June 20, 2007

Spanish coverup in 1536

Inca warrior's wound tells another tale

Archeologists in Peru identify the Americas' earliest reported gunshot victim, casting conquistadors as less than heroic in the siege of Lima.The records maintain that a few hundred conquistadors, led by Francisco Pizarro, used their superior weaponry and their horses to repel an attack by tens of thousands of Incas led by Manco Yupanqui. After breaking the siege, the Spaniards tracked down and killed many of the Incas who had attacked, including the group at Puruchuco.

But the evidence casts the conquistadors in a less heroic light, Cock found. The archeological evidence makes it clear that the Spaniards were accompanied by a large group of Indians who were fighting the Incas to escape subjugation.

Although as many as three of the Inca warriors were clearly shot and others had injuries apparently made by the Spaniards' metallic weapons, most of the 72 victims apparently were bludgeoned with more primitive stone weapons wielded by other Indians.

"The great siege must have taken place in a very different manner than we have been told," said Efrain Trelles Arestegui, a historian at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru in Lima, who was not connected with the research. Only now, he added, are researchers revealing "the great cover-up that took place in the 16th century."

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