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Fri Nov 16, 2012, 03:55 PM

In Priests’ Dining Room, a Reminder of Brutality in El Salvador

Side Street November 16, 2012, 10:39

In Priests’ Dining Room, a Reminder of Brutality in El Salvador


[font size=1]David Gonzalez/The New York Times[/font]

Inside a SoHo residence on Thompson Street, eight portraits hang in a corner of the dining room, arrayed above jars of sunflower and pumpkin seeds, boxes of cookies, and bottles of soy sauce and vinegar. The framed drawings – two women flanked by six men – seem utterly ordinary. But what happened to them 23 years ago this week was not.

The eight were six Jesuit priests, their cook and her daughter who were slaughtered on Nov. 16, 1989 at the University of Central America in El Salvador. Their killers – members of an elite, United States-trained battalion – never faced true justice. Two officers were convicted in 1991, but they were freed a couple of years later under the amnesty that ended that country’s 12-year civil war in which some 75,000 people died.

Their deaths came near the end of a decade that started with the assassination of an archbishop and the murder of four American churchwomen. The outrage the Jesuit murders sparked pushed the government into negotiations to end the conflict.

On Thompson Street, the memory of the UCA Martyrs, as they are known, remains vivid, their faces a daily backdrop to meals, coffee breaks or a quick respite reading the paper. Yet members of the Roman Catholic order are quick to point out that their brother priests – who fiercely decried the civil war’s violence – shared the fate that befell thousands of unheralded Salvadorans.


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Reply In Priests’ Dining Room, a Reminder of Brutality in El Salvador (Original post)
Judi Lynn Nov 2012 OP
BigDemVoter Nov 2012 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Fri Nov 16, 2012, 05:29 PM

1. I remember this.

And I also remember 3 American nuns and a lay worker raped & killed by the military as well. Awful.

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