It was refreshing last week to learn about a positive experience in Latin American history, but yet again, this week we return to violence and fear. The terror is a dramatic yet fitting title of this chapter, a chapter filled with revolutions and wars, murders and torture. This chapter was filled with a lot of information about many different countries, with many different issues and many many different wars and acts of revolt. As I was reading, my mind kept wandering to the French Revolution’s Reign of Terror, in which enemies of the revolution were terrorized. It was a period of extreme violence and bloodshed, much like the Terror all over Latin America. In school, we were only taught about the history of Canada, the US and some information on European history, so reading things like this about another part of the world opens my eyes and helps me expand my understanding of the world. I wish that we had learned more about Latin America and its rich yet complicated history.
Something that stood out to me and disturbed me in one part of the reading was that pregnant women would be held in prison by the military and when they gave birth, their children were given to couples that supported the regime and their birth parents would be murdered. It just puts into perspective how brutal and unforgiving the violence was; the fact that they would take newborn babies from their mothers in order to create more support for the regime, puts into perspective how ruthless this time was.
It just seems like people can’t catch a break from the violence. And reading about it kind of removes you from the situation, it was just another world and another time. But imagine being in the midst of these dirty wars. Imagine being involved in a shootout or a bomb going off. This was a terrifying reality for so many people for so long and I think its extremely important that we’re learning about it. It goes to show that peace does not come easily, and war seems to be an easy fix to things. I wonder what would have happened if multiple leaders had just sat down together and tried to have a discussion? I know that probably seems unrealistic, but sometimes I think about what would have happened, and what situations/wars could have been avoided had people just sat down and talked. I understand that sometimes war and acts of revolution have to be the answer in order to be heard, but I just think its something interesting to think about.