It's official: CIA tried to get Mafia to kill Castro

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The CIA worked with three American mobsters in a botched "gangster-type" attempt to assassinate Cuban leader Fidel Castro in the early 1960s, according to documents released by the CIA on Tuesday.

The CIA hauled the skeletons out of its closet by declassifying hundreds of pages of long-secret records that detail some of the agency's worst illegal abuses during about 25 years of overseas assassination attempts, domestic spying and kidnapping.

CIA Director Michael Hayden released the documents to lift the veil of secrecy on the agency's past, even as the Bush administration faces criticism of being too secretive now.

Hayden told agency employees in a statement the trove included "reminders of some things the CIA should not have done" and a glimpse "of a very different era and a very different agency." The documents had been requested 15 years ago by a watchdog group.

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