Essay On Truth Commission

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Truth commissions are political instruments; they can never hope to satisfy victims’ demands for justice and restitution. An analysis on the function of Truth Commissions. By Sam Kingston Student No: 110340967 INTRODUCTION The concept of a truth commission was to provide a form and forum for those wronged in civil wars and dirty wars, to reveal the truth of what happened during them. Truth commissions’ function extremely well as political tools for transitional governments, it in basic has a dual purpose. To provide a form of catharsis for victim- survivors , and to give transitional governments a tool with which to draw a line in the sand; to create a clear distinction between the past and the present. The form of a truth commission and its capacity to fulfil its objectives, is dictated by the government requesting the report. This essay will focus on the truth commissions of Peru and Guatemala. As they provide a sample of the two different types of governments that order truth commission investigations. Governments that act as almost an obstacle to truth and those who aid it. This essay will assess whether or not truth commissions actually provide the appropriate closure, reconciliation and reparation for those who were most affected by the violations, and are not just political instruments used by the government. Truth Commissions and the role of government in implementing Transitional justice Before getting into the details of the two truth commissions; this essay will first discuss the idea behind a truth commission and the role of the government in implementing the changes advised by the comission. The idea of a truth commission is to provide truth, but... ... middle of paper ... ... and its citizens, or a clear example of how a government can show the public how it has changed. While the Guatemalan government hindered and in many ways damaged the legitimacy of its report, despite the mixture of internal and external workers. On the other hand the Peru Truth commission provided an objective balanced view of the conflict, which in many ways gave the interim government of the time a legitimacy and honesty prior governments lacked. While the process of reconciliation in both countries is slow, the fact that the Peruvian government is not against the process is a huge boon, unlike Guatemala. It is clear from this essay, that while TRCs are very good at discovering the truth; it takes a transparent and benevolent government to make use of it. It is that difference that shows whether a TRC has real meaning or is merely an instrument of politics.

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