08.06.2019 - 19:35 [ The Intercept ]

A Vast Archive Exposed the Secret History of Kidnapping and Assassination in Guatemala. Now It’s Under Threat.

The archive is a repository for the entire historical record of the National Police of Guatemala, an institution that was founded in the 19th century as the country’s first national security force, and abolished and dismantled in 1997 by order of the peace accords that were signed in 1996 to end Guatemala’s 36-year armed conflict.

This historical archive is not just their origin records from the 1890s. It goes right through those terrible years following the U.S.-funded and supported coup in 1954, which destroyed the democratic government that Guatemala had then, through the military dictatorship in the 1960s, when real anti-communist fervor gripped the country, through the 1970s and ’80s when there were these waves of state violence, including military operations in the countryside but also many clandestine covert operations in Guatemala City and other urban areas.