Memory is what guides our everyday actions: it forms our history, shapes our present, and projects us toward a new future. In the aftermath of trauma, memory serves as an important political tool used to rebuild society. Both individual and communal narratives emerge through the retelling of history and contrasting versions of the same occurrences battle one another to be heard.
President Obama’s upcoming visit to Argentina coincides with the 40th anniversary of the military coup responsible for the curtailment of political and civil rights, forced disappearances, and the torture and murder of thousands of civilians. The decision of Mr. Obama to honor the victims of Argentina’s brutal “dirty war” by declassifying military, intelligence and law enforcement documents from that period should be applauded.