deteriorating largely because of the enforcement of economic sanctions, and Hurricane "Flora" although its damage was not as great as originally thought.

The Soviets appear to be continuing the gradual withdrawal of personnel from Cuba although recently 1,000-2,000 troops have come in. There now seems to be a kind of "Soviet MAAG" program concerned mainly with training Cubans in all types of military activity including the handling of missiles. There has been some removal of the more sophisticated types of electronic equipment. Some new tanks have arrived in Cuba, estimates run from 25 to 50.

Mr. FitzGerald reported on Cuban operations under six main headings: (a) Covert Collection, (B) Propaganda, © Economic Denial, (d) Disaffections in the Military, (e) Sabotage and Harassment, and (f) Support of Autonomous Anti-Castro Groups.

(a) Covert Collection. Mr. FitzGerald pointed out that inside Cuba CIA has three kinds of agent activities: (1) "singleton," (2) collection nets, and (3) agents involved in "black net" operations. While there is encouraging improvement in the geographical spread of these agents, there is still, understandably, a fairly heavy concentration of agents in the Havana area.

A question was raised as to how many agents in all of these activities have been lost. Mr. FitzGerald said that in the neighborhood of 25 had been either captured or killed in the past year. The reasons for these casualty figures are the increasing effectiveness of Castro's internal security forces and discovery brought about when agents try to obtain food. No matter how good the documentation, an outsider in a community is viewed with suspicion.

(B) Propaganda. The activities of CIA in this field are the mailing of leaflets and radio broadcasts. Some 30-40,000 leaflets per month have been mailed and during a day there are 32 hours of programs emanating from seven different stations. It is believed that there is a very excellent listening public. The programs appeal to people in a wide variety of jobs and professions. There is some jamming but it is spasmodic and generally confined to Havana.

© Economic Denial. Mr. FitzGerald reported that the U.S. economic denial program is contributing to Cuba's declining economy. Mention was made that the economic denial program would be more effective if the Canadians were willing to cooperate. Up to now they have not gone along with U.S. efforts, and they are supplying many items essential to Cuban economy. The UK and Spain are continuing to deal in certain types of goods required by the Cubans. Commodities going into Cuba in 1962 from the free world reached $101 million. While this represents less than in 1961 the amount is still too high.

(d) Disaffections in the Military. While the military is loyal to Castro as has been noted there are indications that some leaders would like to break with the regime but lack courage and opportunity. Mr. FitzGerald commended a CIA-DIA task force which prepared a report covering some 150 Cuban military leaders. Out of this figure there are some 45 which look interesting from CIA's operational viewpoint. Mr. FitzGerald reported that CIA is in touch with three persons who are in the military or who have highly placed contacts in such circles. The aim is to use these three individuals to establish contact with military personnel inside Cuba. The principal aim is to get military leaders who have become disenchanted with the Castro regime to dare to talk and plot Castro's downfall with each other.

(e) Sabotage and Harassment. Mr. FitzGerald mentioned four successful sabotage operations against a power plant, oil storage facilities, a sawmill, and an underwater demolition operation against a floating crane in one of Cuba's harbors. It is believed that the publication of these successful sabotage activities in the Cuban press has tended to raise appreciably the morale of the people. Also, such sabotage continues to keep pressure on the Castro regime and adds to the growing economic problems facing the country.

(f) Support of Autonomous Anti-Castro Groups. The question was asked from where would the autonomous groups operate. Mr. FitzGerald replied that they would operate from outside U.S. territory. He mentioned two bases of the Artime group, one in Costa Rica and the other in Nicaragua. Also it was hoped that the autonomous group under Manolo Ray would soon get itself established in a working base, possibly Costa Rica. Mr. FitzGerald said that much could be accomplished by these autonomous groups once they become operational.

A question was asked as to what decisions remain to be made. Mr. FitzGerald replied that we were looking for a reaffirmation of the program as presented, including sabotage and harassment. When asked what was planned in sabotage for the immediate future, he said that destruction operations should be carried out against a large oil refinery and storage facilities, a large electric plant, sugar refineries, railroad bridges, harbor facilities, and underwater demolition of docks and ships. The question was also raised as to whether an air strike would be effective on some of these principal targets. The consensus was that CIA should proceed with its planning for this type of activity looking toward January.

The State Department raised questions with respect to sabotage activities in Cuba. The thought was advanced that there may be a relationship between such hit and run attacks on Cuba and the delay of American convoys en route to Berlin. A further question was posed as to the over-all importance to the United States of sabotage operations, especially since it is so difficult to keep them from being directly attributable to the U.S. It was thought that the hit and run type effort might in fact invoke loss of support inside Cuba and may even result in bringing more Soviet troops back into Cuba. Somehow the U.S. must pin responsibility for these activities on Castro. The U.S. in fact must be ready to retaliate when it can be fairly well established that Castro is attempting with arms, money and men to foment Communist uprisings in any Latin American country.

The consensus was that since CIA's sabotage operation is in the main low cost and since it does worry the Castro regime, denies him some essential commodities, stimulates some sabotage inside Cuba and tends to improve the morale of the Cubans who would like to see Castro removed, CIA should proceed with those operations planned for the coming week end (November 15 though 17).

The view was expressed that CIA, in connection with the Department of Defense, should concentrate on attempting to catch Castro red-handed delivering arms to Communist groups in Latin American countries. It was determined that during the next 90 days from this date an attempt would be made by means of air patrols and surface ships to identify ships carrying arms for Castro to Latin American countries. It was hoped that a ship with Cuban arms could be picked up. Conversations are to be initiated by the Secretary of the Navy with CIA to map out a three-month operation against Cuban shipping. It was also determined that the Colombian and Venezuelan governments should be asked to join with the U.S. in developing a joint patrol designed to identify ships carrying weapons from Cuba destined for revolutionary groups in Latin American countries.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So, at a meeting on Tuesday, November 12th (possibly with "higher authority" present as well) attended by RFK and the top brass of the CIA, the meeting approves continued CIA sabotage operations against Cuba, including operations "against a large oil refinery and storage facilities, a large electric plant, sugar refineries, railroad bridges, harbor facilities, and underwater demolition of docks and ships." These operations were to continue in the week immediately before the assassination of the President.

Clearly the Kennedy administration was carrying un an undeclared war against Castro, arguably contrary to the accords that ended the Cuban missile crisis.

I believe the operations that were planned for January 1964 did not in fact occur. The continued JFK/RFK war against Castro was interrupted by what happened in Dallas on November 22, 1963.

But any connection between the Kennedy war against Cuba and the assassination is of course purely coincidental--as is what was going on in Paris on November 22, 1963.

Edited by Tim Gratz
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So, at a meeting on Tuesday, November 12th (possibly with "higher authority" present as well) attended by RFK and the top brass of the CIA, the meeting approves continued CIA sabotage operations against Cuba, including operations "against a large oil refinery and storage facilities, a large electric plant, sugar refineries, railroad bridges, harbor facilities, and underwater demolition of docks and ships." These operations were to continue in the week immediately before the assassination of the President.

Clearly the Kennedy administration was carrying un an undeclared war against Castro, arguably contrary to the accords that ended the Cuban missile crisis.

I believe the operations that were planned for January 1964 did not in fact occur. The continued JFK/RFK war against Castro was interrupted by what happened in Dallas on November 22, 1963.

But any connection between the Kennedy war against Cuba and the assassination is of course purely coincidental--as is what was going on in Paris on November 22, 1963.

Any connections between the assassination of President Kennedy and the maritime commando operations at JMWAVE are also entirely coincidental.

"The intelligence profession does not consider coincidence to be an adequate explaination of events."

BK

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tim, this is the part should concern you:

A further question was posed as to the over-all importance to the United States of sabotage operations, especially since it is so difficult to keep them from being directly attributable to the U.S. It was thought that the hit and run type effort might in fact invoke loss of support inside Cuba and may even result in bringing more Soviet troops back into Cuba. Somehow the U.S. must pin responsibility for these activities on Castro. The U.S. in fact must be ready to retaliate when it can be fairly well established that Castro is attempting with arms, money and men to foment Communist uprisings in any Latin American country.

Who raised the "question posed"?

Who answered it by suggesting a pretext needed to be found in order to justify the sabotage operations?

In the dim, dark recesses, I seem to recall that there was an an attempt to manufacture just such a gun-running scenario which was to be pinned on Castro.

Instead, your concern is expressed in the following: "So, at a meeting on Tuesday, November 12th (possibly with "higher authority" present as well) attended by RFK and the top brass of the CIA, the meeting approves continued CIA sabotage operations against Cuba..."

That may well be what happened, Tim... but it's not what the document states. What it actually says is, "The consensus was that since CIA's sabotage operation is in the main low cost and since it does worry the Castro regime, denies him some essential commodities, stimulates some sabotage inside Cuba and tends to improve the morale of the Cubans who would like to see Castro removed, CIA should proceed with those operations planned for the coming week end (November 15 though 17)."

"Consensus" does not mean "approval". It does not even necessarily indicate 100% uniformity of opinion, but may mean simply a majority opinion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tim,

What RFK approved a week before the election?

I'm sure some saw it as voting of a kind... B)

Now we have assassination = election

and

consensus = approval by appropriate authority

The first may have been just an innocent mistake on your part, but to the authors of the crime, the two no doubt became equivalent for the brief few seconds it took to "cast their (three or more) votes"

I don't see any excuse for the latter - especially from someone who obtained a law degree. If you have any evidence that approval was given by RFK or anyone I'd be happy to see it. Meanwhile, my take on the document is that the author carefully avoided any mention of approval/non-approval, while trying to give the impression approval was obtained by using a word like "consensus" which can have slight, but distinct variations in meaning. But even if it was meant to convey that complete unanimity of opinion was reached, what was it reached on? The answer is, it was reached on nothing but a recommendation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I like the euphemism "sabotage and harassment" for terrorism. Note that there is not a single word about loss of Cuban lives, as if the destruction of "a large oil refinery and storage facilities, a large electric plant, sugar refineries, railroad bridges, harbor facilities, and underwater demolition of docks and ships" involves no human casualties. What's important is that these acts are "low cost," meaning lots of bang for the buck.

This kind of stuff is unknown history to most Americans today who are all for the "war on terror," and who believe the Bush bilge that terrorists (as opposed to "freedom fighters," i.e. terrorists that the U.S. government supports) "hate us for our freedoms."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...