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Cryptonym: AMYELL-1

Definition:
Ira I. Wolfer, an American businessman and anti-Castro activist, with links to Manuel Ray and Paul Bethel. A cable in November, 1960, on the plan to sabotage the main power plant in Havana, seemed to indicate that AMYELL-1 was an "American businessman with opposition contacts."
Status:
Speculative
Discussion:
A cable in August of 1959 stated that Wolfer had been in reasonably close contact with Paul Bethel, the American Embassy attache in Havana. In addition, a October 21, 1960, dispatch was titled "Operational CI/Ira I, Wolfer," while a cable on the same day stated that Wolfer had contacted the KUJUMP (Office of Operations) office on October 19, as a "rep listened sympathetically but made no commitment." The cable also mentioned that Wolfer was one of the Miami representatives of Manuel Ray. In terms of the sabotage to the main power plant in Havana, in November of 1960, AMPAN-1 (Jose Ortega) allegedly did not know of the plan. Also, a cable in April of 1961 stated that the AMYELLS were part of the ACA (probably the Accion Civica Anti-Comunista). Furthermore, a CIA document on the UR in 1963 stated that Candido del Sol Curbelo had featured in AMYELL-1's trial, via NOTLOX and AMPANIC-14 (Juan de Jesus Arbelo Zabaleta). Curbelo was an associate of Clarence. According to Alberto Fernandez Hechevarria, (AMDENIM-1), Curbelo was executed in Cuba in September, 1962.
Sources:

Cuba 109 Correspondence DOS 2003-02-25 Grafeld-JHL

12/02/58, Air pouch from American Embassy in Havana: Page 3: ..."MILITARY: Army: 1. Conspiracy Uncovered. On Thursday evening, 27 November, SIM (Servicio Inteligencia Militar) placed under arrest a number of Cuban Army officers ranging in grade from Lt. Colonel down thru Lieutenant. Reports of the number detained and interrogated vary, but there may have been as many as 40-60 interrogated. Among those implicated were Lt. Col. Candido Curbelo del Sol, Lt. Col. San Martin y Fresnada, Major Pedro Castro y Rojas, and Lt. Laurcano Pino y Cruz. The latter is an aide of General Diaz Tamayo. As a result of the interrogation one active conspiracy against the Government was uncovered and effectively squashed..."

104-10267-10165: CABLE: SOURCE IS IRA I WOLFER, AMERICAN BUSINESSMAN, WHO IN EARLY

08/18/59: Cable from Havana to Director: "1. Source is Ira I. Wolfer, American businessman, who in early January 59 was connected with 26 July militia, Wolfer gave info to Paul Bethel, embassy press attache, with whom he has been in fairly close contact. Claimed he got his info from FNU Uziel, in charge transport workers retirement fund and unnamed rebel commander. 2. Date of recording not given and only person identified by Wolfer was Armando Cainas Milanes who allegedly conversed with unidentified embassy official. 3. Only embassy official known to have visited home of Gustavo de Los Reyes is Colonel Nichols, air att, who met Cainas Milanes at Reyes home on 15 July 59 on which occasion Cainas discussed plan for propaganda campaign and Nichols made non incriminatory and non committal response. 4. Since no KUBARK (CIA) officer attached to embassy has even been in Reyes home embassy official, if any, had to be non-KUBARK..."

104-10271-10242: DISPATCH: TRANSMITTAL OF MEMORANDUM OF CONVERSATION ABOUT MANOLO RAY

09/13/60: Dispatch from COS, Habana to Chief, WHD: "Attached is a self-explanatory memorandum of conversation about Manolo Ray. This is for the information of the Desk Officer. (Signed) Paula K. Thyfault." - - Page 3: Memorandum from Paul Bethel to Ambassador: Subject: Conversation with Ira Wolfer re Manolo Ray: "Ira Wolfer came to see me last evening, and we had breakfast together this morning. He is leaving for Miami to set up a hardware business; the business will also be a cover for his job, which is to get a supply of materials to the group of Manolo Ray. Wolfer saw Manolo Ray last night, whose code name is Pedro Martinez, and reported that Ray is in charge of the groups of men now operating in the Sierra Escambray. They are taking their orders from Ray and are under his discipline. Ray also told Ira that his liaison men from all over the island were in last week to give a report on local conditions and analysts of guajiros and labor support for Dr. Castro...According to Wolfer, Ray told him that it was necessary for members of his group to go through considerable sacrifice in order that the emerging resistance group and political affiliates will not be considered subservient to the United States...Wolfer will leave either today or tomorrow for Miami."

104-10179-10414: DISPATCH: OPERATIONAL/CI IRA I, WOLFER

10/21/60: Dispatch from Chief, JMASH to Chief, WH Division: "1. Reference, which stated that there were no local ODENVY (FBI) traces, should actually have read no derogatory information. 2. ODENVY has provided the following data on Dr. I. Wolfer, presumably identical with subject of reference cables. a. Subject was born 18 September 1918, at Bronx, New York. He was married to Angela Rosello, a Cuban citizen, on 3 January 1943. The couple has one child, born in 1945. Wolfer served in the U.S. Navy during World War II. He was in the export-import business in Havana, Cuba, for about twenty years, having been associated with the World Wide Export Company and the General Supply Company. b. Subject states that he was a former member of the Civil Resistance Group of the Cuban 26th July Movement. He revealed that he had became disillusioned with the latter group because of its Communist ties and broke with it in April 1959. Subject is reportedly an outspoken anti-Communist. c. The ODENVY report also indicates that Wolfer visited the U.S. Embassy in Havana on 23 August 1960, at which time he declared his anti-Communist sentiments, his dislike and distrust of the Fidel Castro regime and his intention to return to the United States. He stated that his (unintelligible) had been wiped out by the present regime and that he hoped to establish some sort of business in the United States."

104-10271-10196: CABLE: ONE IRA WOLFER WHO CLAIMS WAS IN EXPORT IMPORT BUSINESS

10/21/60: Cable from Director to MASH: "1. One Ira Wolfer who claims was in export import business Cuba about twenty years and now one of Miami reps Manolo Ray group advises: A. Met recently at social gathering New York several pro-Castro Cubans from whom learned FNU Barrera who employed Amb Bonsal residence HAVA is very pro-Fidel. He reportedly turned over GOC sticker which was be posted all American property Cuba designating same as American owned or occupied. Sticker then used as propaganda against U.S. B. Ray group has received no satisfaction from AMRASP and has decided go it alone. Ray now has boat. Badly needs explosives which Wolfer can obtain from Atlanta if gets official okay to do so. C. Ray family here badly need of financial support. If aid can be given should be thru Juan Estevez Ramiros or Raul Chibas. D. Napoleon Becquer, Dionisio Suarez and FNU Barandela from Morro Castle group and followers Huber Matos very anxious go New York with Ray reps Col. Ramon Barquin, Felipe Pazos and Raul Chibas. Cannot leave due ODURGE (U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service-INS) hold. 2. Wolfer phoned 19 Oct to KUJUMP (Office of Operations-OO) office where rep listened sympathetically but made no commitment. 3. No local including ODENVY (FBI) traces Wolfer."

104-10296-10046 CABLE: JULIO MESTRE, MEM BER MDC DIRECTORATE HERE, CONTACTED STA 22 NOV AND RELATED FOLL

11/23/60, Havana to Director (Phillips WH Div notified): "Julio Mestre, member MDC Directorate...contacted station 22 Nov and related foll: He and Jesus Fernandez Hernandez had been working past three nights at home of Sarah Emeline Hernandez Cata y Galt on 'Operation Unity'. Objective of ops is create dramatic show here which will demonstrate Manolo Ray is wrong when he telling contacts in U.S. that his group only one capable of action and which will create incident here demanding combined follow through by MRR, Autenticos, MDC, MAR and others due (that) they will have no other choice than fight for survival. Ops involves Jesus Fernandez and six others Cuban electric company proceeding to main control center Cuban electric company at Tallapiedra and blowing it up with plastic demolitions which they have obtained from AMPAN-1. Results will be black out of Havana and Santa Clara for six months. Demolition will be timed for 2300 hrs 23, 24, or 25 Nov. Immediately foll demolition AMPAN-1 will meet with sabotage reps MRR, MDC and Autenticos and distribute 20 hundred bombs which are on hand and will be used throughout Havana with principal targets Havana port area and PSP offices...(CIA officer Wilmer) Aretz noted that plan appeared poorly coordinated assure follow up to event if it does take place and it may precipitate complete destruction opposition by a desperate Castro. Mestre stated plan had not been coordinated FRD Miami and AMPALM-5/Jose Rasco intentionally left out but ops fully coordinated here among FRD sabotage chiefs by AMPAN-1. Braz Emb Secy Lacos on 22 Nov told emb pol officer Wayne Smith that Manolo Ray group planning blow up main power plant of Cuban Electric at 2300 hrs 22 Nov...station aware AMRUNG-1/Rogelio Gonzalez y Corso (MRR chief) appointed AMPAN-1 as chief action and sab for Havana area and had provided him plastic...Msg received from AMPAN-1 afternoon 22 Nov confirms plan blow up power plant, transformers, gas stas, & trucks, etc."

180-10145-10269

Manuel Ray file review shows "11/24/60 cable to Director from JMASH, meeting with AMCHIRP-1 (Ramon Barquin Lopez) on 11/23, revealed that he had information that MRP in Havana had capabilities to blow up power plant and TV station in Havana - a diversionary tactic planned to coordinate with Isle of Pines operation. Ray expects Isle of Pines operation support about 12/15/60; 11/24/60 cable to Director from Havana. Operation Unity involves MRR, MDI, OA, 30th of November Group and MAR (not MAR of Pepin Rivero). MAR and OA groups to blow electrical cable in Regla area. MDC group, at same time, to make assassination attempt on CARLOS RAFAEL RODRIGUEZ at University of Havana." - - - 11/25/60 cable from Havana to Director: "Night 24 Nov AMPAN-1 told Scorgory Operation Unity called off...Mestre said Ray group backing out of op because it did not want participation of any other group since hoped take full credit for op. Jesus Fernandez and other members '30 November' group did not show up for meet with AMPAN-1 night of 24 November and he has been unable to locate them. AMPAN-1 feels Ray group and 30 November playing politics and may poss try execute op on their own although A-1 believes they lack courage. A-1 said Ray group has 250 pounds TNT and not plastic...A-1 wishes (to) proceed with plan utilizing his group (MAR)...the assignments would be as follows: MAR commandos blow main terminal in Naranjito which supplies power to entire city Habana, Mariano, Regla, and Guanabacoa. Simultaneously attack Dieinero which controls electrical supply from Matanzas thereby negating possibility of accessing alternate source. OA group creates diversionary sab various places and knock out power lines Regla area which feed oil refineries; MDC engage in diversionary sab; MRR tasks include assassination attempts and sab..." https://www.maryferrell.org/showDoc.html?docId=19102&relPageId=2

104-10193-10064: CABLE RE: SUBJ - OPPOSITION PLANS TO SABOTAGE HAVANA MAIN POWER PLANT PADA CUBA, HABANA 29 NOV 1960

11/30/60, Cable from Havana to Director: Slugline INTEL: "SUPDATA Source: AMPAR-2. Jose Duarte Oropesa, member of MRP to AMYELL-1. AMPAL-1. REF HAVA 7023 (IN 47583)*. AMPAN-1 knows of no plan to blow plant 29 Nov. Poss exists this may be attempt Ray group get dump on FRD by striking at target first....SOURCES: A. Employee of power company (F). B. Member of MRP (F). C. American businessman with opposition contacts (C). C/S Comment: *AMPAN/1 (4) stated that operation unity was called off; felt that Ray group and 30 November group might possibly try to execute operation on their own."

124-10291-10267:

FBI document: Page 16: ..."On 2/7/61, Noel Shapiro, owner of the Shapiro Brothers and Wolfer Wholesale Hardware Company, 127 NW 5th St., Miami, advised that his brother, James, and Ira Wolfer were partners in the business. He stated that Wolfer, disillusioned with the Castro government, resigned his position as Press Relations Officer around March, 1959. Shapiro related that Wolfer was allegedly working against Castro with a group headed by Manuel Ray, a former official in the Castro government. On 2/13/61, Julio Klepach, 650 84th St., Miami Beach, (protect identity), advised that in 1958, prior to the fall of Batista in Cuba Ira Wolfer (105-76203) worked in an underground capacity with Manuel Ray in opposition to Batista. Informant described Ray as a former official in the Castro government who subsequently defected and was presently the leader of an anti-Castro organization known as MRP. Informant further advised that he had recently learned that Ira was currently assisting Ray in Miami in the MRP..."

104-10226-10256: CABLE RE AMBUD ACTIVITIES

04/10/61: Cable from JMWAVE to BELL: Page 2: ..."5. AS suitable targets for these appeals WAVE would suggest UR, MRR, MDC, DRE, FORD, Rescate, MRP, ACA (AMYELLS), 30 November. Both SW and WT channels should be used. Thru Licari WAVE has already offered make available to AMBUD-1 a means of commo with UR and has learned that neither AMBUD-1 nor AMDIP-1 professes any knowledge of existence of this group. If this typifies their awareness of resistance situation within Cuba then their need for winning friends among the home folks is greater than ever."

104-10166-10226: UNIDAD REVOLUCIONARIA:

CIA document: Page 17: ..."In an attempt to obtain information on UR paramilitary assets in Cuba, JMWAVE directed Alberto Fernandez in April 1962 to arrange for exfil of the UR Military Coordinator, Candido Curbelo del Sol (aka: Ricardo). Curbelo also was to bring full details on the UR 'naval plans:' and the UR in Cuba was to be instructed to cease contact with YOACRE, for reasons to be explained at the meeting with the Military Coordinator. (94) This message was sent by Sanchez via Antonio Comellas Ayala (Cuban) employee of Pan Am in Habana who made frequent trips to U.S.) for delivery to Sergio Fuentefria (aka: Daniel), UR General Coordinator in Cuba. (59) JMWAVE had originally planned to infiltrate Zayas into Cuba to obtain data on the UR status across the board, but Zayas refused the infil assignment and was terminated shortly thereafter. (223) He had also mis-managed UR training teams psychologically and financially, leading to the walk-out by Cid Crespo, Montero and others ca. February 1962. (129) Exfil of Curbelo did not materialize for reasons known best to the UR in Cuba. He was later arrested and, according to Alberto Fernandez, was executed in September, 1962. (223)..."

104-10166-10226: UNIDAD REVOLUCIONARIA:

04/16/63, CIA document: Page 60: ..."85. Curbelo, del Sol, Candido, AKA: 'Ricardo' (Handwritten: 201-325321): Former Mil Coord UR, Cuba; associate of Clarence, featured in AMYELL-1 trial, via NOTLOX and AMPANIC-14; once requested assistance of Swiss to enter YOACRE; suspected as provocateur by SMOTH; ca. 55 years old; former Col. in Batista army; arrested prior 3 Aug 62; alleged to have been executed Sept 2; present status not certain. (59;150;157;168;175; 212)..."

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Gavin McDonald • Bill Simpich

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