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Cryptonym: AMSTRUT-1

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Virginia Vasco Leitao da Cunha, wife of the Brazilian Ambassador to Cuba.
AMSTRUT-1 reported on meetings with the leader of JURE, Manuel Ray Rivero (AMBANG-1). Bill Harvey reported to John McCone in July 1962 that she worked with the CIA in using Juanita Castro (AMSTRUT-1), sister of Fidel and Raul Castro, to provide intelligence against the Castro regime. See 104-10103-10072, p. 5: AMSTRUT-1 was 201-316646.

157-10011-10006: INDEX CARDS, JUNE & JULY 1975

May-July 1962: Persons involved - CIA director John McCone, Chief/TFW William Harvey, and Virginia Leitao de Cunha, re MONGOOSE: "Efforts were made to establish contact with Juana Castro Ruz, half sister of Fidel and Raul Castro Ruz because she opposed the strong Communist nature of the Cuban regime. According to Mrs. Virginia Leitao de Cunha, she contacted Ruz and obtained Ruz agreement to provide intelligence on the Cuban political leadership and to work against the Cuban Communist regime, 'short of engaging in activity which might result in direct personal harm to her brothers - Raul and Fidel.' Arrangements were being made for direct recruitment of Ruz in Mexico." Source: Memorandum for McCone by William Harvey re Juana Castro Ruz, 10 July 1962 (02561). Staff: di Genova. Date: 7/1/75. - - - 2022 release, page 38: https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/2022/157-10011-10006.pdf


1962: "c. Juana de la Caridad Castro Ruz (201-218126), younger sister of Fidel and Raul, was recruited, trained and returned to Cuba. She (REDACTION) and functioned as a JMWAVE Station propaganda asset which included broadcasting into Cuba. d. (REDACTION) Major Raul Jaime Diaz-Arguelles Garcia (201-269882), reported to CIA from Havana through Virginia Maria Lettao de Cunha (AMSTRUT-1) (201-316646), the wife of the Brazilian Ambassador to Russia, who travelled to Cuba for TFW from (REDACTION) where she lived..." - - - 2022 release, page 5: https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/2022/104-10102-10221.pdf See CIA document, 2/10/77. - - - The redactions (in brackets below) in part d) above were "(Wife of) Major Raul Jaime Diaz Arguelles..." and ..."for TFW from (Rio) where she lives." See 2022 release, "EFFORTS TO SPLIT THE REGIME" from William K. Harvey, page 7, number 10: https://www.archives.gov/files/research/jfk/releases/2022/104-10102-10222.pdf


07/12/62, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: "SUPDATA: AMSTRUT-1 on 6 and 8 July 62 in conversations with Manuel 'Manolo' Antonio Ray Rivero (201-239298) while Ray was in the JMWAVE area. Among other things which Ray said were: He was working for the Puerto Rican Government on a workers housing project with which he was very happy; he is a great admirer of Governor Munoz Marin; he is a great admirer of GPIDEAL and believes GPIDEAL is sincere in his foreign policy and wishes to help Latin America; he is optimistic about the Cuban situation and foresees the downfall of Castro; he has travelled to Washington, D.C., and has talked to U.S. officials and U.S. politicians who were sympathetic with his problems and efforts. Ray also stated that CIA has him blocked he explained by saying that CIA does not like him and believes that this was caused by the case officer who debriefed him on his arrival in U.S. He claims the CO tried to impose CIA's ideas on him and so CO and Ray had an argument. He feels that CIA does not understand him or his ideas. He further said that AMBUD-1 and wealthy Cubans in U.S are against him and have marked him as an expounder for the line 'Fidelism without Fidel.' On 8 July AMSTRUT had an afternoon meeting with Ray which was also attended by Rogelio Cisneros Diaz. FYI, Carlos Hevia (201-78043); Roberto Agramonte may be either the son, Roberto Agramonte del Rio, or the father Roberto Daniel Agramonte Pechardo (201-248156). Additional info on Ray activities U.S. in UFG 1223 pouch."


07/17/62, Draft memo to CH/PM: REPORTING AGENT: AMCONCERT-1 ('PACO' scored out). "Eloy Guttierrez Menoyo went to say goodbye to Mrs. AMSTRUT-1 ('Virginia Leitao da Cunha' scored out) on the night of Saturday the 11th (possibly 12th)..."


08/22/62, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Slugline RYBAT GYROSE AMLASH: "1. Ref B reported AMSTRUT-1 received letter from friend Cuba stating wife AMLASH-1 telling friends AMLASH-1 does not intend return Cuba from Helsinki. Suggest AMLASH-1 be advised in general terms of wife's indiscretion. 2. AMLASH-1 friends mentioned para 1 Ref A provided lead this op but unaware A-1 recruitment. WAVE will advise friends op flopped. 3. WAVE believes AMWHIP-1 only non CIA who knows AMLASH-1 recruited. Please advise what AMWHIP-1 will be instructed tell friends para 2 re AMWHIP-1 op. 4. WAVE will include name AMLASH-1 in article or broadcast attacking leading personalities DR 13 March Movement. C/S Comment: *AMLASH-1 says newspaper publicity concerning his activity at ZRPENNY could do much dispel loose talk Miami he plans defect." Also see 104-10215-10235, pp. 8-9: "August 1962: AMSTRUT-1 (wife of former Brazilian Ambassador to Cuba) in Miami area on Aug 62 reported she received letter from friend Cuba stating that wife, Cubela's Mirtha Novoa Delgado de Cubela, was telling his friends that he does not intend return Cuba from Helsinki....(PARI 2743 (IN 10511) 23 August 62)..." (From 10/24/64 Memo: Subject: Weaknesses and Derogatory Information)


08/29/62, Cable from Rio de Janeiro to Director: Slugline RYBAT GYROSE AMSTRUT-1: "1. Since arrival RIOD as AMBUD representative, AMTOAD-1 has been in contact with SUBJ using her on welfare cases and to support his demarches at Foreign Office. This is in line with cover of both and harmed security neither, even after SUBJ made early June trip to Miami and returned. 2. Lately AMTOAD and Rio AMBARBs have been seeing much more of SUBJ and involving her in their propaganda activities including exploitation of reported arrival Soviet troops Cuba and bombarding Havana suburb. Was not feasible to tell AMTOAD and friends to lay off without pinpointing SUBJ, and SUBJ not dependable about executing instructions to break off contact with old asylees. 3. 27 Aug AMTOAD told me SUBJ had told him IDEN A of Ref was disaffected, corresponded frequently with her in anti-Castro context. AMTOAD said since SUBJ said letters were not available, he concluded she gave them to someone. Said if it to us he would drop matter cold but if not to us would pass on as lead to his HQs and investigate further whether SUBJ on right side or not. Also indicated he presumed CIA paid her June Miami Cuba trip. 4. In view of paras 2 and 3 plus our excellent relation AMTOAD and desirability getting him to cut back his contact with her, report anything he heard affecting her security, I told AMTOAD: A. Although SUBJ probably too flighty to use as agent, we are interested in her to make appeals here and abroad on behalf Vargas Gomez and other arrested burns.* B. She may soon make another trip along such lines and to balance it probably better he drop or taper off sharply contact at least for month or two in order not reduce her influence. C. We will investigate the leads he got from her and he should not originate any other investigations which might cross and compromise him or us. SC Comment: *Being serviced for confirmation."

104-10185-10265: 201 FILE OF PROTECTABLE SOURCE.

09/23/62 (possible 09/24/62), Cable from Mexico City to Director: Slugline RYBAT GYROSE AMSTRUT: "1. Sloman made telephone call to AMSTRUT-2 at 1710 hours 23 Sept...After short introduction Sloman turned phone over to AMSTRUT-1 who suggested meet 24 Sept. AMSTRUT-2 said she alone at home except for maid and free then...AMSTRUT-1 told her proceed to previously selected meeting site in front of teahouse at corner Reforma and Calle Rio Else where 'Enrique' (Sloman) would be waiting. 2. Arrangements made have Andrew F. Merton surveil AMSTRUT-2 residence beginning 1745 hours...3. AMSTRUT-2 arrived designated meeting point 1845. Renard surveillance established no one followed AMSTRUT-2 and Sloman as they walked to safe apartment along virtually deserted street. 4. AMSTRUT-2 slightly tense at onset, but after meeting AMSTRUT-1 and having drink became relaxed, affable and cooperative...6. Meeting lasted until 2300 hours...but emphasis rapport and creating atmosphere of trust on part AMSTRUT-2. Basis Sloman and AMSTRUT-1 account meet these efforts highly successful...7..Sloman explained to AMSTRUT-2 that travel Miami insecure...8. Renard telephoned apartment 2300 hours to see if AMSTRUT-2 had left and as result misunderstood telephone conversation with AMSTRUT-1 arrived at apartment while AMSTRUT-2 departing. AMSTRUT-1 introduced Renard as 'Fred' and pleasantries exchanged. Sloman escorted AMSTRUT-2 to area near residence...10. AMSTRUT-1 behaving well and anticipate no further handling problem. 11. Next meeting AMSTRUT-2 to take place afternoon 24 Sept. AMSTRUT-2 agreed our suggestion go on weekend trip with Sloman, Hibbert and AMSTRUT-1 beginning CA 27 Sept in order be available for full time debriefing and training...C/S Comment: *Requested Sloman and Hibbert proceed MEXI ASAP, take over AMSTRUT-1 from Renard and proceed with op."


11/08/62, Dispatch from COS, JMWAVE to Task Force: "1. On 20 October AMCORE-2 told AMSTRUT-1 that on approximately 1 October he had a meeting with Identity A and that later in the meeting GPIDEAL entered and talked with the two of them. According to AMCORE-2 GPIDEAL told him that he should be confident that the U.S. was doing something on the Cuban matter. 2. AMCORE-2 told AMSTRUT-1 that he also had a meeting with Identity B. According to AMCORE-2, Identity B was mainly interested in learning what would happen in Cuba if Fidel Castro were killed. Identity B wished to know if 'Che', Raul and Bla Roca would take over and be able to lead the Cubans. AMCORE-2 told AMSTRUT-1 that he had received word from inside that an attempt was made on Fidel Castro's life and, as a result, approximately 70 persons were arrested. According to AMCORE-2, Identity B's questions and his mention of the attempt on Fidel Castro's life must mean that the Americans are trying to liquidate Fidel Castro. 3. AMCORE-2 told AMSTRUT-1 that AMBUD-1 had offered AMCORE-2 the post of Prime Minister after Cuba had been liberated. In AMSTRUT-1's opinion on this visit AMCORE-2 appeared calmer and more sure of himself and the Cuban situation than on his previous meetings with AMSTRUT-1." Page 3: "Separate Cover Attachment to UFGA-6539: IDENTITY A - Mr. Pierre Salinger, Presidential Press Secretary. IDENTITY B - Mr. Edwin Martin of the Department of State."


11/11/62, Cable from Rio de Janeiro to Director: Slugline RYBAT GYROSE PBRUMEN: "1. AMSTRUT-1 will have AMBANG-1 report by 11 November. 2. AMSTRUT-1 reported received letter from Mariana, wife Raul Diaz Arguelles, dated 17 October reporting Raul going USSR and wants divorce before departure. Wife aware Raul has another women. 3. A-1 planning write letters to Juanita and Celia Agramonte in keeping ostensible Cuban sympathies: This correspondence also as cover in event need travel Cuba. 4. A-1 plans join husband for two-week visit in Paris about 17 November at close Geneva conference of Braz Ambassadors satellite countries." See 1994.03.17.10:43:28:470005 - page 9 - this looks like AMSTRUT-1's interview with Ray; the next two pages are the English translation, and afterwards is the original in Spanish. Ray states at p. 10: "As for the position of Ray towards the 'Company' (note: CIA), he is interested in getting along with that organization. He told me: 'What does one gain by having a controversy with them? That does not solve any problem, and this has always been my opinion, from the beginning of the fight..."


02/04/63, Dispatch from COS, JMWAVE to Chief, Task Force W: Page 2: "8..a...However, the original source of the information given in Attachment C of UFGA-4977 was a letter brought out of Cuba by AMSTRUT-1 about early July 1962. Said letter contained a $25 money order, issued at Station No. 9, New Orleans, on 16 March 1962, for Jorge Medina Bringuier and purchased by Maria Teresa Medina. The envelope, addressed to Sra. Consuelo C. de Rivas in Mexico City, bore the notation, 'For Carlos Prado,' and contained a note, 'This money order for $25 is for Carlos Prado from his mother,' in addition to the money order. There is one Carlos Prado in Mexico. He is studying engineering and is the brother of Faustino Prado Garcia, an engineer who works close to 'Che' Guevara and is of current KUTUBE interest. Faustino Prado is married to Clara Artime, a sister of Josefina Artime, who is a close friend of AMGLEN-9, and she is also of current KUTUBE interest. When AMSTRUT-2, who could have given this letter to AMSTRUT-1 to take out of Cuba, was in Mexico City she called Carlos Prado by telephone at 249769 and told him that she was a friend of his mother. This Prado family is a large one, and includes another brother, Angel, who is in Spain, a sister who is a nun in Italy, and another brother who is a doctor in New York City. Additional data could be secured on this family from AMSTRUT-2 if desired. However, it seems probable that this money order may have been sold in Cuba by Jorge Medina and purchased, sooner or later, by the mother of the Carlos Prado who is currently a student in Mexico. A copy of the material carried out by AMSTRUT-1 is being forwarded herewith. It will be noted that a part of the attachment was disseminated as UFG-1239, 13 July 1962."


09/16/63, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Slugline TYPIC YOBITE AMWORLD: "1, On 4 Sept Elania Germania (Bernal) de Paula reported to AMCONCERT-1 that she had learned from brother-in-law, Manuel Ray, that he had recently been in Europe where he negotiated arms purchases in Belgium. Contact man for purchase was Col. Ramon Barquin. Ray also spent several days PARI visiting AMSTRUT-1 daughter. According Bernal, Ray very happy over results trip over results trip and told her they would soon be fighting in Cuba. 2. Ray indicated people in Venezuela had helped him greatly but did not elaborate. Bernal opines Ray may also be getting aid U.S. since he has had several discussions with Enrique Ruiz Williams. Ray told Bernal he completely opposed Nicaraguan venture, since he cannot align self with dictators like Batista or the Somozas. No index."


12/01/63, Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Slugline RYBAT DYVOUR PBRUMEN AMSTRUT: "1. Assume AMSTRUT-1 referring to letter from AMSTRUT-2 reported RIOD 2211. This letter sent out via (REDACTION) diplomatic pouch and mailed MEXI. Therefore would be insecure for AMSTRUT-1 attempt reply to this letter via open mail. Likewise unwise send reply to (REDACTION) Ambassador since known from past experience he does not deliver mail but rather notifies AMSTRUT-2 by phone that he holding mail for her. 2. Please inform AMSTRUT-1 we arranging for issuance visas which AMSTRUT-2 requested. While we appreciate AMSTRUT-1 concern re delay in replying, have notified AMSTRUT-2 via secure channel that her letter to AMSTRUT-1 was received and forwarded to WAVE. 3. AMSTRUT-1 may be told that AMSTRUT-2 has reported her residence under police surveillance and that her house twice raided by police. Therefore conceivable that even harmless letter from AMSTRUT-1 could be misinterpreted as something sinister by security service who apparently looking for evidence against AMSTRUT-2. 4. WAVE not aware any overt correspondence between AMSTRUT-1 and AMSTRUT-2 since AMSTRUT-2 recruitment Oct 62. If no correspondence has taken place, WAVE believes not desirable for AMSTRUT-1 send any letter now. However, if AMSTRUT-1 has sent occasional (unintelligible) letter, would not object her sending via open mail short Christmas greeting. However, believe any reply sent by AMSTRUT-1 should not make reference to recent AMSTRUT-2 message."

John Newman • MFF • Bill Simpich

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