240. 11/15/1961

“Through the summer of 1961, the CIA headed an interagency group which drew up a new plan for attacking Cuba. [President John F.] Kennedy signed off on this in November, 1961. It was known as Operation Mongoose. The man who was assigned to run this program was General Edward Lansdale, a legendary figure within the CIA for his work in the Philippines and later on in Vietnam…So the principal figures who worked with the Agency were the head of the Mafia in Chicago, Sam Giancana, and his principal lieutenant, Johnny Roselli, together with Santos Trafficante again in Florida. The Agency gave poison pills to Johnny Roselli, who in turn gave them to Tony de Varona, who was the CIA’s man running the Democratic Revolutionary Front. The plan was to assassinate Fidel [Castro] with this poison on the eve of the Bay of Pigs invasion. Of course we know it didn’t happen. De Varona, by the way, passed the pills to someone in Cuba who had access to a restaurant where Fidel and Raul and Che frequently ate. Those were the three perennial candidates for CIA assassination plots.”

Philip Agee, “A Century of War and Bad Faith; Cuba History, and the CIA,” Prevailing Winds Magazine, March 9, 1994, Pages 29-30

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