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The Kirchners wiretap Vice-President Daniel Scioli

By Tony Pagliaro

Buenos Aires 11.01.06 | While in the United States there is an orderly debate on the President’s powers, Néstor Kirchner and his political partner (his ambitious wife, the powerful Senator Cristina Kirchner) have rules of their own. But Argentines do not seem to react. Recent revelations that President George W. Bush has ordered wiretaps in the United States without judicial approval has set off a wide social debate across America on what a President can and cannot do as such.

In Kirchner’s Argentina things are very different. The allocation of power is not determined by reading the Constitution and figuring out what is says or means, it is determined by “fiat”, i.e. totally by the Kirchners will.

A rubber stamp Congress always endorses the presidential couple’s proposals and views, with a straight forward and simple goal in mind: increasing the Kirchners control of all power, including the Judiciary, the Congress blesses any suggestion by the powerful couple. The Kirchners know well that the lesson of the delicate “balance of power” scheme proposed by the Constitution is that the prize of power goes to those who are bold. And they are.

As a consequence, Congress in Argentina has lost all prominence and has simply become a mechanical endorsement procedure of whatever the Executive proposes or wants to obtain, without taking into account any Constitutional restriction which might have been structured by the founding fathers in the name of the republican “checks and balances”. The Kirchners, as we all know, have no limits.

“Noticias” one of the few magazines in Argentina which has not yet been “loyalized” by the Kirchners informs that the Kirchners are know spying the Vice-president, Daniel Scioli, a former world class fast boat racer turned into “politician” during Duhalde’s era.

Scioli is still connected to Duhalde who, when causing Néstor Kirchner to become President, caused also Scioli’s appointment as “second in command”, as his close “observer”. By the way, in what simply is one more of their well known intimidation moves, the Kirchners sent yesterday their loyal “piqueteros” to “attack” and damage Duhalde´s private residence, south of Buenos Aires, in the low middle class town of Lomas de Zamora. Eduardo Duhalde, who in 2001 used similar street procedures to “fire” President De la Rúa, is now forced to take his own medicine: i.e.“mafia style” intimidating street procedures. Scioli who -as Vicepresident- is the President of Argentina’s Senate is not Marxist, nor a radical. And now knows that all his phones are carefully bugged and his letters screened. But he has just stated that he will not be “forced” to resign, thus allowing powerful Cristina Kirchenr to become second in the presidential succession line, as the Kirchners want. He also knows that he is under constant scrutiny by Francisco “Paco” Larcher, a man high up in Argentina’s intelligence services (SIDE) and a close collaborator of the Kirchners for a long while. Nobody is free in today’s Argentina.

Not even the Kirchners’ Vicepresident, Daniel Scioli, who clearly is under attack and, in addition, subject to constant political harassment by Senator Cristina Kirchner herself, in an open and public manner. Quite soon we will know whether he has been able, or not, to survive the authoritarian Kirchner’s pressures. He has committed not to resign, not matter what. But as a target of the Kirchners he is aware that he is in danger and that his personal and family lives have -suddenly- disappeared.

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