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The Argentine Anticommunist Alliance (Spanish: Alianza Anticomunista Argentina, usually known as Triple A or AAA) was a paramilitary active in Argentina during the mid-1970s, particularly active under Isabel Perón's rule (1974-1976). Initially associated with the Peronist right, the organisation was bitterly in conflict with the Peronist left. It later became linked to the military junta led by Jorge Rafael Videla (1976-1983) and played a prominent role in the "Dirty War". Despite its name, the AAA acted against a wide range of government opponents, not just communists.

According to a 1983 New York Times article, at the time of the group's founding, Argentina saw a growing number of guerilla attacks by left-wing groups[1], and harsh repression of political dissidents on the part of the military, paramilitary and police forces. However, according to the 1985 Juicio a las Juntas trial, by 1976 both the ERP and the Montoneros had been dismantled, and so there was no real insurgency to legitimize the so-called "Dirty War."

Clandestinely led by José López Rega, Minister of Social Welfare and personal secretary of Juan Perón, it enforced the repression against the Peronist left-wing. Rodolfo Almirón, arrested in Spain in 2006, was also an important figure of the Triple A, in charge of López Rega and Isabel Perón's personal security. He died in jail in June 2009. SIDE agent Anibal Gordon was allegedly another important member of the Triple A, although he always denied it. He was put on trial and convicted in October 1986. Gordon died in prison of lung cancer the next year.[2]



The Triple A was organized by José López Rega and Alberto Villar, deputy chief of the Argentine federal police, during the brief interim presidency of Raúl Lastiri in 1973. Villar was killed along his wife in 1974, when a bomb was planted on his cabin cruiser in Tigre by members of the organization Montoneros. The foundational act of the movement is alleged to be an important Peronist meeting on October 1, 1973, attended by President Raúl Lastiri, Interior Minister Benito Llambí, Social Welfare Minister José López Rega, general secretary of the Presidency José Humberto Martiarena and various provincial governors [3].

López Rega, a devotee of occultism and self-styled divinator, became a powerful force in the Peronist movement, exerting great influence over Perón at the time, and his wife Isabel Martínez de Perón, who assumed the presidency upon Perón's sudden death on 1 July 1974. To support the group, López Rega drew on funds from the Ministry of Social Welfare, which he controlled.[4] Some of the members of the Triple A had taken part in the Peronist 1973 Ezeiza massacre, when snipers shot on left-wing Peronists on the day Perón came back from exile, thus leading to the definitive separation between left and right-wing Peronists.

Judge Baltazar Garzón's investigations demonstrated that Italian neofascist Stefano Delle Chiaie had also worked with the Triple A, and was present on the day of Peron's return to Argentina. Delle Chiaie also worked with the Chilean DINA and for Bolivian dictator Hugo Banzer.[5]


The group first came to national attention on 21 November 1973 when it unsuccessfully tried to murder Argentine Senator Hipólito Solari Yrigoyen by means of a car bomb. The AAA went on to kill 1,122 people, according to an appendix to the 1983 CONADEP report[6], including suspected Montoneros and ERP leftist guerrillas and their sympathizers, as well as judges, police chiefs, and social activists. In total, it is suspected of having killed more than 1500 people.[7]

The group is strongly suspected in the 1974 assassination of Jesuit Carlos Mugica, a friend of Mario Firmenich, Montoneros's founder.[6] Other people murdered by the organisation include Silvio Frondizi, brother of former president Arturo Frondizi, former-vice director of the police Julio Troxler, defender of political prisoners Alfredo Curutchet, and a key union leader of Córdoba, Hipólito Atilio López. The CONADEP commission on human rights violations has proven the Triple A's execution of 19 homicides in 1973, 50 in 1974 and 359 in 1975, while its involvement in several hundred others is also suspected.

One of the most often cited estimates counts 220 terrorist attacks from July to September 1974, which killed 60 and heavily injured 44, as well as 20 kidnappings[8] Federal judge Norberto Oyarbide, who signed the extradition demand against former leader of the AAA Rodolfo Almirón, qualified in December 2006 the Triple A's crimes as human rights violations and the "beginning of the systematic process directed by the state apparatus" during the dictatorship.[7][9]

Death threats caused many people to leave Argentina. Amongst many well-known and respected people who left are mathematician Manuel Sadosky, artists Héctor Alterio, Luis Brandoni and Nacha Guevara, politicians José Ber Gelbard, lawyer and politician Héctor Sandler, and actor Norman Briski.[10]

The AAA was known to have strong backing from the military and Army Commander-in-Chief Jorge Rafael Videla, who came to power as President following the 1976 coup d'état.

  • Murder of Rodolfo David Ortega Peña on July 31, 1974[9]
  • Murder of Raúl Laguzzidel on September 5, 1974[9]
  • Murder of Alfredo Alberto Pérez Curutchet on September 10, 1974[9]
  • Kidnapping of Daniel Banfi, Luis Latrónica and Guillermo Jabif on September 12, 1974[9]
  • Murder of Julio Tomás Troxler on September 20, 1974[9]
  • Murder of Domingo Devincenti on November 6, 1974[9]
  • Murder of Luis Ángel Mendiburu and Silvio Frondizi on September 27, 1974[9]
  • Murder of Carlos Ernensto Laham and Pedro Leopoldo Barraza on October 13, 1974.[9]


Fifteen former AAA members (including Rodolfo Almirón, who later became Manuel Fraga's chief of personal security) participated in the Montejurra 1976 shooting of two left-wing Carlist members in Spain, along with Italian neofascist Stefano Delle Chiaie and Jean Pierre Cherid, former member of the OAS and then of the GAL death squad.[10][11] Former Triple A member José María Boccardo also participated with Jean Pierre Cherid and others in the 1978 assassination of Argala, the etarra who had participated in the 1973 assassination of Franco's Prime minister Luis Carrero Blanco.[12]

See also


  1. ^ "Ex-Argentine Security Chief Arrested". New York Times. 1983-11-12.  
  2. ^ Quién fue Aníbal Gordon, El Clarin (Spanish)
  3. ^ Manuel Justo Gaggero, “El general en su laberinto”, Pagina/12, 19 February 2007
  4. ^ Un juez argentino ordena capturar al ex jefe de la 'Triple A', que vive en Valencia, El Mundo, December 20, 2006 (Spanish)
  5. ^ "Las Relaciones secretas entre Pinochet, Franco y la P2 - Conspiración para matar". Equipo Nizkor. 1999-02-04.   (Spanish)
  6. ^ a b "Rights: Argentina Renews Hunt for 'Triple A' Death Squad". IPS. 2007-02-23.  
  7. ^ a b Justicia argentina condenó delitos de la Triple A, Agencia Pulsar, 27/12/2006, URL accessed on January 4, 2007 (Spanish)
  8. ^ González Jansen, Ignacio (1986), La Triple A, Buenos Aires, Contrapunto. (Spanish)
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i Prisión para el ex policía argentino Rodolfo Almirón por su pertenencia a la Triple A, EFEEl Mundo, December 29, 2006 — URL accessed on January 4, 2007 (Spanish)
  10. ^ a b Rodolfo Almirón, de la Triple A al Montejurra, PDF (Spanish)
  12. ^ «Yo maté al asesino de Carrero Blanco», El Mundo, December 21, 2003 (Spanish) (English account of El Mundo article)

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