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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 28, 1962

FROM THE JOURNAL OF S.M. KUDRYAVTSEV, 'RECORD OF A CONVERSATION WITH PRIME MINISTER OF THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA FIDEL CASTRO RUZ, 30 DECEMBER 1961'

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    Kudryavstev and Fidel Castro discuss US intervention in Cuba and the positions of other OAS countries on supporting US interventionism in the wake of the upcoming OAS conference of ministers of foreign affairs.
    "From the Journal of S.M. Kudryavtsev, 'Record of a Conversation with Prime Minister of the Republic of Cuba Fidel Castro Ruz, 30 December 1961'," January 28, 1962, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AVP RF, F. 0104. Op. 17, P. 118, D. 5, ll. 136-138. Obtained by James G. Hershberg and translated by Gary Goldberg. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/188158
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Secret. Copy Nº 2

28 January 1962

Outgoing Nº 28

from the journal of

S. M. KUDRYAVTSEV

RECORD OF A CONVERSATION

with Prime Minister of the Republic of Cuba

Fidel CASTRO RUZ

30 December 1961

I met with Fidel Castro tonight and in accordance with instructions [I] had I informed him about the following question [Translator’s note: opros – SIC, which means “query”, or “survey”, not vopros, which means “question”].

I said that according to the information coming from informed Latin American circles, Kennedy has assured Colombian President Lleras Camargo that the US does not intend to interfere in the internal affairs of Cuba, either collectively or unilaterally.

According to this same information, I continued, Kennedy gave a similar assurance to the governments of Argentina and Brazil. In accordance with this information Kennedy supposedly needs the resolution about Cuba which is to be adopted at the upcoming conference of ministers of foreign affairs of OAS member countries to counter the most aggressive circles of the US.

I further stressed that we, of course, cannot guarantee that this information reflects the actual intention of the US but we considered it necessary to convey it to you, inasmuch as it might be of interest to the government of Cuba.

Thanking [me] for the information I passed to him Fidel Castro said that this is a quite comforting report, although it is quite difficult to believe that Kennedy has abandoned his aggressive plans with respect to Cuba, especially as all other information which comes to the Cuban government tells of the feverish preparations of the Americans for a new armed intervention against Cuba.

Fidel Castro continued, in a recent conversation with Deputy Foreign Minister of Cuba Olivares, Brazilian President Goulart repeatedly stressed that the Brazilian government is completely convinced that Kennedy is preparing a new armed intervention against Cuba. Goulart also pointed to [the fact] that the Brazilian government will never give its blessing to aggression against Cuba and will take every step so that no decisions will be adopted at the upcoming conference of ministers of foreign affairs making it easier for Kennedy to carry out an intervention against Cuba.

Fidel Castro said, Mexico also takes a firm position on this question. Lopez Mateos also assured Olivares that the Mexican government will not take part in the approval of any aggressive American plans against the independence of the Cuban state.

Fidel Castro stressed, Kennedy knows about the negative attitude of Mexico, Brazil, and also some other countries of Latin America toward his interventionist plans, and therefore it is not excluded that, knowing of such a sentiment of the governments of Latin America, right now Kennedy is trying to calm them with assurances that the US supposedly does not intend to interfere in the internal affairs of Cuba either collectively or unilaterally. In giving such assurances, Kennedy is striving to achieve the agreement of the governments of these countries of Latin America at the upcoming conference of ministers of foreign affairs at Punta del Este to adopt resolutions condemning the domestic [SIC – vnutripolitichesky] form of government of Cuba and its foreign policy in one form or another.

Fidel Castro continued, based on this resolution Kennedy might later organize some sort of provocation against Cuba with the forces of one of the countries of Central America and detachments of the external counterrevolution. When he does this he will present such an attack on Cuba as though everything was not being done by the US unilaterally, but in fact with the agreement of the countries of Latin America.

Fidel Castro said further, Brazil and Mexico are afraid that Kennedy might embroil them in some adventure against Cuba at the upcoming conference of ministers of foreign affairs. In conclusion, Fidel Castro noted that he is informing President Dorticos about this report of ours. They will compare it with all other information at their disposal in order to draw the most correct conclusions for themselves.

Fidel Castro stressed, in any event we will continue to remain on our guard. Of course, now we feel much calmer than in April. The armed forces of Cuba have become much stronger in the last six months and are well trained right now. They are able to repel any attack from the Central American countries and the forces of the external counterrevolution if one is organized by the US.

The rest of the conversation touched on some general questions.

AMBASSADOR OF THE USSR IN THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA

(S. KUDRYAVTSEV)