Tags: Insider | Report: | Castro | Taped | Jack | Nicholson | Hollywood

Insider Report: Castro Taped Jack Nicholson, Hollywood Stars

Saturday, 09 April 2005 12:00 AM

1. Castro Spied on Jack Nicholson, Spielberg and the Pope

Most outsiders probably don't know that when they're in Cuba, they're being tape-recorded and watched, on direct orders of communist dictator Fidel Castro.

So says Humberto Fontova, author of the new best-selling book "Fidel: Hollywood's Favorite Tyrant."

Fontova says Castro and his spies have secretly taped -- using both audio and video equipment -- some of Hollywood's most notable stars.

Fontova names names, including Woody Harrelson, Kevin Costner, Jack Nicholson, Steven Spielberg, Chevy Chase, Leo DiCaprio, Francis Ford Coppola, Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell, Robert Redford and many others -- all were spied on when they visited Cuba.

Fontova has a good source for the claims.

"My job was to bug their hotel rooms," high-ranking former Cuban intel officer Delfin Fernandez, who defected to the U.S., told the author. "With both cameras and listening devices. Most people have no idea they are being watched while they are in Cuba."

When these guests arrive, their hotel rooms have already been set up with eavesdropping and videotaping gear.

Sometimes, says the intel officer, the guests would be followed wherever the went, 24 hours a day.

In doing so, some of the stars' most intimate, private and potentially embarrassing moments (read: bedroom antics) were captured on film and tape -- all for the private viewing pleasure of Castro and his most-trusted inner circle.

Fernandez said that Castro was a "connoisseur" of such covert tapings, noting that he especially liked "the really famous."

Fernandez also alleged that after a star left, Castro and his buddies would break out the popcorn and review the tapes, almost like Hollywood screenings.

"Hmmmmmm, these scenes are more scandalous than anything in any of her movies!" Fernandez recalled one intelligence officer exclaiming as he watched "nighttime cavortings" of a famous actress from Spain.

He said that Jack Nicholson proclaimed Castro a "genius" after visiting with him in 1998. "Castro is a humanist like President Clinton," Nicholson said, according to Fernandez. "Cuba is simply a paradise!"

But voyeur Castro may have had the last laugh on Jack.

Fernandez said Jack Nicholson was "bugged and taped thoroughly during his stay in the hotel Melia Cohiba." Fernandez says he knows because he was in charge of that operation.

But some VIPs visiting Castro's Cuba foiled his taping party.

2. Stalkers Target Mike Gallagher, Monica Crowley, Radio Hosts

Increasingly, talk radio hosts of all political viewpoints are facing "extreme" feedback from listeners -- including violent threats. Some hosts report being harassed by stalkers.

Talkers Magazine, the industry publication for talk radio, notes that, though rare, on occasion hosts "are stalked and in even rarer instances, the worst happens - serious bodily harm or even death."

Hosts receive quite a bit of listener feedback in the form of e-mail, phone messages and letters.

While much of it is praise, Talkers says "a significant percentage" contains "vile insults and obscenities."

Hosts themselves have reported a number of harrowing incidents. A few even feared for their lives. One, the magazine reported, even had to deal with a bomb threat.

"I used to reply to all my e-mails," Monica Crowley, WABC and MSNBC host, told the magazine. "Even if someone disagreed with me, I would send a note saying, 'Thanks for listening anyway.' But, when I had my serious stalker problem, the New York City police told me to stop doing that since my stalker had been e-mailing me and you never know whom you're dealing with via e-mail."

She was stalked for a long time, but eventually police caught and arrested the stalker.

Top talker Mike Gallagher had a similar experience. The Salem Radio Network host tells the magazine he's had a couple of "instances of bona fide stalkers including a few that are active right now, including one who showed up at my apartment in New York."

Gallagher, like other talk show hosts, realizes it's just part of the business. "It's really the nature of our medium that we're really opinionated people and there's no question we can attract kooks."

3. Stern: Jane Fonda a 'Hero' of Vietnam

He freely admits he may be one of the few people who thinks so, but Howard Stern says Jane Fonda is a "hero" for going to North Vietnam in 1972.

Fonda made her highly controversial trip at a time when U.S. servicemen were still fighting and dying at the hands of North Vietnamese regulars and Viet Cong guerrillas.

Her trip was seen by millions as an act of blatant treason, though she was never charged with the crime and continued on her path to a successful career in Hollywood.

And though he gets "really pissed-off letters from vets and stuff" when he says such things, Stern says Fonda's trip should be praised because "anyone - especially anyone of prominence - who helped to bring down that war, especially when I was a year or two away from going over myself, I gotta say: Thank you."

4. Craig Shirley's 'Reagan's Revolution' Among D.C. Top 10 Books

The Washington Post reported this past week that Craig Shirley's book "Reagan's Revolution: The Untold Story of the Campaign That Started It All," has broken into the top 10 books in terms of non-fiction/general title sales in the Washington, D.C., area.

According to the paper's Sunday, April 3 edition, 'Reagan' was No. 9.

5. Centrist Democrats Seek 'Civil War' With Liberals

The party that claims it is the most all-inclusive isn't comfortable with some of its more liberal members.

According to the Democratic Leadership Council, the centrist-leaning organization wants the Democratic Party to be less liberal, suggesting that is the best course of action if the party ever wants to regain its majority status in Congress and retake the White House.

In a recently issued manifesto for the party, DLC founder Al From and President Bruce Reed said it is "a delusion to think that if we just turned out our voters, we could win national elections."

Rather, the party needs to dramatically change its left-wing, anti-war image and message to "recapture the muscular progressive internationalism of Roosevelt, Truman and Kennedy and convince voters that national security is our first priority."

To do that will take a divisive and all-out political civil war that is better fought now than later.

"We should not shy away from" such debate, said the manifesto. "It's far less important that Democrats come together now than Election Day."


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1. Castro Spied on Jack Nicholson, Spielberg and the Pope Most outsiders probably don't know that when they're in Cuba, they're being tape-recorded and watched, on direct orders of communist dictator Fidel Castro. So says Humberto Fontova, author of the new best-selling...
Saturday, 09 April 2005 12:00 AM
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