Juanita Castro, the younger sister of Cuban leaders Fidel and Raul Castro, worked for the CIA during some crucial years of the Cold War, she says in her new memoir.
The period of her cooperation, from 1961 to 1969, included the Cuban Missile Crisis, which changed the way the Cold War was being waged. To resolve the crisis, the Soviet Union agreed to dismantle the missiles it had placed in Cuba in exchange for assurances that the United States would not invade Cuba. In 1964, Castro decided to leave Cuba for good, becoming an exile in Miami. She worked with anti-Castro exile groups there, and continued to cooperate with the CIA, according to the book. The relationship ended when U.S. policy toward the Soviet Union changed during Richard Nixon’s presidency. As tensions eased with the Soviet Union, the United States would no longer back anti-Castro exiles, two CIA agents told her. When they asked her to use her influence to downplay rhetoric of a communist threat, she quit. The Cuban government had no immediate response to the publication of the book, Jorge Bolanos, chief of the Cuban Interest Section in Washington, told CNN en Espaol on Monday. “I haven’t received any reaction from the Cuban government,” he said. “I am not in the position to comment about a book which I have not read yet.” CNN’s Mariano Castillo and Carol Cratty contributed to this report.