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Thursday, November 02, 2006

November 2, 1960: UN rejects Cuba's Invasion Charges, Eisenhower Warns US Will Respond to Guantanamo Seizure, Nixon charges 'Bare-Faced Lie'

"The [UN] General Assembly rejected tonight Cuban and Soviet-bloc demands for an urgent debate on Cuba's charges that the United States threatened the Castro Government with aggression and an imminent invasion," The New York Times reported today. "Before the votes, James J. Wadsworth of the United States rejected the Cuban charges as 'monstrous distortions and downright falsehoods."

"President Eisenhower said today that the United States would take 'whatever steps may be appropriate' to defend its naval base at Guantanamo, Cuba," The Times reports. "The President said that a clear understanding of the United States position was essential because the 'intimate relations" between Cuba and the Chinese Communist-Soviet bloc had increased the importance of the base to the defense of the Western Hemisphere."

"Vice President Nixon charged today that his Democratic Presidential rival was spreading 'vicious' rumors that those who voted for Mr. Nixon would lose Social Security benefits. He used the phrase 'bare-faced lie' in the charge," The Times reports.

"Los Angeles gave Senator John F. Kennedy a blizzard-like reception of ticker tape and confetti today. Observers said the reception exceed that given three weeks ago to Vice President Nixon," The Times reports.

"The Pentagon is expanding its plans to develop bacteriological and chemical weapons for use in limited war situations ... short of all-out nuclear warfare," the Times reports.

"The Cuban government's recent ostentatious show of military strength is thought by some diplomats here [Havana] to be an effort to demonstrate to Moscow that the Castro regime is a viable concern," Max Frankel reports in The Times.

"These observers believe that the Soviet Union's moment of decision has arrived, that the Soviet leaders must now agree to underwrite the Castro Government with massive and prolonged economic and technical aid or condemn the Cuban revolution to economic strangulation. ...

"Maj. Ernesto Guevara, Cuba's economic director and head of the national Bank, in is Moscow to convince the Russians of the soundness of the investment. For the present he has little to offer other than sugar -- and political loyalty. ...

"Virtually all foreign observers in Havana have been puzzled by the warnings about an 'imminent' invasion from Florida and Guatemala that have preoccupied this capital for the last week. Large headlines in all papers, urgent speeches and acts of mobilization have accompanied the warnings. Many Cubans appear to be convinced of the reality of the danger.

"However, diplomats here, many of whom believe that Premier Castro is more than a match for exiled Cubans and that the United States will not directly intervene without provocation, are wondering why the Cuban Government has been willing to risk the internal tensions and anxiety resulting from its propaganda. ...

"There are other diplomats who believe that Dr. Castro genuinely does fear invasion by 'mercenaries' and exiles throughouut the Caribbean with the open or clandestine support of the United States."

Also in today's Times was this report: "The Government moved today to speed development of a nuclear-powered rocket. The Atomic Energy Commission and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced jointly that they would skip the customary feasibility design study.

"Instead, the nuclear rocket program, known as Project Rover, will be moved directly into the industrial research and development phase. ... The first nuclear rocket is expected to be flight-tested in 1965. By the latter part of this decade, the rocket ... is expected to be ready for sending large payloads into interplanetary space."