In 1962, the U.S. Government devised a covert plan to remove the communist leader of Cuba, Fidel Castro. The plan, called Operation Northwoods, was put in place in order to create support in the U.S. for a war in Cuba.
Documents which were declassified in 1997 show that options for creating support included carrying out terror attacks on the United States' own citizens, and blaming the attacks on Cuba:
- Host funerals for "mock-victims"
- "Start rumors (many)"
- "Blow up a U.S. ship in Guantanamo Bay and blame Cuba"
They even suggested blaming Cuba for the death of then-alive John Glenn, the first American to orbit the Earth, should his rocket explode.
According to the declassified documents, "The desired result from the execution of this plan would be to place the United States in the apparent position of suffering defensible grievances from a rash and irresponsible government of Cuba and to develop an international image of a Cuban threat to peace in the Western Hemisphere."
Operation Northwoods was approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff, but thankfully, President John F. Kennedy rejected the plan.