Monday, October 09, 2006

The Death of Che Guevara: Declassified

The Death of Che Guevara: Declassified. Today is the 39th anniversary of the death of communist insurgent Che Guevara. The blogged site of the day has several declassified documents from the US government relating to Che Guevara and his death.

Guevara was involved with many insurgencies during his life. His most famous endeavor was his role in the Cuban Revolution and his early role in the communist Cuban government. However, he was also involved in other revolts including Congo, Guatemala, and Bolivia. It was the last where he met his end. American trained special forces in the Bolivian army captured him and then executed him.

On October 12, an American State Department analysis of Chi's death predicted, "Guevara will be eulogized as the model revolutionary who met a heroic death." This seems to have been an accurate assessment. However, the communist would probably be unhappy to see how commercial and marketed his image has become.

From the site:

On October 9th, 1967, Ernesto "Che" Guevara was put to death by Bolivian soldiers, trained, equipped and guided by U.S. Green Beret and CIA operatives. His execution remains a historic and controversial event; and thirty years later, the circumstances of his guerrilla foray into Bolivia, his capture, killing, and burial are still the subject of intense public interest and discussion around the world.

As part of the thirtieth anniversary of the death of Che Guevara, the National Security Archive's Cuba Documentation Project is posting a selection of key CIA, State Department, and Pentagon documentation relating to Guevara and his death. This electronic documents book is compiled from declassified records obtained by the National Security Archive, and by authors of two new books on Guevara: Jorge Castañeda's Compañero: The Life and Death of Che Guevara (Knopf), and Henry Butterfield Ryan's The Fall of Che Guevara (Oxford University Press). The selected documents, presented in order of the events they depict, provide only a partial picture of U.S. intelligence and military assessments, reports and extensive operations to track and "destroy" Che Guevara's guerrillas in Bolivia; thousands of CIA and military records on Guevara remain classified. But they do offer significant and valuable information on the high-level U.S. interest in tracking his revolutionary activities, and U.S. and Bolivian actions leading up to his death.

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