ABOUT 9 THAT night the Army Chief of Staff reported to me that we could not hold Las Villas, for even the seat of the military command of the Province was surrounded by the rebels. He said that Lieut. Col. Carlos San Martín Fresneda had arrived from Santa Clara, having made a miraculous escape at the moment the rebels had seized the airport, their guns firing at his military plane.
At 10, Gen. Eulogio Cantillo Porras returned and went to "Kuquine," my farm, to report to me. Nothing could be done to recover Oriente and much less to transfer forces to Las Villas. Fidel Castro insisted that the Army and Navy forces in Santiago mutiny, or, if that failed, that Cantillo surrender to him the forces under the command of Col. José Rego Rubido of the Army and Commodore Manuel Carnero of the Navy . . . "The situation is serious, Mr. President, and we must make a quick decision." He added that Fidel Castro would enter Santiago de Cuba in a matter of hours, knowing that the troops would surrender when the report had spread. . . .*____________________