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Cryptonym: AMPALM-5

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Jose Ignacio Agusto Rasco Bermudez, aka Jose Rasco, head of the Christian Democratic Movement (MDC). In 1961, Chicago cop/Mafia man Richard Cain served as his bodyguard.
See 104-10220-10262: Rasco's POA was cancelled in July 1965 when he moved to Washington, DC.

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1958-1960, Volume VI: Cuba Current Section: 599. 10/28/60 - Memorandum from Asst. Sec. State for Inter-American Affairs to Sec. State

Rasco was the head of the Christian Democratic Movement (MDC), formed in late 1959 by young Catholic groups in opposition to the Castro government.

Reel 10, Folder B - Withheld

Memo for Record by Evalena S. Vidal, Feb. 1960: Rasco and Fidel were both debaters at Universities do de Villanueva. According to Rasco, Fidel did not make the Debating Society while Rasco was president. Rasco was on faculty. After he heard Fidel speak, Fidel asked him for criticism.

104-10265-10023: PERSONALITY (201) FILE REQUEST

May 1960: 201 approved for Rasco. Appears to be 201-274330. Joe Piccolo seems to be his case officer, at telephone 2471. See 104-10220-10291: Here, it looks like 201-274330. See 104-10265-10045, 9/13/62: "Only trace J. Rasco is Jose Ignacio (Rasco) Hernandez (201-274330), born 1 Sept 25, Habana, OCC lawyer...leader Catholic Democratic Movement (MDC) Cuba. Anti Castro..." See FBI 105-82555 Oswald HQ File, Section 221, p. 32 of 162: "MM T-1 further advised that Ramon Cortes Buenrostro, president of the Mexican firm Transcontinental, S.A....and one Ignacio Hernandez Garcia were alleged to have attempted to suppress action against them by the Cuban government by claiming they were major stockholders in a Canadian firm which was also supplying Cuba with parts..." 104-10519-10226, Jan 65: Jose Ignacio Rasco Bermudez, 201-274330, PRQ 1

104-10129-10276: MEMORANDUM: C-82065 #214485

5/3/60: Memo seeking operational approval for an individual identified as C-82065 (CI/OA's Operational Clearance number) and #214485 (Office of Security identifier) - an "informant (political) in Cuba for the WH Division". See 104-10220-10291: His operational clearance was cancelled during September 1961.


#214485 belongs to Rasco Bermudez.


Since C-82065 belongs to AMPALM-5, it is clear that Rasco is AMPALM-5. See 104-10231-10369, p. 2: 5/12/61 memo from JMWAVE to JMBELL: "AMFACET-1 reported 12 May that source of Buchanan article was AMPALM-5. This later confirmed by AMBUD-1 during meeting with WAVE CO (case officer). AMFACET-1 indicated AMPALM-5/Jose Rasco telling people he member of AMBUD/Cuban Revolutionary Council, thus explaining Buchanan reference to source of info as member of AMBUD. AMFACET-1 believes unknown someone put AMPALM-5 up to making statements in article and is attempting to determine identity. AMFACET-1 added that as result AMPALM-5/Buchanan story plus other actions taken by AMPALM-5 (e.g., recently called press conference in Chicago where presented newly bearded self as one of the leaders of frustrated invasion) latter in process (of) being expelled by MDC."

104-10164-10468: Memo: Christian Democratic Movement

5/17/61 Memo from Chicago CIA office, refers to cop/Mafioso Richard Cain as "our private eye". Cain became caught up in MDC affairs after being hired as Rasco's bodyguard. Cain reported that Abascal of MDC was going to meet with RFK hoping to convince him to get funding shifted from Tony Varona's FRD to the MDC. If that didn't work, the plan was to recruit German Chancellor Adenauer (a Christian Democratic leader) to continue the argument.


1/18/62 dispatch, HMWAVE chief Ted Shackley wo WH chief J.C. King: Rasco is identified as one of the two men who wrote highly descriptive profiles of the main figures in the CRC, such as Miro Cardona, Tony Varona, Justo Carrillo, Carlos Prio, and more.


6/21/62: From JMWAVE to Director (probably directed to John Tilton - his name is prominently written on the page): "Station has no record any funds passed (to) Truth About Cuba Committee past or present...info from AMCLATTER-1...on committee say it created to counteract the Fair Play for Cuba Committee...AMCLATTER says committee is creation of Dr. Fermin Peinado, member executive committee MDC...financially supported by Pepin Bosch of Bacardi Rum Company."


8/16/62: Three factions in MDC -one is Rasco's, another is Melchar Gaston's, and the third is Laureano Batista where the leadership will be reunited. Lucas (Pepin Fernandez Badue) arrived in the US in October 1961 with false papers saying that he was a main organizer in Cuba. In Cuba he was aligned with the Batistianos. Lucas was being given funds by a US government agency and was a divisive force within MDC. "It is strange that of all the important people in the MDC who have been arrested by the Castro government, Lucas is the only one who was able to avoid arrest. His brother was chief of G-2 for the Castro regime in Oriente province. It is also strange that when Lucas departed Cuba he came out through the Havana airport on a commercial aircraft without even being detained." Also see 104-10271-10201, p. 3 describing Fernandez Badue as a possible "double agent".

HSCA Report, Volume X Current Section: VII. Movimiento Democrata Cristiano (MDC)

The Rasco faction of the MDC became the Batista faction in 1962 due to the efforts of its independently wealthy military chief, Laureano Batista Falla, who organized and financed its infiltration attempts. "It was one of the most active and effective underground groups in Cuba during the early 1960s...many MDC members joined the (Truth About) Cuba Committee in 1962, which was formed to counteract the propaganda of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, a pro-Castro organization in the United States...a group of about 18 Cubans did arrive in New Orleans during the summer of 1963. Leading them was a well-known Cuban exile, Victor Paneque. (His uncle,) Batista Falla provid(ed) the manpower for the training camp." Lee Harvey Oswald claimed to be a member of the FPCC in 1963. The uncle-nephew relationship of Batista Falla and Paneque is documented by Peter Dale Scott, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, p. 340.

Commission Document 87 - Secret Service report of 08 Jan 1964 re: Oswald

12/4/63 report by Secret Service agent Ernest I. Aragon: "...the day before the Presidential visit to Miami of November 18, 1963. On the evening of November 17, 1963, Dr. Emilio Nunez Portunado was a guest speaker at a Cuban rally held at Bayfront Park, Miami, Florida, in honor of Dr. Jose Ignacio Rivero, now in exile in Miami, and the former owner and publisher of Diario La Marina in Havana, Cuba. The above rally was attended by 6000 to 8000 Cubans, and it was covered by the reporting agent in an effort to determine whether there would be any adverse reaction pursuant to the pending visit of the President on the following day."

John Newman • Bill Simpich

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