Guerrilla Hero Says He's Broke
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
MANAGUA, Nicaragua (AP) -- A legendary ex-Sandinista hero who directed
assault that led to the overthrow of the Somoza dictatorship says he's so poor he
can't even pay his water bill.
``Not even Somoza made me surrender and now the water company is doing
Eden Pastora was quoted Monday by the daily newspaper El Nuevo Diario as
The newspaper said several supporters of Pastora had sent e-mails suggesting
bank account be set up to help Pastora, who directed the famous assault on the
National Palace in 1977 that later led to the Sandinistas' overthrow of dictator
Anastasio Somoza in 1979.
During the assault, Pastora took hostage several congressmen whom he exchanged
for Sandinista prisoners.
But Pastora became disillusioned and resigned from the Sandinista National
Liberation Front in the mid-'80s and switched to the counterrevolutionary
He now says he is so destitute that he had his telephone service cut off,
threatened by the electric company, and owes the water company about $400.
``I'm not even collecting from Social Security,'' he said.
Pastora has put classified ads in the newspaper selling some of his famous
possessions, including a Rolex watch that Sandinista rebels stole from one of the
hostages, a close relative of Somoza, and gave him as a gift for his service on the
first anniversary of the revolution.
The ads have not gotten any response and Pastora suspects that people think
just a joke.
``They don't believe that I'm poor,'' Pastora told the newspaper. ``They
believe that having had the chance to steal, I didn't steal.''
Pastora said he has friends outside of the country who could help, but
that he hasn't
been able to call them because he has no phone service.
``If (former Socialist Spanish Prime Minister) Felipe Gonzalez knew, he'd
lend me a
hand,'' he said.