Thursday, March 14, 2013

That didn't take long!

Good Day Readers:

While many are still euphoric and aglow over the first non-European Pope questions are already being asked about his role, or lack thereof, during Argentina's so-called "Dirty War" (1976-1983) when opponents of the government literally disappeared left, right and centre - an estimated 30,000. Years before the same was asked of the Church's role while the Nazi's were in power. "Deja vu all over again" as Yogi Berra would say?

There was a fascinating discussion this morning on The Current.
Host Anna Maria Tremonti interviewed British journalist Robert Cox, Editor of the only English language newspaper (Buenos Aires Herald) that covered the Dirty War. Forced to flee the country because of his open criticism of the regime and death threats against his family, today he resides in Charleston, South Carolina where he's Editor for The Post and Courier ironically also owned by the came company that owned The Herald. As an aside, Mr. Cox in 2005 was recognized by the Buenos Aires legislature for his valor during its government's dictatorship.

His son David has has since written the book, Dirty Secrets, Dirty War - The Exile of Robert J. Cox (available on Kindle).
Robert Cox is articulate, well-spoken and, needless, to say very well-versed on the activities of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglia during this period.
Another guest on the segment was Clifford Longley a recognized broadcaster and journalist who has specialized since 1972 in covering Britain's international religious affairs. For many years he was lead writer at The Times and The Telegraph. Today as an independent freelance journalist he's a major contributor to the Catholic Weekly publication and a recognized church writer/commentator who has acted as a consultant to the Catholic Bishops' Conference in England and Wales.

He had a very interesting observation. As an outsider Pope Francis the First will not know where are the bodies are buried at the Vatican. Therefore, it will be imperative that the new Pontiff appoint a couple close aids he can trust otherwise "he risks being moved around the chessboard like a pawn" (not his words).
Leading off the discussion was an interview with retired Argentinian Ambassador Luis Mendiola during the 1980's Councillor of the Embassy to the Holy See in Rome. Listeners are told of a Cardinal recognized for his humility and austerity who rode the bus and chose to live in a spare apartment rather than the appointed opulent official church residence. Mr. Mendiola believes the new Pontiff will successfully transition to Pope Francis the First even at a time when the Church has been rocked by unsavory sexual abuse scandals, the role of women and the abortion debate all juxtaposed upon Jorge Mario Bergoglia's own questionable religious journey during the Dirty War.

The podcast lasts about 22-minutes and can be heard at It's a beyond fascinating a must listen well worth the time.

Clare L. Pieuk


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