History of Latin America
Week 11: ...to Right

Lecture outline
Readings: Verbitsky, Chapters 1-5 + Chronology pp. 185-207
(optional: Ch. 10,13,14,16)

This week, we look at the threat of socialist revolution and guerrilla warfare from the perspective of the right, which took control of much of the hemisphere through military dictatorships in the 1970s and 80s.

Above, left: In Argentina's Dirty War against communist subversion, the Madres de la Plaza de Mayo demanded the opening of military records every Thursday beginning in 1977. Source unknown. Above, right: A wounded soldier being evacuated in northern Quiche, Guatemala, in the early 1980s, during the counter-insurgency 'scorched earth' campaign designed to root out leftist guerrillas in the largely indigenous highlands. Photograph by Jean-Marie Simon, in Guatemala: Eternal Spring, Eternal Tyranny (New York: W W Norton, 1988).


Arturo Alessandri, a Chilean conservative, on the circumstances leading to the coup of Sept. 11, 1973. Look also at the interviews of Duane Claridge for a soft Alliance for Progress perspective from the U.S., and of Paul Wimert for a U.S. military perspective.
The trial of Adolfo Scilingo in Spain. There's lots more on the Scilingo trial and the trial and legacy of Pinochet on the web.
Courtroom reaction to the judgment in September 2006 against Miguel Etchekolatz, former police commissioner of Buenos Aires accused of murder and 'genocide' (the first time this term was officially used) during the Dirty War. For those who understand Spanish, here is Etchekolatz explaining his views to a news program filmed as the internal war was in progress.
A recent article on the children of the disappeared, often adopted by their parents' murderers, who are now in their 30s and discovering the past. One pair of siblings from Argentina's wealthiest media family has resisted DNA testing, while another has tried to have ex-dictator Jorge Rafael Videla removed as his baptismal godfather.