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Federación Anarquista Uruguaya (est. 1956 to present)

"Rojo y Negro," Tomo 1-2, Montevideo (Uruguay), 1968

"Tiempo de lucha? Tiempo de elecciones?," Montevideo (Uruguay), 1971

1a Confrencia Anarchista Americana 1957
     Contains the program, pronouncements, and agreements of the First American Anarchist Conference (1957) held in Montevideo, which was organized by the FAU and attended by representatives from Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, USA, Mexico, Domincan Republic, Peru, Haiti, and Panama. The conference is primarily concerned with themes of militarism and imperialism in Latin America.

"The Federacion Anarquista Uruguaya (FAU): Crisis, Armed Struggle and Dictatorship, 1967-1985" Translated compilation of interviews with FAU militants from Kate Sharpley Library, 2009:

"El la sevla hay mucho por hacer" animated film by Walter Tournier, 1974

This short animated film by Uruguayan cartoonist Walter Tournier is based on a series of drawings produced by FAU militant Mauricio Gatti while in prison in Buenos Aires. This is Tournier's first animated film - he later became Uruguay's most recognized cartoonist and founder of the Cinemateca Uruguaya, a nationwide film club. The short film documents the FAU's vision for organizing a resistance to the civic-military dictatorship (est. 1973) while exiled in Argentina.

RE the youtube links below:

Video footage from a 20 September 2017 tour of Automotores Orletti, a clandestine detention, torture, and extermination center in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The site operated from May to November 1976 shortly after Argentina fell under military dictatorship. Roughly 300 people passed through the space - mostly political exiles from other countries in Latin America. The space operated as the primary site for Operation Condor in Argentina. It housed torturers and murderers from at least five different countries (Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Paraguay, and the United States).

It is most famously known as the site of torture and disappearance of over twenty members of the Uruguayan Anarchist Federation (FAU) who were kidnapped and tortured there shortly after its opening. Members of the FAU relocated to Buenos Aires in 1973 after Uruguay fell under military dictatorship. There, they plotted with other exiled New Left organizations to build a transnational resistance movement. In 1974, the FAU's armed apparatus carried out a kidnapping of a high profile Dutch industrialist who was money laundering and smuggling wool in the Rio de la Plata region. They received a 10 million dollar ransom and thus became highly sought after by state authorities.

The FAU used two million dollars of the kidnapping ransom to found and fund the Partido por la Victoria del Pueblo (PVP), which served as an infrastructure for resistance between exiles and militants at home in Uruguay. However, when Argentina fell under dictatorship in 1976, the Argentine Secret Police (SIDE) and Uruguayan Armed Forces began disappearing members of the FAU-PVP from their Buenos Aires homes.

They were taken to "Orletti." The space was owned by Santiago Cortell who rented it to the SIDE during its operation. The space had the facade of an automechanic shop due to its previous life as "Cortell S.A." Guardsman, mostly plain-clothed civilians who were part of the neo-fascist group Triple A, would move cars in and out of the front garage to give the appearance of an operating repair shop. The upstairs was a house where the state terrorists would sleep. It is adjacent to a schoolyard and you can hear the children playing most of the day - from that it took its official name amongst the state authorities who operated the site, "El Jardin". However, detainees knew it as "Orletti" after rumor spread due to a misreading of the front sign by one militant as he caught glimpse of the it briefly from under the hood used to cover his face by the kidnappers. Struggling to gain awareness of his surroundings while being dragged from the van, he read "Orletti" out of the figures "Cortell S.A."

Once in Orletti, detainees were held in a collective cell which was quite different from the holding methods at Argentina's larger clandestine detention centers like ESMA and "La Perla," where prisoners were isolated in casket-sized boxes and only released to eat. In Orletti, detainees were held naked in a collective cell and prohibited from speaking to one another. Guards could watch over them from a peephole and if they heard any sort of collusion they would arrive at the front of the cell and fire shotguns above the detainees, hitting the wall with the purpose of intimidating them. The ultimate form of alienation - together, divided. Detainees received frequent torture, often by waterboarding or hanging inversely from the ceiling - both methods were exported by the United States via the School of the Americas. Torture sessions were carried out in a separate room under an image of Hitler - various survivors have recalled the image.

Detainees were not held in separate cells because they were not meant to stay long at Orletti. There were no clear feeding schedules nor forced labor like at other detention sites of the epoch. Instead, they were brought there by state authorities with intentions to extract information. Uruguayan authorities interrogated (tortured) Uruguayans, Chileans to Chileans, and so on.. Two Cuban embassy officials passed through the site and were interrogated by CIA officials, who made a special trip to the site in search of information on Nicaragua.

On July 24 1976, a group of 23 detained FAU militants were flown back to Uruguay and brought to a house in the suburbs of the city. The Uruguayan military dictatorship called for their presence after the United States Senate began debating a bill that would cut military aid to their government under wide rumors of torture. A group of state authorities housed the militants for over a week in a fake "safe house" before staging a raid on the site in an attempt to paint the picture of a thriving guerrilla movement still under operation within Uruguay. The militants were then paraded around the city in a caravan before bring brought to an Uruguayan prison. Regardless, the US Senate, lead by New Yorker Ed Koch, voted to cut the military funding by November that same year. Those on the flight are some of the only survivors of Orletti.

Other members of the FAU detained in Orletti were killed after authorities used them to trace down the outstanding 8 million dollars. Upon recovering the money the SIDE and Uruguayan Armed Forces split it between themselves. The Argentina military government used the money to build the SIDE headquarters, which still operates today as Argentina's version of the Pentagon.

Orletti closed in November 1976 after two members, a male and female couple of the Argentine group ERP, escaped from the space in the midst of a planned torture session. The Argentine state could not risk the secret being out.

Grotesquely, Cortell returned to live at the site in the 1990s, covering up the bullet holes in the walls with plaster. He was sent to trial and claims complete ignorance of the events there in the 70s to this day. Argentine President Nestor Kirschner expropriated the site from him in 2006. It now serves as one of dozens of sites of historical memory in Buenos Aires alone. Cortell now lives a few blocks away.

Over 30,000 leftists were disappeared from Argentina during the state's "Third World War" against Leftism in the 70s and 80s.

Many of the torturers and murderers who operated Orletti have been recently convicted in an Argentine trial which has been carried out over the past 5 years. The most recent condemnation came on September 11, 2017, when four ex-Argentine federal police were sentenced to 16 year sentences. One, Rolando Oscar Nerone, was brought from Brazil for the trial, where he was living a secret life in the boheme Rio neighborhood of Santa Teresa as an exiled Leftist militant who had escaped the Argentine military junta.
---Troy Araiza Kokkinis

Part I:
Part II:


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