Argentina’s Dirty War from 1976-1983 was an ideological and criminal dictatorship regime that took the lives of approximately 30,000 Argentine people. In America, the 20th century’s second quarter experienced an ideological paralysis with the cold war and détente negotiations. Consequentially, the United States initially supported Argentina’s military regime due to the perception of a strong and independent government resilient to Soviet influences. United States Ambassador to Argentina Robert C. Hill looked to the Argentine generals as a source of stability and implementation of a “moderate government now led by Gen[eral] Videla” to uphold “interests, like ours” and oppose communist forces.1 Once the atrocities and death tolls began to rise during Carter’s presidency, however, the United States started to prioritize global human rights protection over ideological political differences. In other words, Carter’s passion for human rights placed the protection of human rights as the keystone of foreign policy.
Legg, Beth, "The Emergence of United States Human Rights Policy During Argentina’s Dirty War" (2017). Undergraduate Student Research Awards. 37.