170. Telegram From the Embassy in Cuba to the Department of State1

584. Source which has furnished reliable information in past told First Secretary Topping December 4 that 26 July Movement now has executive committee consisting of Fidel Castro, Manuel Antonio Fay Rivero (cover name Campa), Dr. Faustino Perez, Aldo Santamaria, and Marcelo Fernandez (cover name Eloy). Fernandez said to be head of Frente Obrero Nacional, and entire name may possibly be pseudonym.

Source added foregoing committee has decided to legalize communism in Cuba when revolution successful. Said two principal arguments justifying action were (1) communism easier to control when operating openly and (2) Communist Party legal in US.

Source has been closely identified with conspiratorial and revolutionary activities for past 3 years, and is member Agrupacion Montecristi. He has repeatedly spoken of need to control 26 July Movement, and of danger to Cuba and US if Movement becomes dominant force in Cuban political life. His information may be biased, and possibly inaccurate. But he is believed sincere, and fully aware of importance which GUS would attach to the information.

Embassy [less than 1 line not declassified] endeavoring to check accuracy of report, and Consulate Santiago requested do likewise.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 737.00/12–558. Confidential; Priority. Ambassador Smith had left Havana on December 4 to return to Washington for consultations. (Telegram 578 from Havana, December 4; ibid., Central Files, PER)