Monday, April 11, 2011

Argentina's Videla Dwell ordering the death of a bishop

Argentina has its Oscar Romero, although the case did not have much international impact such as the Salvadoran bishop murdered in 1981. Enrique Angelelli was called, was the bishop of La Rioja, a province with less population and poorest in Argentina. Committed to popular claims for greater social justice, Angelelli died on August 4, 1976, during the military dictatorship, as the regime at that time, the press and even the hierarchy of the Catholic Church described as a car crash .

But what seemed an accident is now ranked Argentina for justice as murder and so on Thursday ordered the arrest for the offense of former dictator Jorge Videla (1976-1981), already in prison for other convictions for violations human rights. Angelelli was a son of Italian immigrants who was born in Cordoba in 1923.

At 15 he entered the seminary at 22 continued his studies in Rome and was ordained priest at 26. He then returned to Cordoba and began visiting slums and advice to young workers and college. In 1960 he was consecrated auxiliary bishop of Cordoba. As all the prelates of the world at that time, attended the Second Vatican Council.

"Any attempt to authentic renewal takes as the price of suffering, misunderstanding and sometimes even slander," said Angelelli. "This should make us shudder, but vitally engage with those who suffer from hunger, misery and injustice in your life." His preaching did not fall well in the conservative sectors of the Church of Cordoba and Pope Paul VI in 1968 earmarked as the head of the diocese of neighboring Rioja.

When he got there, said he wanted to become a "friend of all, Catholics and non Catholics, who believe and those who do not believe." Many wanted: during the military regime that prevailed from 1966 to 1973, encouraged the unionization of farm workers, miners and assistants and the creation of cooperatives to produce textiles, bricks, bread and agriculture.

Many hated him: military, landowners and other Catholics rejected it as "communist infiltration." Even in 1972, led a mob stoned a landowner brother Carlos Menem, who in 1989 would reach the presidency of Argentina and in 1990 pardon the leaders of the last dictatorship in this country and the guerrilla leaders of the decade of seventies.

In February 1976, Angelelli wrote a letter to warn their Argentine counterparts: "Do not let the army general usurp the task of ensuring the Catholic faith." A month after the military coup occurred in April and traveled to Buenos Aires archbishop to complain to the Interior Minister Albano Harguindeguy, illegal repression.

In August died in a road Rioja. Only the newspaper L? Osservatore Romano spoke of a "freak accident." The priest who accompanied him in the crash survived and was able to reconstruct the story in court after the return of democracy in 1983. Thus a judge determined that Rioja had been a "premeditated murder", but those responsible were not found by the amnesty laws of the Government of Raul Alfonsin (1983-1989) and Menem's pardons.

In 2005, before the cancellation of these measures, the investigation was reopened. The following year, first Argentina Church suggested a recognition of his "martyr" when the Cardinal Primate of the country, Jorge Bergoglio, admitted in La Rioja to the bishop "was steeped in his own blood." The last dictatorship in Argentina killed a total of 19 priests (including one bishop, Carlos Ponce de Leon), religious and lay Catholic activists, and wiped out another 65, according to the Ecumenical Movement for Human Rights.

Another judge Rioja is now not only accused of the crime Videla but also five other former military.

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