Sunday, August 23, 2009


As the soldiers advanced up the Mar Verde Valley, Che and his men stuck to the flanking forested hills, trying to catch up to them without being seen. They tried to speed up their pace, but discovered that their new mascot, a puppy, had stubbornly trailed them. Che ordered the fighter who was looking after the puppy, a man named Felix, to make it go back, but the little dog continued trotting loyally behind. They reached an arroyo where they rested, and the puppy inexplicably began howling; the men tried to hush it with comforting words, but the little dog didn’t stop. Che ordered it killed. “Felix looked at me with eyes that said nothing,” Che wrote later. “Very slowly he took out a rope, wrapped it around the animal’s neck, and began to tighten it. The cute little movements of the dog’s tail suddenly became convulsive, before gradually dying out, accompanied by a steady moan that escaped from its throat despite the firm grasp. I don’t know how long it took for the end to come, but to all of us it seemed like forever. With one nervous twitch the puppy stopped moving. There it lay, sprawled out, its little head spread over the twigs.”

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