Regarding James T. Dette’s article entitled “Salvadorian war wasn’t that simple,” this part is true. But then again, no war is.
The war in El Salvador was going on before 1980 and a more accurate description and range would be 15 plus years, not 12. While the Mayans were victims of war, they are not the only ones. In war, everyone is a victim.
From what I gathered, the Atlacatl Battalion was indeed trained by the United States. However, when they reached the battlegrounds, they were grossly outnumbered, trapped and surrounded at the lowest ground position possible. They responded in the fight for their lives. It’s easy to say that they murdered every man, woman and child in the village, but I respectfully ask Mr. Dette, were you there?
The terrible truth is that wars are full of untruths. The death of Arch Bishop Romera, the nuns, peace makers and social workers are in question, somewhat of a mystery. Speculation is only as pure as its form. Do we really know if the Salvadorian National Guardsman were the culprit or could it have been the guerillas, who were known to have butchered entire villages because the elder statesman would not unanimously join their gang? These guerillas cut peoples’ heads off and showed satisfaction with their take no prisoners mentality. I’m sure the soldiers were no saints but it was the guerillas that were forcing folks into gang initiation as opposed to recruiting officers. Guerillas were placing guns to the heads of nine and 12 year old boys in poor villages forcing them to carry M23 that were bigger than them.
In war, atrocities are committed, but I’ll take a trained military over gangs and guerillas any day. God Bless America.
James Francis Waddleton