Castro Terrorism Schools
Although terrorism originated centuries ago, modern international terrorism orchestrated by the Soviet Union arguably began at the Tricontinental Conference conceived by Moscow and conducted in Havana, Cuba during January l966.
The purpose of the conference was to devise a "global revolutionary strategy to counter the global strategy of American imperialism." It resulted in the creation of an African, Asian, and Latin American Solidarity Organization based in Havana. The Conference also passed resolutions advocating outside aid for groups fighting for "liberation".
During late l966, the Cubans opened a number of training camps for guerrilla fighters in Cuba that were under Soviet supervision. Palestinian groups began sending students to these facilities on the "Isle of Pines" during l966, and upon graduation, those students spawned the terrorist groups that exploded in the Middle East during the l97O's. Castro's terrorism schools were under the supervision of the Direcion General de Intelegencia (DGI).
Students were flown into the country from connecting airports, or arrived in Cuban harbors by boat. Upon debarkation in Havana, they were segregated by nationality and moved to their individual training locations. The guerrilla courses lasted from three to six months.
Subject material included "tactics, weapons training, bomb making- particularly how to blow up oil pipelines, map reading, cryptography, photography, falsification of documents, and disguise." Illich Ramirez Sanchez, a.k.a. Carlos the Jackal, is reputed to have received instruction at Camp Mantonzas, Cuba, prior to further education in the USSR.
In addition to operating a series of such camps in Cuba, Castro exported instructors to newly opened sites in Angola and Mozambique. Cuban instructors arrived at locations in the Middle East after the October l973 War. During December of that year, 4O Cuban terrorist instructors arrived in South Yemen. South Yemeni desert training sites were protected by the Soviet and East German secret police, and became the focal point for instructing and sheltering terrorists from nations including Germany, Ireland, Japan, Turkey, Iran, Italy, France, Belgium, and Palestine.
When the Lebanese Civil War broke out it created an opportunity for terrorist groups to operate from that country. In l978 the Palestine Rejection Front was firmly established at a number of sites there. In March, l978 the first team of Cuban instructors arrived at Tyre, Lebanon. They presented a detailed eight month course of instruction to their first class of perspective Arab terrorists.
The curriculum included street and desert fighting, attacking people and buildings, demolitions, and sabotaging oil installations. Graduates of the school were supplied with false passports and work permits, and sent to various Persian Gulf countries that they were familiarized with during training.
Castro’s support of terrorism was indicated by his Tucuman Plan, designed to export South American revolutionaries to Western Europe. He intended to dispatch members of the Junta for Revolutionary Coordination (JRC) from Uruguay, Argentina, Bolivia, and Chile to Lisbon, Portugal and Paris, France.
These groups were designed to act in concert against the continent. Castro established a special training site for these operations on a 4,OOO acre estate at Guanabo and provided them with a three month course concentrating on explosives, sabotage, weapons instruction, and urban operations.
The plan was foiled by European security services during l978 before numerous operations could be conducted. Nevertheless, it underscores the global scope Castro envisioned for Cuban trained terrorists.