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Cryptonym: MONGOOSE

A major covert action program aimed at overthrowing the Castro regime in Cuba from November 1961 to October 1962. The Chief of Operations was Gen. Edward Lansdale, who coordinated the activities among the CIA, the State Department, and the Defense Department.

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1964-1968, Volume XXXII: Dominican Republic; Cuba; Haiti; Guyana Current Section: Note on U.S. Covert Actions

Source of definition provided above. "CIA units in Washington and Miami had primary responsibility for implementing MONGOOSE operations, which included military, sabotage, and political propaganda programs."

HSCA Report, Volume V Current Section: Narration by G. Robert Blakey, Chief Counsel and Staff Director

MONGOOSE relied "on the use of Cuban exiles and dissidents in Cuba" to overthrow the government. The work of the agents infiltrated or recruited before or during MOONGOOSE did not cease at the end of that operation. "Rather, it continued until it was eliminated by Cuban security organizations."

HSCA Report, Volume X Current Section: I. The Ingredients of an Anti-Castro Cuban Conspiracy

The MONGOOSE goal was to enlist 2000 Cuban exiles and dissidents.

Church Committee: Interim Report - Alleged Assassination Plots Involving Foreign Leaders Current Section: 3. At What Level Were the Castro Plots Authorized or Known About Outside the CIA?

Landsdale testified that he "never took up assassination with either the Attorney General or the President." Helms tesified (at p. 148) that "he believed the assassination activity was permissible and that it was within the scope of authority given to the Agency. McCone and other Kennedy Administration officials disagreed..."

HSCA Segregated CIA Collection (staff notes)/NARA Record Number: 180-10142-10036

Harvey orders agent teams into Cuba during the missile crisis. RFK takes "a great deal of exception" and McCone orders the mission halted. On October 30, the Special Group Augmented orders an end to all sabotage operations, which effectively marks the end of Operation MONGOOSE.


11/27/62 memo from C/TFW William K. Harvey to DDP Richard Helms: Harvey proposed "a gradual but substantial reduction in the expenditures and personnel of Task Force W. Consideration of the re-positioning of Task Force W within the Clandestine Service, possibly as a major component of the WH Division under different direction. The abolition of the operational Mongoose mechanism."

Bill Simpich

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