Recent Chilean History Sep 18, 2013
Chilean dictatorship (1973 -1990)
After Salvador Allende was overthrown by the 11 September 1973 coup d'état, Chile was ruled by a military dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet that lasted up until 1990. The regime was characterized by the systematic suppression of political parties and the persecution and killing of dissidents.
The worst violence occurred in the first three months of the coup's aftermath, with the number of suspected leftists killed or "disappeared" soon reaching into the thousands. A later report, the Valech Report (published in 2004), confirmed the figure of 3,200 deaths. It tells of some 28,000 arrests in which the majority of those detained were tortured. At least 200,000 Chileans (about 2% of Chile's 1973 population) were forced to go into exile.
In 1980, following a highly controversial referendum, Pinochet, was elected president and a new constitution was approved. The military government, under the influence of the "Chicago Boys", then took a neoliberal stance on economics. Although the military government of Chile lost power following a referendum in 1988, the military continued to exercise a great influence on politics. Before power was relinquished, an amnesty law was passed, preventing most members of the military from being prosecuted by the subsequent regime.
Relationship with the U.S:
The CIA actively supported the military junta after the overthrow of Allende. The U.S. continued to give the junta substantial economic support between the years 1973–1979, while simultaneously expressing opposition to the junta's repression in international forums.
Right and left political movements during the time:
Patria y Libertad (Fatherland and Liberty Nationalist Front) was a nationalist and authoritarian political and paramilitary group denounced by their opponents as being fascist. The group was formed by Pablo Rodríguez in 1970, and turned clandestine throughout the presidency of Allende. It was officially disbanded on 1973, following Pinochet's coup.
MAPU (Popular Unitary Action Movement) was a leftist political party in Chile founded in 1969. It was part of the Popular Unity coalition during the government of Salvador Allende. MAPU was repressed during the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet and mosto f the members went into exile or dissapear.
MIR (Revolutionary Left Movement) is a Chilean political party and former far-left guerrilla organization founded on October 12, 1965. At its height in 1973, the MIR numbered some 10,000 members and associates.Andrés Pascal Allende, a nephew of Salvador Allende, was one of its early leaders.
FPMR (Manuel Rodríguez Patriotic Front) Initially formed as the armed faction of the Chilean Communist Party in 1983 the FPMR was reportedly an urban guerrilla group. At its height, the FPMR was estimated to have between 1,000 and 1,500 members.