Camelot's criminal idiocy finally brought Adm. Arleigh Burke of the Joints Chief of Staff, who was receiving the battlefield pleas, to the brink of mutiny. Years before, Adm. Burke sailed thousands of miles to smash his nation's enemies at the Battle of Leyte Gulf. Now he was Chief of Naval Operations and stood aghast as new enemies were being given a sanctuary 90 miles away! The fighting admiral was livid. They say his face was beet red and his facial veins popping as he faced down his commander-in-chief that fateful night of April 18, 1961...
JFK was in white tails and a bow tie that evening, having just emerged from an elegant social gathering. "Burke," he replied. "We can't get involved in this."
Admiral Burke's pleas also proved futile. The freedom-fighters' spent ammo inevitably forced a retreat. Castro's jets and Sea Furies were roaming overhead at will and tens of thousands of his Soviet-led and armed troops and armor were closing in. The Castro planes now concentrated on strafing the helpless, ammo-less freedom-fighters.
"Can't continue," Lynch's radio crackled - it was San Roman again. "Have nothing left to fight with ...out of ammo...Russian tanks in view....destroying my equipment."
"Tears flooded my eyes," wrote Grayston Lynch. "For the first time in my 37 years I was ashamed of my country."
When the smoke cleared and their ammo had been expended to the very last bullet, when a hundred of them lay dead and hundreds more wounded, after three days of relentless battle, barely 1,400 of them -- without air support (from the U.S. Carriers just offshore) and without a single supporting shot by naval artillery (from U.S. cruisers and destroyers poised just offshore) -- had squared off against 41,000 Castro troops, his entire air force and squadrons of Soviet tanks. The Cuban freedom-fighters inflicted casualties of 20 to 1 against their Soviet-armed and led enemies. This feat of arms that still amazes professional military men.
"They fought magnificently and were not defeated," stressed Marine Col. Jack Hawkins a multi-decorated WWII and Korea vet who helped train them. "They were abandoned on the beach without the supplies and support promised by their sponsor, the Government of the United States."
"We shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty!" proclaimed Lynch and Hawkin's Commander-in-Chief just three months earlier.
This is the day JFK invited the Cuban missile crisis by appearing weak when he refused to provide thd promised air support. He is considered as some kind of saint or hero but his weakness nearly got the world killed.
Just one of many JFK F- - -Ups.
Brave men went free Cuba while RFK and JFK said let them die.
Next came the Berlin Wall,
Then Viet Nam,
Then the Cuban Missile Crisis,
I remember it fairly well. My Sister was a clerk/typist at Hurlburt field, then part of Eglin AFB. There were Cubans all over the place.
I can remember seeing several B-26 bombers which had 8 .50 cal. machine guns in the nose. These were not the WWII B-26 but a different tho similar bomber. They were propeller driven and I suspect devastating ground attack planes but stood no chance against Cuban jets.
One day my Sister was driven home (we lived about 35 miles from Hurlburt) by a Cuban. She had a date with him but Mother cancelled it telling her she was not going out with a Cuban. My Sister was disappointed as she said every girl on base wanted to date him. He looked just like Desi Arnaz.
At the end of the Summer she went back to college and I saw no more of the Cubans.
The article doesn’t make clear the worst of it. Kennedy had been told by the CIA from the moment he learned of the operation it would fail without US air support. He solemnly promised, “They WILL have air support”. The CIA agent in charge did not trust Kennedy and made him swear two more times to provide air support to the Cubans. It wasn’t until they were dying on the beach Kennedy said, “No, air support. We will not get involved”.
JFK, as are most Kennedys, was an unmitigated POS. I won’t say I’m glad he was shot but I think it was better for the country even with Texas gangster Johnson replacing him.
Well, not really.
I am sure I read somewhere a long time ago that Khrushchev phoned Kennedy after the invasion began and scared him so badly that Kennedy was literally trembling.
That is when Kennedy called off the promised air support.
I am currently reading An Enormous Crime billed as "the definitive account of American POWs abandoned in Southeast Asia" by former Congressman Bill Hendon and Elizabeth Stewart. It is the belief of the authors that one of the major reasons the Vietnamese held onto an unknown number of our POWs was because they were expecting to trade them for aid and reconstruction funds, having learned from JFK's cowardice in ransoming the Cuban Freedom Fighters he had betrayed at the Bay of Pigs.
JFK was, without question, a poltroon.
One thing I learned that is almost always left out of the story is the existence of Operation 40. This was a CIA founded and funded team of covert ops guys and assassins. They were along for the invasion but never left the safety of their transport.
It is widely believed that their mission was two-fold --- first, to follow the fighting and eliminate any communist leaders who may have been captured --- second, to eliminate brigage leaders once things were under control. The idea was to guarantee a trujillo-like dictatorship to do our bidding.
There is support for this in the CIA docs.