World Country Argentina

About the world country Argentina, its location, size, population, and who is in power.



Location: In southern South America, east of the Andean crest. Size: 1,068,297 sq. mi. (2,766,889 sq. km.). Population: 27,709,000.

Who Really Rules: The current military dictatorship, which seized power in 1976, consists of two major factions. The soft-liners, or blandos, support the use of unconstitutional means to suppress those attempting to overthrow the military government. The hard-liners, or duros, support such means to suppress anyone. The Argentine government, even after the defeat of Marxist and Peronist guerrillas in the late 1970s, continues to manhandle the traditionally powerful labor movement, to censor the press, and to intimidate the intelligentsia. In addition to 4,000 acknowledged political prisoners, there are some 15,000 desaparecidos, or disappeared persons. Most of these people, suspected critics of the government, were kidnapped by right-wing paramilitary forces linked to the military government. Though a few are eventually released, desaparecidos are usually summarily executed or held in clandestine prison camps, where many are tortured.

Despite this record of active repression, it is economic conditions which are actually building opposition to the government. Military-backed economic policies have given Argentina one of the world's highest inflation rates, and they have helped monopoly business interests at the expense of small and medium-sized businesses, as well as at the expense of the working class.

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