Cuba: The Julio Incident

At 2:52 a.m., the U.S. Coast Guard radio station at Pungo, Va., picked up a nervous call. Speaking in broken English, the caller said that he was aboard the 26 de Julio, a small (943 tons) Cuban cargo vessel that normally hauls freight and cattle between Havana and Montreal. Would the Coast Guard al low the ship to put in to port at Norfolk "to discharge people who are seek ing political asylum in the U.S.?"

That request, recorded in the Pungo radio log, began the small and unhappy saga that official Washington...

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