1966 PROJECT NASSAU / OPERATION ISTANBUL / Eloy J Escagedo Lliraldi
Miami 1966, Haitians, Cubans and American Soldiers of Fortune
conspired to invade Haiti from a little beach called
coco plumb outside of marathon key in Florida.
The goal was to topple Papa Doc Duvalier
Then gather Haitian support to launch an invasion of Cuba
an eliminate Fidel Castro.
These events in the turbulent 60s found Eloy J Esagedo Lliraldi in the middle of
exile, conspiracy, the CIA, FBI, soldiers of fortune and CBS
broadcasting filming a documentary of a Caribbean revolution as it
Eloy J Esagedo Lliraldi arrived in Miami Florida on Sept 23 of 1962.
Born in Cuba, He (Eloy) along with other friends would sabotage Castro controlled communications in Cuba, toppling
telephone poles and electrical lines along with other acts of
disobedience on the island.
Word got around about these anti revolutionary acts and danger of
arrest loomed for him and his friends. So Eloy was sent away by
his family to avoid imprisonment or elimination as many anti Castro
opposers had been condemned to firing squad or incarceration.
For the first month in Miami Eloy Slept on the couch
of relatives that had moved to Florida years before.
Not long after on Oct of 1962 He reported for service with the
armed forces. At 4100 Arora St Coral Gables.
In 1963 Eloy graduated at Fort Jackson, South Carolina
The soldiers were all Cuban exiles and were trained by the Army
for use with CIA operations to topple Castro.
The Brigades were afterwards stationed in various locations
around central america. Eloy was based in Guatemala.
however, Military operations were discontinued sometime during
the Kennedy Assassination of 63 and 64. The central American base
Eloy was stationed at was shut down and he along with other
soldiers were the last of troops waiting to be picked up
and shipped back to the U.S.
Back in Miami a few years after In 1966 a plot was hatched
by Cuban exiles along with soldiers of fortune, The CIA and Haitian
exiles. Rolando Masferrer was a Senator in the Batista government pre
Castro era. Masferrer had been a Communist supporter,
after Fidel Castro took over Cuba on January 9, 1959,
Masferrer had to abandon the island, because Castro accused him
of stealing $10 million dollars.
In the United States, he befriended Mafia bosses such as
Santo Trafficante, as well as union leader Jimmy Hoffa.
Masferrer established the “30th of November organization“,
with the purpose of killing Castro. Masferrer was also known for
mistreating Cubans residing in Florida, extorting money from them
for what he said was “to help Cuba”.
On September 26, 1960, Masferrer sent an expedition of four boats
to Cuba. One boat reached Cuba, three Americans:
Allan D. Thompson, Anthony Zarba and Robert O. Fuller
were caught and eventually executed by the castro gov.
In December, 1960, the Miami Herald, reported that Masferrer
was leading a small group of fifty three people who were
polishing their killing skills at a ranch owned by
multi-millionaire Howard Hughes. Masferrer might have
intended to hire a few of them for his organization.
In 1961, Masferrer met with President John F. Kennedy,
presumably to talk about Castro and the situation in Cuba.
But Kennedy disliked Masferrer’s radical and fanatical personality,
and the two never established any publicly known conversation
In 1966 Masferrer and other Cuban exiles plotted to accumulated
weapons and boats to invade Haiti so as to have a base, free of US law
, to attack the Castro government of Cuba which had foiled his direct
attempts to land in the past. Eloy J Escagedo Lliraldi would be
among the invaders of this new plot
“Project Nassau” was the designation given by Mitch Werbell
and CBS News for the invasion of Haiti by Haitians, Cubans
and American Soldiers of Fortune. Planning began in the
Spring of 1966 when CBS became aware. The actual designation
was OPERATION ISTANBUL. They decided to take the opportunity
to film an actual Caribbean revolution. The producer and film crew
were dispatched to Miami with Mitchell Werbell as an advisor.
Freelance journalists also filtered in, like Andrew St. George
and Tom Dunkin. Filming for the CBS production was from a
rented boat called “The Poor Richard” by a man known as William Harvey.
Rifles were rented by CBS and filming took place in a
South Miami park. Most of the CBS production crew were informants
for one Government agency or another so the entire invasion
was stopped in early January 1967 with the arrest of 75 would-be
invaders. Congress held hearings on the matter to determine if
CBS was financing revolutions.
List of Haiti Invaders
Recounting the events of the 60s, Eloy J Escagedo Lliraldi
explained that before the court all of them were released with the
agreement they would returned if so summoned. However that never
happened. According to him CIA and
the FBI had stepped on each others shoes. So these events were swepted
under the carpet of history. This story is not a complete telling of
the events of 1966. There is much more to say about the people involved
but this has been an overview.