Argentina’s Anti-Abortion Wave

Over the weekend, the eclectic political coalition currently in power in Argentina suffered a massive defeat to a resurgent progressive wing of the Peronist party. If the Peronists win the final round of elections in October, they will seek to enforce in Argentina the model that the late Hugo Chavez imposed on Venezuela.

The incumbents campaigned in 2016 as a pro-life, free-market political option, only to deliver the usual globalist fare of stagnant salaries, price controls, abortion, etc. The resounding loss at the primary elections came partly as a result of a clash with other Argentine social forces, which have been little reported.

Days before, on August 8, pro-life activists in Buenos Aires celebrated the first anniversary of their victory in the Argentine Congress against the international and domestic promoters of abortion.  Pro-abortion forces thought they could win in August 2018. Politicians saw the pro-life crowds, however, and knew right away that supporting abortion was a vote killer. A 2018 abortion bill failed to pass in the Senate, but that was not the end of the matter. The soldiers of darkness were determined to establish abortion by hook or by crook.

Right after their ignominious defeat, the anti-life forces began a frantic campaign to use the judiciary to accomplish what they could not achieve in Congress. Their idea was to make noise everywhere in a vast campaign of judicial intimidation against pro-life physicians. That was not hard to do, since the Argentine judiciary is known to be one of the most corrupt in the western world.  In Argentina, where there’s a bribe, there’s a way.

The local media began a propaganda effort aimed at making the existing anti-abortion laws practically ineffective. They worked hard to make everyone believe that anti-abortion laws are a grave injustice against women in general.  Soon their campaign was extended to the area of sex education in schools. Listening to the activists, one would think that Argentine children were maliciously misinformed about human sexuality because they were not taught about the ways of sodomy at five years of age.

Members of a noisy leftist minority (about 3 percent of the electorate) joined the fray. Financed by anti-life organizations in the northern hemisphere, they adroitly orchestrated a campaign to sway public opinion in favor of abortion.  They presented radical bills that would allow anyone of any age to abort at any time of the gestation period.  Some of these proposals even included the option not to seek medical assistance, a convenient exception for a country where many physicians are Catholic.

The primary objective was to saturate the discussions in Congress with proposals so radical that they wouldn’t even make it to a voting session. In that way, the anti-life forces could later lament the “prejudices” being encouraged against their movement. These extreme bills also help make future pro-abortion bills look more moderate in comparison and therefore more likely to pass.


In the last twelve months, the abortion lobby financed legal action against doctors for denying services to women wanting abortions, some of them in late stages of pregnancy.  Gynecologist Leandro Rodríguez Lastra was convicted recently for refusing to perform a non-punishable abortion on a young victim of rape. He may lose his medical license and is at risk of serving time in prison for following his conscience. In many similar cases, the doctors were not convicted but were burdened with crippling legal fees after years of litigation.

The Argentine political left usually consider the United States to be the source of all evil. Yet this aggressive anti-American posture evaporates when it comes to grabbing fresh dollars from the likes of George Soros. The money to support all these legal attacks against doctors like Rodríguez Lastra comes from pro-abortion organizations abroad.

The unpopular Argentine left will never have the necessary numbers to vote abortion into law. Nevertheless, they try to create the impression of having massive support. They know Argentine politicians decide what principles to espouse after looking at the current opinion polls. Where the polls go, the politicians follow. The media helps by falsely presenting the pro-life collective as an “intolerant minority seeking to impose their Catholic beliefs on the general population.”

Help for the pro-life movement is coming from the least expected corner: the poor.  Since 1916, Argentina has endured a series of incompetent administrations. Regardless of their political leanings, they all imposed some form of socio-economic model that bred more poverty.

In Argentina, state corporativism operates in tandem with a (poorly) planned economy. The power brokers in that political order are basically members of a plutocracy, a club formed by corporate businessmen, union bosses, and politicians who enrich themselves while the system further impoverishes the poor. All Argentine administrations since 1916 have operated more or less in the same way. Argentina is trapped in a decadent economic model that condemns half of its population to poverty. Now, the Progressives want to add abortion, euthanasia, and other abominations to the mix.

The growth of poverty had unexpected consequences. The great surprise of 2019 is that the poor in Argentina are strongly pro-life.  It was truly moving to see women recently planting one tree for every baby born last year. Those were women inhabiting one of the poorest shantytowns in Buenos Aires. Their spontaneous symbolic gesture is a sign of the strong pro-life beliefs that still survive among poor Argentines. Despite the dark forces that seek to impose the murderous ways of global Sodom, the poor in Argentina remain strongly pro-life.

Don’t cry for Argentina but pray for her strong pro-life movement, because it has the potential to ignite a powerful global anti-abortion reaction. August 8 is now the International Day of Action to Save the Two Lives. One year after the Argentine pro-life political victory of August 8, 2018, its message resonates around the world.

“The least shall become a thousand and a little one a most strong nation: I the Lord will suddenly do this thing in its time.” (Isaiah 60: 22)


*Image: Argentine pro-lifers celebrating last week [credit: Agustin Marcarian, Reuters]

Carlos Caso-Rosendi is an Argentine-American writer. A convert, he was received in the Catholic Church in 2001. He is the founder of the Spanish website Primera Luz and his own blog in English, Carlos Caso-Rosendi. His books include Guadalupe: A River of Light, Ark of Grace – Our Blessed Mother in Holy Scripture, and A Vademecum of Catholic Apologetics. He lives in Buenos Aires.