Day in the Five: Posada brags about the bomb that killed a man

Luis Posada brags about his role in the hotel bombings that killed an Italian-Canadian tourist in this telephone conversation secretly recorded by Cuban State Security.

September 5, 1997

“Paco,” the voice at the other end of the phone demanded, “are you up to date on all this?”

Luis Posada Carriles
Luis Posada Carriles

Paco was Francisco Pimentel, a Cuban-born Venezuelan businessman with close connections to Venezuela’s secret police. During the early seventies, he’d become friends with Luis Posada Carriles, the man at the other end of the telephone line. They’d initially gotten to know each other when Posada worked for Venezuela’s feared Directorate of Intelligence and Prevention Services (DISIP). The two men remained close.

Posada was calling today to update him on the latest success in his ongoing campaign to destabilize Cuba’s fledgling tourism industry by planting bombs at hotels and resorts.

“You have no idea,” Posada gloated. “Three in a row in three hotels in Miramar, all synchronized and with no chance of them detecting the envoy.”

Posada hadn’t yet heard the news of Raúl Cruz León’s arrest.

“And this is just starting. I promise you that several more envoys are on their way to Cuba to carry out new actions.”

Paco had had his own suggestions for “actions.” During a conversation a month before, he’d offered one: “As well as the hotels and tourist places,” Paco suggested, “it would be really good to do something to the interests of those businessmen linked to the construction of stores and commercial centres in Cuba. For example, that little faggot Oscar de la Renta…”

Paco made no mentoion of de la Renta today; Posada was too busy gloating.

“This is really fierce,” Posada said.

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