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In a meeting at the White House on January 3 1961, described by
Richard Bissell, CIA Director of Plans, in his book
Memoirs of a Cold Warrior: from Yalta to Bay of Pigs, Eisenhower
"seemed to be eager to take forceful action against Castro, and breaking off
diplomatic relations appeared to be his best card. He noted that he was
prepared to 'move against Castro' before Kennedy's inauguration on the
twentieth if a 'really good excuse' was provided by Castro. 'Failing that,' he
said, 'perhaps we could think of manufacturing something that would be
generally acceptable.' …This is but another example of his willingness to
use covert action-specifically to fabricate events-to achieve his objectives in
By the time Kennedy took office in January 1961, he had already made
serious commitments to the Cuban exiles, promising to oppose communism at every
opportunity, and supporting the overthrow of Castro. During the campaign,
Kennedy had repeatedly accused Eisenhower of not doing enough about Castro.
Eisenhower, Kennedy and other high ranking U.S. officials continually
denied any plans to attack Cuba, but as early as October 31 1960, Cuban Foreign
Minister Raúl Roa, in a session at the U.N. General
Assembly, was able to provide details on the recruitment and training of the
Cuban exiles, whom he referred to as mercenaries and counterrevolutionaries.
[The CIA recruits were paid $400 a month to train, with an additional allotment
of $175 for their wives and more for their children.]
Please let me know if you need any clarification. I'm always happy to answer your questions.
Jul 15th, 2015
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