Richie O’Donnell, who directed The Pipe, a documentary about the Shell-to-Sea campaign in Erris, has just produced a short documentary for Al Jazeera about the killing of three men in Bolivia in 2009. Michael Dwyer, from Tipperary, was shot alongside two Hungarians – Arpad Magyarosi and their friend and leader, Eduardo Rozsa Flores – by the Bolivian security forces on suspicion of a terrorist plot to kill President Evo Morales. You can view his documentary at the link below. It’s a complex story that spans five countries: Romania, Hungary, Croatia, Ireland and Bolivia, and O’Donnell does very well to fit it all into the 25 minutes allotted here. It’s eerie to watch the home movies and photographs of the men parading their weapons and camaraderie for friends back home, reminding me of that family portrait of Maud Gonne, John McBride and little Seaghan in their white frilly fineries posed around a table laden with guns and ammunition belts in the wake of the Boer War.
I have an interest in the story because I knew Eduardo Rozsa Flores. I met him during the year I spent in Budapest, 1992 – 1993, when he was running a brigade of international volunteers on the Croatian side in the Balkans War. You can read my account of the events in Bolivia, their origins and , and their chief conspirator, in ‘The Universal Soldier’, Dublin Review, 36, Autumn 2009. There’s a link to the piece on the home page under ‘Writings’.