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Mendoza, Argentina...a witness to brutality

Marshall Leslie of Toronto heard Alison Crawford's documentary about Rosa and Antonio, torture victims in a secret Argentina detention centre in 1976  (in the March 10 program). Turns out he was there.

Camped outside of San Luis, Argentina, twenty other tourists and I woke to the sound of gunshots and yells.

Pretty soon it became clear that the shouts were orders - to get down and stay down. We had been surrounded by police and were under arrest.

As we came out of the interrogation rooms into the dark of the early morning we saw lines of men in the courtyard -- almost every one, young like us -- who had been picked up by the police during the night. Standing in silent rows they were being questioned, yelled at, and hit.

After they were finally released, he writes...

The British consul in the city...showed us how the state police had already planted a story in the daily paper. It said our group had been arrested while trying to illegally climb nearby Mount Aconcagua. These guys were good at covering their tracks.

Your story shows that some of them have been at it for 35 years. It also raises the possibility that Antonio Savone could have been one of the young men I passed, lined up in the Mendoza police courtyard early that morning.

I understand why 35 years won't erase Antonio's memories - even my vicarious ones still linger with me. And as my little anecdote ended, his more harrowing story was just beginning. I'm thankful that Antonio Savone's is finally nearing its resolution.


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