The Caribbean Mata Hari who fell in love and almost killed Fidel Castro
Anything can happen when a CIA spy is ordered to poison her first love.
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"Have you come to kill me?" he asked. They were facing each other like two halves of the same thing or two ghosts as the revolutionary asked the question and her arm trembled. "Yes," she answered. Castro took out his gun, handed it to her and said, "Then do what you came here to do, kill me." But Marita Lorenz couldn't.
She returned to the United States with the same poison capsules hidden in her suitcase, her mission had failed but her love prevailed. The spy would have to face the CIA, which had commissioned her his murder because she was, no less, one of Fidel Castro's girlfriends. Nevertheless, Marita regretted until her death last year in a New York nursing home that she had not stayed on the island.
This and other stories were told by the German in her autobiography "Dear Fidel: My Life, My Love, My Betrayal" (1993), a long letter to the man she always considered the first love of her life.
Lorenz and Castro had first met in Havana in 1959. She was 19 years old, had arrived with her family on a luxury ship, the Berlin IV, of which her father was the captain. While they were berthed in the port, she remembered, the 33-year-old revolutionary came over smoking his mythical cigar and she invited him to visit the ship.
"He asked me where my cabin was. Once there, after opening the door, he pushed me inside, drew me in and hugged me. That was my first kiss with a man," explained Marita in an interview with Paris Match.
"They took him out of my belly," Lorenz accused the CIA of making her believe that she had lost the child she was expecting with Fidel Castro.
He asked for her phone number in New York, where Lorenz had lived since the end of World War II. The tough young German had spent her childhood in a Nazi concentration camp since his father had been accused of espionage. When the war ended, the family fled to the United States and her parents started working for the CIA. What the young lady didn't expect was that Fidel would call her and more than that, beg her to see her again, in Havana.
The next meeting took place on May 20. From a suite at the Hilton, Marita wrote to her mother: "I'm fine, I have everything and I'm happy". Fidel was in the Sierra Madre, she added. He would return in the evening. When she woke up, she found the room flooded with flowers.
It was seven happy months in Cuba. Having become his lover, Lorenz worked as the revolutionary leader's secretary. However, a strange and horrifying event caused her to break up with him and return to New York...
One day some commandos, allegedly from the CIA, kidnapped and drugged the young lover. When she woke up, they told her that she had aborted the son she was expecting from Fidel. "They took it out of my belly," she remembered. But the child was born, his name was Andres Vazquez, and he remained in Cuba with his father. She only met him again in 1981.
Before that time, many more things happened...
"Whoever survived Bergen-Belsen can work for the CIA," repeated Frank Sturgis, an agent whom the Cuban leader recognized as the most dangerous American spy, who recruited her and was trained to kill Castro. According to documents owned by the FBI, both the Intelligence Agency and the U.S. mafia -- which aspired to take control of the game on the island -- considered Marita Lorenz to be their secret weapon. Maybe she thought so, too.
That winter 1960, everything was about to happen. The poison was hidden in her luggage, the fake smile. "Hello, Fidel." "How are you, Fidel? It's been a long time..." But she didn't test her strength. "Are you going to kill me?" he asked. "Do it!" She didn't betray him, it was her heart that betrayed her.
"They hated me, they blamed me," the old woman explained years before her death about the CIA's reaction when they found out Castro was still alive.
Since that time, Marita continued to work as a spy. She fell in love again with the former president of Venezuela, Marco Perez Jimenez, with whom she had a daughter, and they were both abandoned in the jungle. She also faced the CIA itself as a witness to the involvement of the Intelligence Agency in JFK's murder, but the sanbenito of being a conspiracy buff fell on her.
"I guess I'm tough," she sighed shortly before her death.
Marita Lorenz died of heart failure at the age of 80. Some say plainly that "her heart stopped".