The American Fugitives of Havana 2

Assata Shakur - the former Joanne Chesimard.

Assata Shakur – the former Joanne Chesimard.

By Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker

When a cold war winds down, what happens to its spies and traitors? The British double agents Kim Philby, Guy Burgess, and Donald Maclean were able to see out their days in Moscow while it was still ruled by Communists, without fears that their hosts might betray them and send them back to an unforgiving Great Britain.

Other scenarios, such as that of the United States and Cuba, are more complicated. On December 17, 2014, the same day that the United States and Cuba announced the restoration of diplomatic relations, an exchange of long-imprisoned spies and double agents also took place. Three Cuban sleeper agents who had been imprisoned in the U.S. since 1998 were released from U.S. federal prisons and flown home. Simultaneously, Rolando Sarraff Trujillo, a C.I.A. double agent who had been held in a Cuban prison since 1995, was flown to the U.S., as was Alan Gross, a State Department contractor who was arrested in 2009 for smuggling Internet equipment onto the island for dissident groups.

But the fates of many fugitive citizens who were given refuge in the United States or Cuba remain in limbo. Among them are people sought back home for crimes including murder, kidnapping, bank robbery, and terrorism. Curious about such people, I recently asked an American official what prevented the U.S. government from arresting, and possibly extraditing, Luis Posada Carriles, an eighty-eight-year-old Cuban exile living in Florida, on terrorism charges.

Posada, a former C.I.A. operative who spent most of the past half century involved in efforts to violently destabilize the Castro government, has been on the top of Cuba’s most-wanted list for decades. I ticked off the long list of his alleged crimes—most notably, the bombing of Cubana de Aviación Flight 455, in 1976, which killed all seventy-three passengers onboard, and a number of bombings and assassination attempts across the Western Hemisphere. As recently as 1997, Posada admitted to planning the bombing of a Havana hotel, which killed an Italian tourist.

The official listened calmly, nodding his head as I spoke. Eventually, he told me, “The complication is that Cuba is also harboring people that the United States would like to see face justice back home.” He mentioned Joanne Chesimard, who goes by the name Assata Shakur, the aunt of the late rapper Tupac Shakur and a former member of the Black Liberation Army, a short-lived offshoot of the Black Panther Party that was devoted to armed struggle.

Shakur, a native New Yorker, has been living in Cuba since 1984. She arrived there after several years on the lam, following her escape from a prison in New Jersey, where she was serving a life sentence for the 1973 murder of a U.S. state trooper. (She was also tried for but not convicted of crimes including bank robbery, kidnapping, and other murders.) Shakur was granted political asylum in Cuba, where she was given a job and a home. She is now sixty-nine, remains on the F.B.I.’s Most Wanted list, and is the undisputed doyenne of the estimated seventy-odd American fugitives living in Cuba. Her 1987 memoir, “Assata: An Autobiography,” whose cover features a photograph of her looking over her shoulder at the camera, can be found in many of Havana’s state-run bookstores, alongside books about Che Guevara and Fidel Castro.

Most of the American fugitives in Cuba are radicals of Shakur’s era. Charlie Hill, who is in his mid-sixties, was a member of a militant group called the Republic of New Afrika, which sought to create an independent black nation in the American South. Hill was accused, with two comrades, of killing a policeman in New Mexico in 1971. Several weeks later, the three men hijacked a passenger plane to Cuba, where they were granted asylum. Both of Hill’s comrades have died, but he remains in Havana. And there is the Columbia University graduate Cheri Dalton, who goes by Nehanda Abiodun, also a veteran of the Republic of New Afrika. Abiodun is sought for her involvement in the armed robbery of a Brink’s armored truck in New York in 1981, in which two policemen and a security guard were killed. She is also thought to have helped Shakur break out of prison. Abiodun, who either fled to Cuba with Shakur or followed shortly after, has reinvented herself there as a mentor to rap artists.

Feature continues here: Cuban Safe Haven

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U.S. Rules Out Swap of Jailed Cuban Spy Ana Belen Montes 3

Mugshot_of_DIA_s_Ana_5_1_IH64TF61_L166332774By NORA GÁMEZ TORRES, ngameztorres@elnuevoherald.com

The Obama administration “has no intention” of releasing or swapping jailed Cuban spy Ana Belen Montes, according to a letter sent by the U.S. Department of State to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

The Aug. 19 letter, obtained by el Nuevo Herald, followed a number of news reports pointing to the possibility of freeing Montes — a top Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) analyst on Cuban affairs who is serving a 25-year prison sentence — in exchange for Cuba handing over American fugitive Assata Shakur, formerly known as Joanne Chesimard.

The letter, addressed to committee chairman U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., says the State Department “want(s) to assure you that the United States government has no intention of releasing or exchanging Montes.”

Nunes had written to Obama on July 12 urging the president not to release or swap Montes, calling her “one of the most brazen traitors in U.S. history.” The State Department wrote that it was “responding on the president’s behalf.”

Montes, one of the top foreign spies captured in recent years, authored some of the key U.S. intelligence assessments on Cuba. She was arrested in 2001 and was sentenced in 2002 after she pleaded guilty to spying for Cuba throughout her 16 years at the DIA.

Montes was — and remains — unrepentant. She betrayed the public trust, the security of the United States and her oath to support and defend the constitution while remaining loyal to the Castro brothers in Havana,” Nunes wrote. “Ana Belen Montes richly deserved her 25-year prison sentence, and must serve every day of it.”

“She betrayed the public trust, the security of the United States and her oath to support and defend the constitution while remaining loyal to the Castro brothers in Havana” — U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif.

Montes, who is of Puerto Rican descent, declared in a 2015 interview with the blog Cayo Hueso, which supports the Cuban government, that she has not changed. “I will not be silenced. My commitment to the island cannot be ignored,” she was quoted as saying.

Nunes’ letter noted that because of her senior post at DIA, Montes has compromised every single U.S. intelligence collection program that targeted Cuba, revealed the identity of four covert U.S. intelligence agents who traveled to Cuba and provided Havana with information that could have wound up in the hands of other U.S. enemies.

“In short, Montes was one of the most damaging spies in the annals of American intelligence,” the committee chairman wrote.

Article continues here:  No Deal For Montes

 

Is Clinton responsible for NJ cop-killer’s Chesimard’s freedom? The facts and history Reply

By Louis C. Hochman, New Jersey 101.5

Above: Joanne Chesimard was added to the FBI’s Most Wanted List in 2013.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie took the stage at the Republican National Convention Tuesday prepared to attack.

He presented a seething indictment of former Secretary of State and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton — holding her to account for everything from Boko Haram’s abduction of more than 200 girls to the bloody civil war in Syria that’s cost more then 400,000 lives.

Fact-checkers have been giving the allegations a mixed rating — the consensus is most of Christie’s statements had at least some truth, but some were missing important context.

For instance: Clinton’s State Department did hold off on naming Boko Haram a terrorist organization, but as part of a strategy it hoped would more successfully curb the group’s activities without lending it credibility in the region, and while putting many of its leaders on terror lists. The State Department eventually named Boko Haram a terrorist organization in late 2013, several months after Clinton’s tenure as secretary ended.

But perhaps the most striking allegation for New Jersey residents — that Clinton, in effect, “rewarded” the convicted murderer of a New Jersey State Trooper with safety in Cuba.

Read More: Is Clinton responsible for NJ cop-killer’s Chesimard’s freedom? The facts and history

Will Obama Trade Deadly Spy Ana Montes (Who Aided in the Deaths of at Least 65 Solders) For Cop Killer Assata Shakur? 7

Assata Shakur - the former Joanne Chesimard.

Assata Shakur – the former Joanne Chesimard.

US and Cuba in talks to bring cop-killer back to America

By Joe Tacopino

US and Cuban officials are reportedly discussing an exchange that could bring New Jersey cop killer Joanne Chesimard back to American soil.

The talks between the two countries, which have normalized diplomatic relations, could also send notorious Cuban spy Ana Montes back to the Caribbean nation, according to NBC.

“Cuba has been a haven for US fugitives,” a federal law-enforcement official told NBC.

Chesimard, a former Black Panther and an aunt of hip hop legend Tupac Shakur, escaped prison in 1979 after she was convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper. She has been hiding out in Havana since the mid-1980s.

Chesimard, also known as Assata Shakur, is the only woman on the FBI’s list of most-wanted terrorists.

Montes had been a senior analyst for Cuban affairs with the Defense Intelligence Agency.

On Sept. 21, 2001, Montes was arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit espionage for Cuba.

She was sentenced to 25 years in prison and is scheduled to be sprung in 2023.

Editor’s Note:  Cuban-Supported FMLN guerrillas killed 65 soldiers, including American “Green Beret” Gregory A. Fronius, in a single three-hour battle. The surprise attack on the El Paraiso camp occurred on April 1, 1987 – shortly after Castro spy Ana Montes visited the camp as part of a five-week familiarization visit to the (then) war-torn nation. Montes then shared numerous U.S. secrets with her handler – to include the precise time to attack — on a date she knew 75% of El Paraiso’s garrison would be away conducting counter-insurgency operations.

Chris Christie Wants Cuba Flights Blocked Over Havana’s Sheltering of American Terrorist Reply

rewardChristie urges Port Authority to reject Newark-Cuba flights over cop-killer case

By Geoff Earle, New York Post

WASHINGTON – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is urging the Port Authority not to reopen direct flights between Newark and Havana because of Cuba’s continued harboring of convicted cop killer Joanne Chesimard.

“It is unacceptable to me to me as governor to have any flights between New Jersey and Cuba until and unless convicted cop killer and escaped fugitive Joanne Chesimard is returned to New Jersey to face justice,” Christie wrote in a letter to PA chief John Degnan obtained by The Post.

“I will not tolerate rewarding the Cuban government for continuing to harbor a fugitive,” he added.

Chesimard was convicted in 1977 of the brutal murder of New Jersey state trooper Werner Foerster in 1973 during a shootout on the New Jersey Turnpike.

Officer James Harper was wounded in the melee.

Chesimard, also known as Assata Shakur, busted out of a New Jersey prison in 1979 and fled in 1984 to Cuba, where she was granted asylum. She was serving a life sentence, and escaped with armed accomplices.

Her continued sanctuary inside Cuba became an issue immediately after word broke of the new thaw in relations between Cuba and the US.

“We believe that the strong US interest in the return of these fugitives will be best served by entering into this dialogue with Cuba,” President Obama said this spring.

Feature continues here: Christie Pushes Back Against Cuba’s Continued Sheltering of American Terrorist

 

 

N.J. Lawmakers Urge No Funding for Cuban Relations Until Chesimard is Returned to U.S. 2

Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba. (Photo: Associated Press)

Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba. (Photo: Associated Press)

By Jonathan D. Salant | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com, The Star-Ledger

WASHINGTON — Congress should not approve any money for restoring diplomatic relations with Cuba until convicted cop-killer Joanne Chesimard is returned to the U.S., three New Jersey Republican federal lawmakers said today.

U.S. Reps. Scott Garrett (R-5th Dist.), Leonard Lance (R-7th Dist.) and Tom MacArthur (R-3rd Dist.) made the request in a letter today to fellow Republican Rep. Kay Granger of Texas, who chairs the House Appropriations subcommittee that approves spending on foreign operations, and the panel’s ranking member, Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.).

“Any attempt by the Obama administration to normalize relations with Cuba must include the extradition of Joanne Chesimard back to New Jersey so that she can face justice and serve out her sentence,” the lawmakers wrote. “Until Cuba accepts this condition, we request all funds directed toward normalization be withheld.

Today’s letter is the latest attempt by the New Jersey congressional delegation to make Chesimard’s return a condition of resuming diplomatic relations with Cuba. U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.).told Secretary of State John Kerry in a letter last month that Chesimard and other fugitives must be extradited before Cuba is removed from a list of state sponsors of terrorism.

In January, members of the state’s congressional delegation called on President Obama to make Chesimard’s extradition “an immediate priority,”

Chesimard escaped prison and fled to Cuba after being sentenced to life imprisonment for the 1973 murder of Trooper Werner Foerster during a gunfight. Chesimard and other members of the Black Liberation Army had been stopped by State Police on the New Jersey Turnpike. In 2013, she became the first woman on the FBI’s list of most wanted terrorists.

The calls for Chesimard’s extradition have grown louder since Obama in December announced a “new approach” to Cuba, which has been under a U.S. embargo for a half-century, and said he would easing economic restrictions and move toward re-establishing diplomatic relations with the communist regime.

Article continues here:  NJ Lawmakers

 

Berkeley Students Seek Honors For US Terrorist Harbored By Cuba Reply

Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba. (Photo: Associated Press)

Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba. (Photo: Associated Press)

Berkeley Radicals Want to Honor Cop-Killing Communist

by Matthew Vadum, FrontPage (magazine)

Disgruntled black students at the University of California at Berkeley are demanding a campus building be named after convicted cop-killing terrorist and fugitive from justice, Assata Shakur.

The reason for the demand? In the stated opinion of the school’s Black Student Union, blacks are disrespected on campus. BSU member Cori McGowens told reporters that “trying to excel academically is immensely difficult while coping with the issue of antiblackness on campus.”

“It troubles me that I have already been told countless times that antiblackness is not an issue to discuss within the context of the American political system,” said McGowens, a political science major. “My professors and graduate-student instructors have told me that I shouldn’t bring up the politics of race and the reality of my black experience.”

That politically correct, ultra-leftist UC Berkeley would be infected by “antiblackness” or that teachers there would tell any student of color to shut up about race is nearly impossible to believe. Viewing America through the Marxist lens of race, sex, and class, is all that today’s predominantly leftist academics spend their time doing. Professors can’t stop talking about race or any of the picayune peeves about which the Left constantly obsesses.

But the Black Student Union maintains that somehow black students on that campus are victims of oppression and feel isolated. To remedy these perceived problems the group delivered a set of 10 demands to Chancellor Nick Dirks. One of the demands is to rename Barrows Hall, home to Ethnic Studies, Women’s Studies, and African American Studies, to honor communist murderer Shakur.

Dirks sent out a letter pandering to the students.

“Too many students have told us about being excluded from study groups, ignored during class discussions, verbally harassed at parties and social events, and feeling, in a general sense, vulnerable, isolated, and invisible,” he wrote. “This is something we deplore.”

He added that Berkeley’s black students “feel the least respected of any group on campus” according to a survey taken last year.

According to a San Francisco Chronicle article that actually takes the students’ bratty-sounding complaints seriously…

Feature continues here:  Students Seek Honors For Terrorist

Five of the Most (In)famous U.S. Fugitives in Cuba 6

Puerto Rican terrorist Guillermo Morales remains safe in Havana

Puerto Rican terrorist Guillermo Morales remains safe in Havana

As relations with Cuba normalize, here’s a look at the most well-known fugitives in the island nation — past and present

By Tina Griego, Washington Post

Assata Shakur may be the most-high profile American fugitive living in Cuba, as well as the most controversial. Extradite her, U.S. authorities demand of Cuba. Pardon her, demand her supporters in the United States.

But what of the other 70 or so American fugitives believed to be living on the island nation? They’re not easy to track, says Teishan Latner, a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for the United States and the Cold War.  “And among those who are known, they are hard to generalize. Some are seen as criminals. Some are mentally ill. Some fled from genuine political persecution.” The lines between the groups blur.

Take, for example, the hijackers. To live in the United States in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Latner says, was to have lived in the heyday of airline hijacking to Cuba. It was so common that one publication carried a photo of a flight attendant with the caption, “Coffee, tea or — Castro?”

Between 1968 and 1973, there were 90 attempts to reach Cuba from the United States by commercial plane or, in a few cases, private aircraft, he writes in a forthcoming article for the journal Diplomatic History. Most of the hijackers were from the United States, “making American citizens or residents the world’s most frequent hijackers.”

Latner traveled to Cuba several times to interview those wanted by U.S. authorities. The life they live depends on whether the Cuban government saw them primarily as victims of political persecution in the United States – or as common criminals.

Those viewed as criminals received a welcome party that led straight to prison and eventually into a kind of halfway house, where they could be watched while they transitioned in or out of Cuban life. For many, the reality of a communist society could not survive the idealized version.

But, Latner says, those whom Cuba welcomed as political refugees were put in apartments, given stipends and ration books and supported as they found work.

I asked Latner whom he would place on the list alongside Shakur as the most-high profile American fugitives – past and present. He said it would be hard to narrow down, but these five are among the most well-known.

Nehanda Abiodun. She’s been living in Cuba since 1990. U.S. law enforcement believes she helped Shakur, who was convicted in the killing of a New Jersey state trooper, to escape from prison in 1979. Abiodun is often called the “godmother” of Cuban hip-hop, Latner says, She became an adviser for Cuban youth who were becoming hip-hop artists. She has served as a bridge between Afro-Cuban and American hip-hop artists.

Feature Continues here:  The Top 5 US Fugitives Protected by Castro Regime

 

 

Shakur, Snowden, and the State Department: Is Cuba a State Sponsor of Terrorism? 1

By Rebecca Lullo and Phineas Rueckert, Research Associates at the Council on Hemispheric Affairs

On May 30, the State Department submitted its annual report on terrorism (“Country Reports on Terrorism 2012”) to Congress, notably maintaining Cuba on the list of state sponsors of terrorism along with Iran, Sudan, and Syria. Cuba was designated as a state sponsor of terrorism on March 1, 1982. It has remained ever since on the list of states that Washington accuses of repeatedly providing support for international acts of terrorism. The justification for Cuba’s presence on the list—that it is providing a safe haven for wanted fugitives and particularly for Assata Shakur—is flimsy at best. [1] Upon closer examination this assertion fails to be convincing. Cuba’s unfounded listing as a state sponsor of terrorism undermines U.S. credibility abroad, hampering its efforts to counteract authentic terrorism around the world.

As to the most common criteria for determining state sponsors of terrorism, the State Department has had to openly acknowledge that Cuba is not providing weapons or training to terrorist groups and is cooperating with the international community’s efforts to combat money laundering. Cuba is currently hosting peace talks between the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), calling into question claims that Cuba is harboring FARC members. Nevertheless, the assertion that Cuba is a safe haven for terrorists provides the main justification for its classification as a state sponsor of terrorism and is entirely duplicitous in its argument.

Assata Shakur and Edward Snowden: Two Distinct Cases of U.S. Fugitives and Cuba

The contention that Cuba shelters U.S. fugitives primarily alludes to the case of JoAnne Chesimard, better known as Assata Shakur, who became the first woman placed on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list on May 2 of this year. [2] Shakur is wanted for escaping from jail and fleeing to Cuba after being convicted of murdering a state trooper in New Jersey in 1973. Her conviction remains highly controversial due to the lack of definitive forensic evidence of her involvement, though her presence at the turnpike where the incident occurred is uncontested. [3] Many believe that Shakur was unfairly targeted due to her leadership role within the Black Panther Party and membership in the Black Liberation Army. [4]

Even if Shakur’s conviction holds, her classification as an international terrorist does not. First, U.S. statute defines terrorism as using or threatening violence against civilians or civilian populations for political gains. [5] An active-duty state trooper is not a civilian; therefore, this murder cannot be considered an act of terrorism. Second, the crime was allegedly perpetrated in the United States by a U.S. citizen and against a U.S. citizen, thus ruling out any basis for classification as an act of international terrorism.

Despite these considerations, the United States continues to demand Shakur’s extradition even though Cuba is under no obligation to do so. The Cuban government first granted Shakur asylum in 1984 based on her reasonable fear of being persecuted or prosecuted for her political beliefs and race upon her return to the United States. [6] Granting Shakur asylum absolved the Cuban government of any legal responsibility to comply with the U.S. request. [7] Even if Shakur had not been granted asylum, the Cuban government is not obligated to extradite fugitives charged with political crimes in accordance with a 1904 treaty with the United States. [8] Consequently, the FBI’s convenient reclassification of Shakur less than a month before the state sponsors of terrorism list was released points to inter-agency collaboration within the federal government to justify the continued presence of Cuba on the list.

Recent events regarding National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden shed further light on the inappropriate nature of Cuba’s continued listing as a state sponsor of terrorism. After fleeing the United States and subsequently being charged with three counts of espionage, Snowden travelled first to Hong Kong and then to Moscow, where he requested political asylum from Ecuador. As there were no direct flights from Russia to Ecuador at the time, his publicized route included layovers in Havana and Caracas. Snowden’s transit is a highly political matter for all nations involved, since they can be implicated in giving refuge to a U.S. fugitive. However, the plane to Cuba took off without Snowden on board.

Story continues here: Shakur, Snowden, and the State Department: Is Cuba a State Sponsor of Terrorism?

FONTOVA: Protecting A Sponsor of Terrorism 1

State keeps Castro kin safer than U.S. diplomats overseas

By Humberto Fontova, Washington Times

Protecting U.S. diplomats from terrorists on foreign soil is one thing. Protecting terrorism-sponsoring diplomats on U.S. soil quite another. The U.S. State Department is under heavy fire for failing at the job abroad.

A diplomat from a nation that the United States officially classifies as a state sponsor of terrorism, however, has no complaints against the State Department’s security services. This diplomat and her entourage, under a heavy State Department security detail, safely sashayed through New York and Philadelphia for almost two weeks this month without being subjected to so much as a frown from a bystander. When she stopped for Sunday brunch in Philadelphia’s Old City, one thing that caught the eye of the local paper was “heavy security” surrounding Raul Castro’s daughter Mariela and her Cuban cohorts.

For the second time in about a year, Ms. Castro, an official of her father and uncle’s terrorism-sponsoring regime, was granted a U.S. visa. The purpose of her visit to the nation that her uncle and father craved to attack with nuclear weapons and helped the Black Panthers and the Weathermen get terrorism training, and that millions of her hapless compatriots crave as refuge from the horrors her family inflicts, was to lecture Americans on human rights while receiving honors for her own contributions to human rights.

The forum and her award were courtesy of the Philadelphia-based homosexual-rights group Equality Forum, which also honored former Rep. Barney Frank, Massachusetts Democrat. The faithful communist apparatchik of a regime that incarcerated political prisoners at a higher rate than Josef Stalin during the Great Terror, slaughtered more Cubans than Adolf Hitler killed Germans during the Night of Long Knives and in the process converted a nation with a higher per-capita income than half of Europe into one that repulses Haitians, is on record as favoring homosexual marriage. Hence the human-rights honors and awards for Ms. Castro.

To Mr. Frank’s credit, he seemed to find the award to the communist official from his partners in homosexual activism slightly disturbing. While sharing a panel with Ms. Castro and mildly praising her work, Mr. Frank forthrightly called her father and uncle “among the great betrayers of liberalism and human rights.”

In addition to her forum and honors in Philadelphia, Ms. Castro also was honored with ovations at an International Action Center forum in New York. Under the protection of a State Department security detail and on U.S. taxpayers’ dime, Ms. Castro denounced the justice system of the nation that was feting and protecting her. In particular, the crowd thanked the Cuban official for harboring U.S. cop-killer fugitive Assata Shakur, who was put on the FBI’s most-wanted list as a domestic terrorist two weeks earlier. Raul Castro’s daughter also denounced the U.S. convictions of the terrorists known as “the Cuban Five,” four of whom are serving sentences for conspiracy to murder, manslaughter and spying against America.

Obviously, no “stand-down” order came down when our State Department was tasked with protecting this terrorism-sponsoring official. The perceived threat to Ms. Castro’s security apparently came from right-wing Cuban-Americans. Many of them are Republicans, and some are even Tea Partyers. Were they really more of a danger than the vicious, cunning and bloodthirsty terrorists who attacked our consulate in Benghazi, Libya?

Ms. Castro did all her U.S. bashing in New York while standing under a huge poster of Che Guevara, who, during his lifetime, denounced the United States as “the great enemy of mankind” and Americans as “hyenas fit only for extermination.”

While in Philadelphia, Ms. Castro was given a tour of the Liberty Bell, which her father, uncle and godfather, Guevara, planned to blow up in partnership with the Black Liberation Front in 1965. The plot also called for blowing up the Statue of Liberty and the Washington Monument. The Black Liberation Front hatched the plan with the help of Guevara, whom they visited in Cuba in August 1964. The details were buttoned down during Guevara’s visit to New York in December 1964 while the Cuban official was feted like a rock star by Manhattan’s elite. Only in America.

Humberto Fontova is author of “Fidel: Hollywood’s Favorite Tyrant” (Regnery, 2005).