Argentine dictator goes on trial -

Argentine dictator goes on trial

Reynaldo Bignone accused of torture, human rights abuses


The trial of Argentina’s last dictator, former general Reynaldo Bignone, started Monday in Buenos Aires. Prosecutors say Bignone was behind a wave of torture and other human rights abuses between 1976 and 1978, as he staged a military coup against the government. Bignone was eventually appointed president of Argentina by the country’s military junta in 1982 and served until 1983, during which time he granted amnesty to human rights violators and destroyed documents relating to the disappearance of political opponents. An official report estimates that 13,000 people were killed by Argentine authorities between 1976 and 1983. But some human rights organizations say the figure is much higher, around 30,000. Bignone’s trial is taking place in an indoor stadium in order to accommodate the crowds that showed up on Monday.

New York Times

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Argentine dictator goes on trial

  1. High time, and I hope he hangs. (Actually I think Argentina doesn't have the death penalty.) But even though they're at last, 25 years later, getting around to retrying Bignone, it's a sign of controversial, incredibly enough, the dictatorship remains in Argentina that the government has still not established how many people were disappeared (= kidnapped, tortured, and murdered) only 35 years ago. That is well within living memory. I don't care how bankrupt your State is, the moment you can afford it you exhaustively research how many of your own citizens were murdered by your own government and you account for the 17 000-person discrepancy between the official figure and the higher estimate.

    • Bankrupt? The moment they can afford it? Wasn't the government that was put in place there done so in order to establish some kind of free-market paradise? Why aren't they rolling in dough?

      • From what I could gather, the Kirchnerist party, such as it is, represents a kind of desperate alternative to the neoliberals on the one hand (who completely screwed up the country in the late 2000's by pegging the Argentine peso to the US dollar) and the hard-core socialists on the other, but the Kirchners don't have an organised party structure backing them. I get the feeling they're kind of hoping they can figure everything out with the IMF and ride out this recession, then start selling beef to the Chinese middle class. Attitudes are still pretty entrenched.