12 apr. 2022
7 okt. 2016
Imagine discovering that your surname, first name and date of birth are all lies? That your family is not your real family? Hundreds of Argentineans born during the dictatorship of General Videla, from 1976 to 1983, have faced this horrifying discovery. FRANCE 24 went to meet them.
In Argentina, during the dark days of the dictatorship, almost 500 babies were forcibly taken by the military junta from their parents, who were left-wing dissidents opposed to the regime.
The parents were tortured and often executed.
The young mothers, accused of “being active militants of the machinery of terrorism”, in the words of the dictator Videla, were killed or thrown into the sea from a military plane.
According to human rights campaigners, around 30,000 dissidents were killed or disappeared during the junta’s rule from 1976 to 1983.
Newborns, who were often born in jail or in clandestine maternity wards, were given as spoils of war to military families or those close to the regime. Once adopted, they were given a new name and a new date of birth: a false identity.
In 1983, as the dictatorship came to an end and a civilian government was democratically elected, one group of women, “the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo”, actively set out to find their missing grandchildren.
Today, forty years after the 1976 coup that brought the junta to power, and thanks to a monumental investigation, witness testimonies and DNA tests, 119 people have discovered their real identity and biological families.
In FRANCE 24’s documentary, our reporter Bertrand Devé went to meet these men and women who have discovered the truth of their past, with some of them finding out the horror of who their “adoptive” parents really were.
We joined them on their journey to reconnect with their roots and rebuild their identities.
4 Argentinians Learn of Their Real Parents After Horrors of Military Dictatorship (2010)
13 jul. 2016
When thousands of political opponents disappeared in the 1970s, relatives were left distraught. “We only want to know where our children are!” – a woman cries in a crowded street rally where sobbing women hold up pictures of the disappeared. Around 5000 were taken to ‘ESMA’ – a secret prison where torture and murder were common crimes. Yet it’ s only recently that the theft of children and babies of pregnant captives has come to light: “We never imagined this was a systematic plan, executed in a perverse manner”, says Estella of the ‘Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo’. They work to recover lost children like Huan, who thinks the man who raised him beat him because “every time he looked at me he would revisit the horror of his crime”. He now fights for DNA testing to become compulsory. The children of wealthy media magnate Ernestina Herrera de Noble, may not wish to take part in the inquiry, but “the justice system is obliged to solve the crime”. And for the lucky ones who still have relatives alive, reunion after 32 years is the most powerful revelation of an unbreakable bond: “it was almost the most beautiful feeling I’ve ever had in my life”.
SBS Australia – Ref. 4908
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13 okt. 2015
9 nov. 2013
How did a secret German sect in Chile become a haven for Nazi fugitives and a torture centre for the Pinochet regime?
Forty years after the US-backed military coup that brought General Augusto Pinochet to power in Chile, the truth about the sordid abuses and crimes that took place during his dictatorship are still emerging.
The mountains of Patagonia in southern Chile witnessed a particularly bizarre chapter of the Pinochet era; one that is still claiming victims today.
In 1961, a former Nazi corporal called Paul Schaefer fled Germany, along with hundreds of others, to found a sect in southern Chile. In an idyllic rural enclave framed by the Andes Mountains he created a virtual state within a state – one where horrifying events unfolded.
Initially with the ignorance of the government, and then with the complicity of the Pinochet regime, children were separated from their parents at birth and raised in a Kinder House. Men and women were kept apart and often drugged, while Schaefer systematically sexually abused boys and, occasionally, girls.
It also served as a haven for Nazi fugitives – such as Walter Rauff, the inventor of the portable gas chamber, and Joseph Mengele, the so-called ‘Angel of Death’ – who were permitted to hide out there in exchange for overseeing sophisticated forms of torture.
All of this took place with the full knowledge of the Pinochet regime, whose notorious intelligence chief, General Manuel Contreras, would often visit the site.
In The Colony: Chile’s dark past uncovered, the truth about what took place inside the Colony is revealed through the story of Winfried Hempel. Now 35, Hempel was born into the Colony and raised there without any knowledge of who his parents were. When he first left its grounds, he was 20 years old, spoke no Spanish, had no notion of the country in which he lived and had never seen a television, computer or mobile phone.
Although he initially struggled to adapt to the world beyond Colonia Dignidad, he gradually learned to speak Spanish, received his high school certificate and eventually qualified as a lawyer.
Al Jazeera’s Lucia Newman has followed the story of the Colonia Dignidad since 1996 – at one point even being turned away from the site at gunpoint. As a Chilean, she wants to expose the crimes that took place there – crimes that her country was not only complicit in, but an active participant to.
The Colony: Chile’s dark past uncovered | Al Jazeera Correspondent – Blog
11 apr. 2022
12 uur geleden in première gegaan (16-11-2020)
Gepubliceerd op 27 jul. 2016
4 aug. 2016
20 jun. 2016
30 jun. 2016
11 mrt. 2020
On orders from Heinrich Himmler, the Nazis abducted children from Poland for forced Germanization. Hermann Lüdeking, Jozef Sowa and Alodia Witaszek have never met, but they shared the same fate.
Tears still come to Jozef Sowa’s eyes when he talks about his life. His parents were murdered by Wehrmacht soldiers in Poland in 1943, and he and his four siblings were taken to Germany. Four of them managed to return to Poland. But his younger sister Janina was given up for adoption – as a supposedly German child. She still lives in Germany today. This kidnapping was planned. In 1941, Himmler, who headed the Nazi SS, gave the order to “gather young children who are especially racially suitable from Polish families and for us to raise them in special modestly-sized kindergartens and children’s homes.”
Professor Isabel Heinemann explains, “By so doing, he aimed to build up the German race.” For years, the historian has been researching the fates of the estimated 50 thousand children in Europe who were snatched. The largest group comes from Poland. Without their biological parents to protect them, the children were given to German families by the “SS Race and Resettlement Main Office.” Their names and dates of birth were changed to obscure their true identity.
After the war ended, those whose origins could be traced returned to their homelands. But their native countries had often become foreign to them and being singled out as a German “Hitler child” made reintegration difficult. Those responsible for the kidnapping were never brought to justice.
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30 jan. 2018
3 feb. 2015
Judges and social workers are committing crimes against humanity for stealing thousands of children from their parents to banroll a private foster care industry worth £8 BILLION per year stealing the British Taxpayers money and family court Judges have invested in this private foster care industry so it is obvious that they will protect their investment by taking the children from their natural parents and hand them over to strange money makers child traffickers.
5 nov. 2018
21 jun. 2016
23 mei 2011
rachel4 maanden geleden