How Did Argentina’s Alberto Nisman Really Die?

Source: The Nation

In Buenos Aires, on January 18, Alberto Nisman, a government prosecutor, was found dead in his apartment, shot with a 22. The death, either a suicide or a murder, has rocked Argentine politics. One’s opinion on what the killing means depends on one’s opinion of the country’s president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.

Nisman, who had spent years investigating the 1994 bombing of the Argentina Israelite Mutual Association, which killed 85 and wounded hundreds, had accused Kirchner and her foreign minister, Héctor Timerman (son of Jacobo Timerman, one of Argentina’s most famous victims of the dirty war, author of Prisoner without a Name, Cell without a Number) of conspiring to protect Iran (and Hezbollah) from being held accountable for the bombing. Kirchner and Timerman made this deal, according to Nisman, in exchange for cheap oil. Nisman’s accusations are contained in a nearly 300-page report, released just before his death. He was about to give testimony before Congress, but died the night before his scheduled appearance.

Nisman’s death is classic black-bag baroque. It involves spies, Cold War intelligence agencies, Israel, Syria, Iran, oil politics, and, of course, the CIA and Mossad. But before going in to the deals, I want to point out its eerie similarity to another bizarre political death, in Guatemala of Rodrigo Rosenberg in 2009.

Rosenberg, just before he was murdered, made a video in which he accused the country’s then left-of-center president, Álvaro Colom, of having killed him because he had evidence of corruption. Where Nisman reportedly predicted his own death (“I might get out of this dead”), Rosenberg, in his video, said “if you are hearing or seeing this message it means that I’ve been murdered by President Álvaro Colom.”


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