Chile

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Snapshot,
Roland Benedikter and Katja Siepmann

Viewed from the outside, Chile seems to deserve its reputation as a rising economic star. From the inside, though, the picture is less cheery. The tale of a powerful Chilean family that owns one of the largest paper companies in Latin America embodies that tension -- and the ambiguity between the country’s bright economic growth and its lackluster social and political development.

Letter From,
Juan de Onis

The upcoming presidential election in Chile will test whether the country's middle-class majority will continue to support a government that has brought economic benefits through a dynamic free market and private enterprise system, or will instead turn to a more socialist and populist program.

Snapshot,
Christine Folch

The Triple Frontier has long served as a hub of organized crime and smuggling. But thanks to the economic downturn, the merchants that once thrived on illicit trade are backing law and order.

Response, Jan/Feb 2004
William D. Rogers & Kenneth Maxwell

Former Assistant Secretary of State William D. Rogers disputes charges of U.S. complicity in the rise and rule of Pinochet; Kenneth Maxwell replies.

Review Essay, Nov/Dec 2003
Kenneth Maxwell

Thirty years after the overthrow of Salvador Allende in Chile, The Pinochet File, a "dossier" of declassified documents, lays out the true U.S. role.

Essay, Nov/Dec 1993
Angelo M. Codevilla

The "Pinochet model," a potent mixture of authoritarianism and liberal economic reform, is sold as the elixir to nearly any country ailing under socialist transition. But the years of improvisation by Chile's reformers actually leave scant recipe to follow. The secret of Chile's turnabout, if any can be found, was simply the inspiration to shrink the state. Any country can do it, without a caudillo in charge.

Essay, Winter 1989
Pamela Constable and Arturo Valenzuela

Chile once boasted a longer history of stable democratic rule than most of its neighbors and much of Western Europe. Now it is the last major country on the South American continent to return to civilian government after a wave of authoritarianism. In December Chileans will have elected a new president after 16 years in the formidable grip of General Augusto Pinochet Ugarte. That election should set U.S.-Chilean relations, plagued by a history of intervention and mistrust, on a more constructive, cooperative course.

Essay, Spring 1986
Edgardo Boeninger

Chile today faces a familiar situation: a government attempting to rule the country and implement its program with the support of only a minority of the population. But the present case is different from the country's minority governments of 1964 and 1970, and far more serious. First, General Augusto Pinochet has much less popular support now than was enjoyed by either previous government. Second, Pinochet's authoritarian government, armed with a monopoly of force, is seeking to extend his rule to 1997, and to ensure military control over future governments. The 1980 constitution, rejected by opponents and widely criticized by independents as undemocratic in substance and virtually unamendable, is invoked as the legal foundation and source of legitimacy of this official scheme to cripple Chilean democracy permanently.

Essay, Spring 1986
Mark Falcoff

The recent collapse of personalist dictatorships in Haiti and the Philippines has served to remind Americans that since World War II, some of our most grievous foreign policy wounds have been inflicted not by adversaries but by self-styled (and self-seeking) friends. Though nothing is inevitable, and no two situations are exactly alike, it is difficult to ignore the intimate, indeed inextricable, relationship between the collapse of Chiang Kai-shek and the rise of Mao Zedong in China; of Fulgencio Batista and Fidel Castro in Cuba; of Anastasio Somoza and the Sandinistas in Nicaragua.

Essay, Jan 1975
Richard R. Fagen

On September 16, 1970, in a background briefing to the press, Henry Kissinger spoke about the September 4 electoral victory of Salvador Allende in the following way: The election in Chile brought about a result in which the man backed by the Communists, and probably a Communist himself, had the largest number of votes by 30,000 over the next man, who was a conservative. He had about 36.1 percent of the votes. So he had a plurality. . . .

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