72. Memorandum for the Record1


  • ARA/INR/CIA Weekly Meeting, February


  • ARA—Assistant Secretary Todman, Deputy Assistant Secretary Bushnell; CIA—[name not declassified] INR/DDCTed Heavner

[Omitted here is material unrelated to Argentina.]

[Page 248]

No Human Rights Moderates in Argentine Regime. Responding to an earlier inquiry from Ambassador Todman,2[1 line not declassified] a report3 on the human rights attitudes of the Argentine military leadership. He said the report indicates there are no moderates there on the question of using harsh methods against subversives. All the military leaders are in agreement that they must use rough methods to control subversives. The references we had heard to “curbing excesses” meant only that the regime will not tolerate use of the campaign against subversives as a cover for settling personal grudges.

Ted Heavner
  1. Source: Department of State, INR/IL Historical Files, ARACIA weekly meetings, 1978. Secret. Drafted by Heavner.
  2. In a November 7 memorandum for the record, regarding the ARA/CIA/INR weekly meeting on that date, Todman said that “we have been operating on the theory that Videla is a moderate who is frustrated and circumvented by others in the Argentina military. He asked that [less than 1 line not declassified] examine this thesis very carefully; is it possible that the apparent divisions do not really exist, i.e., that Videla is only playing the white hat while Massera and others do the dirty work on which all agree.” (Department of State, INR/IL Historical Files, ARACIA weekly meetings, 1976–77) The issue was also discussed at the ARA/INR/CIA weekly meeting on January 23, when Bushnell “noted that we really are not very clear about who is moderate and who is hard line on human rights matters.” (Department of State, INR/IL Historical Files, ARA-CIA weekly meetings, 1978)
  3. Not found.