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A former Chief Correspondent of The News Hour with Jim Lehrer, Elizabeth Farnsworth co-produced and co-directed (with Patricio Lanfranco) The Judge and the General. The film traces Judge Juan Guzman’s descent into what he calls “the abyss,” as he investigates the crimes of Augusto Pinochet. After opening at the San Francisco Film Festival in April, 2009, The Judge and the General aired in the United States on P.O.V. (PBS) and screened in film festivals and on television networks around the world, winning numerous awards.
Farnsworth first worked in Chile in 1970 as an assistant producer on Que Hacer, a feature film directed by Saul Landau, Raul Ruíz and Nina Serrano which takes place during the campaign of Salvador Allende. Since then she has written widely about Chile for several publications and reported from Santiago for The NewsHour. In 2000, as part of a story about the Clinton administration’s release of previously classified U.S. documents relating to U.S.-Chile policy in the 1970’s, she interviewed Henry Kissinger, who served as Richard Nixon’s National Security Advisor and later Secretary of State. He said this about his support for Pinochet in spite of well-documented human rights crimes:
HENRY KISSINGER: First of all, human rights were not an international issue at the time, the way they have become since. That was not what diplomats and Secretaries of States and Presidents were saying generally to anybody in those days… But it was also true that….. I was convinced that Allende was heading the country toward communism.
Most recently, Farnsworth and landscape photographer Terry Evans spent almost two years documenting North Dakota’s oil boom. An exhibit of Evans’ photographs and Farnsworth’s writing about the boom is currently on display at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago.
Return to Tribute to Justice: Remembering 40 years September 9th 2013.