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Cryptonym: AMGLOSSY

Definition:
Comandos Mambises - a CIA infiltration team designed to set up an intelligence network and a resistance organization inside Cuba during 1963. Members of the team were captured on 10/21/63.
Status:
Probable
Sources:

Warren Hinckle and William Turner, Deadly Secrets (Thunder's Mouth Press, New York: 1992), p. 152

"(Gordon) Campbell was in charge of the CIA's naval operations in the Caribbean...Captain Alejandro Brooks watched him from the open bridge of the Rex...the 174-foot Rex was the flagship of the CIA's secret Caribbean navy. She was an ex-US Navy patrol craft of early 1940s vintage, formerly engaged in the business of subchasing...the CIA's navy included a sister ship to the Rex, the Leda, plus another four similar ships of the line, and a dozen smaller vessels, all well armed...(the Belcher Oil Company) leased the Rex to Collins Radio International of Dallas for 'electronic and oceanographic research.' Collins was a division of Collins Radio of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, a major defense contractor that more than once provided cover for CIA operations." The twelve commandos on 10/21/63 were all members of the Commandos Mambises, "a wholly owned creation of the CIA, and a crash creation at that. They were trained at a CIA amphibious base near New Orleans...(the) imperative to 'do something' was authorized by President Kennedy on June 19 - a greatly escalated program of sabotage aimed at petroleum facilities, railroad and highway transportation, and electric power and communications facilities in Cuba. This led to the CIA's launching its Caribbean secret navy and the creation of the Commandos Mambises. A measure of the White House green light was that for the first time the CIA was allowed to violate the sanctum sanctorum and target previously off-limits installations that had been owned by American companies. It was a major escalation of the Secret War...(at p. 155): "(The leader of Comandos Mambises in 1963) was Major Manuel Villafana (note - LITAINT-1), a Cuban General Patton known for his spit-and-polish sternness...(he) insisted that the CIA pay his men little; he wanted them motivated by hate, not money."

180-10073-10072: INTERVIEW REPORT WILLIAM TURNER DECEMBER 22-24, 1977

"Mambises first materialized on evening of August 18, 1963 when (Rafael) Pupo made rounds of Guatemala City press offices handing out release about strike against oil storage tanks at strategic port of Casilda. Their leader, Angel Orozco Crespo was captured and later executed. Other raids carried out on October 1 in Cayo Guin and October 22 at port of Isabela de Sagua. Also on October 22, Mambises unit attempted a landing from the Rex on Pinar del Rio Province. Set off a firefight and strafing of freighter J. Louis by MIGs. US charged that Cuba had attacked the J. Louis without provocation, but Castro reported that four of the Rex crew had been captured, described the Rex and named her home port in West Palm Beach...The Rex was harbored at West Palm Beach and the Leda at Port Everglades. Captains of the vessels were brother Alejandro Brooks (Rex) and Gaspar Brooks (Leda). Both flew the flag of Nicaragua...those captured were Alberto del Busto, Luis Montero Carranzana, Dr. Clemente Inclan Werner, and one not identified by name."

157-10014-10242: [No Title]

The five sabotage raids led by the CIA were said to take place on August 18, August 19, September 30, October 21, and December 23.

Jesus Arboleya, The Cuban Counterrevolutionaries (Ohio University, 2000), p. 131

"Manuel Villafana (note: LITAINT-1), who had been head of the Cuban Air Force in exile, was chosen to lead (the Comandos Mambises in 1963). The Comandos in reality consisted of an elite paramilitary group trained in New Orleans that was to operate with the support of the Agency's fleet."

1993.08.11.16:45:12:180036: N.Y. DAILY NEWS ARTICLE: A MISSION TO CUBA, TALE OF THE DOOMED RAIDERS

Re 10/21/63: "Some (Bay of Pigs) veterans were assigned to the 'spook ship' Rex, a 175-foot converted US Navy patrol boat that made hundreds of clandestine voyages to Cuba. Flying the Nicaraguan flag, the Rex operated out of West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It carried the latest radar and sonar equipment, five cannons, several .30 caliber machine guns and two 20-foot speedboats. Its skipper reportedly was Eugenio Rolando Martinez, a Miami real estate salesman and CIA agent who made more than 300 nocturnal runs to Cuba. (He was taken off the official CIA payroll in 1972, the day after he was caught in the Watergate break-in.)...On the night of October 21, 1963, the Rex sent its twin speedboats ashore at the western tip of Cuba. The landing was observed by a militia patrol and the six men in the first boat were captured as soon as they hit the beach. The second launch was sunk by a Cuban gunboat as it raced back to the Rex. Cannon fire from the Rex drove off the Cuban vessel. The men in the water were hauled aboard the spy ship. Next morning, a US Navy submarine surfaced near the Rex off the Bahamas. Five Cubans - four dead, one wounded - reportedly were transferred to the sub, which then submerged and headed to Florida." See 4/24/75, Paul Meskil, "A Mission to Cuba: Tale of the Doomed Raiders", NY Daily News.

Fabian Escalante, JFK: The Cuban Files (Ocean Press, 2006), p. 244

"October 22 (1963): During the night, Cuban airplanes intercepted and attacked two V-20 pirate launches as they were attempting to land arms and saboteurs in Cuba on the southern coast of Pinar del Rio province. The Cuban aircraft also located and attacked the 'mother ship' that had transported the launches. The enemy action was frustrated in a coordinated air force and coastal defense action. CIA agents Clemente Inclan Werner, chief of security in actions organized against Cuba from the Rex vessel, and crew members Luis Montero Carranza and Roberto Lizano Rodriguez were captured. Spokesmen from the Comsandos L stated that Cuban counter-revolutionary groups under CIA direction were given every assistance in their anti-Cuba actions, citing the case of the Mambi Commandos (note: Comandos Mambises), who had engaged in attacks on Cuba from points in US territory." His capture is verified in this CIA memo: https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=138561&relPageId=2&search=%22clemente_inclan%22

104-10093-10147: CABLE RE SUBJECTS IN CUSTODY ARE BOTH WOUNDED IN THE LEGS

10/24/63 cable from Mexico City to Director: "'Gonzalez' and 'Buenrostro' (sic) have been in custody (of) Mexi Navy since late afternoon 23 Oct. Both wounded in legs. Receiving adequate medical attention at Cozumel Naval Base...Madrid should stand by however should WAVE or HQS wish (to) attempt contact with Cubans with message from 'Captain Wally' in order (to) advise Cubans on their third and new cover story..."

104-10093-10175: CABLE - SUGGESTS BASE TAKE NO ACTION

10/26/63 cable from Mexico City to Director, slugline RYBAT TYPIC AMGLOSSY: After the American embassy in Merida got a request for help from AMGLOSSY, Mexico City's response was "Mexi suggests base take no action pending WAVE/DIR instructions. Due (to) some recent info that AMGLOSSY Cubans now under Castro control Mexi suggests that normal answer as outlined...be sent..." There is a note saying that "Mr. Tilton SAS notified."

104-10290-10373: CABLE: EFFORTS TO FIND OUT ABOUT CUBANS ON ISLA MUJERES

10/26/63 cable MEXI-6684 from Mexico City to Director: "Mexi in telecon (with) Chief of Base Madrid morning 26 October. Agreed he will use Madrid exile relief leader as method (of) funding AMGLOSSY Cubans in Cozumel. ASAP (the Chief of Base) will send exile leader with about five thousand pesos 'from Mr. Wally'...Madrid making every effort (to) investigate unknown Cubans Islas Mujeres to ascertain if they AMGLOSSY types. LITEMPOS still unable to report when they can move AMGLOSSY Cubans to Madrid or Mexico City."

1994.06.17.11:36:40:380005: Reel 47, Folder J - MEXI 6742 - 6899 CABLES.

"Airmailing to Pieper address 3 Nov edition of newspaper Hoy containing detailed account confessions captured Rex expeditionaries."

124-10203-10323: No Title

11/8/63 press conference with CIA agents captured in Cuba. They were identified as Clemente Inclan Werner (note: AMSIGH-2), Luis Montero Carranza, and Roberto Lizano Rodriguez. Inclan Werner said, "The US citizen working with the infiltration group was my chief, his name is Hank...a US citizen whom I understand was a retired naval officer was in charge of the ship. His name is Wally...Later this Wally was promoted and another US citizen took over the ship. His name was Bob...(at page 5): The main plan of the group was to establish an intelligence network...over radio through a radio operator who was brought to the CIA base in the United States. As a secondary mission, the team was to set up a resistance organization..." (at page 9): Werner explained that he was a lawyer for the university until he left Cuba in 1960 and had been previously active in the MDC...(at page 14): Inclan served on the team as an interpreter and security officer...the ship's captain was Alejandro Brooks.

104-10308-10083 CONTACT REPORT#38: 35 PRQ IS WERE GIVEN TO THE CASE OFFICER FOR TRACES

1/29/64 contact report #38 from AMWORLD: "The remaining members of the AMGLOSSY team have applied for jobs with AMWORLD. They told AMYUM-19 that they were sent over by (CIA) since we had no further use for them. It is planned to use them as instructors or as cadre."

Contributors:
Bill Simpich

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