Thursday, September 05, 2013

Human Rights Pivot in Chile

The finger-pointing by the Chilean right regarding the dictatorship continues in a cascade. Roberto Thieme of Patria y Libertad is the latest example. Of particular interest is that everyone wants to claim they were opposed to the repression everyone knew was taking place.

“From the first day, I opposed the violations of human rights, this disgraceful and vengeful repression,” Thieme said, identifying late right-wing politician Jaime Guzman as the instigator of the abuses.

Two points:

First, these arguments are not terribly convincing. Silence is indeed one consequence of military rule, but it is not easy to swallow the notion that even those on far right (in this case even terrorist right!) were agonizing at the time over the treatment of people they considered enemies.

Second, these arguments demonstrate how powerful the human rights narrative has become. Even given #1, even on the right it appears to be important at least to be perceived as being concerned. That's an important step forward.


Randy Paul,  9:50 PM  

Thieme's comment reminds me of when I lived in Germany and every German family I met were the only anti-Nazis in their village

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