The Miami Brigade

Author: Nick Fattor


On April 17, 1961, a brigade of CIA-sponsored Cuban exiles landed in Cuba, with hope of starting a revolution to overthrow Fidel Castro. Instead, they spent three days fighting for survival, surrounded and attacked by the Cuban Army.

The Bay of Pigs Invasion had been a daring plan, approved by both Eisenhower and Kennedy. But the CIA made critical mistakes, dooming the entire effort. For instance, by the time the invasion took place it was no longer a secret, and a month past its launch date—so the Cubans were ready. The soldiers who comprised the brigade were from Miami and thus the unofficial name by the CIA for the entire unit was the Miami Brigade. Though the brigade fought bravely, the Bay of Pigs Invasion became one of the biggest CIA blunders of the Cold War.


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