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Asman Misstates Facts on Castro, Cuban Missile Crisis

Reported by Judy - December 21, 2006 -

Fox News' David Asman made some chilling claims against Fidel Castro, including that he almost nuked the United States during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. With Video

In an appearance Wednesday (December 20, 2006) on the "Live Desk," Asman was reacting to a question from host Martha MacCallum about an upcoming interview with Castro by Barbara Walters. Asman went on a tear about the so-called liberal media being in love with Castro, even though Castro "almost nuked the United States. He had his finger on a button when there were Russian nukes in Cuba. He might have killed John K. Kennedy."

Castro "almost nuked the United States?" Castro "had his finger on a button when there were Russian nukes in Cuba?" Hardly.

Americans refer to-the-brink crisis of October 1962 as the "Cuban Missile Crisis" because the missiles were in Cuba, not because the crisis was with Cuba. It was with the U.S.S.R. And the guy with his finger on the button was not Fidel Castro, who had been firmly allied with the Soviets for less than a year at that point, but Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev. All of Washington's negotiations were with Khrushchev, not his puppet Castro.

Here's a brief summary from Wikipedia regarding who really "had his finger on a button."

"In early 1992 it was confirmed that key Soviet forces in Cuba had, by the time the crisis broke, received tactical nuclear warheads for their artillery rockets, and IL-28 bombers [5], though General Anatoly Gribkov, part of the Soviet staff responsible for the operation, stated that the local Soviet commander, General Issa Pliyev, had predelegated authority to use them if the U.S. had mounted a full-scale invasion of Cuba. Gribkov misspoke: the Kremlin's authorization remained unsigned and undelivered.[6] (Other accounts show that Pliyev was given permission to use tactical nuclear warheads but only in the most extreme case of an American invasion during which contact with Moscow is lost. However when American forces seemed to be readying for an attack, (after the U-2 photos, but before Kennedy's television address), Khrushchev rescinded his earlier permission for Pliyev to use the tactical nuclear weapons, even under the most extreme conditions.)"

So Khrushchev did not even delegate permission to his local commanders to use tactical nuclear weapons, let alone allow Castro to launch missiles against the continental United States..

As for Asman's line that Castro "may have killed John F. Kennedy," but "we don't know," well, he may have killed Jon Benet Ramsey. We don't know. He may have killed Natalee Holloway. We don't know. He may be Britain's latest Jack the Ripper. We don't know. He may be responsible for global warming. We don't know.

Asman may be using half-truths and non-truths. That we do know.