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Doesn't he look like the archetypical man of God?

[Image: art.wernich.afp.gi.jpg]

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/7035294.stm
Quote:A court in Argentina has convicted a former Roman Catholic police chaplain of collaborating in murders during the country's military rule.
Christian Von Wernich, 69, was convicted for involvement in seven murders, 42 abductions and 31 cases of torture during the 1976-83 "Dirty War".

Survivors say he passed confessions he obtained from prisoners to the police.

As he was sentenced, Father Von Wernich showed no emotion. Protesters torched his effigy outside the court.

The trial in the town of La Plata, 60km (35 miles) south of Buenos Aires, had lasted for three months.

Father Von Wernich initially avoided prosecution by moving to Chile, where he worked as a priest under a false name.

However, he was eventually tracked down by investigators and extradited to Argentina in 2003 when amnesty laws passed at the end of military rule were declared unconstitutional.

At the trial, several former prisoners said the former Roman Catholic priest used his office to win their trust before passing information to police torturers and killers in secret detention centres.

They say he attended several torture sessions and absolved the police of blame, telling them they were doing God's work.

"Von Wernich participated assiduously and maintained direct contacts with the detainees," the prosecution said in its indictment.

Father Von Wernich's lawyers said the case against him had more doubts than certainties and that he had been obliged to visit police detention centres as part of his duties.

The priest said he had never violated the prohibition against revealing information obtained in the sacrament of confession and accused those torture victims who gave evidence in court of being influenced by the devil.

"False testimony is of the devil, because he is responsible for malice and is the father of evil and lies," he said.

Once the judge announced the sentence, observers inside the courthouse erupted with relief and jubilation. Outside, crowds cheered and set off fireworks.

Human rights activists and former prisoners celebrated the verdict.

"It's a historic day, a wonderful day... it's something we mothers didn't think we'd live to see," said Tati Almeyda, a member of the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, a group of women seeking their sons and daughters who disappeared under military rule.

"Justice has been done. The Catholic Church was an accomplice," she told the Reuters news agency.

The BBC's Daniel Schweimler in Buenos Aires says Father Von Wernich's actions caused particular outrage in Argentina because he had abused the trust that believers placed in him.

While human rights activists and survivors will be celebrating the verdict, they will now shift their attention to the Roman Catholic Church in Argentina, our correspondent says.

The Church remained silent on the case ahead of the verdict, but it will again face questions about the role it played during military rule, he adds.

Between 10,000 and 30,000 people were killed or disappeared before Argentina returned to civilian rule with the election of President Raul Alfonsin in October 1983.
quadrat Wrote:Doesn't he look like the archetypical man of God?

[Image: art.wernich.afp.gi.jpg]

In a word,.............no! You are reading too many horror novels "Q".
Quote:Doesn't he look like the archetypical man of God?

Actually, my initial reaction was that he looks German. He even has a German name, "Von Wernich".

-S
He also helped Argentina avoid entry into Joe Stalin's empire,which is a good thing. When your enemy are communists and Islamic jihadists,you can't win by being nice.

Argentina won and avoided Marxist rule,a few thousand Marxists got their brains crushed out in the process and I understand a Marxist thinking it was bad,but not anyone else.

Had men like him not acted this way,several million Argentines would have been living like Ethiopians under Mengistu.

I say several thousand dead Marxists and a handful of innocents is a small price to pay for that.

Good on the man. Bad on his enemies.
Palladin Wrote:He also helped Argentina avoid entry into Joe Stalin's empire,which is a good thing. When your enemy are communists and Islamic jihadists,you can't win by being nice.

Argentina won and avoided Marxist rule,a few thousand Marxists got their brains crushed out in the process and I understand a Marxist thinking it was bad,but not anyone else.

Had men like him not acted this way,several million Argentines would have been living like Ethiopians under Mengistu.

I say several thousand dead Marxists and a handful of innocents is a small price to pay for that.

Good on the man. Bad on his enemies.

Patrick, are you saying that the end is justified by the means?
Quote:Actually, my initial reaction was that he looks German. He even has a German name, "Von Wernich".
really, there are hundreds of millions of people with German roots out there, can't afford to monitor them all. Doris Lessing, Nobel price laureate, also carries a German name and is quite the opposite of mind. Von Wernich is lower nobility, former earls or so.

Palladin,
trying to be pathetic, again? Marxists killed no one in Argentine, nasty Christians did.
Quote:Marxists killed no one in Argentine, nasty Christians did

really, there are hundreds of millions of people with Christian roots out there, can't afford to monitor them all.
Good reasoning, indeed. What's the job of this Holy Ghost, anyway?
John,

The means don't need justifying. An armed revolt against legitimate authority is to be crushed and the level of force used and rules employed are whatever it takes to prevail.

Being nice and allowing a Castro in Argentina would be less benevolent and more harmful to human rights to millions of Argentines,not just a few thousand Marxists and their friends.

I much prefer overly harsh methods to overly nice methods when it's my freedom we're trying to preserve. Who am I to decide in 2007 if the methods were too harsh in Argentina back then?