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Cryptonym: AMVANG-2

Definition:
Francisco Saralegui. A cable in March of 1961 stated that AMVANG-2 was a Cuban journalist. Saralegui worked closely with Miguel Angel Quevedo on the Bohemia Libre magazine in the 1960's. Also known as Bebo.
Status:
Speculative
Discussion:
In a memo by Bernard E. Reichhardt (probably CIA officer Ken M. Crosby) in October, 1960, Francisco Saralegui was referred to as "Bebo." In addition, a memo in December of 1960 stated that Quevedo and Saralegui had been in contact with WH/4/Prop in the past. They had a meeting with Frank Bender (alias used by Gerry Droller) in which Saralegui and Quevedo stated that they had always been opposed to Batista and favored "evolutionary changes in Cuba." They both denied belonging to any political party, and particularly to Manuel Ray's party. Furthermore, Saralegui asked whether or not he could support Pedro Diaz Lanz on two or three missions into Cuba for the purpose of promoting Bohemia magazine propaganda coverage. Also, Francisco Saralegui requested assistance in locating two special engines he needed for a boat. Morevoer, a memo in January, 1961, mentioned that Saralegui provided financial assistance to Pedro Diaz Lanz for his anti-Castro activities. Also, a document in April of 1962, mentioning AMVANG-2 and 3, appeared to include "Bebo" in a passage. Saralegui had the nickname "Bebo," as mentioned above. In addition, a FBI memo in March, 1963, stated that Francisco Saralegui was the publisher of "Bohemia Libre," and was connected with Foreign Publications, Inc., in Miami. It may have been Manuel Quevedo who was the publisher and owner of Bohemia Libre at this time. However, the memo was correct in adding that Bohemia had just been moved to Venezuela for publication. The memo also mentioned that Saralegui was allegedly a close associate of Juan Bosch, President of the Dominican Republic. In terms of two documents in September of 1963, mentioning a (FNU) Saralegui in connection with the Comandos Libres, it is possible that this was a reference to Francisco Saralegui. One document stated that he was a Cuban exile millionaire. The Comandos Libres inboard motorboats were owned by (FNU) Saralegui.
Sources:

1994.05.10.14:07:53:250007: Reel 27, Folder O - MRP, PART I.

10/19/60: Memorandum for the record from Bernard E. Reichhardt: Subject: Report of Contact with Miguel Quevedo, Publisher of Bohemia, and Francisco 'Bebo' Saralegui, 16 October 1960: "1. To open the discussion with subjects, I said that I had been informed that they wished to discuss certain aspects of Cuban exile politics and that I, as a close observer of these affairs, was happy to do so. There then ensued, however, a 15-minute interlude, during which Quevedo held forth giving a complete history of his record of opposition to Cuban government excesses, staunch pro-Americanism, anti-communism, etc, etc. 2. Having gotten this out of the way, we got to the point. They began by expounding the much-used argument that the FRD is ineffectual because of the lack of following in Cuba on the part of the individuals who head up the Frente, and the dire need for leadership in the Cuban exile community...3. Against this line-up, they presented in contract Miro Cardona as an apolitical figure of national stature, who could command respect and provide leadership; Raul Chibas/Manuel Ray as individuals truly representative of the Cuban revolution and widely known to be such in Cuba; and, lastly, Barquin as the professional soldier, national hero, popular national figure, etc..."

1994.03.16.15:18:41:400005: Reel 15, Folder D - RAY, MANUEL

12/19/60: Contact Report from Withheld: Subject: Meeting with Miguel Quevedo and Francisco Saralegui on 14 December 1960 at the Commodore Hotel in New York: "1. Background: Quevedo and Saralegui who have been in contact with WH/4/Prop in the past had asked their American contacts what political line Bohemia Libre magazine should pursue. They also had complained of not being able to get sufficient advertising for their magazine. In view of the fact Quevedo is close to Ray (Ray claims Quevedo is a member of the MRP) it is also felt that a Bender contact with these two Cubans would be desirable in order to put additional pressure on Ray and his MRP. Against this background a meeting between Bender, Saralegui and Quevedo was arranged... 3. Quevedo and Saralegui then outlined their own political position somewhat as follows. They have always been opposed to Batista and were always in favor of evolutionary changes in Cuba. This political posture has always been reflected in the Bohemia magazine and would not seem to differ in any way from what Bender has outlined to them previously. They vehemently denied belonging to any political party and especially ot the party of Manuel Ray. Quevedo said Ray was indeed to radical. On the other hand, many points of the Ray program are, of course, most appealing to the Cuban masses. He said that he was not a personal friend of Ray but nevertheless had considerable influence over him. He was a very close friend of Chibas...6. Saralegui asked whether or not he could utilize Pedro Diaz Lanz for two or three sorties into Cuba for the purpose of having Bohemia prop. I said that I would have no objection to this with the understanding that I would be able to do nothing for Pedro Lanz taking off from American bases; in fact, I preferred not to know about any of this."(CONTINUED BELOW)

1994.03.16.15:18:41:400005: Reel 15, Folder D - RAY, MANUEL

12/19/60: Contact Report from Withheld: Subject: Meeting with Miguel Quevedo and Francisco Saralegui on 14 December 1960 at the Commodore Hotel in New York: "7. The two Cubans then told me the Swan programs were bad because they were not truthful. 8. Saralegui asked me for help in locating two special engines he needed for a boat. 9. Saralegui and Quevedo told me that they heard Sotus was leaving Cuba on a boat and they wondered whether Huber Matos was on the same vehicle. I expressed ignorance regarding this operation. 10. The meeting was adjourned with an agreement that I would give the go-ahead sign to (REDACTION) in connection with the advertising problem, that Quevedo and I would meet regularly to examine Bohemia future policy, that Quevedo would talk to Manuel Ray and that Quevedo would think about the people he would recommend for a future provisional government in Cuba."

104-10260-10227: MEMORANDUM: 1 THE ALLEGED $2,800 PAYMENT IS PRESUMED TO BE PART OF THE MONEY GIVEN

01/09/61: Memorandum: "1. The alleged $2,800 payment is presumed to be part of the money given to Diaz Lanz by Saralegui as a personal loan in support of Diaz Lanz' anti-Castro activities. 2. Diaz Lanz is, of course, preparing his aircraft for the Vuelo de Verdad and instructions given by him to aircraft technicians including the possible use of national flags on the nose of the aircraft would confirm that Diaz intends to visit a number of countries..."

180-10143-10182:

01/23/61: Memo for record by Michael M. Maney: "Re alleged telecon between Rufo Lopez Fresquet and President Kennedy. In a telecon with Francisco Saralegui (Bohemia Libre) on this date, he confided to me that he had been told by Lopez Fresquet of a conversation which Lopez had had with the President on Saturday. He was promised that once a beachhead was established in Cuba, a provisional government should be set up constituted by Fresquet, Miro and Varona. President allegedly promised that U.S. would recognize government. Lopez added that after first mentioning this to Miguel Angel Quevedo and Saralegui he had been called by White House and reprimanded for having divulged information passed to him in strictest confidence."

104-10193-10274: CABLE: SUPDATA SOURCE AMVANG-2 FROM ROBERTO SUAREZ, HEAD OF MRP UNDERGROUND I HAVA WHO ARRIVED MIAMI 21 MARCH

03/24/61: Cable from JMWAVE to Director: Slugline JMZIP INTEL: "SUPDATA source AMVANG-2 from Roberto Suarez (Handwritten note above: de Cardenas?), head of MRP underground in HAVA who arrived Miami 21 March. Suarez got info from penetration agents in Cuba navy official circles...Source: Cuban journalist (C) from a member of an anti-government group in Havana with good contacts in Cuban navy circles (F).

104-10192-10270: EXTRACT:CONTACT WITH AMVANG-2 AND A-3

04/03/62: CIA document: Handwritten note: "Extract from contact 3 April 62 by telephone with AMVANG-2 and A-3 + Richard (Unintelligible) in (REDACTION) office in N.Y. (in AMVANG CIA file)." Printed section (very faint print): "7. Reorganization of the MRP: Bebo said he has been working in recent (unintelligible) faction to get control of the MRP, which he has now obtained. This faction has (unintelligible) Ray from his position of (unintelligible) Reynol Gonzalez (unintelligible) all the provinces of Cuba except Oriente."

104-10271-10129: OPERATIONAL TRANSMITTAL OF TRANSLATION OF LETTERS OF 7 JUNE 1962 ADDRESSED MRP NATIONAL DIRECTORATE IN CUBA

07/10/62: Dispatch from Chief, Task Force W to COS, JMWAVE: "1. Although you have probably received a copy of subject letter through your sources, we are forwarding, under separate cover, a Spanish-to-English translation of a copy of the letter which was obtained by Harmon V. Tardock from AMVANG-2 during the former's TDY at WAVE. Tardock was on his way to the airport at the time and therefore did not have an opportunity to furnish Station a copy. 2. Also enclosed, under separate cover, is a memorandum commenting on the subject letter, which was prepared by a KUWOLF (Psychological and Paramilitary Staff) staff member at Headquarters.

124-10217-10072:

03/25/63: FBI report from Miami: Titled: Haitian Revolutionary Activities; Internal Security - Haiti: Page 6: ..."On March 8, 1963, informant learned that Roger Rigaud and William Johnson went to see Francisco Saralegui, who is the publisher of 'Bohemia Libre,' and is connected with Foreign Publications, Inc., in Miami. Saralegui has just moved the publication of 'Bohemia Libre' from the United States to Venezuela, where he will publish the paper in Spanish. He is supposedly a close associate of Juan Bosch, President of the Dominican Republic. Roger Rigaud told Saralegui that his brother, Pierre Rigaud, has an armed force at the Santo Domingo border at present. Roger Rigaud would like to go to Santo Domingo to see Juan Bosch and arrange with him to send propaganda messages from the Dominican border to Haiti on the other side. He also wants to make sure Pierre Rigaud does not act prematurely. Saralegui said a trusted courier was coming from Santo Domingo on Monday, and he wanted Rigaud to meet this individual and discuss his plans further..."

202-10001-10106: CUBAN POLICY; INFORMATION CONCERNING

09/24/63: Field Information Report: Country: Cuba. Subject: Plan of Comandos Libres to attack the Henequen plant at La Conchita, Matanzas Province, on 24 or 25 September: Page 2: ..."4. The Comandos have two inboard motorboats which were owned by the Cuban exile millionaire Saralegui (FNU). Both craft were being repaired at a large garage at 218 NW 20th Terrace, Miami, until 21 September when they were moved..."

124-90065-10010:

09/30/63: FBI report from Miami: Titled: Cubans Libres (Free Cubans)...Page 2: "According to this source, the group has two inboard motorboats owned by (First Name Unknown) Saralegui, which were located at 218 Northwest 20th Terrace, Miami, until September 21, 1963, when they were moved. The group has a membership of about 25 men, including Morales and the following: Fernandez Rodriguez, Treasurer; Jorge Rodriguez Triana, Reinaldo Lermo Hernandez, Eduardo Fueyo, Sergio Sanchez, Secretary; Pablo Carreno, Liaison; Evangelio Rufin Sanabria, Jorge Rufin Lustre, Juan Espinosa Gonzalez, Ramon Cubenas Conde, Bernardo Escobar Ferro, Humberto Lopez Davila, Manuel Dupont Rivas, Ridel Calero Rufin, Juan Rufin Lustre, Manuel Benitez Benitez, Luis Arguelles. According to this source, the office of this group was at Apartment 5, 1469 Southwest 4th Street, Miami. As of early July, 1963, the group had six finned aerial bombs about 4 1/2 feet long and a box of .50 calibre ammunition at 4855 East 10th Court, Hialeah, Florida. As of July 15, 1963, the group was interested in acquiring a 27-foot launch with two 280 horsepower engines and a quantity of arms and ammunition, including a 75 mm recoilless rifle, two machine guns, five submachine guns, five semi-automatic rifles,and a box of fragmentation grenades."

Contributors:
Gavin McDonald

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