Argentina: The Generals in the Dock

The Generals in the Dock

The defendants' bench had been empty throughout the 17 weeks in which a total of 896 witnesses told chilling stories of abduction, torture and murder during a six-year period of military rule in Argentina. But last week the nine military leaders, including three former Presidents, who have been charged with responsibility for the "dirty war" in which an estimated 9,000 people disappeared, were required to attend the trial summation.

Nearly 500 spectators crowded into the courtroom for this first appearance of the once powerful junta members, among them Jorge Videla and Leopoldo Galtieri, who ruled Argentina between 1976 and 1982. The...

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