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"Who Killed Che? How the CIA Got Away with Murder": New Book Ties Johnson Admin to Guevara’s Death (2)

Wednesday, 08 February 2012 07:09 By Amy Goodman, Democracy Now! | Video
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Michael Ratner and Michael Steven Smith are the co-authors of a new book about the U.S. role in the killing of Cuban revolutionary, Ernesto "Che" Guevara. Born in Argentina in 1928, Che rose to international prominence as one of the key leaders of the 1959 Cuban Revolution that overthrew U.S.-backed dictator Fulgencio Batista. After a period in the new Cuban government leadership, Che aimed to spark revolutionary activity internationally. On October 8, 1967, he was captured by Bolivian troops working with the CIA. He was executed one day later. In their book, "Who Killed Che?" Ratner and Smith draw on previously unpublished government documents to argue the CIA played a critical role in the killing. "The line of the [U.S.] government was that the Bolivians did it, we couldn’t do anything about it. That’s not true," Smith said. "This whole operation was organized out of the White House by Walt Whitman Rostow. And the CIA, by this time, had become a paramilitary organization." On Che’s significance, Ratner says Che became "a symbol for revolutionary change... He still remains, of course, that today. If you go to Occupy Wall Street, if you go to Tahrir Square, you will see people who are wearing Che T-shirts, because they understand that their obligation, their necessity, is to take on the 1 percent. And that’s what Che was about. And that’s why I think he remains such a hero for people in the streets today."

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