Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Victoria Advocate, December 30, 1963, "Cuban Exile Boat, Bombs Seized by U.S. Officials" by The Associated Press.

MIAMI - Seizure by U.S. authorities of a Cuban exile boat carrying bombs described as ticketed for Fidel Castro was reported Sunday by American and refugee sources.

Dr. Orlando Bosch, head of an anti-Castro revolutionary organization, said his men were taking the arms to a secret Caribbean base to be placed aboard two planes to bomb Havana.

The plan, Bosch said, called for dropping the bombs on Revolutionary Plaza next Thursday while Castro addresses a throng there celebrating his fifth anniversary as Cuba's leader.

David Cardoza, U.S. regional Customs director, said Customs agents aided by the Coast Guard, seized the 18-foot motorboat Saturday night, detained 4 Cubans aboard and confiscated 4 bombs.

Bosch said there were 12 bombs, 6 for each plane. His men threw eight overboard to avoid confiscation, he added.

Cardoza said the men were released without charge. Investigation of possible violation of U.S. Neutrality laws continued, he added.

He said a second boat also was seized. Bosch said it was not connected with his group, the [Insurrectional Movement of Revolutionary Recovery].

Cardoza said the bombs were homemade and averaged 100 pounds. Also confiscated, he said, were detonators and blasting caps.

Bosch said "we planned something big, something to which Castro would react violently, which would command international attention and could spark internal uprisings in Cuba.

"We first planned to bomb Havana during Khrushchev's intended visit there. When this visit was cancelled, we aimed at the Jan. 2 celebration. There will be many thousands of communists there for the event."

Bosch, so disappointed that he wept, told a news conference, "We protest this confiscation of our property by the United States. The United States will let only those on its payroll fight Castro. All Cubans should have the privilege of fighting for their country."

Bosch said his boat was in international waters, 15 miles off the southeast Miami coast. Cardoza said the seizure was made approximately 5 miles east of Miami.

Copyright (c) 1963 The Associated Press

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