Granma International
June 21, 2002

Priest murdered in Honduras: What is Luis Posada Carriles hiding?

                   • U.S. priest James Carney, chaplain to a Honduran guerrilla column,
                   urged his compatriots to devote their lives to poor and humble Third
                   World peoples — an ideal certainly at a very far remove from the CANF
                   arch-terrorist’s dreams of violence and hatred

                   BY JEAN-GUY ALLARD (Special for Granma International)

                   LUIS Posada Carilles — CIA agent, explosives expert, author of a
                   horrendous number of assassination attempts, and drug trafficker in
                   the misnamed Iran-Contra scandal — has refused to reveal what he
                   certainly knows about the murder of U.S. priest James "Guadalupe"
                   Carney, who was thrown out of a helicopter in flight in Honduran
                   territory in 1983.

                   The terrorist, currently detained in Panama for attempting to
                   detonate an explosive device in an auditorium where thousands of
                   students had gathered to welcome Cuban President Fidel Castro,
                   categorically refused to talk to Jesuit priest Joe Mulligan, who has
                   been trying to contact him in order to finally clear up the mysterious
                   disappearance of the respected religious figure.

                   Mulligan has been investigating Carney’s death ever since his
                   "disappearance" and has assured the Panamanian media that he has
                   information indicating that Posada is fully aware of the circumstances
                   of the priest’s death.

                   In July, 1983, Carney entered Honduras from Nicaragua, as chaplain
                   to a Honduran guerrilla column belonging to the Central American
                   Workers’ Revolutionary Party (PRTC), led by Dr. José María Reyes

                   In a press conference in September of that same year, the Honduran
                   army, constantly advised by CIA officers, announced that it had
                   liquidated the rebel group. Meanwhile John Negroponte, another
                   member of the Company, was heading the U.S. embassy at

                   At the same time, officers from the repressive army forces assured
                   that they had no information about Carney’s fate...although they did
                   admit handing over some cult objects and a Bible "found in an arms
                   cache" to his family.

                   Most of the 96-strong guerrilla group disappeared along with Carney.

                   Some years later, an officer who deserted from the Honduran army
                   death squads confessed to The New York Times that he had taken
                   part in the interrogation of Carney, who had subsequently been

                   A refugee in Toronto, Florencio Caballero, a former member of
                   Battalion 3-16 specially trained by the CIA, recounted how he had
                   captured the priest and PRTC guerillas in an operation called Patuca.

                   He explained that he had later seen Carney in "a very bad state" in
                   an underground cell in a Nicaraguan Contra provisions camp set up
                   by the U.S. army at El Aguacate.

                   Caballero revealed that during a meeting with top Honduran officers,
                   headed by General Alvarez Martínez of the Honduran Armed Forces,
                   and in the presence of U.S. military personnel and a mysterious CIA
                   agent known as "Mister Mike", he had been ordered to kill the

                   According to Caballero’s allegations, in the following hours James
                   "Guadalupe" Carney was thrown out of a helicopter in flight into the
                   middle of the Honduran jungle.

                   Following an investigation by the Inspector General into the CIA, the
                   results of which were published in 1997, a large volume of sensitive
                   information on the violence and torture practiced in Honduras during
                   Negroponte’s appointment as ambassador was systematically
                   eliminated from reports to the U.S. Congress.

                   (In 2001, despite protests from various senators and human rights
                   groups, George W. Bush chose Negroponte — the accomplice of
                   terrorists and torturers — to represent the United States at the
                   United Nations.)

                   In 1995, under a liberal government, the Honduran Human Rights
                   Commission asked the U.S. authorities to hand over documents on
                   Carney’s death, in order to bring the authors of the crime to trial.
                   They also asked for information on the disappearance of 184
                   activists apparently killed by Battalion 3-16 henchmen.

                   The CIA and the U.S. army proceeded to hand over a certain number
                   of documents...with 50% of their contents blacked out.

                   Upset by such a lack of respect, friends and relatives went directly to
                   the U.S. embassy in Tegucigalpa to ask for an explanation. Eight
                   members of the Marine guard brutally threw them out.

                   For 45 days those same people remained outside the embassy on
                   hunger strike, but the U.S. authorities refused to be moved.

                   Likewise, successive appeals to the White House and State
                   Department by Nobel prize winners Rigoberta Menchú and Adolfo
                   Pérez Esquival, as well as various U.S. senators who also asked for
                   the truth to be finally revealed, failed to produce any results.

                   On CIA instructions, Luis Posada Carriles, veteran mercenary of the
                   extreme right anti-Cuban mafia, and responsible for the dirty
                   operations of the Cuban American National Foundation (CANF),
                   worked as director of the Venezuelan political police (DISIP) before
                   being arrested on charges of sabotaging a Cubana Aviation aircraft in
                   full flight in 1976 that led to the death of 73 people. After escaping
                   from jail in 1985, he resurfaced in El Salvador and became a drug
                   trafficker alongside Félix Rodríguez, terrorist and friend of George
                   Bush senior.

                   Posada was involved in many conspiracies. In 1994 in Honduras, he
                   worked with mafiosi Mario del Amico on an assassination campaign
                   (at the behest of the army, and doubtless the CIA) aimed at
                   counteracting President Carlos Alberto Reina’s plans to reduce the
                   role of the armed forces. Two attempts on the life of the Honduran
                   president took place: on January 28, 1995 and March 26, 1996.

                   In 1997, General Edmundo Orellano, Honduran attorney general at
                   the time, suspected that Raúl Ernesto Cruz León, the Salvadoran
                   captured in Havana after a series of attacks masterminded by
                   Posada, was also implicated in the assassination attempts in

                   At the same time, Posada Carriles’ links with CIA agents in Central
                   America, whom he was advising, and with extreme right camarillas —
                   in Miami as well as Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Panama and
                   Nicaragua — go back several decades, and there is no doubt that he
                   knows everything about the most degrading acts of repression in
                   that region of the Americas.

                   Like his CIA masters, Posada Carriles is refusing to reveal the
                   shameful secrets of his criminal activities.

                   James "Guadalupe" Carney was born in Chicago, Illinois, on October
                   29, 1924. He was a soldier in the U.S. forces in World War II, serving
                   in France and Britain. On his return to the United States, he became a
                   Jesuit novice in Florissant, Missouri. Once ordained as a priest, he
                   was assigned to a Jesuit Mission in Honduras.

                   A liberation priest, James Carney always identified with Honduras’
                   poorest sectors; for 18 years he preached on the need for political
                   and social change.

                   In 1974, he renounced his U.S. nationality and became a Honduran
                   citizen. However, in 1979, the government of General Policarpo Paz
                   García rescinded his Honduran nationality, expelling him from the
                   country on account of the subversive ideas he expressed in his work
                   with campesinos.

                   Carney took refuge in Nicaragua, was fired by the Sandinistas’ work
                   in the fields of health and education, and decided to join the nascent
                   Honduran guerrilla movement.

                   In 1985, his autobiography To Be a Revolutionary was published
                   postmortem by Harper and Row. The book urges his progressive
                   U.S. compatriots to devote their lives to the poor and the humble.

                   That ideal is certainly at a very far remove from Luis Posada Carriles’
                   dreams of violence and hatred.