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Putting Argentina’s Kirchner on Peron pedestal
Question of the Day
But her support has dropped steadily since. About 61 percent of Argentines now disapprove of her performance, according to a September poll of 2,269 adults by Management & Fit polling firm that had an error margin of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
An uncritical documentary
Ms. Fernandez still seeks strength in her late husband’s reflected glory, promoting his legacy in speech after pointed speech.
“He might have been cross-eyed, but he could see much better than people who had contact lenses and many other things, and what he didn’t see he could intuit, with this emotional intelligence that God gave him,” Ms. Fernandez said Friday.
The documentary’s director, Paula de Luque, is an unapologetic Kirchner fan who also recently directed a drama based on the Perons’ relationship called “Juan y Eva,” which won best film and best director awards at last month’s Bogota Film Festival.
Ms. de Luque was recruited by producers Fernando Navarro, a ruling party lawmaker in Buenos Aires province, and Jorge Devoto, who said they were inspired by the massive outpouring of sympathy unleashed by Kirchner’s death.
The two men launched an Internet site asking people to contribute any images of Kirchner for the film, and received thousands. The documentary combines these with video fragments and personal testimonies, and music by Oscar-winning Argentine composer Gustavo Santaolalla.
The result includes some of Kirchner’s most symbolic acts as president, such as when he paid off Argentina’s International Monetary Fund debt in an effort to operate without IMF scrutiny, and when he stared down President George W. Bush at the 2005 Summit of the Americas and helped kill Mr. Bush’s free-trade proposals.
It also shows when Kirchner had the military take dictator Jorge Rafael Videla’s picture down from a place of honor in his campaign to revive human rights trials.
The film doesn’t criticize Kirchner in any way.
It doesn’t include, for example, accusations by his former political allies that he enriched himself with $535 million in oil royalties while he was governor of the southern Santa Cruz province. Kirchner moved it into overseas accounts in the 1990s, keeping it safe there from Argentina’s roller-coaster economy.
Critics said he never fully accounted for the cash, but supporters praised this ability to outmaneuver enemies as an important aspect of the his rule.
Ms. de Luque acknowledges that she had no intention of making an objective documentary.
“I’m not neutral,” Ms. de Luque said. “I’m not a journalist or neutral historian. It is a controversial movie, but that’s OK This is how democracy works.”
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