Wednesday, July 09, 2014

The U.S. and Brazil's National Truth Commission

Peter Kornbluh at the National Security Archive discusses the documents that Vice President Biden gave President Rousseff when he visited for the World Cup. It's awful stuff. Brazil tends to get less attention for human rights abuses because the intensity of repression during the dictatorship was not as severe as in Argentina and Chile. But it deserves more scrutiny:

It's sickening to read. All of this helps Brazil's National Truth Commission, which is working on documenting the period. This is a great step for the United States government--it has the benefit of being the right thing to do while also improving U.S.-Brazilian relations (and indeed the naysayers paid no attention to it).

During his meeting with President Rousseff, Biden announced that the Obama administration would undertake a broader review of still highly classified U.S. records on Brazil, among them CIA and Defense Department documents, to assist the Commission in finalizing its report.  “I hope that in taking steps to come to grips with our past we can find a way to focus on the immense promise of the future,” he noted.

That's good news.


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