Tag Archive for William Attwood

8) Nov. 5, 1963: JFK considers secret talks with Castro

Fidel Castro

Was JFK going to make peace with Cuba?

On November 5, 1963, President Kennedy was exploring the idea. You can hear JFK talking about it with aides on this White House tape recording. (The substantive conversation starts at :25 in the recording.)

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William Attwood: ‘If the CIA did find out what we were doing…’

“If the CIA did find out what we were doing [talks toward normalizing relations with Cuba], this would have trickled down to the lower echelon of activists, and Cuban exiles, and the more gung-ho CIA people who had been involved since the Bay of Pigs…. Read more

More missing JFK records: the vanishing Church Committee files

Frank Church

Sen. Frank Church

Rex Bradford has illuminates another batch of still-secret JFK records: the files of the Senate committee that conducted the most comprehensive review of U.S. intelligence operations ever.

If you want to understand, the ongoing JFK coverup, you will want to read Bradford’s deep dive on the Missing Church Committee transcripts. It is a useful antidote to the comforting illusion that “the government can’t keep a secret.”

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Did JFK have a vendetta against Castro?

A reader writes:
“From what I remember of the James Douglass book, JFK and the Unspeakable, JFK was a champion of F. That was a threat to institutions like the CIA. The CIA took his convictions so seriously they had to assassinate him. But…

Like Obama, JFK wanted to make peace with Cuba

Fifty one years before President Obama normalized diplomatic relations with Cuba, President John F. Kennedy was thinking of doing the same. To start the negotiations, Obama sent one of his aides, Ben Rhodes, to talk to the Cuban government.

Likewise in the fall of 1963, JFK authorized a U.S.diplomat, Bill Attwood, to make contact with Cuban representatives to discuss the outlines of an agreement between the two countries.

In a new document collection, Cuba – United States Secret Diplomacy Documents (1961-1977), published by Paperless Archives, you can follow how JFK’s pursuit of peace with Cuba, right up to the moment he was assassinated.

After JFK was dead, LBJ had no interest and the initiative died. It would take a half century before JFK’s goal was achieved.

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JFK balked at Castro peace feelers, historian says

Historian David Kaiser

Historian David Kaiser

Diplomatic historian David Kaiser, the author of a new and well-reviewed book about World War II, took time out from flogging it to respond to John Simkin’s post on JFK’s Cuba policy, CIA looped in on Castro peace feelers.

Kaiser, author of The Road to Dallas, says the argument that JFK was a dove on Cuba is overdrawn. He dismisses the idea that Kennedy’s evolving Cuba policy fatally alienated the CIA.

CIA was in the loop for Castro peace feelers

Lisa Howard, ABC News

Lisa Howard, ABC News reporter

In response to Two secret memos on JFK and Cuba, John Simkin, the British historian wrote the following essay that gives valuable context to this neglected story.

Simkin writes:

“The secret negotiations that took place between the JFK administration and the Cuban government could be significant issue in the JFK assassination.

“A key figure in this was Lisa Howard.

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