Thursday, November 25, 2010

Secret annex: "Hastening end of Castro dictatorship"

In 2006, some Cuba watchers wondered whether the classified portion of a report to President Bush contained plans for new covert actions aimed at weakening the socialist government.
The Commission for Assistance to a Free Cuba had issued the 93-page report to President Bush in July 2006, recommending stepped up efforts to hasten the transition to democracy in Cuba.
There was a lot of speculation about the report's classified annex. Wayne Smith, the former top U.S. diplomat in Havana, wrote at the time:
...the report carries an annex which it is said must remain secret for “reasons of national security” and to maximize its chances of success. We can only guess what is in the annex. Given the history of U.S.-Cuban relations, however, there will inevitably be speculation that it contains new assassination plots against Castro (although this time against Raul) and new plans for exile raids if not direct U.S. military action. There is already virtually no support in the international community for U.S. policy toward Cuba. The uncertainty and suspicion resulting from this secret annex are likely to reduce it even further.
The 93-page main document contains an unclassified version of the secret annex. While researching upcoming stories on pro-democracy programs in Cuba, I found an unclassified version of the secret report. Journalist Jeremy Bigwood obtained the 26 pages through the Freedom of Information Act.

This page evidently deals with "breaking the information blockade."

The redacted portions of the pages - an example of which is shown above - aren't scheduled to be declassified in July 2021, unless, of course, someone leaks the document.

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