Nicaragua: Shot Out of the Sky

A captured U.S. soldier of fortune spins a tale of CIA intrigue

For the Sandinistas it was a moment of delicious, unexpected triumph. After years of charging that the White House was orchestrating a secret war to subvert their Marxist-oriented government, there on Nicaraguan TV screens was living proof of their allegations: a burly, rugged-looking, redheaded American named Eugene Hasenfus. The prisoner looked the part he played. Hasenfus, 45, a gung-ho patriot and soldier of fortune, had been captured after parachuting from a U.S. plane that was shot down by Nicaraguan soldiers while on a mission to deliver arms to contra rebels in southern Nicaragua. Three other men, two Americans and a Nicaraguan,...

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