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Malvinas' conscripts demanding war veteran certificates, complete eight years of encampment in Plaza de Mayo

Saturday, February 27th 2016 - 03:37 UTC
Full article 21 comments
“Today is a day to commemorate, not to celebrate”, said Tulio Fraboschi, spokesperson for the group of eight former conscripts “Today is a day to commemorate, not to celebrate”, said Tulio Fraboschi, spokesperson for the group of eight former conscripts
Frabosqui questioned the attitude of ex Defense minister Agustín Rossi who froze the administrative process for the group to be acknowledged as veterans Frabosqui questioned the attitude of ex Defense minister Agustín Rossi who froze the administrative process for the group to be acknowledged as veterans

Eight Argentine former conscript soldiers have completed eight years running in a tent camp in Plaza Mayo, the heart of Buenos Aires City, demanding they be recognized as Malvinas war veterans since they argue, they were involved in defense and logistics duties along the Patagonia coast during the 1982 conflict with the United Kingdom.

 Members of the TOAS Camp (South Atlantic Operations Theatre) got together on Thursday to 'commemorate' a new anniversary of their ongoing protest and had a special service for fourteen of their colleagues who have died since they initiated the protest in 2008, meters away from Government House or Casa Rosada.

“Today is a day to commemorate, not to celebrate. In particular we are remembering and honoring those fourteen of our mates who died without receiving the honors they deserved” said Tulio Fraboschi, spokesperson for the group, who again insisted that all members of the encampment had complied with all “the requisites” demanded by Decree 509/88 to qualify as certified war veterans.

Fraboschi questioned the attitude of former Defense minister Agustín Rossi who last year froze the administrative process for the group to be acknowledged as they demand, when “he had all the necessary documentation” to advance and complete the certification.

“We have fulfilled with all the requirements to comply as established by Decree 509/88. Rossi lied when he said we only qualified with one of the demands, time. The documents so far prove that the members of the encampment fully participated with TOAS...We participated in all of TOAS war actions. We qualify for the three demands of the procedure”.

Furthermore, the TOAS command released an only order, on 12 April 1982, “a secret order which was to guarantee the defense of the whole Argentine Atlantic coastline, islands, sea and continent from Trelew to the south...In the islands, sea and continent the common factor which involved all of us was the risk of combat” added Fraboschi, whose eight years encampment is a record protest for Buenos Aires and Argentina.

“Rossi did not comply with the premise of memory, truth and justice which Kirchnerism preached for so many years”, said the spokesperson who added that “I'm sure this government is going to continue with State policies, hopefully on those which were well done and correcting those which were incorrect”.

“What was wrong was not having concluded the task awarding the corresponding certificates of war veterans, which we are; we are all equal before the law and this inequality of treatment must end, since in Malvinas, both dead and alive received honors and benefits and in the continent only the dead”.

Asked how they felt after eight years of encampment protest, Frabosque replied, 'exhaustion, fatigue' although he valued the 'contention' that the former soldiers receive at Plaza de Mayo.

“The encampment is the only contention we have, the only shelter where we contact with other mates, with common codes. There are many in a situation of helplessness, not only economic, but emotional and live in complete precariousness”, admitted Frabosqui.

“The encampment is our shelter, the protection the State never gave us; this is one of the reasons why we continue with the encampment, until this issue is solved”.

Finally Fraboschi said that if the government gives them the war veterans certificate, “we'll lift the tent and leave things in the best of conditions, the task will be over; what we need is the political push, decision to solve it and that they give us the certificates”.

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

Top Comments

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  • Jo Bloggs

    I suppose having the war certificate in their hand makes them entitled to some assistance. Can anyone in Argentina explain what that assistance would entail please? As a former serviceman I have nothing but sympathy for them if they have somehow fallen through a net that was intended to capture them.

    Feb 27th, 2016 - 05:26 am 0
  • ChrisR

    I think I would prefer the noose to 'capture' them.

    Then their whinging and bleating would be over.

    Feb 27th, 2016 - 12:52 pm 0
  • Marti Llazo

    I believe that in the US these “troops” are referred to as “REMFs” which in the vernacular translates to Rear-Echelon Mother-Fookers. Most of them were only in the south for a few weeks and their exploits are largely imaginary. Long after the war I visited one of the estancias where some of them had stayed (in the sheep shearing-shed) near Río Grande in Tierra del Fuego. Fouler-smelling but more-fitting quarters would be hard to imagine. The troops were told they had to stay there because Chile was going to invade Argentina !

    In Argentina if you can get a certificate that you were a “combatant” during the failed 1982 Falklands adventure then among the benefits is getting paid double whatever your normal work assignment pays. So a lifetime of double-salary for having spent a few days in cool weather well outside the war zone is what is at stake here.

    Feb 27th, 2016 - 01:08 pm 0
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