CIA's Dulles wanted Cuba
to ask for Soviet Bloc arms in 1959
Former adversaries meet
to discuss Bay of Pigs
Read the most recent press release, March
23, 5 p.m.
March 23, 2001, 10 a.m.
BAY OF PIGS DOCUMENTS SHOW CIA EXPECTED
UPRISING AGAINST CASTRO, OR MILITARY SUPPORT
CUBANS EXPECTED BEACHHEAD PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT
WOULD CALL IN U.S. INVASION, SO RUSHED TO WIPE IT OUT
Havana, Cuba: Documents discussed on the second day
of an historic meeting of former adversaries in Havana show that CIA officials
believed that the Cuban people would welcome a U.S.-sponsored invasion
and spontaneously rise up against the Castro regime. CIA officials
also expected that Cuban military and police forces would refuse to fight
against Brigade 2506, the CIA's 1400-man mercenary invasion force.
The document is one of several released today
on the National Security Archive's website <http://www.nsarchive.org/bayofpigs>.
The National Security Archive at George Washington University is co-sponsoring
the event along with the University of Havana and several Cuban government
Another document, culled from the Russian
archives, records a conversation between Soviet Ambassador S. M. Kudryavtsev
and Ernesto "Che" Guevara on April 14, 1961 - the day before the first
B-26 air strikes on the Cuban air force - in which Guevara asserts that
Kennedy Administration efforts to establish "large beachheads of the external
counterrevolutionary forces . . . would be doomed to failure."
The conference - involving former officials of the Kennedy Administration,
the CIA, members of Brigade 2506, and Cuban government and military officials
- convened yesterday in Havana for three days of discussion on one of the
most infamous episodes of the Cold War - the April 1961 invasion at the
Bay of Pigs.
In an unprecedented declassification, the Cuban government has also
declassified some 480 pages of records relating to the invasion, including
intelligence reports on U.S. preparations and Fidel Castro's
directives during the battle - records that "shed substantial light
on Cuba's ability to repel the invasion," according to National Security
Archive Senior Analyst Peter Kornbluh.
Four of the Cuban documents - Fidel Castro's handwritten
notes during the battle with the invastion force - are included in
today's release, along with translated copies.
Documents from the first day of the conference
- including newly declassified records from the United Kingdom - were posted
on the Archive's website on March 22. The Archive has also released
of CIA oral history interviews with Richard Bissell and Jacob Esterline,
two of the operation's key participants.
Other documents released today include:
Copies of two organizational charts of the CIA task
force in charge of the Cuban operation.
An "After Action Report on OPERATION PLUTO"
from the report of President Kennedy's special commission to investigate
the Bay of Pigs invasion, chaired by Gen. Maxwell Taylor.
The summary conclusion of the CIA Inspector General's
report on the operation, in which he blames CIA officials for "failure
at high levels to concentrate informed, unwavering scrutiny on the project
and to apply experienced, unbiased judgment to the menacing situations
Minutes from a March 16, 1962 White House meeting
in which President Kennedy is briefed on guidelines for OPERATION MONGOOSE,
the CIA's covert effort to destabilize and topple the Castro regime.