“Mr President the American people are asking with new urgency: what is going on in Cuba?” On August 31st 1962 Senator Kenneth Keating (Republican, New York) was on the Senate floor prompted by reports of a huge and rapid deployment of Soviet troops and sophisticated arms to Cuba. “The President has said he has no evidence of Soviet troops in Cuba. If he has no evidence, I am giving him evidence this afternoon. Mr President, time is short. The situation is growing worse. I urge upon my government that prompt action be taken.”
Fast-forward to October 10, 1962. “Why has such a veil been thrown around Cuba keeping this information from the American people?” asked Senator Keating. “My own sources on the Cuba situation (Cuban refugees) have substantiated this report completely that construction has begun on at least half a dozen launching sites for intermediate range tactical missiles. I call upon the appropriate government officials to confirm or deny reports of intermediate range missile bases in Cuba. Intelligence authorities MUST have advised the President and top government officials of this fact.”
Indeed: “I showed the president photos of crates which presumably would carry—or where carrying IL—Soviet medium bombers and were deck loaded on a ship which had arrived in Havana in early October,” wrote CIA director John Mc Cone on October 11, 1962. “The President requested that such information be withheld at least until after the November Congressional elections. The president requested that all future information be suppressed.”
All those missile rumors, you see, issued from “right-wing Cuban exiles.” Dozens of Cuban exiles (many of them college kids about the same age as one of JFK’s girlfriends of the time, Mimi Alford) were infiltrating Cuba and bringing out eyewitness reports of what remains the biggest military threat to the U.S. since 1812. In the process, dozens were also dying by firing squad and torture at the hands of Castro and Che Guevara's KGB-tutored secret police.
For all the good the Cubans boys did:
"Nothing but refugee rumors," sneered President Kennedy’s National Security advisor, Mc George Bundy on ABC's Issues and Answers on October 14, 1962. "Nothing in Cuba presents a threat to the United States," continued the Ivy League luminary, barely masking his scorn for these hot-headed and deceitful Cuban refugees. " There’s no likelihood that the Soviets or Cubans would try and install an offensive capability in Cuba,” he scoffed.
Humberto Fontova holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from Tulane University and is the author of four books including his latest, The Longest Romance; The Mainstream Media and Fidel Castro. For more information and for video clips of his Television and college speaking appearances please visit www.hfontova.com.