May 15, 2006

A Feather from his Pillow

In the weeks prior to the invasion at Bay of Pigs in April 1961, New York Times reporters Tad Szulc and James Reston wrote a number of editorials and articles warning of and opposing the impending invasion.

On April 7 Tad Szulc mentioned anti-Castro military camps in Guatemala early on in his article, and revealed everything except the minor details.

In his article of April 11, Reston invokes not just common sense, but the OAS articles to which the U.S. was legally bound. He further explores moral reasons in support and opposition to an invasion of Cuba.

On April 15, shortly after the first wave of air raids, the job of delivering the official CIA cover story falls to reporter Tad Szulc.

Secretary of State Dean Rusk is quoted Reston’s article on April 17: “The issue in Cuba is not between Cuba and the United States but between the Castro dictatorship and the Cuban people.” He added, “What happens in Cuba is for the Cuban people to decide.”

On April 20 Reston reported on the state of mind at Kennedy’s White House following the Cuban victory.

“The whole system of intelligence analysis within the Government must be speedily reviewed,” wrote Reston. “The question naturally arises how it could be that this apparatus, with all its access to Cuba and to friendly nations within the hemisphere, could be so sure that the Cubans would revolt, and be so wrong on the critical point of judgment.”

Kennedy never publicly blamed anyone for the failure at Bay of Pigs, but every major CIA official involved eventually got fired.



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