I made a tweet the other day that my good friends at Fact Check Argentina happened to pick up.
— Mike LaSusa (@mikelasusa) November 25, 2014
I thought this was pretty funny, seeing as I wrote a piece about ATFA that was pretty harshly critical of their attempts to, in the words of ATFA executive director Robert Raben, “do whatever we can to get our government and media’s attention focused on what a bad actor Argentina is.”
Well, the Buenos Aires Herald reported yesterday that the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) sent a letter to ATFA’s main backer, the hedge fund NML Capital, owned by billionaire Paul Singer’s Elliott Management.
“Impeding Argentina from repaying its restructured bondholders and pushing the country into a debt crisis poses risks for the enjoyment of economic, social and cultural rights by its population,” the letter read.
I found it particularly problematic that ATFA appears to be ignorant of the widely-acknowledged link between economic hardship and increased crime and violence. I have personally written many times about this topic on this blog and in other forums.
ATFA even admits that “Argentina’s default is a tragedy and one that is unfortunately being borne by Argentina’s people,” but they claim this suffering is happening “while [Argentina’s] politicians prosper.”
In fact, it’s ATFA’s backers who stand to benefit from forcing the country to pay back the exorbitant amount sought by the so-called vulture fund.