Friday, August 10, 2012

Blood Money at Bain?

             On March 23, 1980, archbishop Oscar Romero called upon the El Salvadoran military to refuse orders to attack and kill their fellow citizens.  The next day, while celebrating Mass, Romero was assassinated by a shot to the heart.
            Central America has long been a favorite target of the United States, and the region was particularly hellish during the presidency of Ronald Reagan.  The U.S. supported terrorists in Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and elsewhere.  In 1981, Robert White, the U.S. ambassador to El Salvador, named two brothers from a ruling family in El Salvador as part of a group in Miami funding the death squads.  For that action, White lost his job. 
            Why revisit the past?  Because in 1983, when Willard Mitford Romney joined Bain & Company to head the new Bain Capitol private equity firm, he turned to Central America for investors.  The oligarchs provided 40% of Bain’s initial funding.  According to the Huffington Post:

The connection between the families involved with Bain’s founding and those who financed death squads was made by the Boston Globe in 1994 and the Salt Lake Tribune in 1999.  This election cycle, Salon first raised the issue in January, and the Los Angeles Times filled out more of the record earlier this month.[1]

            Reportedly, Romney was concerned about unsavory aspects of the ruling families.  He had his new investors checked out and was told that they had no connections to drug trafficking or death squads.  Reportedly, he believed that story — which is a bit like buying whiskey in Chicago during Prohibition after being assured that no gangsters were behind the operation.
            The last thirty seconds of the audio file below come from a recording made by a Sister in the chapel when Romero was murdered.


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