On a sultry July day in 1944, a man walks into the "Wolf's Lair" carrying a briefcase. He is initiating a bold plot, one that aims to assassinate one of the world's most ruthless and powerful men, Adolf Hitler, and topple the whole of his Nazi government. Integral to this ambitious coup is what lies in his briefcase, a bomb. It is set to detonate ... the wheels are in motion. It is only a matter of time now.
Both before and after Fidel Castro came to power in Cuba on January 1, 1959, the major media in America portrayed him as a champion of the Cuban people and a freedom fighter who was not a communist. It was not until December 1961, when Castro himself said he was a communist, that the media acknowledged this truth. Later, in an April 26, 1963 press conference, Dwight Eisenhower, who was president when Castro came to power, opined: "It would have taken a genius of prophecy to know that Castro was a Communist when he took control of Cuba." But Eisenhower did not say that Robert Welch, who founded the John Birch Society the month before Castro came to power, was warning at the time that Castro was a communist.
On January 1, 2009, Cubans of all political persuasions will mark the 50th anniversary of the collapse of the Fulgencio Batista government, and the establishment of the Castro dictatorship. Few, however, will remember how some elements in the U.S. government and media played a significant role in aiding Castro in his bid for communist domination of the island.