The Cartel And Tlatelolco: Keys To The Massacre

A German TV documentary by Helmut Grosse, The Cartel (2002, in English and subtitled German) offers a concise and lucid account of the multiple ties between the second Bush administration and the oil and energy industries, many of which date back to the president’s membership in the secret Skull and Bones Society at Yale. Some of the material is familiar and obvious, but Grosse makes a strong case for the disproportionate influence of Texas on the national agenda, and defuses likely charges of Eurocentric bias by limiting his interviews to American experts. Carlos Mendoza’s Tlatelolco: Keys to the Massacre (2002, in Spanish with subtitles) is an investigative report on the October 1968 shooting of well over 150 student demonstrators, and the wounding or arrest of hundreds more, by soldiers in Mexico City. Aptly described as Mexico’s Tiananmen Square, the massacre may have been the worst human catastrophe to befall the international student left during that era, and Mendoza walks us through the known facts, drawing on archival footage, eyewitness reports, and recently declassified documents from the U.S. Defense Department that suggest possible CIA involvement. The subtitling’s occasionally awkward, but the story is chilling nonetheless. 143 min. (JR)

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