May His Innocent Victims Rest in Peace

By José Pertierra on May 29, 2018

Family members of the victims of the 1976 Barbados plane. Photo: Bill Hackwell

He never paid for the crimes he committed. He died with impunity in Miami last week. His followers say that Luis Posada Carriles fought his entire adult life against communism, and that justifies everything he did. But Posada never fought in the field of honor. His victims were never the soldiers of the Cuban Rebel Army. His military strategy was to kill innocent people in order to try to terrorize those who wanted to visit, talk or trade with Cuba.

He left a balance sheet of suffering in several countries of Our America, especially in Cuba, Venezuela, El Salvador and Guatemala. He masterminded the murder of 73 people aboard a Cuban passenger plane in 1976, including 24 teenagers from the island’s youth fencing team and also a nine-year-old Guyanese girl named Sabrina. As head of special operations for the Venezuelan intelligence service, during the presidency of right-wing Rafael Caldera, he tortured and murdered dozens of citizens, including two sisters Brenda and Marlene Esquivel. A witness stated that Brenda was eight months pregnant when she was arrested, and Posada Carriles said: Kill that seed before it is born, because he is going to be a communist. Brenda lost the baby due to torture.

Posada also worked for the death squads in El Salvador and Guatemala. From his lair in El Salvador he led a terrorist campaign in 1997, with the purpose of discouraging tourism to Cuba. He hired several Central Americans to blow up bombs in the most emblematic centers of tourism on the island, including the Hotel Nacional, La Bodeguita del Medio and the Hotel Meliá Cohiba. One of those bombs killed Fabio di Celmo,  an Italian tourist in the lobby-bar of the Copacabana Hotel in Miramar. He confessed, the following year to the New York Times that the Italian was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and that’s why I sleep like a baby.

In 2000 he tried to assassinate President Fidel Castro in Panama. His plan was to deposit nine kilograms of C-4 explosives in the Paraninfo of the National University of Panama, so that the auditorium would explode during the speech of the Cuban president before approximately one thousand guests, which included students and diplomats.

His lawyer, Arturo Hernández (he prefers to be called Art Jernandes), admitted before a US federal court that everything Luis Posada Carriles did was on behalf of the CIA. And it is precisely the documents of the CIA, the State Department and the FBI that admit Posada Carriles’ terrorist record.

Declassified documents from the United States government and published by the National Security Archive prove that, days before the bombing of the plane, Posada said he planned to hit a Cuban plane and Orlando Bosch (his accomplice) has all the details. NSAEBB153 / 19761018.pdf

A confidential source confided to the CIA the day after the bombing of the passenger plane, that Posada Carriles was the mastermind of the sinister attack. NSAEBB153 / 19761008.pdf

The material authors who carried out the bombing are Hernán Ricardo and Freddy Lugo, both Venezuelans and subordinates to Luis Posada Carriles. They were sentenced to 20 years in prison in Venezuela. Ricardo drew the outline of the C-4 bombs that he and Lugo put on the CU-455 flight that day. Lugo testified that Ricardo bragged about having killed more people on that plane than Carlos El Chacal and that he had received $ 25,000 for the terrorist act. He also said that he worked for the CIA and that his boss was Luis Posada Carriles. = 3214339-Document-09-Trinidad-and-Tobago-Ministry-of

After a life dedicated to terrorism, Posada Carriles decided to retire in Miami. He arrived at the end of March 2005, illegally, aboard a boat called El Santrina. The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela filed a lawsuit for his extradition in May 2005, but Washington refused to send him to Caracas to be held accountable for his crimes. He was protected until the day of his death. As former US President Franklin D. Roosevelt said of Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Somoza García, he may be a son of a bitch, but he is our son of a bitch.

The death of Posada Carriles, on May 23, has inspired several news stories. They use several adjectives to describe him. The BBC of London called him an anti-Castro radical. El País simply described him as a former CIA agent. For El Nuevo Herald of Miami, Posada was an anti-Castro militant. The New York Times entitled their article on him: Luis Posada Carriles, who fought to overthrow Castro, dies at 90. La Voz de América, the official organ of the United States government, reported antiseptically to its listeners that anti-Castro activist Posada Carriles had died.

How these media would title their news if Posada had been a Muslim? Very likely: Terrorist Luis Posada Carriles died. May his innocent victims rest in peace.

Jose Pertierra is a lawyer in Washington DC who represented Venezuela in its effort to extradite Posada to Venezuela.

Source: La Jornada