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Castro Ordered Kennedy's Assassination,
According to a German Documentary

German filmmaker Wilfried Huismann spent years digging into the assassination of US President John F. Kennedy. His documentary "Rendezvous With Death -- Why Kennedy Had to Die," about Cuban leader Fidel Castro's role in the murder is set to premiere Friday, January 6, 2006 on German public TV.

In an interview with Germany's international braodcaster Deutch Welle, Huismann says he spent three years researching for his documentary in Mexico, the United States and Cuba.

He found strong ties between Lee Harvey Oswald, the man who murdered Kennedy, and Fidel Castro. Several witnesses are shown in the film, including Cuban former secret agents, U.S officials, and a Russian intelligence source. Huismann also did some research in Mexican security archives.

"Oswald had been an agent for the Cuban intelligence services since November 1962. He was a political fanatic and allowed himself to be used by the Cuban intelligence services to kill John F. Kennedy," Huismann added.

The film, shown to journalists in Berlin on Wednesday, says Oswald traveled to Mexico City by bus in September 1963, seven weeks before the Kennedy shooting, and met agents at the Cuban embassy there who paid him $6,500.

Oscar Marino, a former Cuban agent and a key source for the documentary, told Huismann that Oswald himself had volunteered for the assassination mission and Havana had exploited him.

"Oswald was a dissident. He hated his country…Oswald offered to kill Kennedy," Marino said in the film.

He said he knew with certainty that the assassination was an operation of the Cuban secret service G-2, but would not say if it was ordered by Fidel Castro.

"It was a Cuban reaction to the repeated attempts of the Kennedy brothers, above all the younger Kennedy, Robert, to get rid of Fidel Castro through political assassination -- a duel between the Kennedys and the Castros, which, like in a Greek tragedy, left one of the duelists dead," Huismann said to DW journalist Jose Ospina Valencia.

After Kennedy's death on Nov. 22, 1963, Huismann says, Lyndon B. Johnson found out that the US had a secret, illegal murder program focused on Fidel Castro. He hadn't been informed before that. He knew that Castro knew, and he was afraid that the discovery of these mutual assassination attempts could force him to carry out an invasion of Cuba, which he believed could result in a third -- nuclear -- world war. And as a conservative pragmatist, he decided within a few hours, in agreement with Robert Kennedy, to drop the whole thing and to ban FBI and CIA officials from pursuing the trail leading to Cuba.

Laurence Keenan, an officer of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) who was sent to Mexico City immediately after Kennedy's death to investigate a possible Cuban connection, said he was recalled after just three days and the probe was aborted.

"This was perhaps the worst investigation the FBI was ever involved in," Keenan said. "I realized that I was used. I felt ashamed. We missed a moment in history."
Questioned about a possible prosecution of Castro for his alleged responsibility in the Kennedy's murder, the filmmaker said it could never happen.

"In my opinion, even the conservative Bush government wouldn't take any political or legal steps to avenge the crime. Then they'd also have to put the American politicians on trial who were involved in assassinating foreign statesmen. They include Alexander Haig, who testified as a witness in my film, and others who are still alive," Huismann said.

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Published on January 5, 2006

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