230. Letter From the Chairman of the Cuba Study Group (Taylor) to President Kennedy 0

Dear Mr. President: By your letter of April 22, 1961,1 you charged me in association with Attorney General Robert Kennedy, Admiral Arleigh Burke and Director of Central Intelligence Allen Dulles to study our governmental practices and programs in the areas of military and paramilitary, guerrilla and anti-guerrilla activity which fell short of outright war with a view to strengthening our work in this area. You directed special attention to the lessons which can be learned from the recent events in Cuba.

On May 16, our Cuban Study Group submitted to you an interim oral report of our conclusions as of that date.2 We are now prepared to make our final report to you orally,3 supported by the following memoranda:

  • Memorandum No. 1 “Narrative of the Anti-Castro Operation Zapata”
  • Memorandum No. 2 “Immediate Causes of Failure of the Operation Zapata”
  • Memorandum No. 3 “Conclusions of the Cuban Study Group”
  • Memorandum No. 4 “Recommendations of the Cuban Study Group”4

In your letter of April 22, you invited me to submit an individual report subject to the review and comment of my associates. As we have found no difficulty in reaching a unanimous view on all essential points under consideration, we are submitting this view as a jointly agreed study.

In closing, may I express our view of the great importance of a prompt implementation of our first recommendation to establish a Strategic Resources Group supported by a Cold War Indications Center which will allow our government readily to focus its resources on the objectives which you set in the so-called Cold War. We feel that we are losing today on many fronts and that the trend can be reversed only by a whole-hearted union of effort by all Executive departments and agencies of the Government under your guidance.

Sincerely yours,

Maxwell D. Taylor
  1. Source: Kennedy Library, National Security Files, Countries Series, Cuba, Subjects, Taylor Report. Secret.
  2. See the source note, Document 169.
  3. See Documents 218 and 219.
  4. See Document 229.
  5. These four memoranda are printed as Documents 231234.