Guatemala: the persistence of genocidal logic beyond mass killing

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This chapter analyses the complex array of factors that shaped the ending of mass atrocities perpetrated during the Guatemalan state’s counterinsurgency campaign of the 1980s. Central to the military campaign and to the execution of mass atrocities, was the strategic employment of public massacres in indigenous Maya communities accused of providing logistical and military support to the guerrilla army, the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity (URNG), in the country’s western highlands. Mass atrocities ultimately gave way to other forms of social control once the strategic goal of defeating the URNG had been achieved and indigenous communities had been successfully subject to military control. Key to the chapter is an enquiry into how the political transition that followed the strategic defeat of the guerrilla and the peace process shaped the ending of mass atrocities, if at all.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHow Mass Atrocities End
Subtitle of host publicationStudies from Guatemala, Burundi, Indonesia, the Sudans, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and Iraq
EditorsBridget Conley-Zilkic
Place of PublicationNew York and Cambridge
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages56
ISBN (Print)9781107561649
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameHumanitarian Law

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