Did Fidel Castro have advance knowledge of John F. Kennedy’s assassination?
That’s the tantalizing suggestion of a new book from a former CIA intelligence officer who is one of the country’s leading experts on Cuba and the Castro regime.
The book, “Castro’s Secrets: The CIA and Cuba’s Intelligence Machine,” is the first substantial study of Fidel Castro’s intelligence operations, according to the Miami Herald.
Based on interviews with Cuban spies who defected as well as declassified documents from the CIA, the FBI, the Pentagon and other national security organs, it’s a highly detailed history of the half century cold war between the United States and Cuba.
But buried in its pages is an explosive charge based on the debrief of a defecting Cuban intelligence officer who was in charge of monitoring broadcasts in the United States. The book says the officer was instructed on a particular day to suspend his normal activities and listen for any news being reported from Texas.
"'The leadership wants you to stop your CIA work, all your CIA work,' his boss said," the Herald writes. "Instead, the officer was told he had a new target: Texas, 'any little detail small detail from Texas.' And about three hours later, shortly after mid-day on Nov. 22, 1963, the shocked intelligence officer had something to report that was much more than a small detail: the assassination in Dallas of President John F. Kennedy.
"'Castro knew,' the intelligence officer would tell a CIA debriefer years later, after defecting to the United States. They knew Kennedy would be killed.”
The claim is that Kennedy’s assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, warned Cuban intelligence officers in advance of his plans to kill the president. Author and former CIA analyst Brian Latell writes that Oswald, a belligerent Castro supporter, grew frustrated when officials at the Cuban embassy in Mexico City refused to give him a visa to travel to the island, and promised to shoot Kennedy to prove his revolutionary credentials.
“Fidel knew of Oswald’s intentions — and did nothing to deter the act,” the book declares.
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