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Augusta la Torre
Second in Command of the Shining Path
Succeeded by Elena Iparraguirre
Personal details
Born 1946
Ayacucho, Peru
Died 14 November 1988 (aged 41–42)
Political party Communist Party of Peru - Shining Path
Spouse(s) Abimael Guzmán

Augusta la Torre Carrasco (c. 1946 – 1988), also known as Comrade Norah, was a Peruvian Maoist revolutionary noted as number two in command of the Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path) guerrillas. La Torre's influence on her husband, Sendero Luminoso founder Abimael Guzmán, was credited with establishing the equality for women's participation within the revolutionary organization and during its militant actions.[1]

Early life and Political InvolvementEdit

Augusta La Torre was born in Huanta in 1946 into a family with a prominent political lineage. The daughter of Communist party leader Carlos la Torre Córdova and Delia Carrasco, "she grew up in a family where political activity, party membership and protest against the Peruvian state were routine, making it unsurprising that she too entered radical politics."[2] She joined the Peruvian Communist Party in 1962 at the age of 17.[2] She met Abimael Guzmán, a professor of philosophy, through her parents. Guzman was a regular guest to their home in Ayacucho, meeting with la Torre's father to discuss politics. In February 1964, she married Guzman.[3] La Torre also encouraged Guzman to establish the Popular Women's Movement in Ayacucho in 1965.[4] She was active within the Maoist political organization, Bandera Roja (Red Flag) and helped found the Socorro Popular del Peru (Popular Succour).[5]

Sendero LuminosoEdit

La Torre was instrumental in helping Guzman to create the Sendero Luminoso.[4][6] She led the first offensive of the Shining Path on December 24, 1980.[2] She went into hiding with Guzman in 1978 and died in November 1988, although the circumstances of her death remain unclear [7] She was succeeded as number two of the Sendero Luminoso by Guzman's second wife, Elena Albertina Iparraguirre Revoredo.[8][9]


  1. Diamond, M.J., Women and Revolution: Global Expressions, Springer, 1998, p309, ISBN 0-7923-5182-7
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Heilman, Jaymie Patricia (2010). "Family Ties: The Political Genealogy of Shining Path's Comrade Norah". pp. 155–169. 
  3. Bloody Peruvian terrorist also had fuzzy side, Latin American Herald Tribune, 2008, retrieved 06-01-2009
  4. 4.0 4.1 Nathanial C. Nash, "Lima Journal; Shining Path Women: So Many and So Ferocious" New York Times, September 22, 1992
  5. Peru: Information on Augusta La Torre, wife of Abimael Guzmán, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, PER12684, 1 January 1993
  6. Mahan, Sue and Pamala L. Griset, Terrorism in Perspective, p 253-4.
  7. "Los misterios de Norah", La República online, 17 December 2008
  8. Terrorism Today by Christopher C. Harmon, p 216.
  9. "Líder de Sendero Luminoso fue condenado a cadena perpetua,", 13 October 2006

External linksEdit

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