Systemic governmental control and genocide targeted towards “threatening or inferior” segments of the population are aspects present in both the Nazi Holocaust and the Dirty War. Having knowledge of these events outcomes, their influences, and relationship to other World human rights violations and humanitarian crimes is empowering. It has been proven that history does replay itself or at least influence the future.
“Among us there are mothers who escaped from the Nazi Holocaust, only to lose their Argentinian-born children to another dictatorship – so we know for a fact that these tragedies can repeat themselves,” Gastelú says.
“The Argentine military took lessons from the Nazis,” says Sara Rus, a 90-year-old Auschwitz survivor who settled in Argentina after the second world war – and whose son, Daniel, was killed by the military in 1977
Education of the Dirty War in school systems and throughout the community is happening within Argentina; previously used clandestine detention sites are now open to the community to foster recovery, protection, proactive effects. Of equal importance, the perpetrators need to be held accountable. While there have been trials and convictions within Argentina, this is due to 40 years of determined citizens protesting and demanding legal action along with answers. With every advance comes covert attempts to erase what happened and still no confessions. Sentencing and convicting the guilty parties is especially difficult due to the multifaceted involvement. Individuals are guilty of committing humanitarian crimes, but why not a government, the military, or the entire state? We could, with justification, say that business entities, municipal governments, nonprofit agencies, and the federal government are all culpable. So are individual citizens (Rivera & P ́aez, 2007) .
The violation of human rights of any kind is a criminal act or practice. Individuals, communities, groups, business entities, and states are responsible for upholding the dignity, security, and freedoms of all humans, and for advancing the well-being of all peoples, especially the most vulnerable (Rivera & P ́aez, 2007) .
Human rights law violations are actions and omissions that interfere with the birth-right of all human beings—their fundamental freedoms, entitlements and human dignity (Rivera & P ́aez, 2007) .
Humanitarian crimes are, in essence, crimes that are so heinous that they shock the human conscience (Rivera & P ́aez, 2007) .
Rivera, J., & P ́aez, D. (2007). Emotional Climate, Human Security, and Cultures of Peace. Human Rights Documents online, 63. doi:10.1163/2210-7975_hrd-9962-3006