Between 1969 and 1983, 30,000 civilians were illegally detained, tortured, and "disappeared" in Argentina by the military dictatorship and the paramilitary operations that preceded their coup. The 35-acre site of the country's first memorial park was chosen because it borders the River Plate, into which many of the desaparecidos (disappeared) were thrown—heavily drugged but still alive—from military aircraft. The park is designed to look toward the city skyline
as a reminder of citizens' widespread collusion with the government. The chilling stone walls slicing down through the park to the river form the Monumento a las Víctimas del Terrorismo del Estado (Monument to the Victims of State-Organized Terrorism). Engraved on it are the names and ages of roughly 9,000 identified victims, organized by the year they vanished. You reach the park and the monument via a square containing sculptures such as Roberto Aizenberg's untitled piece representing his three disappeared stepchildren, and Dennis Oppenheim's Monument to Escape. The small information booth usually has leaflets in English.