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Byron Shire
October 5, 2022

Chile baloney

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What a lot of baloney Will Lilley writes in saying Allende ‘brought it upon himself’ when he was overthrown in a military coup by the brutal General Pinochet, backed by Henry Kissinger and the CIA in Chile, 1973. 

Allende was the first socialist president to be elected democratically through the ballot box in South America. That is, he and his colleagues played the game of the ruling class, the colonial powers of the US, France, the UK, and Australia. And won the election fair and square. Thisy represented the expressed ardent desire of the majority of the Chilean people to distribute the wealth of their country much more fairly amongst the people. That did not sit well with the wealthy elite and American corporations used to ripping off Chile. So they backed Pinochet and the CIA’s coup against Allende. The ‘communistas’ had to be destroyed, rooted out like they were vermin, for fear Allende’s example, like the Sandinista revolution and ‘Poder Popular’ (People Power) in Nicaragua a decade later, would spread to other impoverished nations of South and Central America, and other poor nations of the world. 

I was in Chile making a film in 1985 and I had firsthand experience of the murderous nature of Pinochet’s secret police who detained and tortured; they even used Alsatian dogs trained to rape women political prisoners. After the coup in ’73, Pinochet and his feared secret police rounded up ‘leftists’ like me (and many others in our Byron community) and tortured and ‘disappeared’ them. These were artists, writers, journalists, Montessori school teachers, architects, actors, and musicians who dared to want a better world for themselves and their kids. The murdered ‘leftists’ children, like the Stolen Generation here, were adopted out to childless Chilean army officers and the wealthy elite, never told who their real parents were. 

Will Lilley, in the ‘democracy’ (!) we live with here in Australia, you are free to peddle your sympathies for murderous fascists like Pinochet, Kissinger, Soeharto in Murdoch’s rags – he’ll believe you. He’s part of the mega-rich and ruling elite of the world. But please, don’t defile The Echo’s pages with your re-writing of history and denigrating the struggle and sacrifice of their lives by the Chilean people – a process they are still actively engaged in today with re-writing Pinochet’s Constitution. 

David Bradbury, Wilsons Creek

♦ Read Damian Kassabgi’s response here.

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  1. Pinochet was far gentler and kinder than Stalin or Mao. He was just into direct action, like a BLM riot, fiery but mostly peaceful. It’s not like it was under the first 20 years of Bolshevik rule of Russia. Pinochet’s Chile wouldn’t even be the warm up act for the leftist Bolsheviks did.


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