Argentine federal judge Claudio Bonadio and prosecutor Carlos Stornelliordered a raid on the offices of Presidential son and La Cámpora leader, Máximo Kirchner, Monday, seeking accounting information as part of the ongoing Hotesur K-money laundering and corruption case.
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The raid itself represented the execution of Judge Bonadio’s “procedural orders” seeking information about 35 separate companies with ties to the Kirchner family and its business interests, specifically including “banks and companies” associated with K-businessman Lázaro Báez – the number one recipient of public works contracts during the Kirchner administration. Báez is a business partner of President Kirchner, and the former administrator of her largest hotel, Alto Calafate.
Six months ago, prosecutor Alberto Nisman was found dead of a bullet to the head on January 28 in his Buenos Aires apartment, on the eve of the day when he was scheduled to testify to congress on his findings regarding a civil lawsuit he had filed the week prior accusing president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner of colluding with Iran to obscure the investigation into the 1994 AMIA bombing.
Nisman’s civil lawsuit was dismissed.
The investigation into his murder is still pending.
Three days ago, president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner tweeted a transcript and video of her interview with The New Yorker’s Dexter Filkins,
Pesident Kirchner works in an ornate mansion in central Buenos Aires known as “the Pink House”—for the tint of its walls, once supplied by horse blood—but her official residence, in a northern suburb, is called Quinta de Olivos. Dating to the sixteenth century, Olivos, as it is known, is a white three-storied palace that resembles an enormous wedding cake.
When I met Kirchner there, two months after Nisman died, the mystery was still dominating the news. I was ushered into a wide split-level room that had been set up as a television studio. Kirchner entered a few minutes later, in a flouncy dress and heavy makeup, followed by two dozen aides, nearly all of them men. With the cameras running, Kirchner reached over, before the interview began, to fix my hair. “Is there some girl who can help him with his hair?” she asked. “We want you to be pretty.” Then she began to straighten her own. “I want to primp myself a bit,” she said. “Excuse me, I’m a woman, besides being the President: the dress, the image—”
“Divine!” one of her aides called from off the set.
While Filkins did not refute any of Cristina’s lies, his is not a puff piece at all,
Over time, Kirchner has grown more dictatorial and, according to muckraking reports, more corrupt.
An idea of the importance of the recordings can be gleaned from a February 2013 conversation between alleged Argentine government intelligence operative Ramón Héctor “Allan” Bogado and Khalil. In that call, which was widely reported in the Argentine press, Bogado told Khalil, “We have a video of the [AMIA] attack,” leading Khalil to reprimand him for not being more careful when speaking on the phone. Of course, it’s impossible to know for sure who Bogado meant by “we,” but one distinct possibility may be that the AMIA bombing was filmed by Argentina’s intelligence services, or that a video recording of it, perhaps containing vital evidence about the identity of the terrorists who carried out the attack, fell into their hands.
Both Filkins’s and MacDonagh’s articles are indispensable reading on the Nisman case.
Investigative journalist Jorge Lanata, in his show Periodismo Para Todos (Journalism For All), continues his coverage of the Nisman murder, and commissioned forensic expert Cyril Wecht for his opinion on whether Nisman’s death was a murder or a suicide. You can watch the report here.
Wecht’s interview starts 35 minutes into this YouTube; the show is in Spanish but Wecht’s portion is in English,
One of the world’s foremost forensic experts, Wecht asserts that Nisman’s death is most likely a murder.
We don’t have to learn more about Kirchner’s literary tastes to understand the depth of her prejudices against Jews. Her dealings with Iran and previous comments on social media are enough to damn her as a vicious anti-Semite. But this latest incident solidifies her stance in a way that no objective observer could possibly misinterpret.
Given the willingness of the Argentine government to make crooked deals with Iran and to cover up involvement in terrorism and perhaps even murder of Nisman, there may not be any way to hold Kirchner accountable for her actions. But foreign governments should draw the right conclusions from Kirchner’s Jew hatred and act accordingly. She may be untouchable at home but no decent foreign government should ever receive her as a leader. Until a person not tainted by the virus of anti-Semitism leads Argentina, it should get a cold shoulder from the United States as well as other nations on all issues
Here’s a reading suggestion:
In view of the Nisman murder and botched-up investigation, Argentinian schools ought to read Jean Anouilh’s Becket and watch the film adaptation to better understand Argentinian politics.
One reason for the talks’ resilience is that both sides are used to negotiating during bouts of violence, which did not end even during the quietest periods. Military action by the FARC fell by 85% during its ceasefire and civilian deaths fell by 73%, according to the Conflict Analysis Resource Centre (CERAC), a think-tank in Bogotá. Even so, CERAC recorded 21 attacks by the FARC (and suspects it was responsible for another 75). Mr Santos has staked his reputation on concluding a peace agreement (by the end of this year, he hopes). For the FARC, the alternative to peace is further pounding by the armed forces; it no longer hopes for victory.
Abd al Hadi Omar Mahmoud Faraj [a.k.a. Abd al Hadi Faraj], 40, from Syria and Tunisian Abdul Bin Mohammed Ourgy [a.k.a. Abdul Bin Mohammed Bin Abess Ourgy], 50, will marry Muslim women at a mosque in Montevideo.
“Satán Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, Román Di Santo y ahora Bachelet, (…) objetivos directos para dirigir países que chocan con nuestros objetivos”, dice un párrafo. Otro extracto afirma: “La sangre que derramarán los infieles es el éxito del Islam a nivel mundial. Estamos cerca del inicio de una nueva era“, revela ‘La Razón’.
(My translation: “The Satans Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, [Argentina’s Federal Police Chief] Román Di Santo and now Bachelet, (…) are direct targets for heading countries that clash against our goals”, reads a paragraph. Another excerpt asserts: “The blood that will be shed by the infidels is Islam’s success on a world level. We are at the start of a new era,” reports ‘La Razón’. )
According to Clarín, Kirchner received three prior threats last year.
The endorsement by a Jewish politician of Fernández de Kirchner’s slanderous accusation that Jewish communal organizations are trying to destabilize her government is a genuine gift for Argentina’s professional anti-Semites. They include individuals like , a Buenos Aires lawyer who has launched a private prosecution against AMIA and DAIA, alleging that both have engaged in treason. Labaké, an advocate of the conspiracy theory that Israel was behind the AMIA bombing, is basing his charges on Fernández de Kirchner’s remarks, which were in turn grounded on the original accusation by Jorge Elbaum, a former director of AMIA and a government loyalist, that AMIA, DAIA and Nisman’s supposed subversion was being financed by the American hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer, who has been locked in a separate legal battle with the Argentine authorities.
Just as anti-Zionist Jews provide a protective layer against charges of anti-Semitism directed at the BDS movement, men like Elbaum and Timerman perform much the same service on behalf of Fernández de Kirchner. Indeed, Timerman’s decision to openly turn on AMIA and DAIA brought forth an angry denunciation from Dr. Shimon Samuels, the international director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. In an email to journalists, Samuels declared: “By this personal act, [Timerman] has rejected his Jewish education values and destiny – among them burial in a Jewish cemetery – and has, apparently, abandoned the Argentine victims of this Tehran-sponsored aggression,” a reference to the evidence uncovered by Nisman that Iran was behind the AMIA atrocity.
Considering Argentina’s record of not default, I wonder how long – if ever – will it take to collect.
Whether the survivors collect or not, as Ben Cohen of The Tower points out,
neither that acknowledgment [of Argentina’s failure to protect the AMIA building from a terrorist attack] nor the compensation will lead to any convictions in either the AMIA bombing or the Alberto Nisman case.
Cohen refers us to read Eamonn McDonagh’s posts on the Nisman murder, pointing to Lagomarsino.
Thankfully, it is hard to imagine suicide or a coup. It is also hard to see Ms Rousseff, a tough former urban guerrilla who survived torture, resigning. And Brazilian law holds that a president can be impeached only for political or common crimes committed during her current term of office—though whether that rule would necessarily exempt any malfeasance during her first term is not clear. So far nothing ties Ms Rousseff to corruption; some would like fiscal irresponsibility to be impeachable, but probably it is not. It is for Mr Cunha to decide whether to start impeachment, and he is one of 52 politicians being investigated over alleged illegal donations from Petrobras.
Cristina Fernandez’s administration’s approach to Alberto Nisman is two-pronged:
1. Get the case Alberto Nisman filed a few days before his murder dismissed from the courts.
2. Engage in a full-spectrum smear campaign against Nisman.
WHAT DO lobbyists at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the director of a Washington think tank have to do with hedge-fund manager Paul Singer and the Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman, who died mysteriously in January? Well, according to Argentine President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, they are all part of a “global modus operandi” that “generates international political operations of any type, shape and color.” They “ ‘contribute’ to financial attacks or simultaneous international media operations, or even worse, covert actions of various ‘services’ designed to destabilize governments.”
Fernández says Nisman told leaders of the Delegation of Argentine Israeli Associations (Daia): “If necessary, Paul Singer will help us.” This is alleged to have happened two years ago when Nisman lobbied the body – which represents the country’s Jews – to mount a legal challenge a memorandum of understanding between Argentina and Iran.
Nisman and his supporters alleged that the memorandum was part of a conspiracy to cover up Iran’s involvement in the bombing in exchange for a trade deal – a charge denied by both Iran and Fernández.
Fernández said she saw parallels between these activities and the Israeli government’s support for US members of Congress who aimed to block the recent US-Iran nuclear deal. In both cases, she said lobbyists and covert agencies organised financial attacks and media smear operations designed to destabilised governments.
Not only was Cristina’s original article erased from her official website, she did not bother to present any evidence (in court or elsewhere) to any of her accusations.
And, just this week, prosecutor Javier De Luca asserted that, when it comes to Nisman’s case, “There has been no crime.”