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BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five [Kindle Edition]

Thomas Van Hare , Matt Lawrence , Thomas Van Hare
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

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Book Description

On February 24, 1996, two U.S. civilian aircraft flying a rescue mission in international airspace off Cuba were shot down by MiG fighters. Four Americans, including three U.S. citizens, lost their lives. BETRAYAL recounts how back door politics, failed negotiations and a “mix-up” in communications at NORAD allowed Cuba to murder American citizens.

Readers say:

Matt Lawrence and Thomas Van Hare have written an important book detailing an infamous chapter in the history of the Castro dictatorship and a weak United States Administration. By documenting the Cuban regime's espionage activities and the calculated, cold-blooded murder of four humanitarian pilots, BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five is a timely reminder that the United States must be vigilant against repeating the mistakes of the past. To anyone interested in gaining insight into the utter malevolence of the Cuban dictatorship and the hazards befalling U.S. Administrations who coddle it, I recommend this book."
--- Congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart (FL-21)

"A major contribution to understanding American policy and U.S. confusion about Cuba's intentions."
--- Dr. Jaime Suchlicki, University of Miami - Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies

"In gripping detail, BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five reminds readers that Cuba's 1996 shoot down of two civilian aircraft in international airspace was an act of international terrorism. Lawrence and Van Hare's well-researched account highlights the key role of Cuban spies and the Castro brothers in this premeditated murder of four search and rescue pilots. The authors also examine how a high-ranking Cuban spy in the U.S. Government shaped the Clinton administration's timid response and emboldened the Castro regime. The lesson learned by Havana was clear: in dealing with the U.S., you can get away with murder. Anyone looking for insights into the volatile relations between the U.S. and Cuba needs to read BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five."
--- Lt. Colonel Chris Simmons, DIA-Ret. (Defense Intelligence Agency-Retired)

"I wish I was a wealthy man. I would buy 300 million copies of BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five and provide a copy to every single American citizen, by way of warning: The men who murdered, with impunity and arrogance, three American citizens and one Permanent Resident Alien in the Straits of Florida on 24 February 1996, remain in power off the coast of Florida. BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five exposes their crime and holds them accountable. Read it."
--- Scott W. Carmichael, Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Author of True Believer

"BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five by Matt Lawrence and Thomas Van Hare tells with absolute clarity how Cuban MiGs in an act of cold-blooded murder shot down two humanitarian rescue planes in international airspace killing four Americans."
--- Ed Timperlake, former commanding officer VMFA 321 and author of Red Dragon Rising

“…detailed and well-documented… an extraordinary piece of investigative writing that was based on 13 years of investigation… reading Betrayal: Clinton, Castro & the Cuban Five has been one of the highpoints of the year so far…” --- Wes Vernon, Journalist




Editorial Reviews

Review

Matt Lawrence and Thomas Van Hare have written an important book.. BETRAYAL: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five is a timely reminder that the United States must be vigilant against repeating the mistakes of the past. I recommend this book."
--- Congressman Lincoln Diaz-Balart (FL-21)

About the Author

Matt Lawrence: Author, consultant, public speaker & media personality, is president of Paratus International LLC; a firm dedicated to providing disaster preparedness, continuity of business and security planning for the public and private sectors.

Lawrence has been an invited speaker before members of Congress, conducted preparedness seminars at conferences sponsored by state and federal agencies and provided endorsements for various new life saving technologies marketed today. 

A Florida native, Lawrence first witnessed the plight of Cuban refugees as a child in the early 1960s. Thirty years later, life would lead him to fly search and rescue missions with both Brothers to the Rescue and a similar group, Freedom Flight International where he served as both Director of Special Projects and Chief Mission Specialist. 

Matt's co-author and editor, Thomas Van Hare is the former Chairman of Freedom Flight International and was previously operations director, mission director and command pilot for Brothers to the Rescue. 

Van Hare has served with three Administrations in Washington. During the Reagan administration, he was with the United States Agency for International Development. He also served President George H.W. Bush (Bush 41), as Special Assistant to then Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Armitage and later to then Assistant Secretaries Dr. Harry Rowen and Ambassador James Lilly. 

In 2004, Thomas Van Hare was requested to return to the Office of the Secretary of Defense and work with the Coalition Provisional Authority. Thereafter, he served as Director, Organizational Assessment, in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. 

Thomas Van Hare is currently executive director of a company involved in the global development and direct commercial sales of sophisticated military aircraft.

Product Details

  • File Size: 360 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004774MUQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #547,515 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cold war isn't over March 15, 2010
Format:Paperback
Lawrence and Van Hare have written a " can't put it down book ". It is well written, the sequence is understandable and the story is a modern tragedy. They have done an amazing job fettering out secrets from the Cubans and our own government.

I could have written this review sooner, but I had to have a cooling off period due to the content. If I had written with the raw emotion I felt after the read, I am sure my review would have been rejected by Amazon. I have simmered down now...

People, four Americans, including three US Citizens on a humanitarian mission, were shot down, murdered by Cuban MIG pilots in international air space between Key West and Havana on Feb.24, 1996. A third Brothers to the Rescue
plane narrowly escaped being shot down through brilliant evasive tactics. The third plane was chased to within a few minutes flight from Key West. Our air defenses stood by, watched, and did nothing.

Yes, one of the Brothers to the Rescue Airplanes (unarmed) did stray into Cuban air space during the heat of the tragedy. There are international procedures for dealing with stray planes. Those protocols do not call for the intentional downing of civilian aircraft. They were blown out of the sky in front of witnesses on a cruise ship and a fishing vessel in international air space.

Our government had cues from the Cubans that this might happen. Not one agency called the Brothers to warn them of Cuban threats.

This is not a book of conspiracy theory, it is a book of fact. I do not read conspiracy theories. It is an indictment of the murderous regieme across the Florida Straits as well as an indictment of gross negligence concerning our national defense.

I hope I have wetted your appetite for the book. It is a must read. I have always been for normalizing relations with Cuba. Not now. I would not spend a dime on that paper hanging SOB's island.

There I go....getting emotional. Read it. Just read it.
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Setting the record straight! May 8, 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Finally, the real story on the Brothers to the Rescue shootdown: the integrated Cuban Government activities conducted to commit murder, and the ongoing influence operations relating to some of those involved. This book provides the most detail to date on the events of 24 February 1996. The details are upsetting, but provide much food for thought.

Thanks to the authors for providing excerpts from the transcripts of the Brothers to the Rescue and MiG pilots, as well as transcripts of the testimony by Major Jeffrey Houlihan, who was one of too few in the US military doing his job that day! The transcripts make the events both easier to understand, and appalling at the same time. (If you haven't seen it, the documentary Shoot Down, cited by the authors, is worth seeing. You will hear the chilling recordings of the Cuban MiG pilots.)

The book also provides a disturbing look at the non-response by the US military on that fateful February day. The non-response is so comprehensive that you will wonder if the military was ordered NOT to respond. A communications glitch is a facile excuse that could cover up just such a command. Draw your own conclusion.

Thanks to the authors for pointing out that the purposefully misleading reporting provided to the FBI by Juan Pablo Roque (who was one of at least two who infiltrated Brothers to the Rescue at the behest of Cuban intelligence), has not been reassessed which continues to skew the thinking of the Intelligence Community, and does a disservice to the humanitarian record of Brothers to the Rescue.

Some of the people identified in this book were clearly misled by assessments written by convicted DIA spy, Ana Montes.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating and Disturbing April 15, 2009
Format:Paperback
It didn't take me long to read this book as I was captivated by the story, which actually isn't a story at all but a truth that had been smothered by bureaucratic lies and inconsistencies. The authors, Lawrence and Van Hare, are passionate about the humanitarian efforts that the Brothers to the Rescue supported and that they, the authors, were a part of. They do an incredible job of documenting the facts and noting assumptions, leaving the reader to form their own opinion of what truly happened to their friends and fellow pilots who were murdered by Castro. Hopefully this book will get the attention it deserves and the Obama Administration will take into account the gaps that were left behind by previous administrations and not befriend a murderer. This book will certainly remind Americans how fortunate and privileged we are but it will also make you aware that you can't take anything the government says at face value. Well written, almost like a movie, this book will keep your attention and will have you wondering "what's next?".
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars white knuckled March 17, 2010
Format:Paperback
Without a doubt, Lawrence & Van Hare have succeeded in pulling that trigger which targets every hair on the back of ones neck to prickle at attention throughout the entirety of this white knuckling account of incompetence, murder and betrayal.
The multiple threads of deceit unraveled in this heart racing story, reach beyond ones imagination and begs all Americans to ask how such an atrocity could have occurred in our great country.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent and timely read May 14, 2009
Format:Paperback
This book, Betrayal, was one of the few "can't put down" books that I have read. However, what also made this book different from any others was how upset/agitated/disturbed/just damn mad I became when I did stop reading. What an absolutely appropriate title for this book! Betrayal occurred at several points in this splendidly detailed and documented account of a dark day in our country's history, a day and an event that except for the dogged determination of the authors almost escaped public review. Each time the betrayal was accomplished by officials associated with our government and each time those betrayed were the governed. Unfortunately four of the betrayed lost their lives--and that number could easily have doubled. The initial betrayal encountered in this book was that of Ms. Montes, a mole/spy in the DIA who had risen to a position to greatly influence and determine U. S. policy relating to Cuba. How many other Ms. Montes' are still in positions of influence in determining our country's foreign policy, especially in the current administration? Then the ultimate betrayal was to have so many people at several levels of their government recognize a looming disaster arising from a scheduled flight of the BTTR--just a phone call from one of several officials privy to menacing information would have alerted the BTTR to the threat. The cold-blooded, and preventable, murder over the Florida Straits prompted a CYA proliferating to the highest levels of the Clinton Administration. Overturning the prison sentences for Cuban spies, including the Cuban Five, following their numerous appeals would have been--after reading this book--a not totally unexpected betrayal. This well-written book will certainly make you aware of the spin your federal government is capable of--in case there was any doubt. Thank you Matt and Tom for your dedication to pursuing a passion and exposing the truth of an experience that touched you personally.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Very informative...
Published 3 months ago by Don B
4.0 out of 5 stars A good look at the Clinton Administration's mastery at Ineptness &...
This is a very interesting read and years long account of gathering facts, to get through the maze of cover-up's of this totally preventable & tragic event. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Fastpassage
5.0 out of 5 stars an interesting read
A unique story about the stained relationship between the great United States and Cuba. A must read to get a real understanding of inner workings of our government.
Published 7 months ago by Big D
5.0 out of 5 stars Betrayal
This book is an excellent written documentary on a tragic & outrageous but preventable event. The book exposes the corruptness and double standards found in AMerican politics and... Read more
Published 14 months ago by HammerHead
5.0 out of 5 stars Revealing
I was only vaguely aware [as I am sure many others were] of this horrifying incident from brief news reports. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating
The experiences of the individuals in the book are fascinating - it made me question once again why our government think they have to keep secrets from us
Published 18 months ago by Warren Curtis
4.0 out of 5 stars A thought provoking account
Very detailed and thought provoking-a shocking account of the events associated with the BTR shootdown. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Keith
1.0 out of 5 stars Enough is enough
First couple of chapters are pretty interesting but then the author just keeps pounding you over the head with the same facts over and over and over and over. Read more
Published on September 28, 2012 by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Betrayal: Clinton, Castro & The Cuban Five.
Absolutely a great read!!! When I first started reading wasn't aware that these were actual events in our history. Thank you for the fabulous selections!!!!!
Published on September 6, 2012 by Linccow
4.0 out of 5 stars Betrayal
I had never heard of The Cuban Five. Read about these murders and find that nothing has been done. Is this just another conspiracy theory, you judge.
Published on September 6, 2012 by mamatraub
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More About the Author

Matt Lawrence: Author, consultant, public speaker & media personality, is president of Paratus International LLC; a firm dedicated to providing disaster preparedness, continuity of business and security planning for the public and private sectors.

Lawrence has been an invited speaker before members of Congress, conducted preparedness seminars at conferences sponsored by state and federal agencies and provided endorsements for various new life saving technologies marketed today.

A Florida native, Lawrence first witnessed the plight of Cuban refugees as a child in the early 1960s. Thirty years later, life would lead him to fly search and rescue missions with both Brothers to the Rescue and a similar group, Freedom Flight International where he served as both Director of Special Projects and Chief Mission Specialist.

Matt's co-author and editor, Thomas Van Hare is the former Chairman of Freedom Flight International and was previously operations director, mission director and command pilot for Brothers to the Rescue.

Van Hare has served with three Administrations in Washington. During the Reagan administration, he was with the United States Agency for International Development. He also served President George H.W. Bush (Bush 41), as Special Assistant to then Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Armitage and later to then Assistant Secretaries Dr. Harry Rowen and Ambassador James Lilly.

In 2004, Thomas Van Hare was requested to return to the Office of the Secretary of Defense and work with the Coalition Provisional Authority. Thereafter, he served as Director, Organizational Assessment, in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

Thomas Van Hare is currently executive director of a company involved in the global development and direct commercial sales of sophisticated military aircraft.

Contact us via the links provided on our website: www.mattlawrencebooks.com



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