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tv   Book TV Viewer Call- In  CSPAN  November 20, 2011 2:30pm-3:15pm EST

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national policy but somehow we have to find a way to break the psychology. i am happier if i have something to look forward to in the morning so i do not just complain all the time. one thing you can do is make something good happen. hire somebody. i have a company that is the largest mass mailing company in the country if you get "sports illustrated" every month you got it from them and most other magazines. on november 1st, they challenged every country in the united states with 500 or more employees to hire one more person. they said it even wal-mart hired just one more person there be another 1 million people working in a month and it would change the psychology of america.
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just do something then you can tell the members of congress what you did and ask them to follow suit. >> host: thank you all very much. i hope you will do that and by the block. [applause] -- by the buck. >> thing keogh. [applause] >> booktv live coverage from the miami book fair international continues to #2 of a 2011 miami book fair. it is the big street fair here on the campus of miami-dade. of three events still happening we have another call and with jim lehrer.
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we still have some webcast happening at isabel wilkerson will, then chat -- jeht mahal to talk about herblock you may remember her at the national book festival and then jim lehrer will be speaking in chapman hall as well and in the miami book fair 2011 concludes with author michael moore at 6:00 p.m. eastern that is nine as well. one of the co-founders is ms. caplan and he joins us now on our set. how did this get started and when? >> this is the 28 the book fair and it was started because the president of
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miami-dade college called a number of us together in an attempt to bring life back to downtown miami was suffering from rough economic times and it is thought if we could bring literary culture to downtown we might be able to unite the community at the same time to bring some focus. >> host: the owner of books & books and your invited to participate. >> we had been opened two years. will be open and 30 years. >> host: what was a festival like 1982. >> the first was 1984 as a two day festival but even then we had significant authors, even allen ginsberg came the thing that was so heartening was when you thought of miami back in 1984 you did not think a lot of serious reading got done but what really happened was
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people started to stream into the book fair and we knew we were onto something. >> host: this is one of the few that is a weeklong. >> after two days it went to a full weekend and people were clamoring for more so we decided to do evening events leading up. >> host: how many authors? bill my between 250 and 450,000 come to the street festival and this year we have about 400 writers. >> host: it does cost to get an. >> is $8 of your a student it is less or if you are a senior citizen you could become a member of the miami book fair and that brings the admission down. >> host: lourdes is that money go? >> to the running of the festival.
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we are not for profit and funded a lot by the college indirect costs coming from the county and the state. >> host: regular viewers of booktv would have seen year earlier this morning but from new york city. he was at the literary award at the national book awards what is the significance of that award? >> it is like a service award for lifetime achievement are things you have done for the literary community to bring culture. it was a very humbling experience to be in that room with so many remarkable writers and publishers the previous winners were those like my a hero. it was quite moving for me to be included. >> host: and people are not familiar where are you located? >> it is called bookspan books and we have three stores that we own in south
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florida then we have four affiliated stores comment one in westhampton in one in the cayman islands but we have partners with those stores. >> host: what is businesslike? >> i think the death of the book has been greatly a exaggerated and we are getting into another period. >> before we move on to one more topic what is the website? where they can get information on next year? >> anything. ticket events. >> now we have jumped into the fire and have decided to get into publishing. it claimed the today's came about because of two wonderful idea is one was
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called blue christmas that you have their and the subtitle is holiday stories for the rest of us edited by the wonderful writer and a collection of original stories by some remarkable writers and they are dark and unusual christmas stories that is something we publish as well. >> what is the capital expense of getting into publishing? >> it was not an expensive but we published 5,000 copies if we sell 2000 may break even. if you go to books & books website you can buy it through our website we're having blue christmas parties around the country. >> host: who is the rest of us? >> john has a marvelous
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presence and for those of us to wake up on christmas morning that says we woke up and had no cake and we had no toys and we had no ice cream and we had nothing. and it is that attitude. >> host: published by books & but another book is coming amount by books & >> the last train to paradise. writing a remarkable history with henry flagler and the building of the railway from new york to key west then to havana completed 1912. 100th anniversary of that completion is this coming january. crown box give us the right to do a limited edition. >> host: that is what i am
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looking for. >> we we imagine the book to pull out the maps were the original book had about 20 photographs this has over 200. if you are a railroad buff or a historian it is a remarkable but. it really tells the history that is still very compellingly. >> host: who is henry flagler? >> i will show you this he was a midwestern very wealthy man who made his money in oil and in the last part of his life decided in the way that the dreamers and schemers have, to build a railroad and by building that he also opened up at an developed cities like st. augustine, fort
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lauderdale, my on today's miami beach because he brought the real way to the east coast of florida at. >> host: this is a pretty amazing photograph. >> this is the actual day 100 years ago when the railroad came into key west for the very first time there is henry flagler standing right there and it is a panoramic sweep of all the people who came to greet him that day this is the first and the photograph has been shown in its entirety. >> host: did he ever lived in florida? >> he lived and st. augustine. >> host: flagler beach? >> anything in florida with that name is named after him. >> host: last-- last train to paradise mitch caplan is one of the co-founders of the miami book fair in owner of books & books and has
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been our partner for years here at the miami book fair we appreciate that and your assistance as well. we have about an hour and a half left of our coverage on booktv on c-span2 but we have three more hours at a speech 23 you can find the full schedule and author evens jim lehrer will be here in about half an hour we'll talk with him about presidential debates called attention city is his latest book yesterday we had an author historian here who has written a new book on the bay of p.i.g.s. invasion a brilliant disaster a call in program from yesterday and here is jim now. >> your book billion disaster, said jim invasion now joining us here in miami. ji
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what role did miami play in the bay of p.i.g.s.? >>t it was center stage theame cia came to recruit cuban exiles who eventually in participated in the invasion of cuba.t after castro came into power many people did not like can very much fled cuba and where they fled to wasmain mainly right here in miami. after the bay of p.i.g.s. operation mongoose was another covert operations o center out of miami and at one point the station in miami was the largest cia station in the world. >> what was operation mongoose? >> it was covert after the bay of p.i.g.s. failed and the kennedy administration
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rather than back off redoubled its efforts to initiate this entirely news operation and some ways evens crazier than the bay ofwe p.i.g.s. >> castro took power wire resell intent to get rid of him? >> communism. to understand the bay of h p.i.g.s. you have to appreciate how how concerned they were about thus brad of communism and it may seem a little overwrought by ourn standards today bridges go back 10 years before caster was in power china had gone to the communist the soviets exploded the first atomic bomb then went sputnik you have a series of events that look like the communists
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were taking over some of the ada to have a communist dictator in place 90 miles from the american shores was seen to be something was tolerable to everybody. o >> on the cover of your booke but if we can get and tight you have five people stripped across caster you have eisenhower, and robert kennedy what role they play?p >> it began with eisenhower. the bay of p.i.g.s. is a kennedy fiasco but he only live with it for threey months where eisenhower was in control of the operation four years. in some ways he had more to do with the development in kennedy. robert kennedy did not play
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that big a role in the bay of pigs first came up when he came into power but just as before the invasion he became involved and as it started to fall apart a it is the beginning of a partnership presidency and kennedy realized afterwardsea he really needed his brother's advice in robert kennedy played a much more important role in the white house after that. and take rivera was castro's zero right-hand man in one of the people that drove the administration not. they had plans to assassinate fidel castro. they always wanted to get to raul castro as well also ran thereat as well. but that famous photograph that i am sure that youre
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viewers remember of teenine was taken.>> there is right there. that was taken march 5thm in the lead up to the bay of pigs when that ship exploded in havana harbor and the cubans believed theam americanser did this as an act of terrorism and che was marching in this is when things started to turn sour between cuba in the united states.e >> host: today thest topic is the bay of p.i.g.s.. in retrospect knowing what we know now was it a good plan gone bad? >> in the short term it was probably not as stupid as
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many people think it was part of the plan was nott these 1510 jarret men landed in cuba were somehow supposed to take over all of cuba and defeat the castro army of 30,000.000 what they meant to do was establish aa beachhead inb whole thate between one week and 10 days and 180 after that would be a provisional government assembled in miami the government would declare themselves the rightful leaders of cuba and then invite the unitedre states to come and
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this subject and how the u.s. contributed to making cuba communist. can you hear me? >> yes, we can. >> real listening. >> just want to be sure unconnected. i would like mr. rasenberger comment on how -- what the -- have not seen it mentioned yet how the 1954 successful cia sort of almost arrogant cia overthrow of the government in guatemala, the same actors were involved in the bay of pigs, how that contributed, that momentum give impetus to or sort of a hubris that they could easily pull off an operation like that because
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my research shows that these are the folks that began it. and then the other thing, and i will hang up. it is maybe a comment or to, this embargo, it currently exists, being put to an end in these two nations reaching some reproached. >> at work, we would get an answer to those questions. again, though, why were you in cuba? >> i was in cuba because i was an academic, licensed, if you will and as is the study for their research paper that i am writing, supported by my university, and i was there legally. >> what are your impressions? , what were your impressions? >> my impressions are is a very poor country. the cuban people love the
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american people, but they hate, this is a generalization, but a lot of them did not like the american government. they make that distinction, but it is a great country, but it is very, very poor there. they could benefit by having us embargo and some meeting of the mines. it may not occur until after fidel dies, but i would like to, i would really like to hear what mr. rasenberger has to say about that. >> thank you. beck's -- mr. rasenberger. >> i agree with your description of president cuba, first of all, and i also agree with what you're saying about the 1954 operation in guatemala. no question that that involves the cia and the eisenhower administration would think that they could pull something like that of again in cuba. and it was the same players. the deputy director of operations for the cia oversaw the bay of pigs.
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that was really his first operation. tracy barnes was his right-hand man. really, all the players put together the cuba plan were veterans of guatemala. so the year before would appear to be successful, and iran by the cia. so in retrospect it really did not work out all that well, but it appeared that it was relatively easy to stage these operations and throughout governments. it turned out not to be the case. custer was a very different and all the and the guatemalan government and was very difficult, very popular, he had a strong army. a completely different set of circumstances, and a big mistake. to go back, as part of the embargo, i have been.
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the embargo does seem to be cruel and unnecessary. hard to see what anybody gets out of it. >> chris and new haven, connecticut. we are talking with jim rasenberger about his book, "the billiant disaster". a way it. >> yes, you mentioned a couple of names. it seems to me to normally the cia, these -- neither confirm or deny participations. you keep these names, but it seems to be the case officer who actually was in charge of the operation, but the people up atop who is able to screwed up. i think that it seems to me watching people's careers that there was a case officer down there who saw it to his advantage to help scuttle a democratic administration and that that is what really happened there. it was a poorly operated plan, and it does not seem as if it was -- that it was just a bad
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plan, but it works to the advantage of that case officer, and i think he ended up being president. i think his son ended up being prison after him. thanks a lot. have a good day. >> the fact of the operation really came out of the white house. it was something that president eisenhower wanted to do. he wanted to estragon. the cia did not invent this operation. and when it did go to the cia it was richard bissell who was the deputy director of plans. third in command. he ran the operation and had a number of men under him who were very involved in it. it was, it was always directed in the end by the white house. the white house knew what was
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going on. the white house was behind what happened. >> jim rasenberger, if i'd had formed the plan originally, did jfk come in, was the of the same it is yes of a plan? >> she was not enthusiastic. but he had run for president by beating the eyes of our administration over the head with castro particularly in the fall is before the election he realizes was a winner it did not like having a communist dictator 90 miles from american soil, and the beat of eisenhower and nixon but this. so then he came into office and is handed this plan. he knows there are problems, but he also knows it is difficult for him not to go forward because he would look hypocritical and even worse, he would look soft on communism, and he cannot afford that. he found himself between a rock and a hard place.
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he knew there were problems, but he did not know how to back out of it. >> was vice president johnson aware of what was going on, the planning of the bay of pigs? >> the was. he was not very active. he was in on meetings, but his voice fell. there were other voices that you hear, the national security advisor played a large role. robert mcnamara, the secretary of defense, and certainly the secretary of state. this whole stable, they were all quite involved. >> bruce in daytona, florida. good afternoon. >> am i hearing the same, was this also called the cuban missile crisis? >> no. >> it was not? >> no. the cuban missile crisis came 18 months after, and it was -- this
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was an invasion of cuba that in many ways led to the cuban missile crisis because castro, after the bay of pigs, obviously knew that the united states government was trying to get him out of power. and the soviets did, too. as i mentioned before, operation mongoose, the kennedy administration continues to try to get castro out of power, and he felt he needed protection. the soviets agreed, and that is probably what led to these missiles being put in cuba, and the cuban missile crisis in october of the following year. >> jim rasenberger come in your research on "the billiant disaster", how much time did you spend in cuba, and whom were you able to talk with? >> i did not spend a lot of time there. i went on the fourth night anniversary of the bay of pigs invasion. my main invasion -- my main interest in going was to get to the bay of pigs, seeded beach, get a feel for the lay of the land, and it was not until i
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went there that i understood how the whole lending worked and how these men were defeated. it was really kind of extraordinary. it is pretty much the same as it was back then. >> undeveloped, wild? >> not undeveloped. castro was putting a resort for foreign tourists, and that is were arrested when i went there. but it is a lot of little hats and around this main building. >> nice beach. >> beautiful beach. one thing you notice when you're on the beach is that there is coral in the water. this became a big problem when they tried to do this landing because the landing ships brushed up against this coral, and it got a the bottom of some of these boats. it took much longer than the cia anticipated. they think how did not know there was coral there? they have photographs from its buy airplanes. they thought it was clouds there were seeing in the water. it turned out to the coral, and
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it was pretty disastrous. >> next call for jim rasenberger on the bay of pigs invasion comes from howard, jacksonville, florida. >> hello. >> jim rasenberger. this is the jackson race. i was wondering if you did in the investigation into the training of the soldiers up in north carolina, that is the cuban exiles that were actually trained and the brigade that was trained in north carolina? the reason is that a lot of the documents are still available of the training of the brigade and when their sense was of the mission. >> yes. well, early on there was training in a lot of places. there was trading in louisiana, training in florida, trading at an american base at panama canal this rather quickly was consolidated to the mountains of
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guatemala. that is where these guys really, the main thing really occurred. the cia and the government, the state department particularly wanted to get these guys out of the united states as quickly as possible. the last thing they wanted was the documents you are talking about, getting them in some these hands improving to castro and others that the united states given was behind the whole operation. so, it, it was raised relief of up to five fairly small operation in the united states spread all around. rather quickly it was moved in this summer and fall of 1960 to guava mall. that is where most of it occurred. >> the next call comes from maria right here in miami. >> i am calling you about your research, did you find any type of information that shows why the united states, even though
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wanted given as to liberate ourselves, why now we can't go back? i've wondered if you found that out in your research anywhere. >> why the united states has not held the cubans, is that? >> yes. >> well, i think what the caller is referring to is a canceled airstrike that occurred on april april 16th. i should explain. . .t to be destroyed. well, this is a strike occurred and destroyed about half of his air force, and it was supposed to have a follow-up airstrike on the morning of april 17th. coincidental with the invasion, the landing of the soldiers. john kennedy canceled that, the previous evening because the
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first air strike had stirred up so much tension in the united nations and around the world that he was concerned that this was, he was getting too much attention. he canceled the airstrike. what this meant was that castro had about six airplanes left. these airplanes proved absolutely disastrous. as soon as the invasion landed they came in and they sank to of the supply ships. the other four supply ships took off, so the brigade was left there was no ammunition, no medical supplies, no food, and really was no chance whatsoever. and the man on the beach started begging for help, her support. they knew that there was a u.s. aircraft carrier right over the horizon, the u.s. as that at 8-4 sky hawk jets on it. all it took was a few of these
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to come in and say the day. the ca commanders who in turn bags john kennedy to run these these. kennedy refused. the brigade was just pummeled. now, the reason when you speak, part of this invasion, family members, many remain very angry at john kennedy for doing this. you have to be somewhat sympathetic to his point of view which was if he did send them an american aircraft to participate , he was turning it into an overt american operation, and once he did that he was opening the door to all sorts of escalating tensions with the soviet union. that was a great concern that he had, that he might spark a nuclear war. this was always a concern that both kennedy and eisenhower operated under, that if any of the wrong move provoked the
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soviet union too far that it could end very badly. >> jim rasenberger, how many people were involved in this operation on the ground, how many people were killed? >> 1400 men planted, and in addition to that there was a smaller force. 16b-26 bombers and some transport plans as well. at the most total a few thousand men. the actual men who saw combat, around 1500. >> how many of the cuban pilots still live here in miami, do you know? >> many of them. this is really where -- i should not say many, because there were not that many to begin with, and the number of them died during the operation. the bay of pigs organization here that is made up of members who participated in the bay of pigs invasion, but brigade and pilot members. they have a museum here in miami which is very interesting.
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and then meet frequently and they have very interesting to talk to because they remember it all very vividly. i mean, it is really still living history to them. >> charles in washington, d.c. good afternoon. >> thank you. thank you. begin to address the issue of how could it be changed. the very misleading to suggest that this was eisenhower's plan. he had a plan, but kennedy changed it with the landing, as you talked about. pulled his punches on air cover. the amount of force that eisenhower might have used would have been substantially greater, and he was an experienced military man. this just revealed kennedy's inexperienced, and i think it is misleading to suggest that somehow this was even eisenhower's plan that was finally executed because there's a lot of research and says he changed the landing place, fail to provide the cover, and reduce the amount of people that would
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be there. so kennedy takes responsibility. ami, it is misleading. >> well, he did not reduce the number of people that would be there because under eisenhower that number fluctuated quite a bit. it is true that the plan changed, and this is really two days after the invasion on apple trees second. kennedy invited as hard to camp david, and he was hoping for some presidential solace. but he took into the woodshed. he said basically what you're saying now which is if i had done this i would have seen it through. once you put american prestige on the line you can't pull back. eisenhower also disputed later that he actually had a plan and said what we had was a program and not a plan. as if that term at a very much. in fact, he really did get this thing going. you know, the plan that eisenhower changed quite a bit,
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it is impossible for any of us to say what eisenhower ultimately would have done. i don't think it is valley that simple to say that eisenhower would have done what he told kennedy would have done which is falling over military force. eisenhower was as concerned about starting a war with the soviet union's. very wise to the fears of the possibility that terrible things could be provoked. i am not sure that eisenhower -- i'm not sure what eisenhower would have done. it would be interesting to say, but we don't really know. i'll leave it with that. >> this is the cover of the book, jim rasenberger. our next call comes from stephen. >> hello. among the cuban exiles being trained by the cia, did you come across two brothers who were hoping to set themselves up as
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leaders of the new cuba and effectively turning an entire american dictatorship into a pro american dictatorship? that's all. >> there were a number of people in the cuban exile community. a group that the cia put together here in miami, there was a guy named art to may who went with them and was one potential leader of the new cuba what they try to do was put the other coalition of people from the left and right. i think it probably would have happened, had the invasion actually succeeded, you would have ended up with a whole sort of nightmare and the different factions of this coalition flight out to see who would take a pro player.
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it was not clear how this to play out. it would have been one of the problems of the invasion succeeded. >> jim rasenberger, where was a former president battista at this time? where did he live out his life? >> the dominican republic and live out his life. he was far gone. he took off on new year's eve of 1959. >> did he take the treasury? >> not clear exactly. he took quite a bit with him. still dressed in black tie from new year's eve event. it got planes for his family and got out quickly. the first confirmed cia intelligence was a guy named david phillips. the cia, who was in havana at the time and was lining his backyard after midnight on a
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lawn chair looking up and saw planes taking off. he thought, well, that must be pretty steadily because boys don't take off from havana airport in the middle of the night, and it did not then. so he was gone after that. >> was there a chance of him ever coming back as president? which nobody wanted battista back. nobody in cuba wanted him back. the americans didn't. that was one thing everyone could agree on. a bad guy and better gone. >> red house west virginia. you are on book tv with jim rasenberger and the topic is jfk >> i am enjoying watching your show here, sir. but at the time before the bay of pigs i was living in orlando. there were not that many spanish people around them, but i had to friends that were under 18 years old. their father had a small grocery store and a gas station that was
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kind of a central meeting. for cuban people at that time. anyway, this is probably six months before the bay of pigs, the group from miami dolphins 66 came to orlando for a fund-raiser. and it was held at a big place over top of this huge skating rink and bowling alley that has burned down since then, but anyway, it was the spanish people who brought all kinds of food and stuff for dinner and dance. they charged $3. anyway, it was amazing to me that they recruited zero people from orlando. there were loads and loads of young guys, young man in the area. they disappeared, and they were gone for three or four days and
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just, you know, that is -- that is kind of the downfall with the recruitment. after the bay of pigs, i guess a year or so after they were held captive a bunch of them came to orlando. even gave them some clothing and stuff because they have the shirts on their backs. very disappointed. >> do you remember, do you remember reading the papers during the bay of pigs? was a big deal, front page every day? >> it seemed to be for a little bit, yeah. yeah. there was. >> all right. thank you for calling in. mr. rasenberger, any response? >> your question for reading the newspapers, it was -- there were reporters down here sniffing around the for the bay of pigs. there were several articles that were published about the recruitment that was going on in miami, and later about the
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training camps for guatemalans, the article in the new york times. a few months before the invasion you know, kennedy said castro does not need spies here. all he has to do is pick up the newspaper. reporters kept catching wind of what was going on, and it very famous of that occurred. in miami on vacation, and he was in a bar. he learned about this, this invasion that was coming down, and it was evident. he went and reported it and wrote a story. this caused an uproar. when the white house found out the new york times was about to publish a story about this invasion they tried to get the tons to cancel the story. that is not what ended up happening. they did not condemn a little bit. it took the word in and out of the story.
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they decrease the font size and that sort of thing. but it was -- kennedy, -- >> why the use the words billion yen disaster in your title? >> the billions really refers to the man who concocted this. this was, as i said, the best and brightest. the kennedy administration really did have some extraordinary people. george bundy, the dean of our word, 34 years old, the former rhodes scholar, president nightmare -- mcnamara, how did these brilliant people do such a it stupid thing. i think the brilliance is part of the problem. these guys got into a room with each other and looked at each other they saw other brilliant man, and they thought, how could this go wrong.
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there were also used a success and the right in the planning stages they were more confident of this operation and they should have been. >> fifty years ago, why we still talking about this? >> well, we are not all talking about it. it is funny. some people do forget it. some people confuse it with the cuban missile crisis. here in miami people are still very aware of what the bay of pigs was because some people were very intimately involved. but i think that we should be very aware of it because not only for what happened in 1961, but for but it meant to american history after words. i . out that at least three major currents of american history followed this on april april 20th the day after the invasion plan. kennedy felt like he needed to get some sort of victory against the communists. one thing he did is went to his


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