Argentina's manipulation of a prosecutor's death is almost complete

The Argentine government took out a full page ad in local newspapers denouncing the work of Alberto Nisman, a prosecutor who died mysteriously last month.

The ad says that Nisman sought to “destabilize the government” by attempting to file a complaint accusing the government of covering up a decades-old bombing just before his death.

“With the complaint dismissed … one is left to consider the goals sought by Nisman with his complaint, filled with contradictions, illogical, with no legal basis,” said the advertisement, adding: “Is it possible to think of a different hypothesis than (Nisman) seeking a political effect of destabilization?”

Judge Daniel Rafecas threw out the complaint, which included charges against President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and members of her administration, last week. The ad praises that decision and is called “Commitment, Truth and Justice.”

What this should signal to observers is that the government’s manipulation of Nisman’s death is almost complete.

Before he was found dead, shot to the head in his locked apartment, Nisman was about to testify before the Argentine legislature that the government had covered up Iran’s involvement in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish Center in Buenos Aires, AMIA, in order to secure an oil-for-food deal with Iran.

Since then, Argentina has been a mess. People of have taken to the streets. The mystery serves as a reminder in the country’s collective conscious of the brutal murders and kidnappings of dictatorships in the recent past. Many people blamed the Fernandez administration. Conspiracy theories abounded (and still abound).

Nisman protestEdgard Garrido/ReutersPeople take part in a peaceful demonstration, honouring late Argentine state prosecutor Alberto Nisman, outside the Argentina Embassy in Mexico City, February 18, 2015.

What’s clear is that there has been an ongoing campaign to discredit Nisman and fill the investigation into his death with leads that lead to nowhere. Earlier this week Argentine twitter exploded with tweets about Nisman’s sex life and involvement with a young model, which his lawyer denies.

Add this to the laundry list of people who’ve grabbed national attention for their alleged connection to Nisman for a short time, then left the spotlight as soon as they came into it.

As NPR’s Lourdes Garcia-Navarro pointed out, we’ve heard from a locksmith, a waitress, a computer technician, a jouranlist and more. None of these personalities have pushed the case forward, they share facts that are later disproved, they serve only to confuse.

Alberto NismanMarcos Brindicci/ReutersLate Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman pauses during a meeting with journalists May 29, 2013.

Then today’s ad:

“In his decision the federal Judge in charge of the case categorically rejected the complaint presented by the prosecutor and ratified what many international experts maintained after they read the complaint… the evidence it presented far from even minimally maintaining the prosecutor’s, it soundly dismantles it.”

Considering that Nisman’s report was almost 300 pages long, it’s safe to say that most Argentines haven’t read the whole thing. For those looking to draw a conclusion in all the chaos, here’s one ready made for them, signed and sealed by the government.

“Everything in Argentina has to be placed in a conspiracy theory. Everything,” says Carolina Barros, the former editor-in-chief of the Buenos Aires Herald, told NPR.

She continued: “Some of them say ‘A,’ some of them say ‘B,’ and this is a great mess, a great soap opera, and what is going on regarding the truth?”

Amidst all the confusion there is no truth. Only loud voices that take out full page ads.

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