CubaBrief: Lee Harvey Oswald, a pro-Castro Communist, assassinated John F. Kennedy on this day 60 years ago.

Close-up view of President and Mrs. Kennedy and Texas Governor John Connally and his wife on 11/22/63. Copyright by Victor Hugo King. Mr. King has since placed the photograph in the public domain.

Sixty years ago, on November 22, 1963, John F. Kennedy was assassinated. At 12:30pm Central Standard Time, the Kennedys in their convertible limousine turned off Main Street at Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas. As they were passing the Texas School Book Depository, President John F. Kennedy was shot twice and slumped over toward First Lady Jackie Kennedy. The governor of Texas was also hit. At 1:00pm, President Kennedy was pronounced dead.

On the 60th anniversary of this political assassination the spin doctors and agents of influence continue to cloud the circumstances leading up to the murder of America’s 35th president. However, the question that needs to be asked looking back to that fateful day: who benefited most from his death? Cui bono?

Following the Bay of Pigs debacle in April 1961 the White House initiated Operation Mongoose. President Kennedy’s brother and Attorney General of the United States, Robert Kennedy, headed up the sustained effort to topple the Castro regime and this included the assassination of Fidel Castro.

On December 29, 1962, President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy met with the Bay of Pigs veterans, and over 40,000 Cuban exiles at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida. On that day the returning soldiers gave President Kennedy the flag of Brigade 2506. ” I want to express my great appreciation to the brigade for making the United States the custodian of this flag. I can assure you that this flag will be returned to this brigade in a free Havana,” stated President Kennedy to all assembled there.

President John F. Kennedy receives the Brigade 2506 flag from Bay of Pigs veterans Manuel Artimes y Erneido Oliva at the Orange Bowl stadium in Miami in Dec. 29, 1962.

Daniel Harker of the Associated Press interviewed Fidel Castro on September 7, 1963 at the Brazilian Embassy in Havana at a reception, and in it the communist dictator made an explicit threat. “We are prepared to fight them and answer in kind. U.S. leaders should think that if they are aiding terrorist plans to eliminate Cuban leaders, they themselves will not be safe.”

It is evident in a White House memorandum from ten days before President Kennedy was killed on November 12, 1963, that the Kennedy Administration was still committed to pursuing an aggressive strategy to topple the Castro regime:

Support of Autonomous Anti-Castro Groups. The question was asked from where would the autonomous groups operate. Mr. FitzGerald replied that they would operate from outside U.S. territory. He mentioned two bases of the Artime group, one in Costa Rica and the other in Nicaragua. Also it was hoped that the autonomous group under Manolo Ray would soon get itself established in a working base, possibly Costa Rica. Mr. FitzGerald said that much could be accomplished by these autonomous groups once they become operational. A question was asked as to what decisions remain to be made. Mr. FitzGerald replied that we were looking for a reaffirmation of the program as presented, including sabotage and harassment. When asked what was planned in sabotage for the immediate future, he said that destruction operations should be carried out against a large oil refinery and storage facilities, a large electric plant, sugar refineries, railroad bridges, harbor facilities, and underwater demolition of docks and ships. The question was also raised as to whether an air strike would be effective on some of these principal targets. The consensus was that CIA should proceed with its planning for this type of activity looking toward January.

Less than eleven months after making his pledge at the Orange Bowl, President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas by Lee Harvey Oswald.

On November 29, 1963 in a phone call with President Lyndon Baines Johnson, J. Edgar Hoover, the director of the FBI revealed Oswald’s links with the Castro regime. “This angle in Mexico is giving us a great deal of trouble because the story is they have this man Oswald getting $6500 from the Cuban Embassy and then coming back to this country with it.”

Politico in 2014 reported, “White House aide Joseph Califano, who was part of the anti-Castro plotting, said he was convinced that ‘Robert Kennedy experienced this unbelievable grief after his brother’s death because he believed it was linked to his—Bobby’s—efforts to kill Castro.’”

In 1968, Johnson told ABC reporter Howard K. Smith that “Kennedy was trying to get to Castro, but Castro got him first.

Leo Janos, one of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s former speech writers, interviewed him for the July 1973 issue of The Atlantic in which LBJ “expressed his belief that the assassination in Dallas had been part of a conspiracy. ‘I never believed that Oswald acted alone, although I can accept that he pulled the trigger.” Johnson said that when he had taken office he found that “we had been operating a damned Murder Inc. in the Caribbean.’ A year or so before Kennedy’s death a CIA-backed assassination team had been picked up in Havana. Johnson speculated that Dallas had been a retaliation for this thwarted attempt, although he couldn’t prove it.”

Following the President’s assassination within a year Operation Mongoose was scrapped and Fidel Castro would remain in power until 2006, then replaced by his brother Raul in a dynastic succession following a health crisis. General Raul Castro remains the maximum authority in Cuba today. Fidel Castro died of old age after causing much suffering in Cuba and around the world in places such as Ethiopia, Nicaragua, and Venezuela.

Respected German filmmaker Wilfried Huismann in 2006 made the case that Fidel Castro was behind the killing of the 35th president, and explained why both in his documentary “Rendezvous with Death” and in a Deutsche Welle interview.

We settled the question of why in three years of research on this documentary in Mexico, USA and Cuba. Oswald had been an agent for the Cuban intelligence services since November 1962. He was a political fanatic and allowed himself to be used by the Cuban intelligence services to kill John F. Kennedy. It was a Cuban reaction to the repeated attempts of the Kennedy brothers, above all the younger Kennedy, Robert, to get rid of Fidel Castro through political assassination — a duel between the Kennedys and the Castros, which, like in a Greek tragedy, left one of the duelists dead.

Paul Gregory, a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and author of The Oswalds: An Untold Account of Marina and Lee,” who spent time with both Lee Harvey Oswald and his wife Marina prior to the assassination in a column today make the case that Oswald acted alone.

Oswald’s motive may have been an effort to impress the Cuban dictatorship, and receive asylum there in exchange for killing President Kennedy.

The Mob Museum in November 22, 2021 published an article “Assassination expert says Cubans encouraged Oswald to kill JFK” with the subtitle “Evidence suggests President Johnson covered up Cuba link to avoid World War III.”

Gus Russo, author and JFK assassination expert, interviewed the case officer, Ray Wannall, of two brothers who by 1964 had secretly been working for the FBI informing on the Communist Party for 10 years. Morris and Jack Childs in June 1964 met with Fidel Castro in Cuba “seven months after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas on November 22, 1963.” This is the breakdown of that conversation by Russo, together with other details by Cuban sources.

The brothers listened to Castro tell them about a trip by Kennedy’s accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, to the Cuban embassy in Mexico City in September 1963. During the visit, Oswald sought a visa to immigrate to Cuba, but grew desperate when he could not get one right away. … “What they reported was that Castro told them that Oswald had come into the embassy in Mexico City – and Castro said, ‘I knew about it when it happened,’ it was reported to him – and he [Oswald] offered to kill President Kennedy,” Russo said. “He said, ‘I’ll kill that bastard Kennedy,’ ostensibly for the [Cuban] revolution.” … “The decision was made to encourage him” to kill Kennedy, Russo said. “[Oswald] was there for six days in Mexico City. . . . But the witnesses that we’ve uncovered say that he was meeting for lunches and dinners and going to Communist get-togethers. He was meeting with Castro’s intelligence officers, and they were encouraging him.” … “They made promises to Oswald, from what we were told, and again this has never been adjudicated, but I can tell you what they told us. Two sources in Mexico City who were with Cuban intelligence said that, ‘We promised Oswald we’d rescue him if he was successful. And we would fly him to Havana.’” … “Now, it turns out there were a lot of reports that a plane was at a private airfield in Dallas that day, and that it took off for Havana after the assassination. And one of these Cuban sources told us, ‘We weren’t going to rescue him and take him to Havana, we were going to dump him over the Gulf of Mexico. We didn’t want to have anything to do with this guy.’ Their idea was to get him and kill him, and that was going to be the end of it.”

Lee Harvey Oswald booking photo on November 23, 1963

Fox News, November 22, 2023

JFK assassination: 60 years later we know the truth about the real killer

The Warren Report on the death of JFK left behind an enduring legacy of mistrust in government

By Paul Gregory

Published November 22, 2023

On Nov. 22, 1963, we lost not only a popular young president, but we also lost our national innocence. We lost our trust in government. Once lost, it has not returned and never will.

The rifle shots fired at the president’s motorcade changed my own life as I watched TV coverage of my bloodied “friend” Lee Harvey Oswald dragged into the Dallas Police Station. When the Secret Service knocked on my door the morning after the assassination, they came for me as someone identified as a “known associate” of the presumed JFK assassin. 

My involvement with Lee and Marina Oswald  began in June 1962. I saw them last as they ran to catch the Fort Worth to Dallas bus on Nov. 22, 1962. A year later, my father translated for Marina from Nov. 24 to 28 as the Secret Service probed her knowledge of a conspiracy.  

As America came to a standstill, mourning JFK, the Warren Commission began its inquiry into the circumstances of his death. My own testimony before the commission was on March 31, 1964. The commission was wasting no time. If the assassination had been a conspiracy, we needed to know and fast.  

Comprised of our most distinguished public servants, the Warren Commission (headed by Chief Justice Earl Warren) concluded after hundreds of thousands of pages of testimony and physical evidence that a disturbed young man (Oswald) killed the president, and he acted alone.  

When issued on Sept. 24, 1964, the public overwhelmingly accepted its finding, but more than a half-century later, 60% changed their minds in favor of a conspiracy. Nor has controversy over the commission’s “sole gunman” verdict waned with the passage of time. 

At the 60th anniversary, expect a flurry of new evidence, new theories and even new witnesses to supplement the almost 1,500 books already written on the subject. Some 90% of these accounts promote conspiracy theories, most with Oswald as a “patsy” directed by deeper and sinister forces.  

Also, do not expect any bombshells from National Archives releases of the remaining 14,000 JFK-related documents. The June and August (2023) releases largely consist of previously redacted material that has little to do with the assassination, but do address CIA operations worldwide.   

The Warren report thus left behind an enduring legacy of mistrust in government. At the half-century mark, a remarkable fifth of conspiracy believers blamed “the government” (including the CIA) for JFK’s death. A large number have subsequently come to believe that government has been either involved in assorted other conspiracies – that 9/11 was a government setup, or that we lied about Iraq WMD to justify an invasion. 

No matter how far-fetched (space alien bodies, U.N. black helicopters, the CIA importing AIDS into the ghetto), each new theory attracts its followers. Chasing conspiracies is a profitable business, more so than the “Oswald did it alone” narrative. 

The Warren report played a losing game from the start against the deeply rooted belief that someone or something is in charge. Some claim that a New World Order or a “deep state” control about everything. History-changing events, like the assassination of a president, cannot be random or coincidence.   

According to this logic, the complex set of circumstances that brought Oswald to the sixth floor of the Texas Schoolbook Depository Building on Nov. 22, 1963, had to be planned and executed by powerful clandestine forces. “Little men” like Oswald do not make history by themselves, but they could sit unnoticed in the back row.   

The conspiracy gate opened almost instantaneously after the assassination. There were more than enough opportunists and potential suspects to go around, including the USSR, Cuba, the Mafia, Dallas right-wingers, the CIA and oil interests. One theory, which may have originated in the Kremlin, has my father, Pete, shifting the blame to Oswald by deliberately mistranslating Marina. I have been credited with some 50 clandestine meetings with the future assassin, I guess, to plot some nefarious deed of which I remain ignorant. 

As a regular visitor to the Oswald’s Mercedes Street duplex, I accumulated first-hand observations of this recently married couple, their baby June sleeping in an open suitcase, wife Marina opening the door for me with a black eye, husband Lee resisting his wife learning English or her getting to know other Russians, his anger when challenged on his Marxist beliefs in our house, and his verbally abusing Marina in a frightening temper fit. 

I, as an intermediary to the Dallas Russian community, must have earned Lee’s resentment as Russian Samaritans penetrated the isolation Lee imposed on Marina. Later I was unwittingly to write a letter to Marina that exposed the very weaknesses that Lee wanted covered. Although the couple saved just about every letter they received, my offending letter has disappeared. 

The JFK mystery will never be solved. Any immediate conspirators are dead or have kept silent into their 90s. If there were indeed a conspiracy, it is remarkable that the silence of conspirators (and their children and grandchildren) remains unbroken over six decades. 

Yes, there is an abundance of discrepancies and contradictions to provide fodder for the conspiracists; among them, an alleged shot from the grassy knoll, Oswald’s presumed deficient Marine training in sharpshooting, his meeting with a KGB agent in Mexico City, and a flawed presidential autopsy. 

Some sensational and near-comedic explanations have become grist for the conspiracy mill, such as Oswald was not Oswald but had been replaced by a KGB doppelganger. (It cost that conspiracist a considerable amount to pay for the exhumation only to prove himself wrong.) 

Despite the intensity of feelings on both sides, we seem to have one consensus: Oswald was the shooter from the sixth-floor window, thus leaving two options. Either Oswald was a patsy in a very complex plot devised by mysterious puppet masters, or the “little man” Oswald alone planned and executed the murder of the world’s most closely guarded man.

When reduced to this binary choice, the conspiracy crowd appear to have the upper hand: Is not a delusional and dyslexic high school dropout, working for the minimum wage, ill qualified to murder a president single-handedly? 

My own answer is that we have grossly underestimated Oswald. He was, in fact, a ticking time bomb perfectly capable of planning and executing the JFK murder.  

As Norman Mailer wrote in his “Oswald’s Tale: An American Mystery,” it is not forensics, autopsies, trajectories or missing bullets but Lee Harvey Oswald himself who holds the key to the assassination. We must look to him to decide whether he had the means, motive, intellect and general wherewithal to carry out the assassination alone. 

My answer to all is yes. 

My own contribution to the mix rests upon my knowing Lee and Marina as well as any of the few “friends” they accumulated over their one and half years in the Fort Worth-Dallas area. I first met them upon their return to Fort Worth in June 1962. I was frequently in their home receiving Russian tutoring from Marina. I organized the dinner that introduced the couple to the “Dallas Russians.”

My last meeting with them was at our house on Thanksgiving Day 1962. One year later, I sat in a car headed to an interrogation as a “known associate” of Lee Harvey Oswald. Mine was not the Gregory family’s only personal connection to the tragedy. My father, Pete, translated for Marina throughout the first five days after the assassination as the Secret Service tried to rule out a conspiracy. It was he who told Marina that Lee was dead.  

These qualifications give me the standing to opine on whether Oswald had the means, intellect and motive to shoot JFK, and he did so alone.

Oswald was indeed a perfect “low tech assassin.” His assassination equipment consisted of a $19.95 mail order rifle and a pistol. His transportation to and from the assassination site – a bummed ride and a city bus. He began work at the future assassination site a month and a half before, by chance, at a building that no one then knew would fall on the motorcade route. 

Nor was Oswald a stranger to assassinations. After weeks of plotting, he narrowly missed the right-wing leader, Gen. Edwin Walker, with a shot from the assassination weapon, as Walker worked in his study. For the Walker operation, no one doubts  that Oswald acted alone. The attempt on Walker confirms Oswald’s “soul of a killer,” to borrow from Mailer.

Our gross underestimation of Oswald explains our reluctance to accept the “little man” explanation of the JFK assassination. The Oswald I knew was persistent, scheming and manipulative. He was a convincing liar, a careful planner who forced the hand of the USSR Politburo with a staged suicide. He persuaded the U.S. Embassy in Moscow to return his passport, he wheedled financial help from his despised mother when convenient for him. 

He returned to Texas with wife Marina on money borrowed from the U.S. embassy. He deliberately polished his pro-Castro credentials with his Free Cuba lobbying in New Orleans, paid for remarkably from his own pocket. Despite being unable to spell and punctuate, he carried on a correspondence with leaders of the American Communist Party and with Cuban sympathizers.  

As to means and motive, Oswald had been taught since childhood by a deranged mother that he was special. He was destined for greatness, were it not for the powerful forces aligned against him. Although an avowed communist, he resisted being identified as “working class.” He had a grudge, and he was going to show the world that he belonged in history books. Wife Marina’s publicly belittling her husband’s weird ideas and his bedroom performance made matters worse. 

As to means, Oswald’s work life consisted of $1.25 jobs, living at the YMCA as Marina camped out with Russian female friends. He had money for a bus ticket to Mexico City and for the assassination rifle. He had an ideological reason for killing Walker, but JFK simply fell in his lap via the string of events that conspiracists cannot believe were random and coincidental.  

On Nov. 23, 1963, early morning, as I was being driven to the Oklahoma City Secret Service office, I did not hesitate to accept the fact that Oswald had killed the president. I stated that Lee would be the last person to either join or lead a conspiracy. Lee was definitely not a joiner. Nor was he an organizer. His New Orleans pro-Cuba efforts brought in one recruit: namely, A.J. Hidell, his alias. (Oswald was not lacking in imagination and chutzpah.) 

Oswald’s trip to Mexico City from Sept. 26 to Oct. 2, captures the immense divide between the conspiracists and the lone gunman crowd. According to the former, Oswald traveled (via bus) to get his assassination marching orders from the Soviet or Cuban embassies in Mexico City. A CIA wiretap caught him calling a Soviet embassy official, later identified as KGB. He met a Mexican national working in the Cuban embassy, who introduced him to several friends at a party. According to various conspiracy theories, Oswald left Mexico City with his assassination orders from one or more of these sources.  

Mexico City is crucial for most conspiracy theories. It was there, supposedly, that his Cuban and USSR puppet masters unleashed their assassin. But the Oswald I knew went to Mexico City not for marching orders but to pave the way for a new life in Cuba. Surely Fidel would welcome his faithful servant. 

The nomadic Oswald had already concluded that Texas was not for him. Time to move on, but for that he needed both a USSR and a Cuban (transit) visa. To avoid a half-year wait, he went to the nearest city that hosted both embassies – Mexico City. He went to bluff his way through (his USSR visa was in the mail, he would claim.) There he was rebuffed by both embassies  and frustrated to the point of a verbal battle with the Cuban embassy. 

Upon his return to Dallas, Oswald took the job at the Texas Book Depository on Oct. 15 (FBI officials got orders only about a month later to prepare for a presidential visit). On Nov. 12, Oswald visited the Dallas FBI threatening to blow up the building if they did not stop harassing Marina. Such a “loose cannon” move certainly was odd for someone with secret orders to kill the president. The Secret Service could not forgive the FBI for not neutralizing someone as suspicious as Oswald. 

Lee Harvey Oswald returned to Dallas from Mexico frustrated and depressed. His blueprint for a new life had been frustrated. No pampered life in Cuba, but another $1.25 job, a marriage falling apart, and an FBI breathing down his neck. 

In typical form, the persistent Oswald bounced back. He ordered Marina to update her USSR visa application. They would still go to live in Cuba. He even briefly contemplated hijacking a plane to Havana. 

And then he learns that the president was coming to town. He already had his assassination kit ready. At work, he learns that the motorcade will pass by his building. His path to immortality is set. 

If he had reservations, it would be that Marina so admired JFK and Jackie. His killing the president would devastate her, but immortality’s siren song drowned out any qualms. 

Paul Gregory is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and author of “The Oswalds: An Untold Account of Marina and Lee.”

https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/jfk-assassination-60-years-later-we-know-truth-about-real-killer

The Mob Museum, November 22, 2021

Assassination expert says Cubans encouraged Oswald to kill JFK

Evidence suggests President Johnson covered up Cuba link to avoid World War III

Published: November 22nd, 2021

Last Updated On: December 29th, 2021

By 1964, two brothers secretly working for the FBI had been informing on the Communist Party for 10 years. One brother, Morris Childs, had risen to the position of official courier of funds from Moscow to the Communist Party of the USA. They were so highly regarded in the party that they often interacted with leaders of Communist nations. That June of 1964, they met with an unwitting Cuban leader Fidel Castro in Communist-run Cuba, seven months after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas on November 22, 1963.

The brothers listened to Castro tell them about a trip by Kennedy’s accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, to the Cuban embassy in Mexico City in September 1963. During the visit, Oswald sought a visa to immigrate to Cuba, but grew desperate when he could not get one right away.

“These were two of the best sources in the history of the FBI,” said Gus Russo, author and one of the world’s foremost experts on the JFK assassination. “I interviewed their case officer, Ray Wannall, who said these guys never exaggerated, never made a mistake in 25 years of reporting.”

“What they reported was that Castro told them that Oswald had come into the embassy in Mexico City – and Castro said, ‘I knew about it when it happened,’ it was reported to him – and he [Oswald] offered to kill President Kennedy,” Russo said. “He said, ‘I’ll kill that bastard Kennedy,’ ostensibly for the [Cuban] revolution.”

The Childs brothers reported the conversation to the FBI. The information was given to the Warren Commission, but nothing was done about it and the written report was kept top secret until the mid-1990s, a document “that said what Castro knew about Oswald’s intention,” Russo said. It is believed to be the last Warren Commission document declassified, the bulk having been released in the 1960s.

To Russo, the Cuban connection is key to understanding Oswald’s motive for – and what led to – the Kennedy assassination, a shocking, history-altering act of terrorism that marks its 58th anniversary this week.

Oswald fired at Kennedy from the sixth-floor window of the Texas School Book Depository building where Oswald had started working several weeks before. He used a Mannlicher-style Carcano bolt-action rifle (more correctly, an Italian-made, World War II military surplus Model 91/38 Carcano with a Japanese-made 4×18 telescopic sight). He hit Kennedy twice, once in the upper right back (exiting through the throat) and fatally in the top rear of the president’s head, exiting through the upper right side of Kennedy’s skull. A third shot missed completely. As Russo explained, after the missed shot, Oswald had nine full seconds — not 5.6 seconds, as mistakenly reported for years — plenty of time to get off the two shots that struck the president.   

The Cuban connection

After decades of speculation, the release in the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s of troves of long-suppressed American, Russian and Cuban intelligence documents, and statements from former Cuban and Russian spies who defected and told their stories to the U.S., the Cuban connection emerges as the most plausible explanation for the JFK assassination.

And, no, according to Russo, despite the sale of hundreds of conspiracy books on the topic, the Mob was not involved in killing Kennedy – nor were the CIA, FBI, Dallas Police, rich right-wingers, Vice President Lyndon Johnson, et al. There was no gunfire from the “grassy knoll” of Dealey Plaza on Elm Street in Dallas, and no shooter other than Oswald. In fact, Russo said, the story of the JFK assassination stopped being about Dealey Plaza the moment of the fatal head shot. 

Russo, a member of The Mob Museum’s Advisory Council, served as co-lead reporter for the 1993 documentary Who Was Lee Harvey Oswald? for the Frontline show on PBS. He has written two books, Live by the Sword and Brothers in Arms, based on government documents and interviews, detailing efforts by John Kennedy and his brother, Attorney General Robert Kennedy, to eliminate Castro, how Oswald’s obsession with Castro led him to murder Kennedy, and how Castro and his intelligence agents knew in advance about Oswald’s intentions. Russo has been a reporter, writer or producer on 10 other major-network Kennedy shows.    

Russo was part of a 2005 German TV team researching the assassination that made trips to Mexico, Cuba and South America to speak with witnesses, among them retired former Cuban spies who reported that they had been aware of Oswald since late 1962, when the KGB forwarded his Russian sojourn file to Havana (Oswald left for the USSR in 1959 and spent more than two years in Minsk, where he interacted with both KGB and Cuban agents, who trained just blocks from his apartment).

“We also learned that Oswald made his offer out of left field in the Cuban embassy,” Russo added, “and the Cuban agents sort of huddled together later, wondering, ‘What do we do with this guy?’”

“The decision was made to encourage him” to kill Kennedy, Russo said. “[Oswald] was there for six days in Mexico City. . . . But the witnesses that we’ve uncovered say that he was meeting for lunches and dinners and going to Communist get-togethers. He was meeting with Castro’s intelligence officers, and they were encouraging him.”

“One officer told us that, ‘We offered him money, but he wasn’t interested in money. It was all ideological for him.’ So [the Cuban agents] gave him a few dollars to go to the bullfights and to walk around Mexico City. But that wasn’t his intent. He wanted to prove himself to the [Cuban] revolution. And, so [the ex-agents said], ‘We encouraged him to go ahead and try. We didn’t know if he would do it, or be lucky, but what could it hurt?’”

The Cuban spies in Mexico City knew that the Americans under President Kennedy had been trying to assassinate Castro for years, “so why not let some nut take a shot?” Russo said. “They didn’t know if it would be successful.”

However, while the Cubans encouraged Oswald to carry out his plan to kill Kennedy, that was the extent of their participation.   

“They made promises to Oswald, from what we were told, and again this has never been adjudicated, but I can tell you what they told us. Two sources in Mexico City who were with Cuban intelligence said that, ‘We promised Oswald we’d rescue him if he was successful. And we would fly him to Havana.’”

“Now, it turns out there were a lot of reports that a plane was at a private airfield in Dallas that day, and that it took off for Havana after the assassination. And one of these Cuban sources told us, ‘We weren’t going to rescue him and take him to Havana, we were going to dump him over the Gulf of Mexico. We didn’t want to have anything to do with this guy.’ Their idea was to get him and kill him, and that was going to be the end of it.”

But as Oswald walked along a Dallas street an hour after the shooting, with a police bulletin out on his general description, police officer J.D. Tippit happened along in a patrol car. When he got out to encounter the suspect, Oswald shot him dead, three shots to the body, and one point-blank to the head. Tippit, Russo said, “possibly stopped him on the way to this [Cuban] rendezvous, and that changed the whole layout of things.”

Russo makes it clear that neither Castro nor his Cuban cohorts played a part in the shooting of JFK, that Oswald acted alone on that. They, of course, did not report Oswald’s threating statements to U.S. authorities. They only lied to him about a rescue and sat back to see if he would actually do it.

Hours before the murder, the cunning Castro had instructed an intelligence officer to steer shortwave radio antennas away from surveilling U.S. transmissions from Washington, D.C., and Miami and toward Dallas, Russo said. He needed to be the first to know if this crazy guy actually pulled it off.

About 12:22 p.m., Castro listened in to the sudden, frenzied live broadcast accounts of the president’s mortal wounding in an open limousine.

“So, yes, it comes from the fact that Castro was told in real time that this nut came into the embassy, was going to do something, try something when Kennedy came to Dallas. He remembered that. ‘Oh, Kennedy’s coming to Dallas? Turn the antennas. Let’s see if it really happens. I want to hear the news when it comes out.’ And lo and behold, he heard immediately.” 

Russo advanced this Cuban connection theory based not only on interviews, but on documentary evidence from the American, Russian, Mexican and other governments, many unclassified and released since the 1990s. They continue to arrive in Russo’s mailbox: In 2020, Russo received long-suppressed pages from the Mexican government’s own investigation.

The Warren Commission, created by President Johnson to investigate the assassination, failed to seriously investigate Oswald’s doings in Mexico City with the Cubans, Russo said. The problem was, the U.S. government kept JFK’s intrigues – plots to kill Castro and attempts to destabilize Cuba with covert U.S. commando raids on the island – an official secret, even from the Warren Commission. This cover-up denied the commission the ability to follow that critical lead, Russo said. Conversely, Oswald, a Castro fanatic, did know, based on what he read for months in pro-Castro newspapers such as The Militant, and possibly from conversations with Cuban contacts.   

Those higher-ups who knew about the anti-Castro schemes – and did not want them revealed – included the President’s brother, Robert; President Johnson; and former CIA director Allen Dulles. Dulles, appointed to the Warren Commission and a close Kennedy family friend, misled commissioners so they would not closely examine Oswald’s activities with Cubans in Mexico City, Russo said.  

“So the Warren Commission was as kept in the dark as the average American,” he said. “They weren’t told. Thus they had no motive for the crime of the century.”

[ Full article ]

https://themobmuseum.org/blog/assassination-expert-says-cubans-encouraged-oswald-to-kill-jfk/

From the archives

Deutsche Welle (DW), January 5, 2006

“Castro Ordered Kennedy’s Assassination”

01/05/2006January 5, 2006

German filmmaker Wilfried Huismann spent years digging into the assassination of US President Kennedy. His documentary about Cuban leader Castro’s role in the murder is set to premiere Friday, on German public TV.

DW-WORLD: We know that Lee Harvey Oswald killed John F. Kennedy. But who ordered his assassination and why?

Wilfried Huismann: We settled the question of why in three years of research on this documentary in Mexico, USA and Cuba. Oswald had been an agent for the Cuban intelligence services since November 1962. He was a political fanatic and allowed himself to be used by the Cuban intelligence services to kill John F. Kennedy. It was a Cuban reaction to the repeated attempts of the Kennedy brothers, above all the younger Kennedy, Robert, to get rid of Fidel Castro through political assassination — a duel between the Kennedys and the Castros, which, like in a Greek tragedy, left one of the duelists dead.

DW-WORLD: One of the most important leads pointed to Mexico. Why do you think the US didn’t pursue it?

Huismann: After Kennedy’s death on Nov. 22, 1963, Lyndon B. Johnson found out that the US had a secret, illegal murder program focused on Fidel Castro. He hadn’t been informed before that. He knew that Castro knew, and he was afraid that the discovery of these mutual assassination attempts could force him to carry out an invasion of Cuba, which he believed could result in a third — nuclear — world war. And as a conservative pragmatist, he decided within a few hours, in agreement with Robert Kennedy, to drop the whole thing and to ban FBI and CIA officials from pursuing the trail leading to Cuba.

DW-WORLD: Could Castro now be prosecuted for his responsibility for Kennedy’s murder?

Huismann: In my opinion, even the conservative Bush government wouldn’t take any political or legal steps to avenge the crime. Then they’d also have to put the American politicians on trial who were involved in assassinating foreign statesmen. They include Alexander Haig, who testified as a witness in my film, and others who are still alive.

It’s history. Only people’s awareness will change, the impression they have. And it will provide an answer to the question that has very much upset many million people over the years: Why did this horrible thing happen?

“Rendezvous mit dem Tod — Warum Kennedy sterben müsste” (“Rendezvous With Death — Why Kennedy Had to Die”) will be shown on ARD on Friday at 9:45 p.m. CET.

Jose Ospina-Valencia interviewed Wilfried Huismann (ncy)

https://www.dw.com/en/castro-ordered-kennedys-assassination/a-1846726