Wednesday, July 27, 2005

"Wife of Guatemalan Rebel Killed by CIA Asset Says CIA Operatives Engaged in Criminal Acts Should Be Exposed" (Democracy Now!)

Marcia e-mails to ask if we could pull an excerpt from the mid-morning post and note it individually because "I was shocked when I heard it on Democracy Now! this morning."

From "Wife of Guatemalan Rebel Killed by CIA Asset Says CIA Operatives Engaged in Criminal Acts Should be Exposed:"

AMY GOODMAN: Jennifer Harbury, you took a case against the U.S. government to the Supreme Court. You fasted endlessly in both Guatemala and the United States to find out what had happened to your husband. Can you talk about what happened in taking on the U.S. government, how ultimately, you found out what happened to Everardo, what happened to your husband Ephraim Bamaca Velasquez?
JENNIFER HARBURY: Well, I first, of course, had been told by the Guatemalan military that he had shot himself in combat to avoid being captured alive. Six months later, a young prisoner of war for the first time was able to escape from a Guatemalan military base and explain to me that he had not been killed in combat, he was captured alive, that they had fabricated this story about his combat death in order to torture him long-term for his information. And in fact, they had doctors present -- because of his great intelligence value, they had doctors present to make sure they didn't accidentally kill him. They then opened the grave and found the body of a very different young man, a young soldier who had been killed as a decoy.
For the next two-and-a-half years, I carried out efforts with the O.A.S. I went to the United Nations. I went everywhere and got no results. No one was able to force the Guatemalan military or the U.S. State Department to carry out any serious actions. And the Embassy, the U.S. Embassy told me and also sent form letters repeatedly to concerned members all over Capitol Hill, representatives and senators, that there was no information at all about him.
After my third hunger strike, it was, of course, disclosed that the C.I.A. had known from the week of his capture that (a) he had been captured, (b) they were faking his death, and (c) they were torturing him. And that memo went straight to the State Department. We also found out that when I first started looking for him and was opening the grave with the State Department and embassy sending people to stand next to me, they knew he was still alive and that so were 350 other prisoners of war in Guatemalan military hands and, in fact, they also knew that he was in the hands of our own paid informants whom we could have, of course, pulled into line. In other words, at that point in time, we could have saved 350 lives, including my husband's. During all of my efforts they continued to tell me and to tell the United States Congress and
Amnesty, etc., etc., that there was no information.

The e-mail address for this site is