Partisan Anthem (Himno guerrillero)

Author:
Unknown. Russian melody. During the Russian Revolution, several lyrics with different ideological content circulated. This version is based on "Makhnovtchina", attributed to Nestor Makhno, Ukrainian anarchist revolutionary.
Testimony by:
Julio Laks Feller
Place & date:

In late September 1974, the Soviet partisan’s song was intoned softly but with an awe-inspiring force in the José Domingo Cañas torture centre. Our comrade and beloved friend Sergio Pérez Molina, leader of the MIR who had fallen into the hands of the DINA a few days earlier, was being tortured again. We had already seen him disfigured by the blows; they had even applied electricity to a bullet wound when they shot him at the time of his arrest. Moren Brito boasted that he had run a pick-up truck over Sergio’s body.

For hours Sergio had been intensely moaning in pain and we could hear guards running back and forth, saying he was in bad shape. Tension mounted and a guard could be heard shouting that he was in very bad condition and had to be taken out of there. They began dragging him, and as they passed our room, Rosalía began to quietly sing “Por llanuras y montañas...” (“Through valleys and over hills”). It was a way to speak to him and to try to give him strength; to tell him we were there and that we were accompanying him. In a sense, it was really his song. We had sung it together many times.

Perhaps a dozen of us, holding hands, with our eyes blindfolded, all began to sing, in whispers. The young sentry who guarded us appeared to be so paralyzed by the collective power released by our voices that he did not even try to shut us up.

The Amur partisans were transformed into the partisans of "amor" (love), as rendered by the translations of that song that celebrates the courage of the guerrillas who fought on the shores of the river of the same name. Precisely that love uniting us is what gave us strength to resist. In the same way, we also sang “L'Internationale” when on 5 October Miguel's assassins returned triumphantly to the facility.

Few of us from that group survived. But the voices of Lumi Videla, María Cristina López-Stewart, Aldo and Carlos Pérez Vargas, the brothers Jorge Andrónicos Antequera  and Juan Carlos Andrónicos Antequera, Antonio Llidó, Ariel Salinas, Cecilia Bojanic and her husband Flavio Oyarzún, Francisco Aedo, Mario Calderón, Alfredo Rojas Castañeda, José Jara, Manuel Villalobos, and David Silberman continue to echo in our memory.

The version of the Russian partisan song we sung was the one anti-Franco fighters had adopted and adapted, as had fighters against fascism in other countries before them.

Victims remembered in this testimony:


Published on: 19 December 2014


Over plains and mountains
free fighters go,
the best fighters
of country and city.

Neither pain nor sadness
will impede our conquest,
we shall continue forward
and never retreat.

The fighting banners
like blankets will cover
the brave fighters
who fall in battle.

The future shall not forget
that their mission was
to end the fascism,
implanted in Spain.