Currently viewing the category: "Human Rights and Justice"

This past May, returning to the Plaza de Mayo in central Buenos Aires after several years, I see that few things have changed. The “madres” and “abuelas”—mothers and grandmothers of those disappeared or murdered under Argentina’s military dictatorship (1976-1983)—still meet each Thursday afternoon in protest. The groups have splintered over the years, but by […]

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“Are you looking for the museo?” Having taken the wrong metro exit, I surely looked like the standard lost gringa standing on a corner in the old neighborhood of Barrio Brasil on Santiago’s west side. It was on that corner that I found that a simple request for directions to the Museum of Memory could […]

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The defense of former General of the Bosnian Serb army, Ratko Mladic, began in May 2014 at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Among the arguments his lawyers have already made and are expected to return to is that he suffers from “deception of memory.” As The Independent reported:

His [Ratko Mladic] […]

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While those killed in war are described as ‘victims,’ those who experienced torture, sexual violence, kidnapping, or witnessed atrocities without having experienced physical violence directly are often described as ‘survivors.’ Language matters not only because it seeks to represent acts of violence, but also because it has the capacity to accord agency to – or diminish the agency of – those affected by the violence. Yet, ‘victim’ and ‘survivor’ are often insufficient terms for capturing the varied and layered experiences of violence.

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El impacto del conflicto armado que vive Colombia desde hace más de 50 años, aun tiene capítulos de los cuales las y los colombianos y el mundo no conocemos. Sin embargo, el Informe ¡Basta Ya! Colombia: memorias de guerra y dignidad, realizado por el Centro Nacional de Memoria Histórica[1] es un aporte valioso en la dirección correcta: narrar la verdad sobre las graves violaciones ocurridas en Colombia; develar la acción de todos los actores del conflicto, sus intereses y vínculos con las élites políticas y sociales en Colombia; rescatar la memoria de las víctimas y la persistencia de su sufrimiento; mostrar las políticas judiciales, gubernamentales y administrativas dirigidas a imponer justicia sobre el muro de impunidad existente; y recomendar medidas concretas para la superación de estos problemas.

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The account of armed conflict that has affected Colombia for more than 50 years still has chapters that are unknown to Colombians and the world. However, the report “Enough Already! Colombia: Memories of War and Dignity,” created by the National Center for Historical Memory [1], is a valuable step in the right direction and it serves a number of purposes: narrating the truth about the [most?] severe violations that have taken place; revealing the activities of all actors in the conflict, as well as their interests and links to national political and social elites; capturing the memory of the victims and the persistence of their suffering; highlighting judicial, administrative and governmental policies to begin to use judicial mechanism to create cracks in the wall of impunity; and recommending concrete measures to overcome these problems.

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