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News > Latin America

Cuba Remembers Defeat of the 'Bay of Pigs' Invasion

  • Fidel Castro (C) in Playa Giron, Cuba, April 1961.

    Fidel Castro (C) in Playa Giron, Cuba, April 1961. | Photo: Twitter/ @communists_US

Published 20 April 2022

On April 19, 1961, Commander Fidel Castro and the Cuban revolutionary forces defeated an invasion from CIA trained mercenaries at Playa Giron.

On Tuesday, President Miguel Diaz-Canel took part in an event to honor the 61st anniversary of the victory of the Cuban people against the U.S.-backed invasion that landed at the Bay of Pigs in 1961.


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On April 15, 1961, the military airports of Libertad and San Antonio in Havana and the Antonio Maceo aerodrome in Santiago were bombed by B-26 planes. The next day, during the burial of the victims of the US attack, Commander in Chief Fidel Castro created the popular militias and declared the socialist nature of the Cuban Revolution.

The operation "Pluto", which was approved by President Dwight D. Eisenhower and executed by President John F. Kennedy, financed the formation of "The 2506 Brigade", which included 1,500 mercenaries trained by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

On April 17, they left Nicaragua in five US ships and attempted a maritime landing in Matanzas province. The fighting and bombing left more than 150 Cubans dead and hundreds wounded.

"Almost immediately, the invasion was a disaster. The CIA had wanted to keep it a secret for as long as possible, but a radio station on the beach broadcast every detail of the operation to listeners across Cuba," the History Channel recalled.

"Unexpected coral reefs sank some of the exiles’ ships as they pulled into shore. Backup paratroopers landed in the wrong place. Before long, Castro’s troops had pinned the invaders on the beach, and the exiles surrendered after less than a day of fighting."

In just 66 hours, the revolutionary forces repelled the imperialist aggression and captured some 1,200 Cuban exiles in the United States. On April 24, the Kennedy administration recognized its connection to the failed attempt to overthrow socialism in Cuba.


Fidel Castro
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