Tag Archives | Argentina

Alberto Nisman: Conspiracy To Kill A Prosecutor


In Buenos Aires, Nisman’s case generated conspiracy theories involving spies and foreign governments and conniving politicians.

Even among skeptics there can be little doubt that there was a conspiracy to kill Argentinian state prosecutor Alberto Nisman, who was trying a bit too hard to lock up that country’s president. The New Yorker has a typically in-depth look at some of the theories of whodunnit:

In the last days of his life, Alberto Nisman could hardly wait to confront his enemies. On January 14th of this year, Nisman, a career prosecutor in Argentina, had made an electrifying accusation against the country’s President, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. He charged that she had orchestrated a secret plan to scuttle the investigation of the bloodiest terrorist attack in Argentina’s history: the 1994 suicide bombing of the Asociación Mutual Israelita Argentina, the country’s largest Jewish organization, in which eighty-five people were killed and more than three hundred wounded.

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Falklands Controversy Shows Why Bill O’Reilly Will Never Be Fired

Bill O’Reilly is a guy who likes to make the claim that the mainstream media, which is to say, all media that isn’t either his own Fox News or the far right blogosphere, is liberal. He seems to believe that there are dark, clandestine forces that are at work against him, which, at the same time, serve to coddle and prop up anyone who doesn’t unquestioningly accept his point of view. And as with every claim that O’Reilly makes, the opposite is usually true.

Nowhere is this more evident than the current controversy Bill O’Reilly finds himself in. In the wake of the 6 month suspension of NBC’s Brian Williams over an erroneous statement he made about his time covering the Iraq War, David Corn and Daniel Schuman at Mother Jones had an interesting idea: that perhaps by digging into statements made by O’Reilly in the past, they might come across some errors too.… Read the rest

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Argentina’s Nisman Scandal and the Dark Side of Progress


presidencia.gov.ar (CC BY 2.0)

Politics in Latin America is always a messy affair. And in the latest scandal to rock the region, the mess in question was a pool of blood left by Alberto Nisman, an Argentinian federal prosecutor found dead last Sunday in his Buenos Aires apartment. The day after his death, Nisman was scheduled to present key evidence in a case against the government of Argentina, led by president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.

This was certainly a big deal within the country. Piggybacking off the protest slogan coined for the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris, protestors immediately took to the streets with “Yo soy Nisman” signs (which translates to “I am Nisman” – something tells me every high profile killing this year will now result in “I am [victim]” sloganeering). But though this story may seem easy to write off for audiences in the US and Europe as more needless violence by those backward folks in the “global south”, it really is a cautionary tale for any government who takes progressive ideas seriously – proof that sometimes, progress comes with a high price tag.… Read the rest

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Adopt an Argentine Werewolf


Last week my girlfriend shared a link with me via Facebook chat that seemed custom-made for one of my blog posts. It concerns a faraway country, political power, folklore, religion and lycanthropy. Here’s the story from Argentina as reported by The Independent

The President of Argentina has adopted a young Jewish man as her godson to “stop him turning into a werewolf”, according to tradition.

President Christina Fernández de Kirchner met Yair Tawil and his family at her office last week to mark the unusual ceremony, which dates back more than 100 years.

According to Argentinian folklore, the seventh son born to a family turns into the feared “el lobison”.

The werewolf-like creature shows its true nature on the first Friday after boy’s 13th birthday, the legend says, turning the boy into a demon at midnight during every full moon, doomed to hunt and kill before returning to human form.Read the rest

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Argentinian Journalist Who Went Into Hiding for 4 Years Vindicated by Wikileaks

In this video Luke Rudkowski meets Argentinian journalist Tin Bojanić who was on the run, hiding from government officials for over 4 years. Tin went on the run after unidentified government officials ransacked his house and put a gun to his head when he was working on a story linking Argentinian officials to drug cartels that were running drugs all over the world.

Via We Are Change

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How Pope Francis Collaborated With Argentina’s Brutal Military Dictatorship

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.

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“Stop Fucking With the Soy”: Anti-Monsanto Activist Faced Anonymous Death Threats

SoybeanLucia Graves writes at the Huffington Post:

For 13 years Sofia Gatica has organized opposition to the aerial spraying of agrochemicals that threaten human health and the environment in Argentina — and for almost as long, she and her children have faced physical threats from anonymous agents.

Gatica, who lives in a working-class neighborhood of 6,000 in central Argentina surrounded by soy fields, began organizing against Monsanto after she noticed a disturbingly high rate of cancer and birth defects in her community. Her own 3-day-old daughter died of kidney failure in 1999, and a neighbor had a baby die of the same uncommon birth defect.

“I started seeing children with mouth covers, mothers with scarves wrapped around their heads to cover their baldness, due to chemotherapy,” she told Grist in an interview, explaining what inspired her to co-found Mothers of Ituzaingó. The efforts of those half-dozen mothers, who began going from door to door collecting information on health problems in their community, led to the first epidemiological study that showed cancer rates in Gatica’s hometown of Ituzaingó were 41 times the national average, with high rates of birth defects and infant mortality as well.Within a few years of the study’s publication, and as her advocacy work gave her a higher profile, Gatica began to receive death threats, culminating in an incident in late 2007…

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Argentine Dictator Going To Jail – Is Bush Next?

People v. BushCharlotte Dennett, author of The People V. Bush: One Lawyer’s Campaign to Bring the President to Justice and the National Grassroots Movement She Encounters Along the Way, writes in Huffington Post of at least one dictator that is going to jail. Guess who she wants to be next...
The growing accountability movement got a major shot in the arm recently when it learned that on April 19, an Argentinian judge sentenced the last of Argentina's dictators, Reynaldo Bignone, age 83, to 25 years in prison. Bignone's crime: kidnapping and torturing 56 victims in a concentration camp during the reign of terror known as the "dirty war" that gripped Argentina from 1976-1983. This is huge, surpassing the arrest of Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet in his hospital bed back in 1998. (Pinochet died before justice could be done). The conviction of a former head of state for crimes he committed while in office sends a powerful message to all those suspected war criminals still on the loose, including some of the top leaders of the Bush administration.
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Argentina Seizes the Central Bank

From WSJ:

After a month of wrangling, Argentine President Cristina Kirchner succeeded in sacking central bank President Martin Redrado last week. In his place she named Mercedes Marcó del Pont, a Yale-trained economist who has expressed the view that central bank autonomy ought to be limited.

The opposition howled at the news. Felipe Sola, former governor of Provincia de Buenos Aires, warned that the new bank president “is going to do what the executive decides and they are going to modify the bank charter to justify her doing what the executive tells her.”

Of course that would seem to be the point. Mr. Redrado was fired because he refused to turn over $6.6 billion in bank reserves to Mrs. Kirchner, who wants to pay foreign creditors but doesn’t want to use treasury revenues. Ms. Marcó del Pont, if she wants to keep her job, will follow the orders of the president.

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