Is it really so difficult to find someone qualified to be pope who isn’t connected with mass murderers? Digital Journal writes:
From 1976 until 1983, Argentina was governed by a series of U.S.-backed military dictators who ruled with iron fists and crushed the regime’s opponents. As many as 30,000 people were killed or disappeared during this horrific era, and many children and babies were stolen from parents imprisoned in concentration camps or murdered by the regime.
During this harrowing period, the Argentine Catholic church was shamefully silent in the face of atrocities. Worse, leading church figures were complicit in the regime’s abuses. One priest, Father Christian von Wernich, was a former police chaplain later sentenced to life in prison for involvement in seven murders, 42 kidnappings and 31 cases of torture during the ‘Dirty War.’
So exactly what role did Jorge Bergoglio play in his country’s brutal seven-year military dictatorship?
A 1995 lawsuit filed by a human rights lawyer alleges that Bergoglio, who was leading the local Jesuit community by the time the military junta seized power, was involved in the kidnapping of two of his fellow Jesuit priests, Orlando Yorio and Francisco Jalics, who were tortured by navy personnel before being dumped in a field, drugged and semi-naked, five months later. Yorio accused Bergoglio of “effectively handing [the priests] over to death squads.”
But that wasn’t the only time Bergoglio allegedly cooperated with the regime. According to a book by Horacio Verbitsky, one of Argentina’s most respected investigative journalists, he also hid political prisoners from a delegation of visiting international monitors from the Inter-American Human Rights Commission. Bergoglio was also silent in the wake of [activist clergyman] Bishop Enrique Angelelli’s assassination, even as other leading Argentine clergy condemned the murder. “History condemns him,” Fortunato Mallimacci, a former dean at the University of Buenos Aires, once said of Bergoglio. “He was very cozy with the dictatorship.”