1. With South America in the grip of military dictatorships & rocked by the same kinds of social & political movements that were demanding change all over the world in the 60s and ’70s, a handful of the continent’s governments made a pact to work together to roll back
2. the rising tide of “subversives” and “terrorists.”
What followed was a secret, global campaign of violent repression that spanned not just countries, but continents, and featured everything from abduction and torture to murder. To say it was known about by the USA
3. which backed these regimes, is an understatement: though even this simple fact was denied at the time, years of investigations & document releases since then mean that we now know the CIA & top-ranking US officials supported, laid the groundwork for, and were even
4. directly involved in the crimes committed under Operation Condor. Condor was a particularly successful example of the covert war the US national security state had set into motion all over the world against democracy & the Left, a war that saw it get into bed with fascists
5. & that, in some cases, arguably constituted genocide. It was the system working exactly as intended, a stark reminder of the lengths the global centers of power will go to retain the status quo.The middle of the 20th century saw a flourishing of people’s movements in
6. Latin America that threatened to up end the rigid hierarchies of the hemisphere: feminist, workers’ ,indigenous rights movements, peasant-led movements for agrarian reform, & leftist movements, to name a few. Naturally, they had to be stopped. Until then, Washington-backed
7. juntas &dictatorships had successfully kept a lid on social change, or simply overthrew whatever governments those movements succeeded in forming. Such changes directly threatened not just the power & privileges of the region’s elites, but Western business interests, too.

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