Date: Thu, 2 Oct 97 13:07:28 CDT
From: rich@pencil (Rich Winkel)
Organization: PACH
Subject: Guatemala: Cerigua Weekly Briefs 37 Sept 25
Article: 19119

/** reg.guatemala: 138.0 **/
** Topic: Cerigua Weekly Briefs 37 **
** Written 2:45 PM Sep 30, 1997 by in cdp:reg.guatemala **
From: cerigua <>

Books Reveal Secret Lives of Ex-guerrillas

Ceigua Weekly Briefs, no.37, 25 September 1997

Guatemala City, September 18. Peace has encouraged many Guatemalans to come forward and speak about the past—among them the nation's former rebels. This week the Guillermo Toriello Foundation presented the book Fernando Hoyos: Donde Estas? (Where Are you?), which tells the story of one of the nation's best-loved guerrilla fighters. The work is the third published this year in an attempt to bring to light the untold experiences of rebel combatants.

A lot of things can be said now that couldn't be said before, said foundation director Enrique Corral, adding that only a few years ago the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity (URNG) had decided not to include Hoyos' life in a book dedicated to Guatemala's martyrs.

Written by his sister Maria del Pilar Hoyos de Asig, Donde Estas? describes the road Hoyos traveled from his ordination as a Spanish Jesuit priest to his decision to take up arms. It also cites many of those who knew him, from his work in a poor neighborhood in Guatemala City, as founder of Campesino Unity Committee (CUC) in Quiche, as rebel organizer in Huehuetenango, and—after he was killed in 1982—as the subject of one of the songs sung by children in the Resistance Communities (CPR).

Donde Estas? is not the first such biography to be offered up for public consumption. La Hora Cero en Tiempos de Guerra (Zero Hour in Times of War), published last April, was the first testimonial on guerrilla life to appear since peace was signed. In it, Angel Cantu Aragon recounts his experiences in the Peten jungle with the rebel forces and also recalls some of the more dramatic, tragic and heroic events that he and his companions witnessed.

And in May, novelist Jose Flores, who writes under a pseudonym, launched Sombras de Selva (Shadows of Jungle). This fictional work is also based on the guerrilla experience in Peten. Earlier works by Flores had described the massacres by the army suffered in Peten, but this is his first novel to look at that history from the rebel perspective.