U.S.-Backed Guatemalan Dictator José Efraín Ríos Montt Faces Charges of Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity

John Glaser
Antiwar
January 31, 2013

 

Guatemala's former dictator José Efraín Ríos Montt attends a court session to hear the judge's ruling in Guatemala City, Monday, Jan. 28, 2013.  Shockingly, no American or Israeli government officials will face prosecution.

Guatemala’s former dictator José Efraín Ríos Montt attends a court session to hear the judge’s ruling in Guatemala City, Monday, Jan. 28, 2013. Shockingly, no American or Israeli government officials will face prosecution.
PHOTO: AP/Moises Castillo

After 13 failed appeals, a Guatemalan court on Monday ordered 86-year-old former US-backed dictator Efrain Rios Montt to face charges of genocide and crimes against humanity.

“Prosecutors allege Rios Montt, who ruled as commander-in-chief for 17 months, turned a blind eye as soldiers used rape, torture and arson against leftist insurgents and targeted indigenous people during a ‘scorched earth’ military offensive that killed at least 1,771 members of the Ixil tribe,” Reuters reports.

Rios Montt wasn’t the only one turning a “blind eye.” He came to power in a military coup and “was a close ally of Washington who received training at the infamous “School of the Americas,” writes Cyril Mychalejko. The Reagan administration…

not only covered up, but aided and abetted war crimes and genocide in Guatemala. For example, President Reagan traveled to Guatemala in December 1982 to declare that Rios Montt was getting a “bum rap”, while praising the dictator’s “progressive efforts” and dedication to democracy and social justice. Just a few days after Reagan’s presidential visit the Guatemalan military massacred 251 men, women and children in Las Dos Erres.

The United States was party to an extensive list of human rights violations and possible crimes against humanity going back to the Eisenhower administration, when in 1954 the democratically elected government of Jacobo Arbenz was overthrown in a coup orchestrated by the CIA.

The 1960-96 conflict in Guatemala, with consistent US intervention on the side of the government and paramilitary groups, saw some 200,000 people, predominantly indigenous Mayan, murdered or disappeared. The height of the bloodshed occurred under US ally and beneficiary Ríos Montt, during which the number of killings and disappearances reached more than 3,000 per month.

Read the full article— US-Backed Guatemalan Dictator to Face Charges of Genocide

Traces of Reality:  Don’t forget… President Reagan and his Iran-Contra coterie — chiefly, Secretary of State George Shultz — disregarded the Congress to provide “humanitarian aid” and war materiel to Rios Montt during his reign of terror in 1982-1983.  The CIA was also supporting the war criminal, as usual, while the U.S. government subsidized his regime, enabling the dictator to offer food to recruit Guatemalans.  Those who refused were simply killed.  After experiencing all of this horror and terror in Latin America, the U.S. decided to try the same failed manuvers in the Middle East, yielding identical results.  The insanity will continue during this decade in Africa — yet another continent, this one just now ripening for the NWO creeps.  After all, no American court will halt or prosecute them.  -DB