To paraphrase that great line from Bogie: I remember the night of March 24, 1976 like yesterday. My wife was wearing blue. The Argentine military was in gray.

Exactly thirty years ago this weekend, the Argentine military seized power and installed a regime whose dimensions of barbarity overshadowed those of all other Latin American dictatorships: 30,000 dead or disappeared; massive torture; the stealing, bartering and selling of the children of the victims.

Living in Buenos Aires at the time,I had a front row seat to this sad spectacle as well as my own terrifying brush with the death squads. I recount those experiences here.

I was a lucky foreigner who survived. The relatives and friends of those who didn’t are still seeking justice three decades later.

Among the unaccountable, of course, is one Dr.Henry Kissinger. No sooner had the regime been installed did Kissinger do everything possible to lend American support. That story is well told by Randy Paul over at Beautiful Horizons.

There are profound lessons still to be excavated from experiences like those of Argentina and Chile; namely an appreciation for democracy. And the need to unconditionally defend it from demagogues and dictators of both the Right and the Left.