290. Memorandum from Harvey to Carter, August 141

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  • Operation MONGOOSE

1. Action. None. This memorandum is for your information.

2. Reference is made to our conversation on 13 August 1962, concerning the memorandum of that date from General Lansdale. Attached is a copy of this memorandum, excised from which are four words in the second line of the penultimate paragraph on page 1. These four words were “including liquidation of leaders.”

3. The question of assassination, particularly of Fidel Castro, was brought up by Secretary McNamara at the meeting of the Special Group (Augmented) in Secretary Rusk’s office on 10 August. It was the obvious consensus at that meeting, in answer to a comment by Mr. Ed Murrow, that this is not a subject which has been made a matter of official record. I took careful notes on the comments at this meeting on this point, and the Special Group (Augmented) is not expecting any written comments or study on this point.

4. Upon receipt of the attached memorandum, I called Lansdale’s office and, in his absence, pointed out to Frank Hand the inadmissibility and stupidity of putting this type of comment in writing in such a document. I advised Frank Hand that, as far as CIA was concerned, we would write no document pertaining to this and would participate in no open meeting discussing it. I strongly urged Hand to recommend to Lansdale that he excise the phrase in question from all copies of this memorandum, including those disseminated to State, Defense, and USIA. Shortly thereafter, Lansdale called back and left the message that he agreed and that he had done so.

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5. For your information also, in your absence and since the attached memorandum already had been distributed and in view of the possibility that this might come to the Director’s attention, I informally briefed Walt Elder on the above.

William K. Harvey
Chief, Task Force W


Memo fr Gen Lansdale dtd 13 Aug 62

  1. Operation Mongoose—assassination of Fidel Castro. Secret. 2 pp. CIA, DCI (McCone) Files: Job 91–00741R, Box 1, Mongoose Papers.