When States Kill

Author: Cecilia Menjívar
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 0292778503
Format: PDF
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Since the early twentieth century, technological transfers from the United States to Latin American countries have involved technologies of violence for social control. As the chapters in this book illustrate, these technological transfers have taken various forms, including the training of Latin American military personnel in surveillance and torture and the provision of political and logistic support for campaigns of state terror. The human cost for Latin America has been enormous—thousands of Latin Americans have been murdered, disappeared, or tortured, and whole communities have been terrorized into silence. Organized by region, the essays in this book address the topic of state-sponsored terrorism in a variety of ways. Most take the perspective that state-directed political violence is a modern development of a regional political structure in which U.S. political interests weigh heavily. Others acknowledge that Latin American states enthusiastically received U.S. support for their campaigns of terror. A few see local culture and history as key factors in the implementation of state campaigns of political violence. Together, all the essays exemplify how technologies of terror have been transferred among various Latin American countries, with particular attention to the role that the United States, as a "strong" state, has played in such transfers.

Predatory States

Author: J. Patrice McSherry
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
ISBN: 0742568709
Format: PDF, Docs
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This powerful work makes a compelling case that U.S. forces secretly condoned and assisted the implementation of Operation Condor, a covert Latin American military network created during the Cold War to facilitate the seizure and murder of political opponents across state borders. Drawing on a wealth of primary sources, J. Patrice McSherry provides a hidden history of the Cold War through her analysis of the intelligence networks, security structures, coordinated operations, and international connections of Condor. Revealing new details of Condor operations and fresh evidence of links to the U.S. security establishment, this controversial work offers an original analysis of the use of secret, parallel armies in Western counterinsurgency strategies. It will be a clarion call to all readers to consider the long-term consequences of clandestine operations in the name of 'democracy.'

A History of Political Murder in Latin America

Author: W. John Green
Publisher: SUNY Press
ISBN: 1438456638
Format: PDF, ePub
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A sweeping study of political murder in Latin America. This sweeping history depicts Latin America’s pan-regional culture of political murder. Unlike typical studies of the region, which often focus on the issues or trends of individual countries, this work focuses thematically on the nature of political murder itself, comparing and contrasting its uses and practices throughout the region. W. John Green examines the entire system of political murder: the methods and justifications the perpetrators employ, the victims, and the consequences for Latin American societies. Green demonstrates that elite and state actors have been responsible for most political murders, assassinating the leaders of popular movements and other messengers of change. Latin American elites have also often targeted the potential audience for these messages through the region’s various “dirty wars.” In spite of regional differences, elites across the region have displayed considerable uniformity in justifying their use of murder, imagining themselves in a class war with democratic forces. While the United States has often been complicit in such violence, Green notes that this has not been universally true, with US support waxing and waning. A detailed appendix, exploring political murder country by country, provides an additional resource for readers.

State Terrorism in Latin America

Author: Thomas C. Wright
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 9780742537217
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Examines the tragic development and resolution of Latin America's human rights crisis of the 1970s and 1980s. Focusing on state terrorism in Chile under General Augusto Pinochet and in Argentina during the Dirty War (1976-1983), this book offers an exploration of the reciprocal relationship between Argentina and Chile and human rights movements.

Cocaine Death Squads and the War on Terror

Author: Oliver Villar
Publisher: NYU Press
ISBN: 1583673075
Format: PDF
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Since the late 1990s, the United States has funneled billions of dollars in aid to Colombia, ostensibly to combat the illicit drug trade and State Department-designated terrorist groups. The result has been a spiral of violence that continues to take lives and destabilize Colombian society. This book asks an obvious question: are the official reasons given for the wars on drugs and terror in Colombia plausible, or are there other, deeper factors at work? Scholars Villar and Cottle suggest that the answers lie in a close examination of the cocaine trade, particularly its class dimensions. Their analysis reveals that this trade has fueled extensive economic growth and led to the development of a "narco-state" under the control of a "narco-bourgeoisie" which is not interested in eradicating cocaine but in gaining a monopoly over its production. The principal target of this effort is the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), who challenge that monopoly as well as the very existence of the Colombian state. Meanwhile, U.S. business interests likewise gain from the cocaine trade and seek to maintain a dominant, imperialist relationship with their most important client state in Latin America. Suffering the brutal consequences, as always, are the peasants and workers of Colombia. This revelatory book punctures the official propaganda and shows the class war underpinning the politics of the Colombian cocaine trade.

The Paradox of Democracy in Latin America

Author: Katherine Isbester
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
ISBN: 1442601965
Format: PDF, Mobi
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What becomes clear throughout is that there is a paradox at the heart of Latin America's democracies. Despite decades of struggle to replace authoritarian dictatorships with electoral democracies, solid economic growth (leading up to the global credit crisis), and increased efforts by the state to extend the benefits of peace and prosperity to the poor, democracy - as a political system - is experiencing declining support, and support for authoritarianism is on the rise.

Masters of War

Author: Clara Nieto
Publisher: Seven Stories Press
ISBN: 1609800494
Format: PDF, Docs
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In Masters of War, Clara Nieto adeptly presents the parallel histories of the countries of Latin America, histories that are intertwined, each reflecting the United States’ "coherent policy of intervention" set into motion by the Monroe Doctrine. As the value of this continued policy comes increasingly into question, Nieto argues for the need to evaluate the alarming precedent set in Latin America: the institution of client dictatorships, the roles played by the interests of U.S. corporations, the enormous tolls taken on civilian populations, and the irreversible disruption of regional stability. Drawing from an impressive array of documents and sources as well as from her unique first-hand insights as a participant in crucial meetings and negotiations in the region from the mid-1960s through the mid-1980s, Nieto chronicles the Cuban Revolution, the CIA-sponsored coup against popularly elected President Allende in Chile, the U.S. invasions of Panama and Grenada, U.S. support for the cultivation and training of paramilitary death squads in Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Colombia, as well as similarly severe but less well-known situations in other countries such as Uruguay, Venezuela, Argentina, Peru, Bolivia, Honduras, and Guatemala. Masters of War offers, from an informed perspective, perhaps for the first time, a distanced, objective analysis of recent Latin American history. Clara Nieto’s depth of knowledge and understanding is an invaluable resource at a time when the media is seen as unapologetically aligned with the interests of major corporations and policymakers, and the American public has reached a new height of apprehension regarding the intentions behind and consequences of its government’s policies.

The Last Colonial Massacre

Author: Greg Grandin
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 0226306909
Format: PDF, ePub
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After decades of bloodshed and political terror, many lament the rise of the left in Latin America. Since the triumph of Castro, politicians and historians have accused the left there of rejecting democracy, embracing communist totalitarianism, and prompting both revolutionary violence and a right-wing backlash. Through unprecedented archival research and gripping personal testimonies, Greg Grandin powerfully challenges these views in this classic work. In doing so, he uncovers the hidden history of the Latin American Cold War: of hidebound reactionaries holding on to their power and privilege; of Mayan Marxists blending indigenous notions of justice with universal ideas of equality; and of a United States supporting new styles of state terror throughout the region. With Guatemala as his case study, Grandin argues that the Latin American Cold War was a struggle not between political liberalism and Soviet communism but two visions of democracy—one vibrant and egalitarian, the other tepid and unequal—and that the conflict’s main effect was to eliminate homegrown notions of social democracy. Updated with a new preface by the author and an interview with Naomi Klein, The Last Colonial Massacre is history of the highest order—a work that will dramatically recast our understanding of Latin American politics and the role of the United States in the Cold War and beyond. “This work admirably explains the process in which hopes of democracy were brutally repressed in Guatemala and its people experienced a civil war lasting for half a century.”—International History Review “A richly detailed, humane, and passionately subversive portrait of inspiring reformers tragically redefined by the Cold War as enemies of the state.”—Journal of American History

State Terrorism and the United States

Author: Frederick Henry Gareau
Publisher: Zed Books
ISBN: 9781842775356
Format: PDF, Docs
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This is a chilling analysis of the immediate predecessor of the US war on terrorism: its counter-insurgency policy during the Cold War. The US promised a low level response uniquely tailored to assisting third world states to respond to local insurgencies seeking social change. Drawing on the reports of Truth Commissions from six countries, Guatemala, El Salvador, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, and Indonesia, Frederick Gareau examines a harrowing array of human rights abuses by US-supported dictators, governments and paramilitary groups against their own peoples. He shows that state and para-statal forces committed by far the greatest proportion of violence, and that these state repressions were perpetrated with Washington's full awareness, complicity, and military and politico-diplomatic support, if not at its instigation.