Castro’s Secrets: The CIA and Cuba’s Intelligence Machine

by msecadm4921

Author: Brian Latell


Review date: 12/07/2024

No of pages: 288

Publisher: Palgrave

Publisher URL:

Year of publication: 11/09/2012


More than a dozen ranking Cuban secret agents embraced by the CIA and FBI speak in these pages exposing long buried secrets of Fidel’s nearly 50 year reign for the first time, including details of numerous actual and attempted assassinations carried out on Castro's orders, some against foreign leaders. Latell also probes dispassionately into the CIA's most deplorable plots against Cuba - including previously obscure schemes to assassinate Castro - and presents shocking new conclusions about what Fidel actually knew of Lee Harvey Oswald prior to the assassination of John F Kennedy.

In the era of al-Qaeda and cyber-crime Castro might sound old-fashioned. In a new and surprising look at Fidel Castro. Latell draws his narrative on personal interviews with high level defectors from Cuba’s intelligence, many of whom have not spoken out for over nearly five decades. The result is a vivid and revelatory account that revises our understanding of how Fidel operated, what his goals were, and how he imagined the future for his tiny island nation.Latell takes us from from the crimes Fidel allegedly committed as a youth in the anti-Battista movement, to how quickly he built up an intelligence system that it is claimed rivalled the Soviet Union’s KGB and Britain’s M15 in effectiveness, and how that translated into a feud with JFK’s administration and the CIA, and the ultimate confrontation during the Cuban Missile Crisis that brought the world to the brink of a nuclear war.
Latell began tracking Cuba for the CIA in the early 1960s. Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies at the University of Miami, he previously taught Cuba and Latin America as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University. A former National Intelligence Officer for Latin America and Director of the CIA’s Center for the Study of Intelligence, he has written for the Washington Post, Miami Herald, Wall Street Journal, Time, and many other American and international publications. His previous book After Fidel has been published in eight languages.


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