The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Saturday, June 07, 2003

Argentina: Kirchner opens secret files on AMIA bombing

I never followed the interminable Argentinian presidential election campaign - think the '04 Democratic Little League with subtitles - but conspiracy theorists might see a reason for former president Carlos Menem's anxiety to get his old job back in the unfinished business of the AMIA bombing and its aftermath [1].

The current President, Nestor Kirchner, can scarcely have made Menem's day when he decided (BBC June 6) to open up secret files on the case, and to allow agents of SIDE (Argentinian intelligence) to testify in the ongoing trial of various small fry and alleged peripheral actors in the AMIA bombing (setting aside the impediment of national security supposedly a bar to such testimony).

A piece from the Diario Judicial (June 5) suggests that SIDE is not exactly committed to full disclosure:
...el saliente titular de la SIDE, Miguel Ángel Toma, se empeñó en su momento en no desclasificar el sumario [2].

The piece says the most important things to come out of the testimony of SIDE agents would include
el supuesto pago de 400.000 pesos a Carlos Telleldín [3] antes que acusara a los policías bonaerenses y los numerosos indicios de que el organismo de inteligencia contó con información propia que nunca volcó al expediente judicial.

Quite what this information missing from the court files might be, I haven't a clue.

How long Kirchner's enthusiasm for getting at truth in the AMIA case (if that's what it is) will last, I couldn't say. Whether he's merely intent on connecting dots in the short term (he needs US support (via the IMF) for the health (such as it is) of the Argentinian economy; the neocons, post-Saddam, are in charge of USG policy: the neocons' friends in the Jewish Lobby would give brownie-points for movement on the case) or has a real commitment to getting to the bottom of what happened must be in doubt.

Colin Powell, as it happens, is paying a social call on Kirchner next week. I suspect that has precious little to do with movement on AMIA, somehow.

  1. My piece of June 2 mentions the allegations of Witness C (Testigo C) that Menem got a $10m bribe from the Iranian government to hush up their part in the bombing.

  2. Exactly what, and how significant, this summario is, I'm not sure - having arrived at this particular play rather late...

  3. The first man accused in the case, who allegedly bought the car used for the bombing.

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