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A day to wear black as well as green

Yesterday was St. Patrick’s Day, as March 17 has always been and will continue to be globalized. Embassy of Israel.

The shock of that horrific event remains unique beyond the numbers. At least 28 months later, AMIA Jews died A subsequent anti-Semitic bomb blast at a community center killed 85 people, quantitatively overshadowed by the 194 youth lives consumed in the Cro-Magnon rock club blaze in late 2004. The stunned or stunned disbelief is never repeated. Unlike the tragedy above, the death toll today remains unknown, with both his 22 and his 29 figures taken from official sources. Day.

As it happened, that day directly overlapped these two aspects of March 17th. The bombed-out Israeli embassies in Arroyo and Suipacha are adjacent to the Irish and Romanian embassies, the former closed for St. Patrick’s Day. An Irish diplomat was on a bus to a regional event in Rosario when he was just two minutes from departure, still in Retiro as he left the terminal, over an area he knew well. I suddenly saw a huge mushroom cloud rising up. “Oh my god, that’s my embassy! How did the IRA get to Buenos Aires?” he thought. We didn’t have mobile phones at the time, so before I knew the news, I was haunted by that worry the entire trip to Rosario.

Towards the end of perhaps the mildest summer in a quarter century, the shock was even greater. Neither the genocide of the 1970s and the ensuing South Atlantic War of 1982, nor the presidency of Raul Alfonsin from 1983 to 1989, ended in hyperinflation in the 1985 military tribunal (the subject of the film is I declined the Oscars last Sunday). Carapintada The military uprising that lasted until 1990 was rather peaceful. But convertibility, introduced on April Fool’s Day 1991, finally started to click after a slow start, ending two years of his four-digit annual inflation rate, and Carlos his Menem provided a comfortable intermediate win in the previous spring. Life in Argentina was becoming almost boring, and foreign correspondents were beginning to abandon the expensive cities with nothing of interest.

The mood of hard-won complacency was shattered by rudeness. No one could understand what had happened to them. The atrocities widely circulated (and persisting to this day) were the Iranian retaliation for Menem’s provision of two small corvettes for his 1990-1991 Gulf War fleet. . Of course, there was every reason to suspect the Islamic Republic of Iran, but this motive made no sense at all – Saddam Hussein was killed in the then-recent Iran-Iraq War of 1980-1988, killing nearly a million people. of Iranians, why should Tehran be angry with Menem for joining an international alliance to eliminate Saddam? The near-universal credibility given to this interpretation indicates a staunch ignorance of the Middle East.

If that happened, I probably didn’t realize it and had more reason than most to suspect Iran. Buenos Aires Herald The newspaper (of which I was a co-editor at the time) launched a marketing strategy to cover the National Days of each country at the Buenos Aires Embassy, ​​interviewing diplomatic representatives, and advertising to affiliated companies and chambers of commerce. bottom. His first two years were to cover all countries before shortlisting the most valuable ones. Since the date of the Islamic Revolution is his February, in that month of 1992 I visited Figueroa for a corresponding interview. Mosen Lavani was one of my interlocutors). I was made to wait in the entrance lobby for half an hour before I walked in for my interview. I persuaded myself.

of Herald Tragedy and far more direct in the form of a late night visit on March 17, 1992, by co-editor Nicholas Toser, to Embassy Resident Rafael Eldad (who would become an ambassador over the next decade). there was a direct contact. A few hours. My own thoughts earlier in the day were much more frivolous, centered around how I could get as drunk as possible that night and honor my Irish grandmother in Liverpool.

One of the public reactions to the atrocities was the easy phrase.we are all Jewish I have never been more relieved than to easily deprive the Jews of their special victim status by trying to share the admirable sentiment that (“We are all Jews”). . Although this atrocity took place within Argentina, killing Argentines and some citizens of neighboring countries, such innocent bystanders turned their morbid minds to the extermination of the Jewish nation. It has never been a target for terrorists. Jew, instead of falling into self-pity.

The immunity to this horror has not disappeared, but neither should the memory.

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