tania: spy, guerrilla and mystery
MUCH IS KNOWN ABOUT ERNESTO ‘CHE’ GUEVARA. HIS REPUTATION AS THE ARCHETYPAL FREEDOM FIGHTER ASSURES HI S LARLY IN THE WEST, FAR LESS ATTENTION IS PAID TO THOSE FIGURES WHO MADE HIS ACHIEVEMENTS POSSIBLE. PRIMRO S AN EXTRAORDINARY CHARACTER.
n August 31st 1967 a beautiful, blonde was shot dead by the Bolivian Army on the banks of the Rio Grande. Her body was found by tracking dogs a week later, partially devoured by piranhas. Unlike the eight male guerrillas who died alongside her, thrown into an unmarked pit, the body of the mysterious fighter was carefully wrapped in a white shroud and lovingly laid to rest by a group of Bolivian women. When the news of her death reached the man
reputed to be her lover he refused to believe it, claiming it was capitalist propaganda intent on demoralising him. Just over a month later he was captured and unceremoniously executed. Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara was no more. Who was the woman who now lies immortalised beside the archetypal freedom fighter at Cuba’s Commandante Che Guevara memorial? The name on her birth certificate was ‘Haydée Tamara Bunke Bider’ and yet
she was known by many other names: Maria Iriarte; Haydée González; Laura Gutiérrez Bauer…Tania the Guerrilla. A woman of a thousand faces, she stirs our imagination precisely because her true identity is impenetrable. Some knew her only as the gifted 23 year old German who worked as Che’s translator and interpreter. Others encountered her as an Argentinian anthropologist who wrote a brilliant report on Bolivian folk songs. To Cubans she will always
D JESTERS. AND YOUR NEUROSES. THE JOKE ABOUT THE BAKER WHO COULDN’T HOLD ON. THINK ABOUT THE LAST ONE -