Jorge Videla has been sentenced to life in prison. Calling the 1976-1983 military dictatorship in Argentina, often called “The Dirty War(s),” a “just war,” Videla still does not seem to regret regret his actions. According to Aljazeera, he was charged with committing at least 31 murders, but he did not come to court to try to defend these actions, not because he finds them wrong, but because it “doesn’t make sense” that his actions would need defending: “I did not come here to defend myself today nor speak in my defence, in my eyes, defending myself doesn’t make sense.” He considers his consequences unjust: “With this reality, which I cannot change, I will accept, however unwillingly, the unjust sentence that you are able to pass on me as a contribution on my part to the ends of national harmony and I will offer it as an additional service that I owe to God, Our Lord and the nation.” Additionally, her considers Fernandez and Kirchner “enemies”: “There is no doubt that the enemies defeated in the past completed their plans. Today they govern our country and aim to name themselves champions in defence of human rights while at the time they didn’t hesitate to violate them [human rights] in a superlative fashion.”
The “just war” which Videla feels he committed resulted in the kidnapping, torture, and deaths of thousands. Known as “the disappeared,” many of their bodies have yet to be recovered (many were dumped heavily drugged but still alive into the river from helicopters). Pregnant women kidnapped were kept alive until they gave birth, then their children were given to members of friends of the armed forces. Detention centers were often used as production facilities for documents and propoganda; detainees were forced to work. The list goes on and on and on, an extensive and unimaginable collection of human rights violations that altered the history of Argentina, reported in the CONADEP (National Commission on the Disappearance of Persons) report, available online (prepare yourself, it’s grapic).
All of this, “just” in the eyes of Jorge Videla, who still feels no need to so much as defend his actions. Justice is served.
Local Argentine News Reports:
- A cárcel común, aunque aislados de otros reclusos
- Videla fue condenado a prisión perpetua e irá a una cárcel común
- Perpetua y cárcel común para Videla y Menéndez por el fusilamiento de 31 presos políticos de la UP1
To learn more about the 1976-1983 military dictatorship and the disappeared:
- The dictatorship of generals (Mass Violence)
- Argentina Dirty War 1976 – 1983 (Global Security)
- Argentina’s “Dirty War” 1976-1983 (Wars of the World)
- The Last Military Dictatorship in Argentina (1976-1983): the Mechanism of State Terrorism (Online Encyclopedia of Mass Violence)
- Project Disappeared
- Online Memorial to the Disappeared