August 14, 2002
REMEMBER Jose Padilla? He's the American Attorney General John Ashcroft branded a major terrorist who planned to detonate a radioactive "dirty" bomb. Well, you can forget all that. An FBI investigation has found no evidence that Padilla was planning an attack, or even has any connection to al Qaeda, law-enforcement sources are now saying. Still, despite growing doubts that Padilla is a serious terrorism threat, the U.S. government is insisting on holding him without charges being filed and without a trial.
January 3, 1992
It was the dirtiest, most resilient of wars - conserving its energy, allocating its horrors, outlasting Nicaragua's revolution and the Cold War's end. El Salvador's conflict had deep indigenous roots, but would come to rely for sustenance on annual infusions of U.S. aid as reliable as those for Vietnam once were. The country would come to have, too, a war economy, a war mentality. There was little incentive to quit. El Salvador never quite gripped the American consciousness as Nicaragua did. And its 12-year war never climbed high enough on the agenda to demand fixing, defusing, ending.
November 27, 1996 |
When the CIA's Harold J. Nicholson was arrested on a charge of espionage at Dulles airport earlier this month, he was carrying a copy of The Washington Post, with its long obituary of a rather more significant figure in the annals of espionage. The death of Alger Hiss and the arrest of Nicholson took place within 24 hours of each other, and they constitute a sad epilogue to an era when the profession of the spy had combined a deep if misplaced conviction with a dash of warped honor.
January 30, 2012
Miguel Nazar Haro, 87, who led Mexico's domestic spy agency and was accused of being behind the disappearances of alleged leftist guerrillas in the 1970s, died Thursday. Mr. Nazar Haro headed Mexico's now-dissolved Federal Security Directorate from 1978 to 1982 at the height of the government's "dirty war" against leftist insurgents. He was arrested in 2004 and put under house arrest on charges stemming from the disappearances of six farmers who were alleged members of a group called the Brigada Campesina de los Lacandones, an armed group that the government linked to at least one kidnapping.
April 21, 1987
It was indeed a happy Easter moment for Argentina, where for once Latin American history did not play true to form: This time the democrats got to win. Argentina's fledgling civilian government had faced perhaps its severest test over the weekend when first one band of war-painted soldiers and then, quickly, another challenged the young democracy's authority to hold the military accountable for the "dirty war" it waged from 1976 to 1983. When it was over, President Raul Alfonsin was able to tell the cheering tens of thousands in Buenos Aires, "The mutinous men have backed down," and the newspapers, once silenced, could crow: "Democracy Triumphs!"
April 20, 2005 |
Republicans break ranks, delay vote on U.N. nominee John Bolton's nomination as U.N. ambassador suffered an unexpected setback yesterday when the Republican-controlled Senate Foreign Relations Committee scrapped plans for a vote in favor of a fresh look at allegations of unbecoming conduct. A delay of at least two weeks seems likely while the committee looks into fresh allegations, including those of a Dallas businesswoman who says Bolton berated her at an international conference a decade ago. The delay came after Ohio Republican George Voinovich said he had "heard enough today that I don't feel comfortable about voting for Mr. Bolton.
May 4, 1995 |
ZAGREB, CROATIA SERBS STRIKE BACK, HITTING CAPITAL SITES Serb missiles spread terror through the heart of this elegant capital yesterday, smashing into a children's hospital, a theater and other sites. One policeman was killed and 64 people were injured, including children and foreign ballet dancers. Twenty-one dancers from the Vienna-based Danube Ballet Company, who were wounded during a rehearsal at the Academy of Dramatic Arts, were rushed to the Hospital of the Sisters of Mercy.
October 17, 1986 |
The revolutionary power of motherhood is the life-affirming theme of Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo. This riveting documentary chronicles the brave women who, during Argentina's "dirty war" of the 1970s, under threat of death protested the military government's kidnapping of their children. As dramatized in the film The Official Story, the junta declared that the desaparecidos (literally, the disappeared ones) were left-wing subversives. Not so, insist many mothers of the estimated 30,000 desaparecidos kidnapped, brutally tortured and murdered by the military regime of Gen. Jorge Videla.
December 2, 1988 |
Most likely because 17th-century colonials wiped out the indigenous Indian population, Argentina is the most European of South American countries. Ditto its film exports, which until recently did not reveal a national character in the way that, say, Brazilian cinema so colorfully asserts. Made in Argentina, an urgent film about political exiles who return to their homeland after the junta gave way to the Alfonsin democracy in 1983, is one recent movie that tries to define the contemporary Argentine spirit.
October 20, 2003 |
Dozens of skeletons are strewn helter-skelter. Skulls are cracked where bullets passed through. Jaws remain open as if still screaming. A glance at the photos makes it easy to understand why, nearly three decades later, Argentina's "dirty war" still inflames passions. More than 120 skeletons were found in the mass grave in the San Vicente cemetery near the industrial town of Cordoba. The site is said to be the largest such grave uncovered to date in Argentina, where military rulers are thought to have killed 10,000 to 30,000 leftists, real or perceived, from 1976 to 1983 in a "dirty war" against what they said were communist sympathizers trying to take over the country.