MORGENFELD Leandro Ariel
capítulos de libros
Kissinger in Argentina. A key support to the dictatorship
The Good Die Young. The Verdict on Henry Kissinger
Lugar: New York; Año: 2021;
After the White House supported General Augusto Pinochet?s overthrow of Chilean President Salvador Allende, it irritated many countries on the continent, leading the administration to attempt to re-establish relations with Latin America. Their approach was the New Dialogue policy, a US government diplomatic initiative launched by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. US President Richard Nixon had appointed Kissinger in September 1973, months before the administration of Isabel Perón (1974-76), which was in the midst of an economic recession that ended with an adjustment via a devaluation implemented by Economy Minister Celestino Rodrigo. This resulted in a contradictory bilateral relationship.At the same time that messages were sent to Washington DC with the aim of improving relations, the Argentine government announced certain nationalist public policies that affected important US business interests in the country. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and US banking interests put a freeze on loans that were to be given to Argentina -and had already been approved- suffocating it financially before the country?s military overthrow was announced. The bilateral relationship shifted sharply beginning March, 1976, with the assumption of Dictator Jorge Rafael Videla. This occurred after it was made known that Alfredo Martínez de Hoz would be named Economy Minister, who had a close ties with businessman David Rockefeller and US bankers. Videla quickly announced his administration?s alignment with the Western powers, the fight against communism, and the National Security Doctrine. However, after the first few months of the dictatorship, there was constant friction with the White House, especially during the Carter administration (1977-1981). Henry Kissinger is essential to understanding the role of the United States, before, during and after the military overthrow that took place on March 24, 1976, that marked a turning point in Argentine history. It was more than a none-intervention policy; the Secretary of State had a double discourse. In public, he would voice his worries over human rights violations, but in private he spoke in favor of the State terrorism being implemented, which was supported by the US State Department weeks before the military dictatorship began. This is demonstrated in two meetings held between Kissinger and the Foreign Minister César Augusto Guzzetti, which occurred on June and September of 1976. In the first meeting, the Secretary of State signaled his support for State terrorism. And this policy won out, despite the opposing opinions within the United States? own government and the country?s public opinion. In this article, we focus on Kissinger?s role before the last Argentine dictatorship, and what tensions his position created in the internal politics of the US government.