DescriptionCuban Archive Ranging From 1956 to 2002. Ranging from a 1956 Batista signed document to a 2002 Castro signed letter of State. The most notable is a 9 page memorandum from the Ministry of Foreign Relations relating to the "Bay of Pigs" comparing JFK to Hitler in this regard. "The road of the North American imperialism is the same as Hitler's..." The Republic of Cuba consists of the island of Cuba (the largest of the Great Antilles), the Isle of Youth and various adjacent small islands. It is located in the norther Caribbean at the confluence of the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. Fulgencio Batista led the 1933 Sergeant's Revolt overthrowing the transitional government after Gerardo Machado's dictatorship collapsed, and became first the Army Chief of Staff and eventually the man in charge under a series of presidents until 1940 when he was elected president himself. In 1953, Fidel Castro attacked the Moncada barracks, was exiled to Mexico, but returned to Cuba on November 1956 with 82 fighters trained by Alberto Bayo (a former colonel in the Spanish Republican Army), and with the help of popular discontent managed to overthrow Batista, who fled the country.
This fascinating Cuba archive traces the reparations of hostile Latin relations and attitudes after the Bay of Pigs. On April 17, 1961, approximately 1,300 members of a CIA-supported counter-revolutionary Cuban exile force stormed the beaches of Cuba, beginning a brief military adventure which ended in total failure. The incident quickly became a foreign policy debacle for President Kennedy, who approved the plan just three months into his presidency.
A 9 page unsigned memorandum could have been written by Raul Roa, who was the Cuban Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1959 to 1973. Roa was appointed Foreign Minister by Castro and he gained international prominence with his blunt diplomacy. In the 1970s he worked to restore good relations with other Latin American countries, and in 1973 he signed an anti-hijacking agreement with the United States. The memorandum typed on "Republica De Cuba, Minister of Foreign Relations" stationery is dated Havana, May 5, 1961 "Year of Education". Less than a month after the Bay of Pigs. The document measures 13" x 8.5" and reads in part: "Acts of terrorism, sabotage and all types of criminal attacks followed since receiving North American support...As occurrence of an especially serious incident aimed to violate the rules of international rights for the effects that followed, we must mention the case of a strongly armed boat that penetrated the Bay of Santiago de Cuba and fired upon a petroleum refinery causing damages, one death and many wounded...On the last April 15th of this year, war planes that the United States have reserved for attacks on Cuba, have bombed the cities of Santiago de Cuba, San Antonio de los Banos and Havana causing many damages, killing eight persons and leaving several others wounded...On the 17th of the same month, on the beach of Giron, in the South of the island, took place the landing of mercenary invaders trained in the territory of the United States, in its colony of Puerto Rico, Guatemala and Nicaragua. They were armed with very powerful weapons that were transported in ships provided by agents of such countries, were escorted in the crossing by North American naval units from a departure point correspondent to the last two countries mentioned above. The invaders received from the United States a quantity of weapons and, since no other power has superior forces than this one, they included naval units, also had Sherman tanks, strong artillery with cannons without backward movement - exclusive weapons of North American Imperialism - and a large number of airplanes, including four units of the type "Sabre" of the North American Army. After they broke off their offensive, these invaders left behind almost one hundred victims among our population, as well as a considerable quantity of wounded persons. Few days before this invasion, President Kennedy had said that the United States had no intention to intervene in these operations. After they produced the attack, and before the imputations that arose from different officials about its failure, including those from ex-President Eisenhower, President Kennedy, with cynical forgetfulness about his recent words, assumed all the responsibility for the failure of the invasion, praising much later the traitors in interviews with the simulated chiefs of the conspiracy, arriving to the enormity of declaring on front of the Society Newspaper Editors that the principle of non-intervention remained unchanged unless it is subject to the convenience of North American's interests, among the major contempt from international opinion that he recognized having deceived, especially the nations of this hemisphere...During interviews transmitted by television and radio, the conspirators, including the principal figures that were captured, admitted that the invasion was organized, equipped and transported by the American Government. Our Prime Minister, Doctor Fidel Castro, conducted one such interview and personally interrogated these prisoners...The North American Government, in its determination to invade Cuba, remains indifferent to the massive protests of the population and governments of Latin America and other places in the world, as well as those famous personalities, reporters, professors, students, workers' organizations, etc. From a distance, it stimulates attacks to the North American territory and dispatches naval units and troops to the Base at Guantanamo; it organizes urgent interviews with military and political leaders to wage war, to prepare the condition for an attack on Cuba. The agressive government of the United States does not mention one single hostile maneuvers and the attack itself that they organized were due to the reason that it could not accept that Cuba, exercising its sovereignty and self-determination, gave itself one or another form of government not to the liking of the North Americans. Hitler exhibited the same tactic against the people of Europe, that he later dominated using violence. The road of the North American imperialism is the same as Hitler's. If they achieve the goal of destroying Cuba, they will consider themselves almighty enough to crush any nation that will dare to oppose its domination or will cross them or disagree with its imperialistic directions. They will not achieve this because the people of Cuba is ready to fight and will answer with violence to violence."
When JFK entered the White House in January of 1961, the training and planning for the exile invasion were near completion. The CIA had organized a brigade of about 1,400 exile fighters at a secluded camp in Guatemala, and was infiltrating advance teams of organizers and saboteurs into Cuba. President Kennedy was excited at the prospect of secretly arranging Castro's overthrow, and took an active interest in the planning. However, the President was concerned that the size of the operation would threaten his ability to deny U.S. involvement with the exile brigade. Throughout the preparations for the invasion he was enthusiastic about the CIA's Cuba program, but as he planned D-Day approached, Kennedy became increasingly worried that the U.S. hand in the operation could no longer be concealed. Kennedy was as determined to have the Cuba program remain secret. As the operation kicked into high gear in Mid-April, the CIA and the Kennedy administration labored to maintain the fiction that the exiles attacking Cuba were not under the employ of the United States.
A Raul Roa signed document typed on the Republic De Cuba Ministry of Foreign Relations stationery in Havana on May 7, 1963, the "year of reorganization" is addressed to Jose Fellman Velarde, the Minister of Foreign Relations of Bolivia. The document reads in full, "Your Excellency: I have the honor to advise Your Excellency that the Revolutionary Government of Cuba has designated Mr. Roberto Lassale del Amo, Fully-Empowered Minister, to fill the position of Business Chief at interim for your Esteemed Government. I ask that your Excellency accept Mr. Lassale del Amo in the role above mentioned and I take this opportunity to reiterate the assurance of my highest respect." The document is signed by Rual Cruz.
The earliest document in this archive is a July 18, 1956 document by Fulgencio Batista address to Victor Paz Estenssoro, President of the Republic of Bolivia. The document was written in Havana at the Presidential Palace on July 18, 1956 and reads in part, "Wishing to interpret the feelings of affection and true friendship of the People and the Government of Cuba toward the Bolivian nation, I have decided to entrust its representation in the solemn act of the formal introduction of the First Magistracy of Your Country by the elected President, His Excellency Mister Heran Siles Zuazo, which is upcoming, to Mister Doctor Emilio Cancio Bello y Mazutier, Extraordinary and Fully-Empowered Ambassador of Cuba to Uruguay; assuming the position of Extraordinary Ambassador in Special Mission, he will present to Your Excellency my sincere homage of high consideration and appreciation and will express to Your worthy successor the warm wishes that I formulate for the success and full outcome of your Government, for the purpose of consolidating even more, if at all possible, thetraditional and fraternal friendship that fortunately exists between our two countries..." The document is signed by Batista and the Minister of State.
A final extended handshake towards the future comes from a 2002 Fidel Castro document to Gonzalo Sanchez, President of the Republic of Bolivia. The document reads in full, " With the wish to continue the maintenance of the cordial, friendly relations that exist between the Republic of Cuba and the Republic of Bolivia, I have chosen Mister Luis Felipe Vazquez Vazquez to represent the people and the government of the Republic of Cuba as Extraordinary, Fully-Empowered Ambassador in front of the Government of Your Excellency. Mr. Vazquez Vazquez is tasked with supporting the interest of both countries; the integrity and aptitude that he exhibits allow me to hope that he will gain the esteem and the kindness of Your Excellency. With this confidence, I beg your Excellency to extend full faith and credit to what Mr. Vazquez Vazquez will say in name of Cuba and, most importantly, when he will express my sincere wishes for the prosperity of this Country and for Your personal happiness. In the Palace of the Revolution, Havana, on August 8, 2002." Signed by Fidel Castro. All fine or better, most very fine.
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