Alexis Markovic & The Female Assassin
Harris L. Kligman's upcoming release, "Kill Alexis Markovic," has as its primary character a tall, raven haired beauty who embarks on a mission to find out why the Russian Okulov Crime Family is losing money in their American operation. While there, Alexis finds herself at a crossroad where she begins questioning her obligations to the organization that created her.
Are assassins often women? We asked Harris L. Kligman his take on female assassins and the history behind them.
"The word Assassin is believed to have its origin in the Arabic word, "Hashshashin" or "Hashshasiyin"."It refers to a group of Nizari Ismailis who were known as Assassins and were active against political targets.
The earliest known use of the verb "to assassinate" in printed English was by Matthew Sutcliffe, an English clergyman, academic and lawyer in a published pamphlet printed in 1600.
Assassination constitutes an illegal killing.
Assassins are normally considered to be men, however, women have been used effectively in espionage, intelligence operations and assassination work.
The illogical view held by some that women are physically and mentally lower in intensity and therefore ineffective as intelligence operatives engaging in espionage or other illicit activities such as assassinations, has no foundation in fact.
One such female assassin was Idola Lopez Riano, known as "La Tigresa" - "The Tigress," who is said to have assassinated more than twenty people in the1980's during the quest for Basque independence from Spain. She would often use sexual prowess before killing a target. A Spanish court sentenced her to one thousand, five hundred years.
Another woman assassin was Brigitte Mohnhaupt, a prominent member of the Red Army Faction also known as the Baader-Meinhof gang. She was involved in a series of hijackings, assassinations and bombings In the 1970's. She was arrested and sentenced to five life terms plus fifteen years for her involvement in nine killings including one where she handed flowers to a banker before shooting him at close range. Another assassination attempt was made on an American Commander and his wife using a rocket launcher.
"The Tigress" and Brigitte Mohnhaupt are several female assassins whose identity is known. Normally assassins are not known for obvious reasons. In most instances they are part of a country's organized intelligence apparatus or they work for private contract firms specializing in espionage and assassinations.
These private contract "companies," are under retainer with various governments or special interest groups whose identity is a closely guarded secret. For a multitude of reasons, some world governments have enacted restrictive laws prohibiting their intelligence personnel from engaging in assassinations primarily due to the severe international repercussions it could cause. The assassinations or wet work, as it is termed in tradecraft, is therefore farmed out to private "companies" specializing in this type of work, and the operatives are in many cases, women."