[REFERENCE: APPENDIX TO
the SELECT COMMITTEE ON ASSASSINATIONS of the U.S. HOUSE
Ninety-fifth Congress, second session, VOLUME X:
Anti-Castro activities and
organizations, etc., March 1979, pages 89-93]
NOTE: Please read the footnotes.
X. MOVIMIENTO INSURRECCIONAL DE RECUPERACION
(MIRR) AND ORLANDO BOSCH AVILA
(324) When four of Castro's
and 100 men deserted and left for the Las Villas Mountains
in August 1960,
they formed the nucleus of the Movimiento Insurreccional de
Revolucionaria (MIRR).(1) Helping lay the groundwork for
was the former chief of the 26th of July Movement in Las
Dr. Orlando Bosch Avila. (2) Bosch had left Cuba 1 month
from Miami, issued a call for rebel army men to desert. (3)
defection of army personnel and carrying out sabotage
Cuba were the early primary activities of the MIRR. (4) In
both, it was extremely
(325) Former rebel army
officer Victor Paneque
assumed military leadership of the group (5) and, within a
few months of
his escape from Cuba, organized a team of infiltrators to
reenter the country
to continue MIRR operations. (6)
(326) Orlando Bosch became
of MIRR, working with individuals and other groups involved
against Cuba and securing necessary financial backing. (7)
(327) A pediatrician by
profession, (8) Bosch
became immersed in his political movement and for 18 years
carried out a
crusade to overthrow Castro. His efforts at times have
as "bumbling," but he has also been termed "single-mindedly"
committed." (9) Widely viewed in the U.S. press as a Cuban
patriot when he
first began his anti-Castro activities, Bosch's increased
acts of violence
gradually changed his image to that of a terrorist. (10) the
violence of his activities, which have always been widely
a major factor in the committee's decision to examine Bosch
and the MIRR
among those Cuban exile organizations considered capable of
an assassination conspiracy.
(328) Bosch was interviewed
by the committee
in Cuartel San Carlos prison in Venezuela. He is
charged with complicity
in the October 6, 1975, bombing of a Cubana Airlines plane
in the deaths of 73 people. (11) Although denying
involvement in the airplane
bombing, Bosch said he approved of it. (12) Claiming
terrorism a necessary
evil in fighting Castro, Bosch stated, "You have to fight
violence with violence.
At times you cannot avoid hurting innocent people." (13)
(329) The activities of the
MIRR in the early
1960's were carried out by a small group of
individuals. There were
reportedly never a great deal of members in Miami. (14) In
1966, Bosch claimed
to have only 20 men outside Miami, located in various
seaport cities in the
United States (15) One of the major interests of the MIRR
was to blow up
vessels trading with Cuba. (16) In this, it was
the MIRR successes in the
early 1960's was
a result of its association with a number of other anti-
(330) Bosch said that in late
1961 he was
contacted by Evelio Duque, leader of Ejercito Cubano
who indicated he might be getting CIA support for his group
and wanted Bosch
to join him. (17) Together they submitted a plan to the
their conditions for CIA support and were informed about a
month later the
plan had been approved. (18) Acting as the political leader
in this alliance,
Bosch joined Duque, the military leader, at a camp in
Homestead, Fla., and
was in touch with a CIA liaison officer. (19)
(331) Bosch soon came to the
the camp was an exercise in futility. He believed that
the CIA had
no intention of mounting another invasion or initialing
attacks against Cuba.
He felt the U.S. -sponsored camps were merely a means of
keeping the exiles
busy and, privately and unofficially, his CIA contact
confirmed his suspicions,
Bosch said. (20) After 9 months of frustrating inactivity,
he published a
pamphlet, "The Tragedy of Cuba," in which he accused the
United States of
misleading the Cuban exiles. He sent a copy to
President Kennedy and
then closed down the camp. (21) After this, Bosch said he
had no more dealings
with the CIA. (22)
(332) Bosch maintained an
beginning in late 1960, with Frank Sturgis, well- known
of fortune; (23) Alexander Rorke, former clerk at the FBI;
(24) and William
Johnson, an American pilot who, along with Sturgis, provided
to the CIA on Cuban exile activities. (25) Johnson had full
all MIRR operations. (26) Bosch was concerned with financing
Cuba and did not know the nature of the missions until their
(333) According to Johnson,
were placed under contract to fly three airstrikes over Cuba
for the MIRR.
(28) They were to receive $2,000 per mission. (29) Johnson
admitted his own
motive was purely mercenary. (30)
(334) Although relatively
inactive in 1962,
(31) the MIRR engaged in a series of bombing raids over Cuba
in 1963 primarily
aimed at destroying the production of sugar (32) in an
effort to disrupt
the economy. It also reportedly conducted airstrikes
against a MIG
base in Cuba (33) and various other strikes aimed at
strategic targets. (34)
The raids were effective but not without risk. In
the raiders' planes were shot down and pilots killed. (35)
(335) Concurrent with an
American adventurers, the MIRR also had associations with
other exile organizations.
It planned raids against Cuba in cooperation with Commandos
L (36) and discussed
unity raids with members of RECE. (37) Bosch, at this time,
in establishing a base of operations in the Dominican
Republic to facilitate
long-range planning. (38)
(336) The documentation the
failed to explain how the MIRR was able to finance its
further, Bosch did not specify any source. Bosch told
that his association with Frank Sturgis alone culminated in
over Cuba. (39) At that time, he said, they usually rented a
plane for $400
plus $60 an hour. (40) Bill Johnson charged $4,000 for pilot
fees for each mission. (41)
Bosch said he
knew the pilots only got $2,000 and Johnson pocketed the
rest, but his purpose
was to fight Castro whatever it cost. (42) Bosch's
commitment to fight Castro
extends to the present. (43)
(337) The funds were
initially furnished MIRR
from a Chicago-based Cuban exile, Paulino A. Sierra, who
moneys from gambling interests. (44) some money came from
in Puerto Rico. (45) It is known that the FBI was long
interested in the
source of finances of the MIRR and in March 19164 authorized
a 30-day mail
check on it and Bosch in an effort to identify possible
sources. (46) During
this time, several wealthy Cuban exiles received threatening
large contributions for the fight against Castro. (47) Bosch
in these extortion attempts, (48) brought to trial, and
acquitted. (49) He
told committee that in 1967 he once used the funds he had
collected in settlement
for a personal injury automobile accident to buy explosives
(50) Whatever Bosch's methods of raising money, there is no
ever used it to enrich himself. (51)
(338) Well financed and
Bosch managed to run afoul of the U.S. Government
authorities at least seven
times in slightly over a 4-year period. Several of
resulted in his arrest, (52) but he was always acquitted.
(339) In July 1967, Bosch and
the MIRR became
assimilated into a new movement, known as Cuban Power (54)
and the tempo
of violent activities increased. On September 16,
1968, Bosch was arrested
for firing a bazooka into the hull of a Polish ship anchored
in Miami harbor.
(55) He was subsequently tried and sentenced to 10 years in
a Federal prison.
(56) From his prison cell in Atlanta, Ga., Bosch allegedly
was making plans
to resume bombing Japanese and Spanish ships trading with
Cuba as soon as
he was released. (57) He was granted parole on
November 1, 1972
and immediately began traveling through Latin America, in
violation of that
parole. (58) he said his aim in Latin America was to forge
countries which had powerful Cuban exile communities. (59)
So effective was
he in making solid political alliances, that in the ensuing
years he was
able to travel freely, with forged passports, throughout
Latin America. (60)
(340) Whether or not Bosch
was the principal
conspirator in the bombing of the Cuban airliner, it is
known that his Cuban
Power movement, which merged with other Cuban activities in
1976 (61) to
form a Cuban Secret Government (62) engaged in acts of
terrorism. (63) This
latter group was linked with numerous recent bombing
incidents, (64) an assassination
attempt against Henry Kissinger, (65) the assassination of
in Washington, D.C. (66) and the bombing of the Cuban
(341) Orlando Bosch, a
zealot, turned out
to be the most aggressive and volatile of the anti- Castro
That alone could validly raise the question of possible
the assassination of President Kennedy. In addition,
was presented with an allegation that specifically connected
him to a conspiracy.
(67) but investigation failed to support the claim that
Bosch had been in
Dallas in November 1963 in
the company of
Lee Harvey Oswald. When asked, Bosch told the
committee he was at his
home in Miami when he heard President Kennedy had been shot.
Gaeton J. Fonzi,
Elizabeth J. Palmer,
(1) FBI No. 97-4474, MIRR
index of anti-Castro organizations, Feb. 8, 1960, p. 1
(4) FBI No. 97-4474, MIRR
sec. 1 cable to
Director from Miami, Nov. 2, 1960, item 1, p. 2 (J.F.K.
(5) Id. At p. 1.
(6) CIA cable to Director
from MASH, Nov.
(7) CIA updated report.
(8) Memorandum to staff
director, June 15,
1978, re interview with Dr. Orlando Bosch Avila, p. 1
(J.F.K. Document 009362).
(9) Gloria Marina and Arnold
Bosch Courts Terrorist Label," Miami Herald, Nov, 8, 1976.
(11) See ref. 8.
(12) "Caracas to Charge
Bosch, Trio in Bombing
of Cuban Airliner," Miami News, Aug. 23, 1978.
(14) FBI No. 97-4474, MIRR
sec. 1, report
from Miami by George E. Davis, Jan. 18, 1961, item 5, p. 3
(15) Ibid., item 3, p. 15,
FBI No. 97-4474,
sec. 6, memo to J. Walter Yeagley from Director, June 22,
(17) See ref. 8.
(23) FBI No. 97-4474, MIRR
sec. 1, report
from Miami, item 3, p.2, Jan. 23. 1961,
Select Committee on
Assassinations (J.F.K. Document 009427).
(24) Ibid., item 2.
(25) Ibid., item 14, p.6.
(26) Ibid., item 15, p.6.
(29) See ref. 8, p.5.
(30) See ref. 4, FBI cable,
item 2, p. 12.
(31) Ibid., item 9, p.5.
(32) Ibid., items 10, 11,12,
(33) Ibid., item 14, p. 6.
(34) Ibid., items 1,2,3, p.8,
an items 4,5,
(35) Ibid., items 2,3, p. 11,
and item 1,
(36) Ibid., item 5, p. 14.
(37) Ibid., item 2
(38) Ibid., item 8, p.9.
(39) See ref. 8, p.2.
(43) See ref. 12.
(44) See ref. 4, item 16, p.
(45) Ibid., item 7, p.11.
(46) Ibid., item 6, p.9.
(47) FBI No. 9-42758, Orlando
1, 2, 4, p. 5 (J.F.K. Document 013071)
(49) See ref. 9.
(50) See ref. 8, p. 5.
(51) See ref. 9.
(52) See ref. 4, FBI cables,
item 6, pp. 15,
(53) See ref. 47, FBI
document, item 1, p.
2, FBI No. 45-10848.
(54) See ref. 4, FBI cable,
(55) Blake Fleetwood, "I am
Going to Declare
War," New Times, May 13, 1977, p. 46.
(57) See ref. 47, FBI
document, sec. 4, p.
3, FBI No. 45-10848
(58) See ref. 55, pp. 46-47.
(59) Id. At p. 47.
(61) Id. At p. 48.
(62) See ref. 4, FBI cable,
item 3, p. 2.
(63) See ref. 47, FBI cable,
item 1, pp. 1-2,
FBI No. 45-10801.
(65) See ref. 4, FBI cable,
item 14, p. 5.
(66) See ref. 55, p. 51.
(67) Immunized executive
of Marita Lorenz, May 31, 1978, Hearings before the House
on Assassinations. Lorenz, who had publicly claimed
she was once Castro's
mistress (Miami News, June 15, 1976), told the committee she
at a September 1963 meeting in Orlando Bosch's Miami home
during which Lee
Harvey Oswald, Frank Sturgis, Pedro Diaz Lanz, and Bosch
made plans to go
to Dallas (pp. 31-34). She further testified that
around November 15,
1963, she, Jerry Patrick Hemming, the Novo brothers, Pedro
Diaz Lanz, Sturgis,
Bosch, and Oswald traveled in a two-car caravan to Dallas
and stayed in a
motel where they were contacted by Jack Ruby. There
were several rifles
and scopes in a motel room (pp. 43-54). Lorenz said
she returned to
Miami around November 19 or 20.
All possible individuals
involved in this
allegation were questioned by the committee with the
--Interviewed on June 16,
1978, Orlando Bosch
told the committee he had met Lorenz once in 1962 at which
time he was planning
an air raid over Cuba with Alexander Rorke. Lorenz
later called him
and said she wanted to get involved in anti-Castro
activities, but Bosch
turned her down and never saw her again. He further
stated he had never
traveled west of New Orleans in his life (JFK Document No.
--In a March 21, 1978,
deposition in Miami,
Fla., Jerry Patrick Hemming responded negatively to the
questions: "Did you
ever drive from Miami to Dallas with Marita Lorenz? Or
Or a man identifying himself as ‘Ozzie'?" (pp 170-71).
--Immunized testimony was
received in Washington,
D.C. on April 28, 1978, from Pedro Diaz Lanz, who denied
(p. 64), and explained his whereabouts on November 22, 1963
--In a March 20, 1978,
deposition in Miami,
Frank A. Sturgis was asked if he did, "... in the company of
Leon Oswald and others drive from Miami to Dallas a day or
two before the
assassination?" Sturgis responded:
Sir, that is an absolute
lie. I have
never been with Marita Lorenz and Ozzie, as she calls him or
with Pedro Diaz
Lanz, or Marcus Diaz Lanz, or Dr. Orlando Bosch, or Jerry
she claimed all of us besides some other Cubans, were in two
and left Miami, Fla., 2 days before the assassination of the
the United States. She is a liar. I took a
to that effect that I have never been involved in any
conspiracy to kill
the President of the United States, nor was I with her in
with these people or any other people going to Dallas to
plot to kill the
President of the United States. She is an absolute
liar [p. 157].
Sturgis said that on November
22, 1963, he
was in his home in Miami, Fla. (P. 155).
The committee found no
evidence to support
(68) See ref. 8, p. 1.
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