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Former argentinean dictator Rafael Videla dies


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Former Argentine military leader Jorge Rafael Videla has died aged 87 while serving a life sentence for crimes against humanity.

He is reported to have died from natural causes in prison.

The general was jailed in 2010 for the deaths of 31 dissidents during the 1976-83 military dictatorship, of which he was overall leader until 1981.

Up to 30,000 people were tortured and killed during this period, in a campaign known as the "Dirty War".

Gen Videla had been sentenced to life in prison for torture, murder and other crimes in 1985, but was pardoned in 1990 under an amnesty given by the president at the time, Carlos Menem.

In April 2010, the Supreme Court upheld a 2007 federal court move to overturn his pardon.

Eight months later he was found "criminally responsible" for the torture and deaths of 31 prisoners and jailed for life.

Most of the left-wing activists were taken from their cells in the central city of Cordoba and shot dead shortly after the military took power.

The army said at the time that they were killed while trying to escape.

Gen Videla was one of 30 members of the security forces charged with the murders.

'A bad man'

Last year, he was also convicted of overseeing the systematic theft of babies from political prisoners.

At least 400 babies are thought to have been taken from their parents while they were held in detention centres.

More than 100 children given for adoption to military or police couples have since been reunited with their biological families.

A court in Buenos Aires sentenced Videla to 50 years in prison, while another ex-military leader, Reynaldo Bignone, received 15 years for his alleged role in the crime.

In an interview with an Argentine journalist last year, Videla said the crackdown he oversaw was the price Argentina had to pay in order to remain a republic.

"War, by nature, is cruel," he said. "An internal war, between brothers, is especially cruel."

Jose Miguel Vivanco, director of Latin America for US-based Human Rights Watch, said Videla presided over one of the region's cruellest repressions in modern times.

"He was arrogant to the end and unwilling to acknowledge his responsibility for the massive atrocities committed in Argentina," he said.

"Many of the secrets of the repression will die with him."

Argentina's Nobel Peace Prize winner Adolfo Perez Esquivel told Reuters news agency: "Death has brought an end to his physical existence but not what he did against the people."

The head of the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo, an association that works to uncover the real identities of the stolen children, described Videla as a "bad man".

"I'm reassured that a discredited man has departed this world," said Estela de Carloto in a statement to local media.

Videla was born in 1925, the son of an army colonel.

In 1976, he and two other military leaders staged a coup against President Isabel Peron, the widow of former leader Juan Domingo Peron.

He will also be remembered as the person who ruined Argentina's public image during the 1978 WC and helped Argentina win the Cup (and also ordered to kidnap Johann Cruyff and his family.)

http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2008/apr/16/newsstory.sport15

Good riddance. The world has lost one of the worst Cold War vampires and almost everyone in Argentina is celebrating his death. Unlike Pinochet, at least he died in jail.

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Argentina, in my lifetime, is ruined forever by this monster...OMG I've read some of the stories from the Dirty War...Burn in Hell you SOB!!! :angry:

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I wonder how long it will take for Kissinger to kick the bucket too. That bastard was the one who helped both Videla and Pinochet to seize power and commit all the crimes they did whenever they wanted, so he's equally as guilty for all these stuff.

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I wonder how long it will take for Kissinger to kick the bucket too. That bastard was the one who helped both Videla and Pinochet to seize power and commit all the crimes they did whenever they wanted, so he's equally as guilty for all these stuff.

Good point...vile bastard was the Cheney of the era...total slimeball. May have had a hand in the Whitlam, Wilson, Kirk removals which all happened around that time as well.

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And yet, Kissinger is actually very respected today at least in the Western world - and a much demanded speaker, especially here in his former home Germany where he also befriended our former chancellor Helmut Schmidt. So he's really an ambiguous person who isn't associated only with evil.



He has committed or helped to commit serious crimes against humanity and human rights, yes - but strangely, his image as wise elder statesman seems to dominate everything these days.

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^^ I agree he was one of the main responsables of the good relationships that the USA and China have to this day and he helped end the Vietnam War, which were actually good things. However that doesn't erase the fact that he helped those dictators kill their own people. Even spanish judge Baltasar Garzon (who was controversially removed from office after he attempted to judge all the Franquismo criminals) wanted to bust Kissinger's ass for his implications on the Dirty War crime.

I still can't like someone like him. The day they gave him the Nobel Peace Prize I lost all my respect to these awards.

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How come? You weren't even born yet in 1973. ;)

Kissinger was 'consulted' for his 'wise counsel' long after he left the Nixon/Ford administration, even right up to today...

...Interesting that although Kissinger/Nixon opened China, the USA never really took advantage of it and now can only watch China's wake widening in front of them.

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One more murderous dictator bites the dust. I don't normally like to speak ill of those who have just died but I think of those thousands of innocent, young people and their families whose lives he destroyed and I get an overwhelming feeling of good riddance!

I detest murdering dictators of any kind, whether right-wing or left-wing and whatever their so-called justifications for their evil actions! :angry:

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One more murderous dictator bites the dust. I don't normally like to speak ill of those who have just died but I think of those thousands of innocent, young people and their families whose lives he destroyed and I get an overwhelming feeling of good riddance!

I detest murdering dictators of any kind, whether right-wing or left-wing and whatever their so-called justifications for their evil actions! :angry:

What makes it worse is this creep looks like the atypical South American dictator. This whole continent was at the time infested with exiled Germans from the Nazi reigeme.

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What makes it worse is this creep looks like the atypical South American dictator. This whole continent was at the time infested with exiled Germans from the Nazi reigeme.

One of whom was captured (although it took 15 years) and the rest died in exile.

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What makes it worse is this creep looks like the atypical South American dictator. This whole continent was at the time infested with exiled Germans from the Nazi reigeme.

Which South American dictator exactly was a exiled Nazi? I think I would know that.

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I was never a fan of Videla, I wasnt born until the 80s. Many people are very happy but they have no idea how was that time, a lot of people do not remeber he wasnt elected as a president.

But we are all humans, RIP Mr. Pantera Rosa.

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Which South American dictator exactly was a exiled Nazi? I think I would know that.

There weren't.

Yes, South America had a lot of former Nazis, but North America did too and probably had more, except that the Nazis living in the US and Canada were not as notorious as the ones living in South America.

I am curious to see if there were any German Nazis left when Videla took over in 1976.

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Which South American dictator exactly was a exiled Nazi? I think I would know that.

...would you now.

Read the comment again.

"This whole continent was at the time infested with exiled Germans from the Nazi regieme"...and we all know that's true...I didn't imply that any made it to leadership...However the exiles DID influence leaderships of these South American countries.

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In which regard?

Military, Aviation development (especially in the case of Argentina), illeagal funds transfers. Documentries over the years clearly show the influence of ex pat Germans from the Nazi era in developing these countries...They must have been so releaved when the de-Nazification program was wound up in the late 1950's. Little did they know that brave Israel would hunt them down...Yes! -_-

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