U.S. expert witness Terry Karl Monday revealed in El Salvador that a U.S. military advisor witnessed the massacre of some 1,000 unarmed people at the hands of the Salvadoran Army in the El Mozote locality, in 1981.
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This revelation given during pretrial hearings in El Salvador exposes U.S. involvement in the Salvadoran civil war and the reasoning behind Washington covering up the massacre perpetrated by the Salvadoran Army.
According to Karl, U.S. Master Sergeant Bruce Hazelwood was at El Mozote with Salvadoran Lieutenant Colonel Domingo Monterrosa, who led the massacre on the ground.
"The presence of a U.S. military advisor was illegal," the expert said and assured that the U.S. and El Salvador covered up the massacre, in which most of the victims were children so that aid from the U.S. would not be cut off.
"I won't say Monterrosa didn't order it," Hazelwood testified under seal in 1982, before the United Nations (UN) Truth Commission that investigated crimes against humanity perpetrated during the Salvadoran civil war (1980-1992).
According to Karl, the Salvadoran Army had as a "main target" the Morazan Department, where El Mozote is located, because it feared that the territory would become The Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) guerrilla's rearguard.
"El Salvador implemented a strategy of extermination, without differentiating between combatants and civilians," Karl condemned.