Author Alexander Aviña talks about Mexico’s cold war in new book

Arizona State University Associate Professor at the School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies Alexander Aviña discusses Mexico’s cold war in “Specters of Revolution: Peasant Guerrillas in the Cold War Mexican Countryside.”

“When we tend to think about the cold war, we think about this geopolitical ideological confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United States,” Aviña says.

The professor’s book deals with the cold war deals in Latin America and how local conditions interacted with global political conflicts. It is the first book in English to describe the history of peasant revolutionary movements an the history of state terror by the Mexican government against civilians in the 1960s and 70s.

“I think part of the argument of my book, and an increasing number of Mexican scholars, is Mexico conducted its own series of dirty wars,” Aviña says. “I think a small group of us and active scholars in Mexico have uncovered probably about three thousand people killed by the Mexican state from the mid-1960s to the early 1980s.”

Aviña says if the number of people killed is correct than it puts Mexico on par with Chile.

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Alexander Aviña: ASU Assoc. Professor School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

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