The Double Life of Fidel Castro

The Double Life of Fidel Castro

My 17 Years as Personal Bodyguard to El Líder Máximo

Book - 2015
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In The Double Life of Fidel Castro, one of Castro's soldiers of 17 years breaks his silence and shares his memoir of years of service, and eventual imprisonment and torture for displeasing the notorious dictator, and his dramatic escape from Cuba. Responsible for protecting the Lider maximo for two decades, Juan Reinaldo Sánchez was party to his secret life - because everything around Castro was hidden. From the ghost town in which guerrillas from several continents were trained, to his immense personal fortune - including a huge property portfolio, a secret paradise island, and seizure of public money - as well as his relationship with his family and his nine children from five different partners. Sanchez's tell-all expose reveals countless state secrets and the many sides of the Cuban monarch: genius war leader in Nicaragua and Angola, paranoid autocrat at home, master spy, Machiavellian diplomat, and accomplice to drug traffickers. This extraordinary testimony makes us re-examine everything we thought we knew about the Cuban story and Fidel Castro Ruz.--Dust Jacket
Publisher: New York : St. Martin's Press, 2015.
Edition: First U.S. Edition.
ISBN: 9781250068767
Branch Call Number: 972.91064 SAN
Characteristics: 278 pages ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Gyldén, Axel
Spencer, Catherine


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Jan 02, 2018

Castro ran Cuba like a plantation for his own benefit. He was a man who would brook no disagreements and who had a police state to enforce his opinions. All else in Cuba flows from that. The author, one of his trusted bodyguards, gives a rather bland, uninspiring look into the life of Fidel. This book is an easy read and worthwhile, but there are better books that tell the true tale of this murderous, corrupt regime.

Apr 06, 2017

I found this title while browsing the new paperback books at my local library. A skim through really interested me and the writing was clear & fast paced. The author was a committed Castroite that rose through ability and smarts to be Fidel's first bodyguard. He was there for almost everything, protecting Fidel when he went to his private island or numerous other secret homes, planning and protecting Fidel on his overseas trips, often carrying suitcases of hard currency to rent or buy homes, cars, etc for Fidel to use at a Non-Aligned Nation Summit or other event and operating the secret taping system in Fidel's office. The author helped Fidel conceal his several mistresses and was aware of, and disgusted by, the arrangements Fidel & his government made for cash payments to look the other way as drug runners & cartels smuggled their shipments through Cuba after the fall of the Soviet Union cut off their support of Cuba. I was surprised that the book confirms with details that Cuba supported all the socialist guerilla wars in Central America they were rumored to be behind and their deep involvement with large numbers of troops in Angola. Sanchez also describes how trusted generals, aides and even himself are cast aside or killed at Fidel's whim. The author finally escaped Cuba to write the book. I recommend this for anyone who is interested in seeing behind the veil of Castro's Cuba.


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