Fidel Castro Had Secret Nukes: Transcript
But Soviets removed the tactical nukes after relations soured
By Neal Colgrass, Newser Staff
Posted Oct 12, 2012 3:45 PM CDT
Above: Cuban leader Fidel Castro in 1962, and below, President John F. Kennedy in Washington, April 3, 1963.   (AP Photo/Prensa Latina via AP Images, AP Photo, File)

(Newser) – Think the threat of a nuclear Cuba ended with the Cuban Missile Crisis? Apparently not—because the Soviets had only removed their medium-range nuclear missiles under US pressure in November of 1962, and left about 100 tactical nukes unknown to the United States, Foreign Policy reports. But the Soviets decided not to leave those weapons behind when relations soured between Fidel Castro and Soviet Deputy Prime Minister Anastas Mikoyan.

Visiting Cuba, Mikoyan struggled to make an agreement with Castro, who was angry over the missile withdrawal. Matters worsened when Castro told his UN representative to reveal the country's nuclear weapons stash, partly to gain leverage on inspections. Ultimately, Mikoyan told Castro the Soviets would remove the tactical nukes for their own reasons—not because of US pressure. "What do you think we are?" said an irate Castro. "A zero on the left, a dirty rag. We tried to help the Soviet Union to get out of a difficult situation." Click for a document that recounts the full meeting.

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Showing 3 of 16 comments
Bundy714
Oct 13, 2012 4:05 AM CDT
Fidel Castro Had Secret Nukes: Transcript Totally misleading headline to get views and stir people up. If you read the whole transcript it's plain as day that Fidel never had any nukes, the Soviets based in Cuba had nukes, but no way they were giving them to Fidel. They had laws that even prevented them from giving nukes to any country, even Warsaw pact nations. All nukes were always under Russian control, never Cuban. From the transcript: After we get the Soviets to agree to withdraw from Cuba, Castro asks if the Soviets will leave him the tactical nukes. Soviet Deputy Prime Minister Anastas Mikoyan replies, "We have a law prohibiting the transfer of any nuclear weapons, including the tactical ones, to anybody. We never transferred it to anyone, and we did not intend to transfer it. The nuclear weapons, remaining in our hands, would be used in the event of a war to defend the entire socialist camp." Then Castro asks for a compromise, "Would it be possible to leave the tactical nuclear weapons in Cuba in Soviet hands, without transferring them to the Cubans?" A. I. Mikoyan replies, "No, Comrade Fidel, it would not be possible, because if there is not a Soviet base in Cuba, then the Soviet officers will be acting only as advisers to the Cuban army. The Americans are not aware that the tactical nuclear weapons are here, and we are taking it out not because of the American demands, as you would think, but of our own will." Bottom line: The Soviets based in Cuba had nukes, and they took them with them when they left. Fidel Castro NEVER had any nukes or any authority over nukes. I guess they expected everyone to take the headline as fact and no one would bother to actually read the whole transcript.
Steve4freedom
Oct 13, 2012 12:03 AM CDT
Only a few minutes rom Florida the CIA and their cohorts led Castro, this maniac motherchugger to have nukes? I am sure the U.S. knew about it, especially the CIA. They, however, never attacked or planed to attack any communist hellhole. China, Cuba, North Korea are the examples. During the Cold "War", the U.S. supported many Eastern- and Central European communist satellite countries with Billions of $$$ under the crappy "Most favored Nation" fund, like: Romania, Hungary, Poland, Yougoslavia for decades. Communism was kept alive by the Evil Empire within the Empire (U.S. gov't). Looks like the Soviets were more anti-Castro than the U.S. marxist regime.
Bulls-Eye
Oct 12, 2012 8:59 PM CDT
We are so damn lucky to have gotten through the 50's and 60's.