305. National Intelligence Estimate1

NIE 85–65


The Problem

To estimate the Cuban situation and outlook over the next year or two.

[Page 727]


Castroʼs hold on power is firm; there is virtually no chance of his overthrow in the foreseeable future.
His regime has abandoned its ill conceived program for rapid industrialization and is concentrating on what Cuba can produce most readily—sugar. The economy is making some progress, though not enough to advance living conditions much during the next few years.
Recognizing that he has no alternative to further large-scale aid from the Soviet Union, Castro has moved politically closer to the Soviets and has cooled toward the Chinese Communists.
He no longer views all Latin America as on the brink of revolution, and will concentrate his clandestine support where revolutionaries are already active—in particular, Venezuela, Guatemala, Colombia, and Peru.
Both the Soviets and the Cubans will probably exercise caution to avoid any direct confrontation with the US in Latin America; thus Castro is not likely to use his SAMs to shoot down a U–2.

[Omitted here is the Discussion section of the estimate.]

  1. Source: Central Intelligence Agency, NIC Files, Job 79–R01012A, NIEs and SNIEs. Secret; Controlled Dissem. According to a note on the cover sheet this estimate was prepared in the Central Intelligence Agency with the participation of the intelligence organizations of the Departments of State and Defense and the National Security Agency. The United States Intelligence Board concurred in this estimate on August 19.