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Monday, September 9, 2013

  • 40 Years After Chile Coup, Family of Slain Singer Víctor Jara Sues Alleged Killer in U.S. Court

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    This week marks the 40th anniversary of what’s known as the other 9/11: September 11, 1973, when a U.S.-backed military coup ousted Chile’s democratically elected president Salvador Allende and ushered in a 17-year repressive dictatorship led by General Augusto Pinochet. We’re joined by Joan Jara, the widow of Chilean singer Víctor Jara, who has just filed a civil lawsuit in U.S. court against the former military officer who allegedly killed Jara 40 years ago. Jara’s accused killer, Pedro Barrientos, has lived in the United States for roughly two decades and is now a U.S. citizen. Jara’s family is suing him under federal laws that allow U.S. courts to hear about human rights abuses committed abroad. Last year, Chilean prosecutors charged Barrientos and another officer with Jara’s murder, naming six others as accomplices. We also speak with Almudena Bernabeu, an attorney with Center for Justice and Accountability, who helped file the Jara family’s lawsuit last week. "I saw literally hundreds of bodies that were piled up in what was actually the parking place of the morgue," Joan Jara says of finding her husband’s body 40 years ago. "I recognized him. I saw what had happened to him. I saw the bullet wounds. I saw the state of his body. I consider myself one of the lucky ones in the sense that I had to face in that moment what had happened to Victor. I could [later] give my testimony with all the force of what I felt in that moment — and not the horror, which is much worse, of never knowing what happened to your loved one. That happened to so many families, so many women who have spent these 40 years looking for their loved ones who were made to disappear."

  • Was U.S. Journalist Charles Horman Killed by Chile’s Coup Regime With Aid of His Own Government?

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    As we continue our look at the 40th anniversary of the U.S.-backed military coup in Chile and the ongoing efforts by the loved ones of its victims to seek justice, we turn to the case of Charles Horman. A 31-year-old American journalist and filmmaker, Horman was in Chile during the coup and wrote about U.S. involvement in overthrowing the democratically elected president, Salvador Allende. Shortly after, he was abducted by Chilean soldiers and later killed. Horman’s story was told in the 1982 Oscar-nominated film, "Missing," which follows his father, Edmund Horman, going to Chile to search for his son. We’re joined by Charles Horman’s widow, Joyce Horman, who filed a criminal suit against Pinochet for his role in her husband’s death, and established the Charles Horman Truth Project to support ongoing investigations into human rights violations during Pinochet’s regime. We’re also joined by Peter Weiss, vice president of the board of the Center for Constitutional Rights, who represented the Horman family in their case against Kissinger and others for Charles Horman’s death.

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