Humberto Fontova

Here’s how her media friends describe the CFR’s Julia Sweig upon their frequent showcasing of her “expertise:”

“Julia Sweig heads the Latin American division for the Council on Foreign Relations.” (Stephen Colbert)

“Julia Sweig is director for Latin America studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.” (NPR)

“Julia E. Sweig is senior fellow and director of Latin America studies at the Council on Foreign Relations.” (New York Times)

Here’s how the Council on Foreign Relations itself describes their star:

“CFR Senior Fellow and Director of Latin America Studies and the Global Brazil Initiative and award-winning author of Inside the Cuban Revolution.

Fine. Let’s turn to the acknowledgments in Julia Sweig’s award-wining book. Here we find:

“In Cuba many people spent long hours with me, helped open doors I could not have pushed through myself, and offered friendship and warmth to myself during research trips to the island…Elsa Montero and Jose Gomez Abad championed this project.”

Let’s turn now to the front page of The New York Times Nov. 18th edition. Ah! Here we find that Elsa Montero and Jose Gomez Abad had just been arrested by the FBI for a terror plot against Manhattan that would have probably put the death toll from 9/11 in second place. Some background:

On Nov. 17, 1962, J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI cracked a plot by Cuban agents that targeted Macy's, Gimbel's, Bloomingdale's and Manhattan's Grand Central Terminal with a dozen incendiary devices and 500 kilos of TNT. The explosions were timed for the following week, the day after Thanksgiving.Macy’s get’s 50,000 shoppers that one day.Thousands of New Yorkers, including women and children—actually, given the date and targets, probably mostly women and children—were to be incinerated and entombed.

At the time, the FBI relied heavily on “HUMINT” (Human Intelligence.) So they’d expertly penetrated the plot, identified the ringleaders and had them tapped. One by one the ringleaders were ambushed and arrested. Among these were Cuban DGI agents Jose Gomez-Abad and Elsa Montero who worked as “diplomats” in Cuba’s UN mission.Alas, they enjoyed “diplomatic immunity” and were soon back in Cuba as heroes instead of in electric chairs at Sing Sing.


Humberto Fontova

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.