Argentine Anticommunist Alliance
The Argentine Anticommunist Alliance (known as the Triple A or AAA) was a death squad active in Argentina from 1973 to 1976. It was secretly led by Argentine Minister of Social Welfare José López Rega and operated by Rodolfo Almirón. The group was largely active under the government of Isabel Perón, lasting from the year before she rose to power until she was overthrown by Jorge Rafael Videla.
Ideologically, the Triple A leaned towards the far-right and was considered to be a right-wing Peronist group. For that reason, its primary victims were left-wing Peronists and other leftist opponents of the regime. It was founded in response to an increasing number of left-wing guerrilla attacks, in retaliation for which it killed many leftists.
The Triple A was founded 1973 by its future leader, José López Rega. The idea was conceived on October 1 during a meeting attended by Rega, Alberto Villar, Benito Llambí and others. Rega was a powerful figure in the Peronist movement, and as Minister of Social Welfare was able to draw on government funds to support the organization. Many of those recruited to the Triple A took part in the 1973 Ezeiza massacre previously.
Agents of the Triple A included Italian neofacist Stefano Delle Chiaie, who had also worked for DINA. The group came to national attention in November 1973 after they tried to kill Senator Hipólito Solari Yrigoyen. They are also strongly suspected in the killing of Jesuit priest Carlos Mugica. The 1986 study by Ignacio Jansen González is often cited; he estimates the group committed 220 terrorist attacks from July to September 1974, which killed 60 and severely wounded 44; as well as 20 kidnappings. In total, the Triple A killed 1,122 people. These included union leader Hipólito Atilio López, prisoner defence attorney Alfredo Curutchet and former police leader Julio Troxler.
Death threats caused many of the opposition to leave Argentina.
The Triple A was disbanded after the regime was overthrown by Jorge Videla. After this, many members fled to Spain and continued taking part in the murders of left-wingers.
In December 2006 Argentine judge Norberto Oyarbide ruled that the crimes of the Triple A were crimes against humanity and so had no statute of limitations. As a result, the group's leader Rodolfo Almirón was arrested in Spain and charged with his crimes after being extradited. Other high-ranking members were also arrested.